Minutes: 68 minutes
David: Point do we just shoot the shit?
Dima: What we can do is we can, we can smoke cigars afterward and shoot the shit. And then record that as like a third session.
Dima: Well, we already started.
David: Oh did it?
David: Alright, sounds good.
Dima: Hey guys. We’re back. This is podcast number two with David Medina and Dima Ciolache. Today, we’re going to talk about today, same day. We’re going to talk about David. David why don’t you tell us all about yourself, a to z.
David: Well, listen, let me tell you something. I’m not much of a person that talks about myself, believe it or not, but I got into the mortgage industry actually in 2007.
Dima: Go earlier than that. Tell us about where you grew up, where you were born, all that good stuff. Start with the juices detail that built up the foundation of David.
David: Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Well, my parents are from El Salvador, so they’re immigrants from El Salvador. They came here fleeing from the civil war in El Salvador that was happening in the eighties. And so anyways, I was born in the eighties, late eighties, 88. And I was fortunate enough to have parents that worked hard and they instilled good values, work ethic for sure. And, fortunately for me, I was able to attend private school. And in high school, I attended a school called Loyola high school in LA. And from there I played sports, I played sports growing up. In high school it was more competitive. I played club soccer, I played high school soccer as well. And I had the opportunity to travel when it came to that, I played, they’ll call it striker, but it’s forward. Right. I played a forward out, so I was a goal score, right! So growing up, I’ve always been that guy that always leads the team.
David: Yeah. The pack. Exactly. So anyways, I feel that that actually helped as far as my business career develop as a leader and even where I’m at today, I’m still growing. I’m still learning that aspect of it. But anyways, going back, I graduated from this school was supposed to, I did get recruited to play soccer in college, but things happen you’re young and with low resources. And my parents doing the best they can, there was no mentorship on my end. So…
Dima: Did you play soccer though in college or?
David: …Well, no, I, so the lack of mentorship, at least from my perspective even though I got recruited to play soccer at college for school, I ended up not attending. Yeah. I ended up not attending and just ended up falling back to just, regular school, if you will. My passion, when I was growing up was to be an architect. Yeah. Yeah. So, I was good at drawing. I was very creative growing up. I did a lot of competition. Well, I did a few competitions as far as art and drawing growing up. And I actually happened to win first place in some of these competition and to cat lawns. So, we would compete into cat lawns. And so, architecture was my, that’s where my head was. That’s where I wanted to go to. I had a cousin where I have a cousin who is an architect, so I would work with him, I interned with him a few for a while and he had his own architect firm also young and successful. But I remember he would always tell me every time I would show up, he would say, you sure you still want to be an architect. And then he would say its long hours and little pay. So, the purpose of asking me that was to make sure that I was passionate about it. Right. And so I would always say, oh yes, absolutely. Absolutely. Absolutely. So, I finally graduated from high school. I’m going to Cal State Northridge and in the Valley. But I live in South LA. I live in South LA, so it’s a commute. Right. And you’re looking at least 45 minutes. And again, I have a car at that time. But my folks are struggling to pay the insurance, the gas, and then all of a sudden now, there’s, lunch at, on campus, it’s expensive tuition, all that stuff. So, I decided to get a job or I just looked through, I believe was Craigslist. And there was an ad that said make $20,000 a month with no experience. So, of course I was intrigued and I had no idea what a mortgage was. I had no idea what a mortgage was. I’m at this age, I think I’m 18, 19 years old. And so, I go in, and this is a great story, by the way. I would never remember this. I would never forget this guy. His name is Steve Super.
David: Yes. British guy worked at a mortgage company. And so I show up for interview. And he asked me, why should I hire you? Right. And typically I, prior to that, my only job prior to that, or I had maybe two jobs prior to that was, as a teller at Washington mutual. I don’t know if you recall Washington mutual.
Dima: Right before they got bought out? Yeah.
David: Yeah. So, and also at big five, so right out of high school, or I believe I was still in high school as a senior, I worked at big five for a little bit, for a few months. But you’re talking about these corporate jobs where there’s a protocol, there’s a system. So the interviews, whether they hired you or not, whether you did good or not, they would always let you go very, very smooth or they would hire you very smooth. And so you go to this, I go to this mortgage company and, now, I know it’s a cutthroat environment, so I show up to the interview and the guy says, so, okay. So, why should I hire you? So I started talking I’m 18, 19. And I started talking about all my goals. I want to be an architect, I want to make money, so I can open up my own architecture firm et cetera, et cetera, everything architect, not speaking to anything with sales or mortgage or real estate, so, and again, I had no idea what a mortgage was to begin with. So, he guy stops me and says, and he said, so what what’s the most you’ve ever done, made in a month, and I think at the time was making like $7, 25 cents per hour as a teller. And we’re getting maybe; I think it was like 15 or $20 bonuses per credit card that we would open for somebody. Anyway, so I think I told him maybe like, 12, $1,400, $1,500 a month, so the guy laughs and he says, there’s people here making 20, 30, $40,000 a month. He says, you’re 14, 50, a hundred dollars ain’t shit. And he says it in those words, so now I’m thrown back. I said, okay. And just imagine, again, 18, 19, I’m sitting there with my resume and, I mean this suit that doesn’t even fit me because I’m using my father’s suit. And so he starts talking about, how much money these people are making. And then he goes into, I’m saying, so you’re going to use me and my business and my company to make money and then leave. So you’re basically using us. And for some reason, I don’t know if I got him in a bad day or if that was just his personality, but he goes and says, why don’t you get the fuck out of my office in those words, no joke, and no exaggeration. So I’m really shocked. Right. Because again, I interviewed at Washington mutual, I’ve interviewed at Big five and these are corporate companies. So even if they don’t hire people, they say, okay, well we’ll contact you. We’ll let you know.
Dima: This is a little bit more rough.
