In this episode, Bill Allen, the CEO of 7figure Flipping shares his journey with us, starting off in the military, investing in Real Estate, buying into a coaching program blindly, and reaching his financial goal. Bill shares a ton of amazing insights from his journey which he has used to help investors make millions in Real Estate.
7 Figure Flipping is the top house flipping and wholesaling mentoring group in the world. Just a few years ago, Bill was stuck flipping 1 or 2 houses per year and doing all the work himself, but since then, he’s built a systematized business that runs without him, doing business all across the Southeast.
Tony Robbins - The Science of Achievement & Art of Fulfillment
7 Figure Flipping Underground Book
Extreme Ownership - How U.S Navy Seals Lead and Win
Alright. Welcome back everyone, to the no BS Department Investment Podcast. I am your host Marc Cesar and, on this episode, we are talking to Mr. Bill Allen. He will be sharing his story for about being the owner and the CEO of the 7 Figure flipping and host of the 7 Figure flipping podcast. Bill also currently has a portfolio of 1979 storage units and 247 apartment doors. So, guys, today you will be learning how Bill managed to accrue such a
vast portfolio and what he's doing. Bill, welcome to the show, sir.
Bill: Marc, thanks for having me. It's exciting.
Yeah, I appreciate it. So, let's jump right into it. Bill, tell us a little bit more about yourself and what it is that you
Bill: Yeah. So, my background is in the military actually I was an engineer in college. So, a very analytical thinker, went in the military, I didn't think I was destined to start a business, be a business owner, entrepreneur, those kinds of things. So, I went in the Navy. I flew helicopters and airplanes for the Navy. I still am a part time naval officer so I’m still in the Reserves. I did almost 15 years of active duty and when the Reserves, I'm in my 19th year right now. So almost ready to retire next year.
I got into investing in single family houses. I just would move so much with the military. I moved like 17 or 18 times now in the last 19 years. And I just buy a house, fix it up, live in it for a little while, and then rent it out when I left. And that was really successful for me. I started seeing my net worth grow up, cash flow, those kind of things after I got a couple of them, and it was exciting. So, I figured out I bought a rental property and fixed it up to rent it out. And my agent said, you could sell this thing and make some pretty good money. And I think she just wanted a double Commission, right? She wanted to purchase it with me and then sell it. And we did. We made $43,000. And I was like, wow, this is half of my military income. And so that was kind of the story. I took off from there. I did basically like one house flip per year for a couple of years until I found a mentor and a coach myself and hired them, jumped into a mastermind group, and then I did 67 deals, then 135 and 187. And we're doing over 200 wholesale and flip deals a year with my company for the past few years. So, a lot in the single-family fix and flip and wholesale space, I raise a lot of money. That was like my superpower just talking about money. I love to talk about money. So, raising capital. So naturally I had a ton of active income. So, I realized a lot of people that are listening to this are probably like they want to get an apartment investing. I did it through the single-family space, and then I found out I was really good at raising money. And so that was kind of my superpower. I was making a ton of active income, and I was a real estate professional. So I was trying to figure out how to offset a lot of that active income. So I jumped in a ton of limited partnerships. I was a limited partner in a lot of apartment deals. I just take like 50,000; $100,000 and shove it into these apartment deals to get depreciation to offset my active income. And so I haven't paid much tax in the past couple of years, made more money than I ever have, and haven't paid much tax because of apartment investing. So found some partners, started raising capital for deals and things like that, doing investor relations and kind of weasel my way into some general partnerships and great relationships with other people who are amazing at what they do. So that's kind of, in short, the story. And I still invest in single family houses. I do hard money loans. I run a mastermind group. There's so many things that I just love helping people, getting involved in people's world and see how we can help. And if we can help serve people, then the money follows that stuff. So that's kind of my story. In short, I'm sure it causes some questions.
First and foremost, thank you for your service. We appreciate putting your life on the line. For our freedom and our safety.
I do have a question. So, we know a lot of military personnel. I think it's a stigma where once they retire or leave, it's just living life. I do have a good friend. He mentioned that a lot think he's in the Air Force and a lot of people that he come across pretty much they're spending their stipend on cars or trucks and so forth. So, what made you see something different or why do you think that a lot of people don't use that mentality that you have where, hey, let's go buy a house. Let's buy a house a year. Let's find cash flow properties and build a portfolio. That when we leave the military, we have a nest that to live on and we're building that a legacy as well. What's your thought on that?
