What Is Our No Money Challenge?

By far the most popular question I am asked is how do I get started in property quickly followed, in many cases, by “if I have no money”.  With a substantial portfolio and businesses behind me it can seem hypocritical to say “save up” for a deposit.  It’s also difficult for me to put myself in the shoes of an investor facing the challenge of buying a property when they have limited knowledge, income or, as most do, a large amount of outgoings.

In reality a property investor starts their journey far before buying their first house, this includes educating yourself around the property market and various other important factors but ultimately it boils down to generating a starting fund to buy your first house.  This can come from any number of places, savings from your current job, inheritance and so on, some invest with other people’s money to generate income before they are able to invest with their own money, generally this money comes from family members as very few people would entrust a wannabe investor with their money when they have no track record.

My money for my first two properties came from three places, I was awarded a scholarship to university which meant that I got a sizable student loan and I lived at home during university so I didn’t spend this money, I also worked as a swimming teacher during university and had a decent income from this, I used this money to buy my first property.  My mum passed away when I was young and I received inheritance money from her estate, I used this to buy my second house.  These two properties cost me £40,000 each, I refinanced them at a much higher value after refurbishing them myself and recycled the money to buy more.  I continued to do this over and over again adding more to the pot from earnings to help it grow, it’s a very simple model but that is where I started.

So what if I was starting out from scratch today, with no money and no savings, could I replicate this in today’s market starting with £0….  Over the next year, along with my brother in law Robbie, we are going to find out.   To make this fair I have set out some rules which means our position is actually harder than many people looking to buy their first property.

The aim is not to buy just one property but to build a small portfolio of four properties from a standing start with £0.  This is relevant not just to those wanting to get into property investment but also the millions of people who want to get on the property ladder to buy a home to live in!  We will be using a variety of different methods to build our investment capital but all will be basic and available to the average person.

The rules of the experiment

Start with £0

1 year to build a portfolio

Not allowed to use any of my existing contacts, family or friends

Not allowed to use any skills built up from previous knowledge.  Any work undertaken to build up a cash float will be unskilled.

All work on building this portfolio will be done outside of my normal working hours on evenings and weekends.  I run 4 companies, multiple building projects and a property portfolio as well as having a wife and 8 week old baby at home so I wont accept lack of time as an excuse for not taking part!

Personal expenses are undertaken within normal income and no money from this investment float will be used to live on or cover any personal costs for travel etc

We have access to a car and the internet.

Property purchase will be made using a mortgage, we have the credit rating and income to achieve this.

How can you follow the challenge?

We will document progress in the form of a weekly YouTube documentary and via this blog with weekly posts which will go into more detail. Every deal / trade / transaction will be documented in a spreadsheet with purchase / sale price / profit to show our exact route.

Snippets of our journey will also be shared in our @talking_property Instagram and other social media pages for some behind the scenes shots!

The first episode and blog post on our progress will follow next week.  In the meantime we encourage you to look for people you would like to follow this challenge with, share, tag and post about the journey.  We want as many people to get involved as possible, ask questions / give suggestions on ways you have thought about making money which we will discuss and potentially trial during the process, we will also aim to bring in some experienced investors and utilise free advice!

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