David: This was definitely very rough. So, and then he gets back to his computer. He just literally tells me to get lost, get the fuck out. And so I’m sitting there, I’m looking at him and he just turns around and he’s on his computer and it was about maybe two seconds, but those two seconds felt like it was, 10, 20 minutes just sitting there. So I grabbed my stuff and so I get out of the chair, I’m walking, I’m walking out of his office and I don’t know, I have no idea why, but as I’m opening the door, as I grabbed the handle to exit his office, I tell myself, fuck this. I’m not leaving. I don’t know why. It just came in. And this is my competitive nature, right? This is my competitive nature that says, no, fuck this. I’m not…
Dima: [Inaudible 00:09:57] goal.
David: Yeah, listen, I’m not, first of all, no one talks to me like that. Right! And second, it was just more of a, it’s just the competitive side of me. So I turned around and I said, Hey ask me again. So now I’m staring across this room, he’s in his desk. Now he’s puzzled as to what I’m doing and what I’m asking him. And she, he says, what? And I said, ask me again, ask me why you should hire me. So he says, so why should I hire you? And literally this was my first sales pitch. I literally just told them everything that he had already told me. So everything about, these people come in at eight in the morning and they leave at 8:00 PM, they work 12 hour shifts. They’re cold calling. Just everything that this guy had already like pretty much yelled at me prior to, I just threw it back at him. That’s what I was going to do. And that I was going to get me make money. I was going to make 10, $20,000. I was going to stick to the company, dah, dah, dah, all this stuff. And so basically I told him what he wanted to hear. So, that was the first sales pitch that I did on the, on the bigger scale just telling him what he wanted to hear. And so the guy he got a kick out of it, right? So he chuckled and he said, okay, have a seat. And he says we’ll hire you, but you got probation for one week. You got one week probation. So, if you can hang for one week, then we’ll keep you, if you can’t then you’re up. And he says in, I expected tomorrow at 8:00 AM. Well, I was going to Cal State Northridge so I classes. But the commute and now, by the way, this, this mortgage company was in Glendale. And so, this was in 2007, the beginning of 2007. So, literally this was at the peak of the market, the real estate market that was happening back then in the early two thousands. So, Glendale was one of the big epicenters of the mortgage industry in here in Los Angeles. So, I started the next day. I skipped school. I wasn’t a big fan anyway. So, I skipped school and I go to the job and I, what I noticed was that this company would hire in fire people every single day. So, if you were there for three to three months, you were considered a veteran because every day they would hire and they will fire people. It was a revolving door. If you didn’t hit your numbers, then you’re gone, you’re gone. So, I go back and we were cold calling homeowners in LA, we’re cold calling people in California. We were cold calling people in Florida, and Maryland, Hawaii. So we’re just doing a lot of cold calling for, at the time we were doing a lot of refinances. And again, mind you, I have no clue what a mortgage is. Never done it, no experience, no, no nothing. And, but I had one week to prove that I was good enough to stay there. And I had a cubicle. I get on the phones and at the same time, by the way, I’m still going to meet with my cousin as far as, helping out with, with architect with his work. And he was still asking me, Hey, are you sure you still want to be an architect? Long hours, little pay, that guy, cousin. Absolutely. I love it. I’m here. Long story short. I gave my first deal within the first 30 days; I didn’t realize that I was a natural. I’m speaking to people on the phone, and it would time it developed even more so, but I don’t know if it was just the idea of trying to prove this guy wrong, right, In that week. And so what they required at the time is as far as being, a producer was essentially we were telling marketers. And so what we were doing is we’re taking an application it’s called tunnel three app, right? For mortgage. So, it’s a mortgage application that we would take. It’s about; I believe it’s like five, six pages long. And you got to get people’s full name their address, how long they’ve lived at a property, when did they purchase it? Their employer’s information, sometimes you want to get their banking information, but the key thing of this application and what the company really needed was the social security number and a date of birth. And the purpose for that was to run their credit in order to see whether they qualify to get a loan to refinance or not. So I didn’t matter if you got all the other information, but if he did not have a social security number and the date of birth, what they would do is they would take that app and they would give it to somebody else. So they expected you to get that information on the first call.
David: Yeah. So it was very…
Dima: It’s pretty tough for…
David: Yeah. Yeah.
Dima: …in getting someone’s social and date of birth…
David: Absolutely. Absolutely. And if you ever watch boiler room, this is like the mortgage version of it.
David: Yeah. This is the mortgage version of it. On the first call you had to get all that information. You had to get a date of birth, a social security number. And if you didn’t, then again, they would just, they would hand it to the next guy. And if he got that app, that, those two items, then that was his deal. Yeah. There was no, Hey, I was in the call for an hour with this guy. I build rapport. So we go 50/50 on it now it’s like, Hey, listen, you couldn’t deliver, I got the info. So it’s now my app. Yeah. So it was very cutthroat. But anyways, my first month I made a, I closed the deal. And it was the most interesting experience that I’ve ever been in. So, my team leader at the time, he was, they were Persian and Armenians. And for some reason I get this client who was a Spanish speaker and he’s actually around the corner in LA. And so I set up in the point, I’m talking about refinancing and saving him money and whatnot. And the guy out of nowhere says, okay, listen, let’s set up a time. Can you come in tomorrow to my house? And yeah. And let’s go over, I’m interested, but can we do it instead of doing it over the phone, I would like to be in person.
Dima: Is that a cultural thing?