Bill: Yeah, I see that. I'd say a lot of it, I think starts with our upbringing and our thoughts on money, like our belief system when it comes to money and spending money versus saving money and what we want to do. So I see it a lot. And by the way, when I joined the military, you get this bonus like in the beginning, there's a loan that you can take, that's really low interest loan. It's for military officers when they graduate, and everybody goes out and buys. In the Navy, the first rank is Ensign in the Navy. So it's a second Lieutenant in the Army, Air Force, Marines. And they call it the Ensign mobile, everybody goes out and buys a car. Right. And I was like, I'm not going to buy a car. I'm not going to buy a car. I bought a big screen TV and sound system and everything. It was like $1,000 or actually it was probably two grand at that time. And I was like, I'm not going to buy a car. And then I bought a car. So, I bought a 2003 Mustang Cobra convertible is amazing. I loved it, kept it for like ten years before I sold it to buy a house. I sold it to buy a house. So I was that guy, by the way. But I saved a ton of money my whole life. I was always saving money. And I think that's the difference. You have to shut shift your thinking and become a saver, not a spender. So, I remember every time I got a raise, so a new rank, we get paid more money. I would still live off the previous rank. So even when I made Lieutenant commander, which is a O4, the fourth rank up as an officer, I was still living off of a Lieutenant JG or an O2 salary. So, a much cheaper salary. When I kept moving up and I just kept storing cash, storing cash. At some point, I was saving over 60% of my income every single year. It was going in IRAs, my TSP (Thrift Savings Plan), which is the Navy 401k, military 401K into his accounts, like investment accounts and stocks. And I think that was built into me when I was a kid. My dad was always, like, saved at least 10%, 10% all the time and save, save. Fill up your IRA, do all that stuff first, pay yourself first. All of these techniques about being smart with money. So I think it comes from that. I do see people that are really good and smart with money that weren't raised that way, but they had to have some shift, some belief change and shift at some point in their life. Like, maybe they saw the fact that other people were struggling, or they struggle when they were younger, and they don't want to do that. So they had some belief change and shift. I think everything comes down to our belief system. And I don't mean, like, your morals. I mean, what story do you tell yourself in your head? Like, I am blank. Money is blank. Like, what is the belief system that you have about that? Some people might say, who did that person have to screw over to get that nice car or that nice house versus how many people did that person have to help to get paid that amount of money to do the things that they get to do? So I think that's a big shift that I see. And in the military, it's very easy for it to be glamorized to have those kinds of things. I think, and really just society in general right now, we're so plugged in that having a really expensive thing is what people are searching for instead of like, true fulfillment. So I don't want to go too deep into that. But I think it's not just the military people. It's really society in general on spenders versus savers. And I think most people that are listening to show and things like that probably are savers. But it took me a while, right? I was still going out and partying. I have $100 bar bill in a restaurant on Friday night and stuff like that. It wasn't like I was sitting in my house looking to invest every single dollar that I made, and I don't think I ever will be. You got to have fun. You got to live your life. You got to do all those things. But I was starting to play a game, and I like to win at games. When I play games, I like to win. So my game was how much can I save per year of my salary and start parking and investing and compounding into net worth? And I tracked my net worth every single month. Every month I would track my net worth. I still have the spreadsheet. I don't do it every month anymore. And it's all in QuickBooks right now, but I look at it all the time and see, is it going up? Is it going down and what happened that month or that year or that quarter that causes go up or down? Let's do more of that. So that's when I started seeing houses, I was like, Whoa I was investing in stock market and index funds, and I saw houses started really ticking up my net worth and the amount of money that I was actually bringing home into keeping, right. The equity that was being built in those homes, the cash flow, all that stuff. I just loved it. The tax depreciation, it was amazing. Like, you get paid so many times with real estate that I was like, like, this is the ticket. So I went all in. I don't have very much money in the stock market anymore. It's pretty much all diversified through lots of different things inside real estate.
Awesome. I appreciate you sharing that. So we know that you jump into real estate because you saw that the opportunities there, as you mentioned a few seconds ago, tax purposes, cash flow, and so forth. What is your burning WHY that made you decide, hey, I want to start in real estate. What's passionate? What's the passion behind it?
Bill: So, it started with this love in real estate. I was actually really excited. I was watching the flipping shows. I was interested in learning more about construction and project management and how to make money there. I became addicted to it. There's probably a lot of people listening, like, oh, my gosh, I don't even know why, but I'm called to this real estate thing, and I feel like I want to figure out how to do this. So it started there. I was really interested in it. It just looks so cool. The TV shows probably glamorized it, the books that I was reading, the podcast, the forums that I was in, all that stuff. And I saw people that the richest people in the world have a ton of real estate holdings interested in real estate. It's where most of the billionaires have a lot of their money, those kinds of things, so all of that led me to this place of this has to be the path, right? Let somebody else map out the path for me, and I'll just follow it. So that was that, like, getting me interested. And then what really did it was I got married, right? So I got married, and then we got pregnant, like, three months after we got married. So I was like, okay, now I went from just taking care of myself and having me to feed, to now having three now to feed and people that are looking at me to take care of them and the future, I got to make sure that I can support them even if I'm gone. So that is really what pushed it to the next level. And then to be perfectly honest, real estate is interesting and exciting to me, but I'm not as passionate about that anymore. I think we evolve over time. Like, I was addicted to this in the beginning, and now that I understand it, I feel like I'm an expert at it. It's like, okay, let me go master the next thing and go master the next thing. So now it's like kind of as much as it might sound horrible, it's like the widget. It's like the thing at the vehicle now for freedom and network of growth and financial independence and time, freedom and all that stuff in business. And then I was building a business and I became more passionate about the people, like the people inside of my company. How can I lead them? How can I help grow them personally, professionally, help them with their family through some of the things that I learned, started teaching, mentoring, motivating other people. And then that became the passion, right. That was the thing that fired me up all the time and still does, frankly. And that flame hasn't gone out as fast as it did, like actually going to Home Depot and picking out tiles. Right! And designing the home and swinging the hammer because that got old pretty quick for me after a couple of years.
Most people say my family is my “why”. Like, that's a big “why “and agree with that, but I think there's more for us. I definitely am a big family man. I think my family is important. But if you said, hey, Bill, you got to stay home for the rest of your life, change diapers, raise your kids and not go speak on stages, not go on podcast, not run your podcast, not write books, not doing that stuff. That's it. I'd be like, wait, what? Like, that's really not why I think I was put on this Earth. I feel like I was put on this Earth to do a lot more. And I love spending time with my family, and I'll go on vacation with them, spend time, but I need to go out and grow and drive, and I'll grow at home, and I need to go and work in business, too. So business has really been a thing for me that's exciting. Running my own business, supporting other people, having 20,30 employees, that kind of stuff is really cool.
That is awesome. I appreciate you sharing that. So touching on the fact that you love helping people and you love to make sure that people grow. You started a company, and you're the CEO and owner of The 7Figure Flipping. Can you tell us a little more about the company and the story behind it?