David: You know what, yeah, absolutely. I think so. Yeah, absolutely. I think that especially when you’re making big decisions like that in that culture, they want to see concrete things, whether it be a piece of paper or whether it be something that you write out, but just listening to it. It’s very difficult for people to make decisions, Latinos, Hispanics. So, anyways, he says, Hey, listen, why don’t you come over tomorrow? And let’s go over the information. And he’s like, I’m interested. I want to do it, but, can you come over? And I said, sure. So the, the plan was that you would always set up an appointment, whether it be over the phone or in person with your team leader. Now these individuals, there were about 20 to 23, as far as the team that I was under. So there were still young guys. And I remember asking one of my team leads and I said, Hey, listen, I have an appointment for tomorrow. Can you come? And then, the guy says, yeah, sure, no problem. And he starts to ask questions, as far as the client, long story short, I tell him it’s a Spanish speaker. So he says, Oh, I don’t speak Spanish. And then he looks at me and he says, so you got this right? You got this David in other words, saying, Hey, listen, I’m not going with you. You got this you’re going on your own. So I said, sure, why not never been on an appointment before, especially for mortgages. And yeah…
Dima: And at 19.
David: …I was 19. I looked like I was 14. So, I don’t know what compelled me to just show up. So, I show up and I’m nervous. There was, there was not a lot of training going on at that time. So I show up, with a little bit of information that I had already learned. And one of the things that has at least gotten me to where I’m at today is that I’m self-taught. So, I won’t wait until there’s what i call training or office training, whatever product service or anything it is that I’m doing. I take the initiative to teach myself. So when I did begin the business I started to read on mortgages. And I remember getting my parents mortgage statement and just…
Dima: [Inaudible 00:19:15] that I want to show you something.
David: …Well, I was actually going through the statement as far as like, I don’t, what, what is this, what is that? What is an interest rate? What’s a third, what’s amortization, what’s the difference. So, I would grab the mortgage statement from my father at the time for his house. And I would just study it, I would review it. And I think at this time the internet was kind of starting to be pretty big and pretty prevalent as far as Google and having information out there. So, and there was books as well. So, that’s kind of how, that was my education.
Dima: Did you finish college?
David: No, no, well, no, I did not. I did not. So, I’ll get to it right now. I show up to this meeting, right? And it’s, this is like 55 year old, or maybe even 60 year old gentleman with his wife. And they literally, as when, once they saw me walking up to them, they looked at each other very concerned because, and then they tell me later, we were expecting, we thought you were maybe like, 35, 40 year old, we felt we were going to be, this tall gentlemen, right. And so this 18 year old, 19 year old, it’s like showing up to their house with, again with an overgrown suit shows up. So, they were very, they were a little hesitant to open up, but they welcomed me to their kitchen table. I sit there, it’s the husband, it’s the wife, and the daughter which at the time I think she was maybe in her mid-thirties. And then they’re sitting across the table from this 19 year old. So, again, there was no proper training, so I didn’t know how to break the ice. There’s nothing I could relate to them. There was nothing I, and so I remember just strictly jumping into business and asking them, Hey, let me see your mortgage statement, right? So they provide me with that. And because I had already been studying the mortgage, the statement, I was able to start talking about it. So this is kind of where, the way I do business and the way my career has grown started because I believe in educating the client so I wasn’t there to sell them anything initially, right? The approach that I took was, Hey, listen, let me educate you. Do you know how to read your statement? Which the answer was no, not really. I just know that I have a mortgage payment and I got to send this amount, but they had no clue what any of those items meant. The difference between the principal and the interest and the property taxes and insurance, none of that. So, I started to educate them on how to read properly, read that statement, and that’s how they were able to open up.
Dima: That’s how you built rapport.
David: That’s how I build rapport. And that’s how I built that credibility and that trust, that 30 days later, we close escrow it, we did the refinance and I got my first commission check at the time, which was 4,500 bucks.
Dima: That’s great.
David: Yeah. However, now when I look back the commission was actually 20,000, 22,000. So I was at a 25% split, which back then I had no idea. When I look back now, I definitely was taken advantage of because of my age and the lack of knowledge, but anyways, 4,500 bucks, I was still very stoked. And…
Dima: Do the works with the work at the bank.
David: …Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And so, from there and it was even more money than probably my parents were making at the time. And so from there, I said to myself, if I can make 4,500 bucks with no experience, what can I do if I actually really dive into this? And that’s when I really took a liking to it. And that’s where everything started. So the next time I went to my cousins to work with him, he asked me the typical question, are you sure you still want to be an architect long hours, little pay. And that’s when I said, you know what? No, not really. I didn’t anymore. So I, and that’s when I really started to dive into the mortgage industry. I left the architect, the idea and the passion to pursue that. And I got into the mortgage business. And from there, unfortunately market crashed the following year and that company, we’re not a business. But that spark was already ignited.
David: Yeah. And the more I dove into it, because real estate mortgage or any type of cells position, in my opinion, it really is more of a personal development. Okay. So if you really…
Dima: Would there be like three key things that you would say, like really help motivate you through your journey. I mean, even though you didn’t know what you know now. There’s, to me, it seems like there is some sort of foundational belief that you had, whether it be in yourself or in a way of doing things that you’ve developed and expanded upon. What do you think would be that? Can you, in essence, describe that feeling that of like having a stop in front of the door and turn around and actually say something? Because it doesn’t seem yes. It’s ego, but it’s also something. It seems like it’s something bigger than that.
David: …Sure. And, I would, I would say that ego is, to a certain degree is not necessarily terrible.
David: Yeah. A little bit of ego contained and using it the proper way. I think it’s very beneficial.
Dima: Yeah. And also, if you think about it, that whole experience was you saying and repeating exactly what he said was the opposite of ego.
Dima: Right? So you were putting yourself in a vulnerable position…
Dima: …because you know you wanted something and you want it to get, to achieve your goal.
David: But touch base on that real quick is, I do believe that again, an ego could be as a sense or a source of fuel. Right. And again, it just goes with everything else, in moderation, right. As long as you’re able to control it, which is very difficult by the way. And I’ll admit, I’m still working on that because sometimes it gets out of control, but I think we all struggle with that at some point. But a little bit of ego is not, it’s not bad because that could be a source of fuel that gets you going, that gets, because that also creates a little bit of belief in yourself. So you talked about belief, so the ego again, sometimes using it in a proper way can give you that belief in your, so that self-belief, right. Even when, your body may be saying, no, your mind can say, Hey, listen, you’re the shit, you’re the, you’re this great person, keep going, keep going. You’re not going to lose. You’re not going to lose. You’re not stopping, you’re not stopping. And you’re able to push through some through situations that sometimes, people give up. So, that’s my take on it. But when building a career or business, especially in sales or even entrepreneurship, building a business there are a few components in my opinion that has helped me so far. And one of those is self-belief right. And that comes with personal development.
David: And, I, it took me a while. It took me a very long time to really understand what that meant. And it took me a while to really start to look at individuals as mentors. I think it probably to be quite honest with you, probably the last the first time that I had an in person or one on one mentor was three years ago. So, I started mortgages back in 2007. So we’re talking about what 13 years ago.
Dima: Was Mr. Super your first mentor of essence, or who was your first mentor?
David: If we’re talking about business-wise or career-wise no, I wouldn’t say, I wouldn’t say he was a mentor, at least for me. I think he was that person that I feel that we all need in our lives to just kind of get us started. To just kind of…
Dima: Kicking the button.
David: …Yeah. Kicking the bud exactly. To ignite that fire because that’s really what it was. And I think that was his because he was technically the office manager and the sales manager actually, he was a sales manager. So, and again, I mind you, I was 19. I was there for maybe about a year or less. And so I really didn’t understand any of this. So looking back to it retrospect, it might’ve been his way of getting people…
Dima: Read it out.
David: …Yeah. Again, we do now and also getting people to get going and those that stick around…
Dima: Type of higher chances of succeeding.
David: Exactly. So, maybe that was his way of training to a certain degree. And to me it helped actually, yeah, to me, it helped.
Dima: It’s like a wakeup call.
David: It was a wakeup call and it was also just like you said, a kick in the butt. And I’ve always, I’ve always stepped up to challenges. So anytime somebody challenges me, or something, I always, my response is like, okay, watch me.
Dima: So who was your first mentor that, that you can remember and why did you decide to get a mentor?
David: Yeah, so, my first experience, I should say, and people talk about having mentorship, whether it be in the book, whether it be, and nowadays, YouTube videos or in person. And I would say that my first mentor that really got me through my first phase of my career in my life was Les Brown.
Dima: Les Brown.
David: Les Brown. He’s a motivational speaker.
David: Yeah. So recall back in 2008 once the company went out of business and by the way, I struggled as far as my family being supportive as far as being, dropping out of college and pursuing this career. And. again, the mentality of you need to go to school, you needed to get a good job.
Dima: I came from an immigrant family as well, so you definitely know.
David: So, it was a big letdown to my parents that I dropped out of college. And so, that was very difficult. And being in the business where it’s a hundred percent commission only. So, I recall a lot of the time saying, hearing or being told you’re out there for 8 hours, 10 hours, 12 hours, but you’re not getting paid, so you’re working for free. So at the time I came across, I don’t even recall how I did it, but Les Brown motivational speaker, and what really, why I connected with him was because of his story. Right? And so I think, now I understand now, as far as a leader, if you’re able to connect with your, whether it be your mentees, your crowd, your consumer, your client, whatever it is, wherever you’re speaking to, that’s very powerful. So, Les Brown, his story, he was labeled, what is it, as educationally mentally retarded, something like that. Basically, while he was going to school, he was put in special, special ed. So, but anyways, he was able to overcome that situation. And he’s one of the biggest motivational speakers and very successful. So that really connected with me because, I come from very humble beginnings. I grew up in South LA and I was a college dropout. So, in my mind, I’m thinking like, how can people listen to me if I don’t have a college degree. How can I do business with someone who maybe owns a million dollar home and in a good area, if I don’t have a college degree? So, my mentality was I need to go to school, I need to graduate. And that’s how, that’s the credibility and the trust. So once I started to listen to Les Brown that was, I believe my first mentor, as far as personal development and believing in creating that self-belief in myself. So, and that’s really what really took me to the next level. But my first in person mentor was, I would say three years ago, as far as business goes. I would always say that my parents have been my mentors. They’ve always established good values for the most part, work ethic. But at the end of the day, and I would say, they’re my biggest heroes, they’re, I always say that I would like to be, half the person that my father is when they come to his work ethic, he’s, very punctual, he’s always on time. He always keeps his, it’s just an amazing individual. Yeah, exactly. Very, very so. And then my mother on the other side, she’s very creative, she’s, I think that’s where I get my risk tolerance, because she’s more of, hey, listen, you can do it. If I say, hey, listen, I’m going to jump off this building. I’m going to, I’ll be able to fly. She say, yeah, I believe you can’t. Right. Whereas my father would be a little bit more. Yeah.
Dima: How do we say it compares you?
David: Yeah. Yeah. He used to be like, no, I don’t think that’s a good idea unless you have, what do you have down there? Do you have a parachute? So, but a combination of the two, I think that’s where I’m at. But yeah, my first in-person mentor was three years ago. It was three years ago. He’s my partner in the real estate company that I own now. I learned the development real estate development aspect of it. And raising capital syndications very bright individual.
David: He has a lot of experience, a great leader and yeah, I think that was my first in-person mentor. And I think that has definitely, I’d say the last three years, I’ve been going to school.
Dima: That’s amazing.
David: I’ve been going to school.
Dima: How do you, how do you suggest that? Like, let’s say someone listening to this wants to get a mentor and find someone that they can look up to that can, that they can learn from. How do you suggest they go about that? And what should they [Crosstalk 00:34:50]
David: Yeah. Truthfully, I would say the first thing that they have to check is themselves, is their ego.
David: So, like I said, I’ve and I’m very genuine about this and very blunt about it, but I’ve struggled with that. And so, in order to really find a mentor and for somebody to want to mentor you as well, the first thing you need to do is check your ego.