Bill: Yeah, it's a pretty cool story, actually. I don't know. You might be old enough. Do you remember the Hairclub for Men? Where the guy's like, there's a commercial about Hairclub for Men? And he's like, I'm not just the owner. I'm not just the President of Hairclub for Men, I'm also a client. Remember that one? Yeah, I think about that all the time about 7Figure Flipping because when I was in the Navy and I was getting my business going, I flipped one house in like 2013. Then I did another one in 2014, and then in 2015, I joined this mastermind group, this brand new mastermind group that this guy, he's running a podcast, it's called The House Flipping HQ podcast, his name was Justin Williams and I heard him talking about this group called 7Figure Flipping. And I was like, seven figures? These people are making seven figures? He said, in a year they want to get people to help them make a million dollars a year. And I went, I want to be a millionaire one day in my life. Like, I have this plan, this map of 8% growth in the stock market and all these things and by the time I'm 60, I'll have a million dollars and I'll be able to retire, right? Just like everybody else ever talk to a financial planner, and that's it. And I was like, I can make this in a year? Like, there's people making this in a year? It's $25,000 to get in. And it was like a new program, didn't have… no history, no success stories, no nothing. I heard him on a podcast, never talked to this guy, never met him. I was listening to the podcast for a while, and I said, you know what? I'm about to make $45,000 on this flip. I'm going to take $25,000, I'm going to put it in there, I'm going to invest in myself, I'm going to join this program. So I paid $25,000 to join a program called 7Figure flipping. It was about six years ago now, and I ended up doing 67 deals that first year. So I went from 1 to 67 and that was in about eight months. Twelve of those were flips, the other ones were wholesales. Made almost $700,000 that year. Had a couple staff members, team members at the end. Probably the most money I've made in a year in real estate since then, too. I built up a team. They operated without me. I made a little bit less money every year personally, but the company made a lot more and built a company. But I joined the program. I was a paying member for quite a few years. And then I became one of his coaches. I was success story. So he asked me to come on and help coach. And then I wanted to do more. So I said, I want to run the whole membership Department. I want to run all the events. I want to put together the lunches. I want to throw big parties for our members every 90 days. And so I started doing that. And then I became the COO of the company. And eventually he was like, hey, would you ever be interested in buying this company? So two and a half years ago, July 2019, I bought the company. So I'm not the creator of this mastermind group, but I'm the owner, I'm the CEO right now, I run the day to day operations. I spend all my time here, really. I have a couple of other companies that I spend part time in, but this is the thing that I am growing. So we're a real estate mastermind group for single family, and we have house flippers and wholesalers in our runway and altitude programs. And then we just launched a multifamily mastermind, actually in June 21 of this year.
It's amazing. I love it. We have some amazing partners on the apartment space, but we have about 280 members or so across the three groups. And I get to speak, I get to write books, I get to run a podcast, I get to put on these massive events and coach and mentor people. So that's what we do. We're basically coaching and mentor program for real estate investors.
I don't know. It's interesting because it really is about kind of mindset, belief systems and life too. So, the thing is you come for the tactics and the strategies and the people that are there, just absolutely amazing. We build a community and a tribe around our values, and we try to attract those people that all share the values. You come to our events. It's like a big family reunion. It's really cool. So that's what we do. We do some education, live events, virtual events, stuff like that. We have events pretty much every month and just put on educational content, support, belief systems, those kinds of things.
Wow. That is amazing. 25 grand for a program there's no reviews, no Google reviews or nothing and just do it in there. And within a year, 67 flips. And now you're the CEO of the company. That is true success. That is an amazing success story. That's crazy. I never heard….
Bill: crazy story, huh? Yeah. So I am like the hair club for men guys, right? That's what I call myself there. I was a client. So the interesting thing is now people come and they're like, well, what are you going to do for me? What do you have? What are all the things? Tell me what I get when I spend $25,000. I just rolled out a $50,000 program to work directly one on one with me. Right. And I'm on calls with people and it's like, what do I get? And it's hard because I know their future. I know what's possible. And I remember that decision to pay $25,000. I didn't even know when I went to the first event if anybody was actually going to be there. I've heard so many horrible stories of like sending people to call centers and then they're not there and they take your money and rip you off and stuff like that. And the amount of reviews and success stories that we have at this point from our company is like thousands, right! We've made millionaires over and over and over again. I've given out over 100 7Figure awards. 7Figure club awards, which means they made a million dollars in one year, given it over 100 of those just in the past two and a half years. It's like I just kind of want to look at them and say, just believe in yourself, man. Do it. Just one nugget from something like that is worth millions of dollars if it's executed on. Right. And so really, what you're not, you're not asking me if what we have is good. What you're really asking is what if it works? Can I do it? Is it the next thing for me? Right! And so we have the product, we have everything. And I'm just so glad that I jumped six years ago when I looked at it like, man, and this is like a Honda, right? You can either buy a Honda or I can join a mastermind program. And then I was like, yeah, I spent millions of dollars on my formal education, and I spent zero on my self-education. Why is that? It just doesn't make sense. And now I'll spend $400,000; $3-400,000 on myself and my team. This year. I'm in a mastermind group that costs $150,000 a year.
Yeah. That's very interesting. If the product works, the product itself is pretty much a belief system on the person who's looking to get into the product. As you mentioned, you have to really see, okay, can I do it?
The real estate between your ears is what matters. If you don't have control over that, then everything else is futile basically. But yeah, you're absolutely right. So I know out of that, this entire story, there's a book that's live out now. So let's do a quick shameless plug on the book.