David: Because if you’re seeking somebody and you’re asking for advice, are you asking, having them open up to their circle, but you’re stubborn and you don’t want to listen and you don’t want to follow their advice, then why even pursue that. So I think especially a lot of entrepreneurs and anyone who’s had a little bit of success, whether it be in business or maybe as an athlete or, in anything. It’s very hard to turn that off because that little bit of success kind of, gets your head. So, even though you ask somebody or you want to pursue somebody and you want to be in their circle, that ego is still there. Even when somebody says go, right, you’re thinking to yourself, I don’t know I would go left. So all of a sudden you create that doubt. And so the reality is that…
Dima: I think we all have that in one way or the other. It’s not about to me, it’s not about getting rid of the ego because we’re never going to get it…
Dima: It’s like saying I need to just get rid of my, the left side of my body. Because I think it’s like…
David: Well, controlling that is what I mean.
Dima: It’s about being aware of the ego. I’m not saying you were saying to get rid of it, but really I feel like that the idea is more awareness of ego. Because if you can say to yourself, why am I, this guy is telling me go right and I’m talking about going left. What’s the point of that? Like, he’s where I want to be.
Dima: What I want to learn.
Dima: I’ll just go right. Let me just put it away for now.
David: It’s a lot easier said than done.
Dima: It is.
David: Yeah. It’s a lot easier said than done. But yeah, that’s the first thing that I would definitely recommend and advice to anybody. Looking for a mentor is, leave your ego at the door or be able to control it. And then secondly is be able to find somebody that you can actually click with and someone that resonates to you because there are so many people out there that have been successful and you would like to perhaps, have them as a mentor, but they may have certain beliefs that you may not agree with. And we’re talking about on a bigger scale, maybe personal beliefs. So what happens is if you subdue to something like that, that you really don’t believe in, and then now you have a conflict in your mind that it’s like, hey, listen, I want to listen to this guy. I want to follow his steps. I believe in his advice as hard as business, but maybe I don’t believe in this aspect of his personal life. But…
Dima: So how do you vet someone or how do you, in essence, like how do you judge? No, I don’t want to say judge, but how do you, how can you tell if you resonated someone in the same beliefs?
David: …So I don’t think there’s a, there’s an actual answer to that. Like a specific answer. Like here’s a formula to this, da da da. I think it, personally, I think it takes time and anybody that’s seeking a mentor of any sort, whether it be business or personal, like a life coach. I look at it as almost like dating, you want to take some time. And I know that when I first partnered up with my mentor, his name is Abraham. It took six before I decided to lock arms with him and say, hey, listen, I’m all in. So, same thing as when you date a girl or, and here’s the thing. Some people are able to judge that a lot faster, a lot quicker and say, hey, listen, I click. And this is a guy that I want to work with or the woman that I want to work with. So, I don’t think there’s a specific answer. However, I think it’s just, hey, taking your time. Don’t jump into something just because, hey, listen, this guy has a lot of money. Or this person has a lot of money, so I want to follow him. I want to be mentored by them or him or her. So it’s it, I would say, take your time, take your time. If it’s in person and you have the ability and the chance to have a conversation, one on one, and then ask the questions. What do you believe in this? What are your thoughts? What are your values? But so, I would say really the answer is taking your time. Don’t just jump into something, because again at the end of the day, you may be pursuing a mentor because he’s financially, or she’s financially successful, but you may not resonate with their personal beliefs. Sometimes it’s politics. Sometimes it is…
Dima: The way they do business.
David: …the way they do business, right? So, and then you’re going to be conflicted. And at the end, you’re going to be spinning your wheels. You’ll be confused and that’s where you’re going to end up getting stuck.
Dima: Yeah. I mean, money can be made all over the place now. I mean, there are opportunities for everyone. You just got to find it. And to me, getting a mentor and being in a mentoring position is it’s exactly what you’re saying. It’s more about the value system that’s driving you. And then I don’t know if you know this, but there’s actually like websites online now that are like tons of them where you can go on there. And people like let’s say for you, for example, you want to be a mentor to someone. You can actually put your profile on there, fill everything out. So people have a way of connecting, not only with potential people that they want to mentor, but also mentors themselves. So ,there are a lot of tools out there. And obviously the vetting is, it’s still has to be done by you sure. You’re not resonating with someone you’re not resonating with someone’s. Yeah. I definitely agree with that.
David: And aside from all that, and taking time to it, again, you also want to see, Hey, is this person going the same where I want to go? And even if you have a mentor that is financially successful, trust me that they’re, they’re still thinking of, where else can they go further? So, you want to align with somebody that, hey, I see myself going the same route that this person is going because they never stop anyways. So…
Dima: By the time they get there, they’re thinking of doubt further down the road, like, where am I going now.