Bill: Yeah. So, I spent the last two years, I've written this book three times. And it really is like all the stuff that I've learned. So, if you're an apartment investor and you want to get into apartments, this is primarily a book for house flippers and wholesalers, single family type stuff. But there's a lot of beliefs and there's a lot of off market strategy. So, the purpose I wrote this book is because before I joined this program, I had no idea that you could buy houses $0.50 on the dollar or apartments, $0.50 on the dollar by the way. I just didn't know that it was possible. I didn't know what a distressed seller was. I knew what a distressed property was because I was buying with real estate agents and I was looking on the MLS, and I was going to auctions and stuff like that. But I didn't know what a distressed seller was and it really unlocked something to realize, I've probably only bought 10 or 15 properties off the MLS in the past five or six years and I bought probably upwards of almost 1000 properties off market. And so as an apartment investor, if that's your goal, if you can figure this out and understand how wholesalers and bird dogs and people operate and you can implement it in your search for properties, when you start marketing, like sending letters or finding the owner, skip tracing, cold calling people texting using those kind of strategies instead of just going to the broker like everybody else does. And this is something that we teach specifically for, like, if you can take some of the things that single-family investors are using and start putting it into the multifamily space, game over. Right? And so we've gotten a lot of our multifamily deals off market using a lot of the same strategies and techniques that we use in our single family business as, like our superpower secret weapon, that kind of stuff. So that's what's in this book. It's really just kind of like what I learned over those few years to be able to grow and scale my business using tactics and strategies. So it's not a lot of theory and it's very easy read. And that's why it was so hard to write. Because if you try to put like five years of experience in like 200 pages, it's not easy. That's the challenge that I had to do it. So put it together. I'd love for you to pick it up. It's totally free. You do have to pay for shipping, so it's not 100% free, but it's a free book. Like, I'm giving it away. It's not on Amazon yet, but when it's on, there will be like 20 or $25. If you go to our website, it's free. The shipping is like $7 or $8 on there. So it's just a free plus shipping book. I want to get it to as many people as possible. I was telling Marc before, it's like I actually have to pay money to get the book in your hands. Like, when you buy it, it costs me money. But I know that when you read it, it will unlock something in you, and then you'll figure out what the next step is for you from there some information about raising money, a little bit of information about growing a team, sales strategy, marketing strategy, goal setting, all kinds of stuff in there like that. I don't know it's. Basically what $25,000 for in a free book. So hopefully somebody picks it up and enjoys it. That's my purpose right now is to get it out there and share it.
Wow. I for sure will definitely pay whatever shipping to get my hands on it. I'm a believer of being a student of the trade and definitely we will put all the information to show notes when the episode releases this. But let's go a little deeper with you on Bill. Can you share with us a story in your journey that something went totally sideways in real estate? And how did you manage the situation? Like what went wrong? How did it affect your business and what did you learn from that situation?
Bill: Yeah, absolutely. And before we do that, I'm going to get your address after this, and I'm going to write a note for you and just send you one, so you don't have to go get one.
I appreciate that.
Bill: Yes, I have one that's on my mind. And I don't know if it made it in the book. I wrote it multiple times. So it might be in there. It might have been in the first cut that's on the cutting room floor. But I remember a house that was I was flipping houses. I was pretty confident haven't lost money yet. We probably had done I don't know. 50, 40, 50 flips by now and everything was great, like smooth sailing. And I was doing first and second time home buyer type houses, median home price, maybe median home price plus 50,000 or so. And then this like luxury house, this really expensive house came through our marketing, and I was like, wow, I was still going on the appointments at this time for a lot of them. And I went on this appointment, and I was talking to the seller. They had won the lottery. Let's see, they won the lottery. There were boats and Corvettes and all kinds of nice cars in front of this house. They had put like $300,000 in renovations into this home. It was right on the water, had a pool, a beautiful home, like amazing house. They're playing like led lights, playing music in every shower, like marble tile everywhere. It's just incredible, right? And so I was like, buy this house. If I get the right discount, put a little bit of money into a couple of things that need to be done and then just throw it up on the MLS and sell it. And I could make $100,000. It would be a six-figure deal for sure. Ran the numbers. And so I started talking to them, negotiated the price, had them hold back a note, so I was able to own or carry it. They paid cash, they needed money to pay their taxes, so they won the lottery. They spent all this money. And then the tax bill came, and they were like, oh, crap, we have a couple hundred thousand dollars tax bill. And so
I said, look, I can give you a couple of hundred thousand dollars to pay the tax bill, but I want you to hold back the note at 0% interest on the majority of the purchase price. Then I'll bring in a lender for a second position and I won't have any money in the deal. I negotiated all that. Everything was great. I put some money into it for a little bit more than I thought put on the market, crickets! What I didn't tell you is right in front of the house, in between the water, it was on the Bay and Pensacola, Pensacola Bay and then the house, it was a split lot and there's the house, the pool and then there was a set of railroad tracks. And then there was the cross-railroad tracks go to the dock and the Bay there with a boat, beautiful dock and all that stuff. So, I didn't really think it was a big deal when I bought the house. The house was on HGTV twice. So it was on different HGTV shows. They filmed beach hunters there twice is one of the options. So it's so nice that it's on TV, right? As one of the options for the people on HGTV. So sat on the market, everybody who went to see it was upset about the railroad tracks. Then I kept hearing it. I kept hearing it. I kept hearing it. People are getting picky. Pensacola, by the way, I think it was priced like 750,000; 800,000 is not a luxury market. The median home price there is about $150,000 significantly over the median home price in Pensacola. Eventually sold it for a $70,000 loss.
So I learned a ton on this project, but I lost $70,000. I had two lenders. The people who held the note back actually fell into more distress and wanted to sell their note quick. So they sold their note for a discount to another friend of mine. They were going to sell it to a guy I didn't know. I said, look, I got a friend that will buy the note. I called up one of my lenders. He bought the note at a discount like $50,000 off the face value of the note. And it's because it's a 0% interest, right. And so when I sold it, I lost 70 grand. But I made sure that all of my lenders got paid back. So they had no idea and probably until about a year or two ago and I told the story for the first time, they didn't even know that I lost money on the house. So that's a big difference when you're dealing with private money, private lenders raising capital, stuff like that. So, it was a disaster. I learned a ton. I'd say the biggest thing I learned is more expensive houses means more picky buyers. They have a lot more options and not just more expensive houses, like if you're in San Diego, a $700,000 houses median price. But in Pensacola, they have a lot of other options so they can be really picky. And there's not a lot of buyers that are looking for a $700-800,000 house in Pensacola, they're looking for $150,000 house or $200,000 house. And so I didn't have a lot of foot traffic then they could also be so picky that railroad tracks are really a big problem when it comes to selling a house. Like a big problem. And price drops in a house that is $800,000 aren't the ten or $20,000 price drops that I'm used to getting more interest. If you make a price drop like that, it does nothing to the market. I had to make like a $50,000 price drop did not anticipate that. Longer times on market, more expensive holding costs. The repairs, like the quality of construction, needs to be higher. The type of contractors that work on houses like that need to be better. It was just a whole learning experience for me. So, I think I do tell the story in the book specifically what I say is if you want to live in the sweet spot as a housekeeper and be really successful, you don't have to hit home runs all the time. You don't have to look for six figure profits, every single house, things like that. But what you should do is you should stay around the median home price where is the majority of the demand coming from? And figure that out if you're going to buy an apartment building, don't buy studio apartments, but everybody wants a two bedroom, you're going to have problems filling it up and don't buy in an area that nobody wants to live. Or next to another building that is a lot nicer than your building, and you're not planning on making your building any nicer. So, you guys just got to think about supply and demand and all this. And I didn't understand that equation. I understood what supply and demand was, but not in this context. Right. And so I had to learn my lesson that way. I've also lost $50,000 on a deal after that. I've lost $30,000 on a flip that I can remember. And pretty much all of them were like larger homes in an area that I shouldn't have been doing. So that's kind of the thing that I stay away from
That is powerful. This is why market resource is very important, and I'm pretty sure you touched on that in the book. Again, we see a lot of these common mistakes which a lot of investors are not sharing, and hence the name no BS Apartment investing. We want to take away all that fluff. We want to help people understand, okay! These are the mistakes that are made. And this is what you should do to avoid those pitfalls so that you can become a better investor. So I appreciate the transparency there, Bill.
Bill: Well, I'll tell you before we go on, the key is going to be to surround yourself with people who will share the lessons that they've already learned with their money, so you don't have too. Like, let them walk through the snow with their footprints and you can just step into their footprints. You don't have to blaze your own trail. There's plenty of people, most of these books that are written, podcasts that are out there, all that stuff, they're sharing these experiences, go out and grab them. Find the people who are willing to be open, and they're not, like, hiding their secrets. The name of the book, the 7Figure Flipping Underground, and there's a big vault on the front of it. All the secrets are behind that vault, and they're all inside the book. That's the whole structure of what I tried to do and what I think you need to do. You've got to go out there and find the people. If you want to be an apartment investor, if you want to be a new construction developer, go find the person who's already done that, has what you want and shares the same values as you and go find somebody that's willing to share to help you along the way. Walk with you along that path. And don't just be like, hey, give me all your secrets, give me all your secrets, give me all your secrets. If they're educators and they're selling something or they got a book or something, pick it up. If they're not, then say, how can I help serve you? Like, what can I do for you, to help you in your business, expecting nothing in return. All I want to do is soak up the information. So many people come to me, it's like, hey, do you have time for coffee? Do you have time for lunch? Can I take you out? It's like, no, you can just buy my book and you can start there. It's got everything that I'm going to tell you at lunch is in there, and it's a lot cheaper to buy a book than it is lunch. And same thing with other people. Go to an event, like, go to somebody's event. If somebody's got an apartment event that looks awesome, go to it. They're going to share everything that they know. Well, probably not everything that they know, but they're going to share a lot, right? They're going to share everything they've learned, but they're constantly growing, too. So go out there and figure out there's so much information out there. The thing that I will say, if I can add one more piece is the problem that we have these days is there's so much information, it's so easily accessible that we get five different opinions on the same thing, and then we don't know what to do. So if you're listening to this podcast, just keep listening to this podcast. Right? If Marc's, the guy that you want to follow, go follow him and listen to the advice. If there's somebody that you're following, don't be like, oh, but these three other people told me these other things. So many people pay us for mentorship and coaching. They just don't listen. It's like, wait, you're paying for it? And then you're listening to all the other noise to five other people that you think might be sharing something of value. And then you just get into this paralysis point where you can't even make a decision, like find the person you want to follow and just do what they say. That's what I did. I hired my mentor at that time, I was so cheap, I hadn't even bought a book in my entire life. Never went to event, never did anything. I had a library card. I'd go to library and get a book for free. And I spent $25,000. I said, if I'm spending $25,000, I'm going to listen to everything this dude says and I'm going to do it. And I think that's the difference these days is we're kind of like just overloaded with information all the time and we don't know what to listen to or who to follow. So sorry, I went on a little rant.
No, that's fine. That is a great tip. Again, as you said, you don't want to get caught in the paralysis analysis phase. Find one person. If you believe in their product, if you believe in them and you believe in their mission, stick with them. Don't need to reinvent the wheel. Learn from those who have gone before you. And also, just a quick tidbit that you mentioned there, picking people's brains over coffee and lunch, that's sort of the 90s, guys. We want to invest…. best way that Bill put it, find ways to add value, as it would say, hey,
how can I add value to you? What can I take off your plate? And once it's received genuinely, that person will definitely just spill their guts and give you the whole blueprint. Just a quick tip for everyone there. So, Bill, I know everyone has their own definition of success. What is your secret to success in your perspective?
Bill: It's interesting that you ask that, because I've been studying this a lot lately, and I dove into this. I gave a presentation for it was about an hour-long presentation at our event. It's called Flip Hacking Live last October, it was like two months ago. And I gave a success presentation because I think so many people are like, oh, this guy is successful, this Gal is successful, this person is successful, and it really is in their eyes. Right? So, Tony Robbins. I listened to a lot of Tony Robbins, I just went to one of his events, he talks about success as the science of achievement and the art of fulfillment. So he talks about these two things. And so I broke that down and gave a presentation on that. And the science of achievement is what I think most people think is success. Right? It's achievement. It's making more money, it's Fame, it's fortunate, it's that kind of stuff. Glory. It's being able to do what you want, when you want with who you want. As a lot of people definition. Right.