David: …Listening for someone that is worth, let’s say a million bucks. They want to get to five, someone who’s worth 10. They’re going to get to 50. Someone who’s worth 50 million. Once you get to 100 someone who’s a hundred, one wants to get to a half a million. And so even at a billion, they want to get to two buildings. So, there’s always a, the next level of things. And like I said, there’s a, there’s a way of doing it. There’s a path, there’s a certain beliefs and you have to align with that because otherwise, in my opinion, you get stuck. If you have one thing that you do believe it, but then another one that you don’t. So now you’re conflict. And it’s like, hey, am I with the right person? I might not. And if I’m not, if I decide not to listen; now I’m uncoachable. So now it just creates more of a problem. So definitely, and but I tell you it’s a lot better to at least go through that process then to be able to do things on your own, because there’s only, there’s two ways of learning. There’s two ways of learning, right? You either learn through education, whether that be books, videos in person, mentors, or you learn by mistakes, And then some people just don’t learn at all, but those are the two ways of learning. Okay. So learning by mistakes, that’s how I’ve been learning the last 10 years, because after the mortgage business, I started another business with my father in 2011, which we were able to scale that within five years. It’s a pest control company. So after the mortgage collapsed or the market collapsed, I’m sorry, I decided to go back to school for about a semester, but that wasn’t happening. It was too slow. I was used to the fast pace. So being on the phones, closing deals, making money. And so went back to college for a semester. After that was done, I dropped that and I was just trying to find a way of how do I leverage, how do I create something? And so architect at the time wasn’t really my priority anymore, architecture. And so, I was trying to see, hey, what, what can I do? What can I create? And I did a few businesses in real estate that I try to do, but that wasn’t successful. And in 2011, I decided to partner with my father because he was complaining all the time. I figured, you know what, he was complaining about his job. And he was complaining about his job. He was working there for about 15 years, probably even longer than that. And so I don’t know, I encouraged him to get his, his license in order to open up his own shop and I would help him out. So, in doing so simultaneously, I was also getting into commercial real estate. So this is when I got into commercial real estate in 2010. And so my dad passes his license in order to open up his own shop. I set him up with his own, with his own truck. Again, this is a pest control company. So I have no interest he’s been doing this for 15, 20 years. So he loves it. He’s the only person who’s patent, that I know that is passionate about that, right. But anyway, so I started with everything. He’s not really an entrepreneur he’s a technician, he knows how to do the work, but he doesn’t really know the business side of it. So, I convinced him to quit his job. And again, individual that for like, his whole life, he’s accustomed to having a steady paycheck. He knows when the clock in, when the clock out. He knows what to expect at the end of the month. So it’s everything like clockwork. And so, I convinced him to quit his job and to go independent, start his own business. Right. So I set him over the DVA, sole proprietor and he has his little truck, 94, Ford Ranger. And I get him the decals for the truck. I get them the contracts. I create the logo, the name, and his business cards. And at this time I’m a heavily in commercial real estate, so I’m doing transactions and I’m doing Okay. I’m pretty doing pretty good. And then within 30 days, 30 to 60 days, he wasn’t able to really well, he didn’t know what to do with the business, right? So now you start from scratch, as an entrepreneur, you got to wear multiple hats in the very beginning, especially when you’re building from scratch. So, he knew how to do the work. He just didn’t know how to get the work. So long story short, I quit real estate a hundred percent. I quit real estate completely. I dive into the business. I made a deal with him because we’re very similar as far as personality and characters. So we bumped heads a lot.
Dima: [Inaudible 00:46:54].
David: And so, we made an agreement. My mother had to be the mediator there. And we agreed to, hey, listen, you do the work outside and I’ll handle the inside. I’ll handle the business side of it. And that was the agreement. At that point, he didn’t have a choice because now we’re…
Dima: Because he couldn’t get the business.
David: He couldn’t get going and he had already quit his job. And literally we started it with, I believe it was like $8,000. Right. And part of that $8,000 was to create the logos, the contract, and the decals. And the other part of it was to save up for like three months of mortgage payments. So that was it. That was all we were working with. The capital that we had, the startup capital was half of it was to save up for three months of mortgage payments and the house. And the other half was to get the whole setup. So anyways, he agreed to it and I wasn’t very thrilled about it. I go from wearing suits and ties to, now I’m selling them a hundred dollars in jobs and $200 jobs and $50 jobs. And so, it took about six months, maybe about four or five months, actually. Four or five months before I was really fed up with it. And I said, look, if I’m stuck doing this, and this is around the time I’m listening to Les Brown. If I’m stuck doing this, then I’m going to blow this thing up. Like, if I’m going to be here doing this pest control company, dealing with roaches and whatnot then and I’m going to blow this thing up. So, this is when I was really, I started to, just concentrate focus set goals, right? And so one of the things that now that I learned back then was I like to go backwards. So, basically what we do is, whatever the goal is, so within the first four or five months, I decided, okay, the next, the first year, the next 12 months, we have to hit six figures. We have to hit a hundred thousand dollars. That was my goal. So again, this was a chip on my shoulder. This is my ego saying, okay, if I’m going to be doing this then I have to go ahead and I have to make this substantial. Yeah.
Dima: [Inaudible 00:49:32]
David: Exactly. So, it’s reverse engineering, right. Reverse engineering. So, if I want to make a hundred thousand dollars, then I got to break that down backwards a hundred thousand a year. How much is that per month, right? So, let’s call it $8,500 a month. Okay. So even at the time making the a hundred thousand dollars selling these 40, 50, a hundred dollar services, I’m like, there’s even for my imagination, it was like, there’s no way I’m making a hundred thousand dollars doing this. There’s no way it’s impossible. Right. So a hundred thousand dollars was a big number. And so, a side note, what happens with a lot of entrepreneurs or a lot of people that want to achieve a goal, whether that be financially, whether that be health, they want to lose weight or whatever it is. In my opinion, what happens is they look at the big goal, right? And this instinct was making a hundred thousand dollars with something that I really didn’t think it was possible to do, because we’re making $40 per surveys. And we don’t have an infrastructure. It’s just my father and I. And so, a hundred thousand just seem impossible. And so what happens with a lot of people is when they look at that bigger goal, this is why they fail, right? Because they’re looking at hundred thousand. And if within three, four or five months they don’t feel like they’re in that path to achieve that goal. Then they just simply give up. Yeah. It’s not attainable, So for example, someone who’s 300 pounds and they say, I want to weight 150, just as an example, right? In his mind that’s almost impossible, but if he, or she would say, Hey, I’m just going to lose five pounds every month, or every three months. Now that’s achievable. Now that’s attainable. So, it’s reverse engineering. So I said a hundred thousand. I said, no, that’s impossible, but how much is that a month? 8,500 bucks. Okay, cool. I say 8,500 bucks. That’s a little bit more attainable. Right. But I say, do you know what? That’s still, we’re still doing 40, 50 here. What do what if we break that down weekly? So, what does that look like now? We’re looking at about maybe $2,000 a week. So, okay, $2,000 a week that’s even better. So, how do we do that If we break it down in days, right? At the time we’re working about six days, I believe six or seven days a week, we would just take Sundays off. So, how does that look like divided by, let’s just say Five or six? So, now we’re looking, we’re breaking it down at about four to $500 a day. So, I said, okay, Four or $500 a day That’s a piece of cake. , let’s bring it down. Even further. I said, what is our, what is our average ticket price? Which was about a hundred bucks. So I said, okay, cool. All I need to do is sell four contracts, four to five contracts per day….
Dima: That’s it.
David: … That’s it. So, I completely erased the idea of a hundred thousand dollars for the first year, completely. It was done. It was gone. I never thought about it ever again. All I thought about was four to five contracts, four to five contracts, four to five contracts. That’s it. That’s it. That’s it. That was it. So, I put my blinders on I got to work. I will not leave the office if Oh. Actually the office at the time was at home. So, we did have a little desk in the office. Yeah, exactly. So but I was so determined and again, this is the ego, this is what I’m talking about. Sometimes ego is a fuel in this ends, I’m not hurting anybody, right? I’m not hurting myself. I’m not hurting anybody else. So in this sense, it’s my ego saying, hey, listen, dude, if you’re going to do this, you can’t be doing this living at home broke because the market just crashed and you left everything and da,da,da. And so didn’t even have a car at the time. I had different story for different days, but the car was total. Yeah. So I didn’t have a car. I was living at home. And I think at the time was 20, 21, 22, I think I was 22 at the time. So, anyways, all I focused was four to five deals, four to five deals, 400 bucks a day. Sometimes I would do it with one deal. Sometimes I would do it with two deals. And so, first year we hit 125, hundred twenty five thousand. So, after taking off the blinders and looking up, all of a sudden, I had not only past the finish line, I was way beyond that. So 125. So what I did was okay, well, I have the formula now I’m going to double this the second year, second year we did 250.
Dima: It’s amazing. That’s great.
David: Then again, third year, do it all over again. But now we’re hiring people.
David: Expanding So, the money that would come in would be just reinvested back into the business. Whether it be hiring people, getting a location, getting another truck, hiring other technicians I hated to do the paperwork. I hate paperwork. So, I had to hire the first employee that we had was an administrative assistant. Yeah. Because I hate the paperwork. So what I ended up doing was, I had two choices either. I stayed in the office and kept doing the paperwork and hire a technician to do the work, or I go out and do the work out in the field and I hire somebody to do the paperwork. So, for me it was a no brainer. I said, you know what, let me get my license. Let me go out on the field…
Dima: That’s great.
David: … Yeah. So I have no problem with getting my hands dirty, but I just, I couldn’t do the paperwork. So anyways, so we did that and then we expanded. The 30 year we did half a million dollars. And the faster you grow and the more you grow the more liabilities you’ll incur and you want to do that the bigger you’re getting, the more expenses you want to get. Not only is it are there tax benefits to that expenses, but your business is expanding.
Dima: You’re reinvesting it.
David: You’re reinvesting it Yeah. And another thing that I’ve always done is I’ve always, when I can’t at the time at least, when I wasn’t able to afford something, I would for example, I got my first, I got a car after I think the second year. So for the first year I didn’t have a vehicle. And the second year I finally get a car, technically speaking, I couldn’t afford the payment, but that was a fuel. Yeah That was a fuel to me to keep going. So, Hey, listen, now I got this new liability that I really can’t afford. So now I got to really put in the double the work. So we scaled that close to a little under seven figures within the first five, six years. And then, and in doing so I transitioned and simultaneously as I was building this business, I was doing real estate at the time, so I was doing more residential real estate. And I was consistently actually closing about one to two deals a month as a part time real estate agent.
Dima: It’s amazing.
David: Yeah. So. Now I have multiple streams of income. I had the business and I had the real estate on the side. That was to me, was a cherry on top.
Dima: Of course.
David: Yeah. So what I did again with those commission checks, I eventually reinvested it and I started flipping properties.
David: Yeah. So, my first deal was an experia back in 2014. And that was an interesting deal. But again, everything has been no mentor. Everything has just been learning through experiences.
Dima: Making mistakes.
David: Making mistakes. We started flipping properties and in 2018, 2000 towards the end of 2017, 2018 is when one of my investors. So people start to really pay attention to what I was doing. And they said, Hey, listen I see you’re flipping properties. How can I get how can I get involved in this? I got 50,000, I have 75,000, I have 100,000. So all of a sudden, little by little people just started reaching out to me to a point where at one point I had about a million dollars quote unquote, as a fund, right. So I started to flip properties like that. And in 2000, towards the end of 2017, I partnered up with an investment company, investment group. This is where I met my mentor at the time. It took six months vetting them and seeing if this would be a good fit. And this is where I transitioned from flipping properties, single family homes, into development and syndication, raising capital. Luckily for me, I had already built a system for the pest control company that now that was sustaining itself, it was running itself. So now we we’re generating 60, $70,000 a month. And there was a percentage that was coming to me even though I wasn’t present there now at that point. So yeah…
Dima: [Inaudible 00:59:10] and that’s great.
David: …So we put the people there in place. We have the technicians, we have the systems, we have the procedures, everything. Yeah.
Dima: So let me ask you then. What are two or three main takeaways from your experience not only in the real estate but also the pest control, that you say have been like the key to your success? If you can tell someone, this is what you need to focus on in order to help you succeed, what would those two or three things? This is one thing.
David: Yeah. Yeah. Well, I would break it down in two categories, right? You have your personal, and then you have your technical right. And technical would be more in business, right! And so, in the technical side, I would say systems and procedures are very important because that’s what really creates a cash flow. And there’s a difference between being a business owner, right? And being self-employed. So, if the business can’t run without you being present, then you’re self-employed.