And the science of achievement is a formula. So as an engineer, I study a lot of math and science. And it's like, if you do these ten things, I think I broke down like eight or ten things that I saw just after coaching thousands of real estate investors and seeing successful ones, the ones that achieve and the ones that don't achieve, let's put it that way for this purpose. What were they doing? What are the people that achieved at a very high level, what were they doing? And what were some of the folks that didn't have as much success doing? And what is that formula? What's that science? It's the science, right? You just follow it. You follow the formula. It's proven model. Just go do it. So there's that. And I think that's what most people think success is. But when you get into the art of fulfillment that he talks about, that I really dove into, the art is different for everybody, right? Art is the eye of the beholder, right? You can have five different people look at a piece of art and be like, this thing is garbage. And one person like, I would pay a million dollars for that piece of art. So that art of fulfillment is really what we need to figure out. That's what we're all searching for. I've done a presentation on the Heroes to Journeys as well, the inner and outer journey that we see. It's the one that we see and the one that's really happening inside of us. So that journey is that fulfillment that we're looking for. And what he talks about is success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure is one of his quotes. So it's like, if you have money, how many billionaires do you know that are unhappy and five different divorces and kids with three or four different women or vice versa. Right. And so like money won't make you happy. Even famous won't make you happy and running an amazing business might not make you happy and feel like successful. So, it's different for everybody. So what I would say for all of you that are listening is like your definition of success is a combination of achievement, whatever you want to achieve. But somehow trying to find fulfillment for you and all of that. And that's the hard part. That's the part that I'm working on right now, that I feel like this last year, God has been guiding me in that direction of finding fulfillment and finding that for me and understanding that I can help you achieve. Right. But, I can only help guide you to whatever fulfillment is for you. And in our programs, we're really trying to figure out how we help people. We beat a guide for people to find that fulfillment in themselves. The science of achievement is not going to change. We've got that cracked. But people become a very high achiever, make a lot of money, and their family is left in the wake. Or their kids don't see their dad or their mom or they're not present when they're with them. They're not unplugged from their phone or their computer. And their mind is always in the entrepreneurial zone. They're not mom and dad anymore. They're business owner, even at home. So, trying to guide them to help them in that fulfillment journey, to figure out what that is for them and where they can be happy that's the key, I think! So success for me and all of that is achievement and fulfillment, like being truly fulfilled with where I am. And I always want to be a high achiever. That's a part of my fulfillment formula. But there's lots of other things. Like tomorrow morning I'm unplugging computers going off, phones going off, and I'm flying down to Key West with three of my guy friends, and we're going fishing for eight days.
Bill: That to me is going to recharge me. It's a little bit selfish. I'm leaving my wife and my three kids at home, and I'm going to go for eight days to go fishing. But I need it. I need that time off and realizing that and understanding that and communicating that to my spouse and her knowing me coming back just totally open and energized and excited and to be fulfilled in my life, I can be way better dad, way better husband, way better business owner, way better leader than I would before that. So that's my long-winded definition of success. And I'll say, if anybody tells you that you want what I have and everybody should want what I have, that's a huge problem. Like success is going to be different for everybody. Now, achievement can be taught, learned and guided with a formula.
That is powerful. Truly powerful. What is the biggest failure that you've learned from?
Bill: My wife asked me for a divorce a year ago, and that was the biggest failure that I learned from. I got to a point where I couldn't believe that we got there a couple of degrees off over many years. Me spending so much time in my business, so much growing, achieving, and becoming addicted to my company, the people, the time that I was spending our communities, our mastermind groups, all that stuff and just forgetting to feed my family, my spouse, making sure that she feels seen, heard all those things especially important to me. That was the biggest, lowest of the low that I had probably ever been in my entire life. And we got to the essence of us. I gave that Heroes to Journeys presentation primarily from me and other people were just listening to everything that I had gone through. But it was stripping off the identity, the belief systems, all that stuff, and getting down to the true essence of who we are, both looking at each other and say, I want you and I want you to. And getting through that and building on that and putting in the time, effort and energy that's needed to get to the next step together. And now in a relationship that's better than it was before, more passionate, stronger, more interesting and I think that's a lot of things that people don't share, they don't talk about. Like, you see, so many things happen to high powered CEOs, executives, achievers that they're just like, well, yeah, it didn't work out, I'm going to find somebody else, I'm going to do something. When 95% of the people will quit and you go through the hard stuff to get on the other side of that, that's where the good stuff lives, whether it's in business or in life. So that is what I learned the most from. To answer your question was a potential failure. And honestly, like a true failure in my relationship and taking the responsibility and ownership for my portion of that and changing because of it. So, I'm not perfect. I'm not the best husband. I'm not the best father in the world. Certainly, wasn't the past few years because of just the way that I was showing up for my family at home, just not being present, not making my wife feel seen and heard, and becoming really addicted to my business, which I think a lot of us do. So that's probably the biggest failure. But it has become the interesting thing about failures. Everyone's afraid of it. It's. And it's the thing that gets you to the best place in your life.
And I gave a presentation on failure, too, at this event. It's funny you asked me this because I only gave two presentations. Well, maybe three. I gave three. One was success, the laws of success. And one was about failure. I told a story about Walt Disney and how many times he failed. So we're in Orlando. I gave a whole presentation on Walt Disney. And what people don't realize is that failure that you see when you sit in it like if you're listening to this right now and you're in this point where you're like, I can't believe I got here. I feel like a failure. Like, this is horrible. I don't know how I'm ever going to get past this. There's going to be a time and you might not feel like that right now, but two months, six months, one year, two years, five years from now, you're going to look back and say, that was the best thing that ever happened to me. And the only difference between the way you feel right now and the way you're going to feel in the future is one variable in that equation, and it's time. It's time. And so the Bible talks about it. You have to go through the brown to get to the green pastures, right? To get to the green pastures, you got to go through the brown. It doesn't say how long you're going to sit in that brown to get to the green pastures, but I'll tell you what, when you get in that green pasture last year, it is amazing. And so you have to go through that. And I know it's not helping if you feel like crap right now or you're going through something hard and nobody wants to hear it when they're in it. But I don't know how long that season is going to be for you, but you're going to look back one day if you decide to learn from it and if you decide to push through it and if you don't quit and you keep going, you're going to say, I needed that. And my belief I don't know what your beliefs are, but my belief is that God gives us that we get to choose the direction that we're going with that guidance. And then at the end we look back and we say, you know what, thank you for that. I had a special needs child put in my life. He only has half a heart. He had five open heart surgeries in the first four in the first six months. He had his last one in May this year. And he was put in my life, I'm confident to slow me down and stop looking at the big picture and start looking at the little things, the really little things in life and just be happy and joyful for those little things. He can look at a bug that you wouldn't even see when he's walking and just point and sit and watch it for five minutes where he won't even stop doing anything for five minutes. He's all over the place. It gets into everything. He's five years old, but he's like a two-and-a-half-year-old that has autism, basically. And he's all over the place. And you stop and stare at that little bug and just be amazed by it, the glory that's there. So that's my answer. Hopefully it helps somebody out there.
Trust me, that hit home for me. Key takeaways fail forward first and foremost and work life balance. That is very important and just enjoy what you have. I definitely can relate to that story. I mean, my story is pretty much similar. I do have an autistic kid as well. So I understand the plight and just to enjoy life and enjoy the moment and you're not going to stay in the brown forever. There is green and grass on the other side.
Well said. Well said. What is the biggest surprise that you found in your success and what happened that you did not expect?
Bill: Well, I certainly didn't expect to be running a podcast, writing books, speaking on stages, motivating people at all. Like, I never expected that. I certainly didn't expect it to blow up the way that we blew up pretty much everything that we've done over the past five or six years, I had no expectation of that. I knew that I had a vision and I wanted to do it and I wanted to get there. But I let the opportunities open up. And I'll tell you, in the beginning, I said yes to too many of them that I wasn't qualified for. But now I'm learning to say no more than say yes. I think the biggest surprises and opportunities for me have been the fact that I'm doing what I'm doing now and absolutely loving it. Like if you told me when I was flying airplanes and helicopters that I'm going to be speaking at events that have a thousand people there and motivating them to be more do more grow personal development type stuff, not to say you're crazy. I always wanted to write a book one day, but I figured it's probably going to be one of those things like learning how to speak French. That would never happen for me and stuff like that. I didn't see myself in my life the way it is right now, but it's so amazing. It's really cool being a business owner, being able to kind of set my time and do what I want to do, kind of when I want to do it is really incredible. And I think that everyday challenges me to be the leader that I need to be. And I screw up every single day, every day, and every morning I have to wake up and just say, hey, you're a little bit better today because of what you learned yesterday, and what are you going to do with it today? So they've and be a good steward of that.
Awesome. What is the least favorite part of your job? Whether it be a role position and something that you're comfortable sharing?
Bill: Yeah, there's a lot about my job. So right now, we use kind of like a track model, EOS, visionary, integrator and then we have our staff and so there's a part of the job to manage and hold people accountable that I'm not very good at and that I don't love. Like all the detail stuff, like the little things, checking emails and scheduling and stuff like that, it drives me nuts. I tell you what, I just want to be speaking on stages, I want to be writing books, I want to be doing podcasts, I want to be talking like this, I want to be going to events, to speak, I want to be doing that stuff. If I could do that, change belief systems, get people to understand that they need help, to have somebody in your corner to have a coach, to have a trainer, to have a mentor, to do those kinds of things that will change your life, it will change your business, it will change your home life, too. It's amazing. And if I can be doing that 24/7, I would love it. But there's all the admin, the meetings, the paperwork, all that stuff, that's probably my least favorite thing. And it's honestly, at this point, I just hired a COO for 7Figure Flipping, he's downstairs. He's been with me for about a month. It's going to be amazing. We can actually take over and run the team so I can focus on big relationships, big ideas, and the stuff I just talked about. So, I'd say, like, 80% of my job right now is not my favorite. But it's been like that for the last year, but it's unnecessary. And I'll tell you, for anybody listening, it's like, oh, I'm just going to do 100% of what I want to do. You can do that eventually, but there's always going to be five or 10% of stuff that you're just like, I got to do it, but I don't want to do it. And you want to figure out how to get to that zone. Like, right now, for the last year, I've been working on how to get to that zone of I'm in the 80/20 type zone, right? 80% of what I do is what I love. It fuels me. It fires me up. And the other 20% is kind of stuff that I've got to do.
Yeah, I hate to say it, but it's like a lot of what I do right now, like meetings and planning and holding people accountable, like setting dates and timelines and structure and processing systems and all that. Put them all together and documenting it all. I like to build it out on the whiteboard and they're like, okay, everybody go take care of that. Put it on paper. Build it out. Here's all my ideas and we can work through it. So I'd love to solve problems, I love to play games, and solve problems, but then I don't like to like tell everybody else how to solve that same problem for the next ten years and put it in a sheet of paper…that makes sense.
Gotcha. I’m the same way!
Bill: I like throwing ideas out there and get into like 70% of the way. I tell you what I like. I like going 80% of the way. Hand it off to somebody else to put the cherry on top.
Understood. Nice. Well, we're coming down to the wire here, Bill. What is next up for you and 7Figure Flipping?