Dima: You can just have another job
David: You have another job, that’s it. So, the idea of building a business is so that the business runs itself and it works for you. Exactly. So on the technical side, I would say, Hey, learned assistance systems and procedures, because once you’ve implemented that and you’re able to have the right structure, anybody can come in place and just run it for you, right? So, and finding the right people is very important by the way. But on the technical side, that would be the, my one thing that I would point out is systems and procedures, right? On the personal side more on personal development it’s, for me is education. So everybody talks about personal development, which I agree with that. But there’s just so much personal development that you can do before it’s just oozing out of your ears. And it’s repetitive. And it’s the same thing that everybody’s talking about. The reality is education and applying that education. So, taking the action, right?
Dima: And by education, you don’t mean like college, you mean experience. Putting your foot and even actually making mistakes. and learning, and doing, and growing fast.
David: Right. Right. Absolutely. And if you recall, I said, there’s two ways of learning, right? In my opinion. And that’s through experience and mistakes or through the proper education. Whether that be an institution or whether that be books or whether that be again, YouTube videos, or whatnot. So, educating yourself in whichever way whatever it is that you’re doing, industry, whatever it is. So, education and applying that education. So, there’s no point of having that knowledge if you don’t put it to action. Yeah. So, for me it’s just taking action, right? There’s analysis paralysis, right? So, what happens is with a lot of people, is that if they analyze it for too long, or for too much then they get stuck, they get paralyzed, they don’t move forward.
Dima: Yeah. You ever heard of Mel Robbins?
Dima: She developed a simple, I mean, I say the developed, but it’s so obvious that, It’s just why didn’t, I hadn’t think of it?..
Dima: She came up with the five second rule.
Dima: Have you ever heard of that?
Dima: They say just in essence, I don’t know if she’s the one that developed it or just rebranded in essence. But it’s just, if you want to do something, whether it’s getting up in the morning, going to the gym doing a business transaction, don’t overthink it. Countdown five, four, three, two, one, and get up and take action and do it. Because that five seconds that we have to make that decision, if we take longer than that, we’re going to talk ourselves out of anything.
Dima: And then you get up, you put your gym clothes on. If you’re not out that door in five seconds, basically the concept is you’re not going to go to the gym. I’ve been there. A lot of us have been there.
Dima: You know what I mean?
David: Yeah. Absolutely. A hundred percent.
Dima: So, it’s actually right. If you think about things too much, you get stuck and you don’t do it. And you come up with excuses, Oh, it’s raining outside. What if it’s unsafe? I don’t want to go to the gym today. It’s excuse after excuse when in fact you can just do it, whether it’s raining, you can work out in your home, you can work out outside your door.
David: And that’s been and I say that because early in my career, that helped me a lot not overthinking it and just pulling the trigger. Pulling the trigger, taking the action, that has made me a lot of money. But you have to be cautious as well because when you take risk, one thing that I learned later in my career is that there’s a difference between pure risk and calculated risk. Right? So, unless it’s calculated risk…
Dima: But that’s where education comes into place.
Dima: If you have an idea of what you’re expecting or what to happen in any given situation…
Dima: …you can calculate the outcome potentially.
David: Yes. So, but in the beginning, it’s very hard. And this is why education is very important. Whether it be, and sometimes an actual in person mentor actually will give you a lot more value than…
Dima: Because you’re learning from the same mistakes.
Dima: So you don’t have to repeat those same mistakes. And it’s the same that goes for any motivational speaker that we listen to.
Dima: We’ve all made mistakes, whether you’re Mel Robbins, Lewis Howes, Tony Robbins. I mean Les Brown.
David: Les Brown.
Dima: All of them, we’ve all made mistakes. We’ve all, we learned from them. And it’s how we apply it to our lives. And don’t take action with it that makes a big difference.
David: There was a saying, there’s a saying that there’s three people, there’s a dumb person. There’s a smart person. And there’s a wise person. The dumb person makes mistakes, doesn’t learn from, it keeps making the same mistakes over and over. The smart person makes mistakes, learns their mistakes, not to do it again. And then the wise person learns from the smart person’s mistake. So, I’ve been lucky that now at 31, I’ve had 10 years of experience whether it be in sales or in pit, in business. But now these concepts are really….
Dima: Starting to open up.
David: …. starting to open up right. To be that wise person. But, it’s an ongoing thing. It’s an ongoing thing. I don’t think that by the age of 32, I’m going to have this already mastered.
Dima: There’s people in retirement, right. They don’t even know what they want to do for their careers. So…
Dima: … It’s not about where mastering the idea of life. It’s about living it, taking action and pursue moving forward with it. So, yeah.
David: So yeah, those are the two things I would say.
Dima: That’s amazing.
David: It’s taking the action. And on the technical side of systems and procedures. That’s very important.
Dima: I’m really big on systems and processes as well. Yeah. Really big on it. I mean, you have to develop whatever business you’re working on. You have to develop some sort of way to automate things and to make things flow for you versus creating more speed bumps.
David: Yeah, I agree.
Dima: Yeah. That’s amazing. Thank you. Thank you for taking the time and the talking about your experience too. I love the story. I love all the information. And if someone wanted to get in touch with you to potentially interview you as a mentor, how would they do that?
David: Wow. Well, they can always reach me on Instagram at Daavid M9 and I actually spelled D-A-A-V-I-D M9. So, it’s AA. So, they can always follow me on Instagram and shoot me a message or email at email@example.com and that’s David, D-A-V-I-D @luxum capital, L-U-X-U-M-C-A-P-I-T-A-L.com. So…
David: …in case somebody needed help with the spelling.
Dima: Awesome. Well, thank you so much, David. It’s a pleasure and have a good night, everyone.
David: I appreciate it. Likewise.