Bill: I don't think I've said this publicly, but we're buying a Church right now, right down the street from us to turn into our office. So, we are renting an office right now. We put a Church on a contract just a couple of days ago, and we're going through due diligence now to close on it before the end of the year. I want to build a local here in Nashville, kind of meetup space, almost like a REIA down in Williamson County, Murray County type area there where we can have events, we can do virtual events, live events, things like that at headquarters for our company, hired a COO. We're growing. We have launched into the multifamily space. We have a multi-family event called Multifamily Live in June in Nashville. It's going to be awesome, three-day events and be really cool. And then we have our single-family event. So just growing those events, growing the awareness of who we are and what we do, that's the next step. I heard Grant Cardone say something one time, he said,
“best known beats best”. I was like, it's hard to hear sometimes because I feel like we have our back-end fulfillment products, like what we create and who we bring in, like we're the best, but we're not the best known. And so that's our next step. How do we become the best known? How do we become kind of a household name in the development space, in real estate for coaching, training, mentoring, those mastermind groups, that kind of stuff. So that's my next step.
Very nice. So, Bill, as we're ending, we're pretty much closing out on amazing conversation. I know we could have gone longer, but we do have a few get to know you questions for you, sort of like a fire round. I hope you're ready for them.
Bill: I'm ready.
I'll be very easy. All right. So, the first one is what is your favorite book of all time that has had the greatest impact on your life?
Bill: I'm assuming we're avoiding the Bible here. Right. So, it's usually like, what's your most impactful book other than the Bible? So, if that's the case, there's one written by a guy named Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, it's called Extreme Ownership. That is the book that I think that I come back to all the time. We had Jocko out at one of our events, Flip Hacking Live in 2019 and meeting him, spending time with them, they were Navy Seals tell a story about the battle of Ramadi before in the Middle East time, where we were in Operation Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, all that stuff a little bit before I got out there. And they talk about all the things they learned at Seals and then they take it as an application to business. It's a really great book. And I would encourage anybody if they're thinking about getting to get the Audible book because the two of them read it and it's like second Seals talking to you about a battle in Ramadi. It's amazing. So best book I've read in the last ten years for sure and ever for me, it's one of my core values now because of that.
Amazing, awesome and yeah, nothing…. The Bible will always outshine every other book.
What is a huge life lesson you can share and how has your life changed afterwards?
Bill: I'd say the biggest thing is understanding people's needs and your needs. Like the biggest life lesson I've learned, especially of late, is to understand how we communicate with everybody around us. Like people are so important in our lives, whether it be employees, staff members, family relationships, relationships are business. And if you can really focus on that and understand that everybody doesn't see the world through the same lens that you do, so figure out what lens they're looking through and then figure out how you can support them, especially if you really care about them. The more you can care about people, the better you'll do in business and in life. And then on top of that, don't forget that you need to put your oxygen mask on first. Take care of yourself and it's not being selfish and self-care.
I love it. Love it. Favorite hobby outside of real estate?
Bill: Oh, I love to fly. So, I'm a pilot. I flew from the Navy. I have an airplane I really love. Tomorrow morning, I get to get in my airplane and fly down to Key West, my friends. It's going to be awesome. I can't wait. So I love doing that. I really love to scuba dive, go offshore fishing. I like to snowboard; I like outdoor stuff. I like to play soccer, sports, go to the gym, all that stuff. But I'd say I don't know if I could do one thing. I'd probably just be getting a plane and go fly.
Nice. The Freedom I'm sure is exhilarating.
Bill: It's pretty cool when you can just drive up to your plane, throw your bags in, and off you go. You don't have to get there an hour early, go through security. You can bring whatever shampoo you want. It's really nice.
Those are goals for me. Final question for you, though. If you have to start over, but with the knowledge you have now, what would you have done differently?
Bill: So, I've been asked this a lot, and I don't think this is the most popular opinion, but I don't think I would do anything differently. And I'm going to say why? Because maybe that's kind of a cop out. But every single lesson that we learn along the way was put there for a reason, for us to be stronger, better, and move the way that we did and challenges, obstacles, opportunities, everything in our life was done for a reason. And so when I look back, there's plenty of things that I was like, oh, I would change this, I would change this, I would change that.
Let's just learn from them. If we learn from everything, and then we kind of figure out how we can modify behaviors, execution, things like that a little bit differently in the future, that's probably the best thing that we can do. There's not anything that I would really change. I've answered this really great way before when I said I would have figured out how to meet my wife earlier in my life because I met her when I was like 30, three or so. And if I could have met her when I was in my 20s, it would be pretty awesome. But that was probably my best answer any time I've ever been asked this. But honestly, I don't think I would change a thing. Like, if I met her earlier in life, if I probably would have been ready, I probably was screwed up the relationship like I did many others before that, and I wouldn't have had the knowledge and understanding in life that I needed to actually win her over. So, yeah, I don't think I would change anything, unfortunately.
Awesome. That's fair enough. So, Bill, if anyone wanted to get in contact with you just to connect and know more about you, how would they go about doing so?
Bill: Well, I would say first step, just like we talked about, go buy the book. Go to 7ffbook.com like the number 7ffbook.com and just buy the book. It's like free book, free book. You just got to pay for shipping. So go do that. I have a podcast called 7Figure Flipping Podcast. You can check that out. And I hang out there two times a week. So those are two places if you buy the book, I don't know, our marketing Department will find it's your way on our email list and stuff like that, you'll be able to get a hold of me. But I'm on social media @BillAllenRei on Instagram, and I'm trying to figure out that platform. And I'm on Facebook a lot. So those are the places I kind of hang out. You guys can follow me there.
Sounds good. Yeah. Guys, 7Figure Flipping underground book, 7ffbook.com.
All these links will be in the show notes for sure. Again, I'm going to get a copy. I'm going to read it and make sure I apply. And I recommend you guys do so as well. So, Bill, I want to thank you again for jumping on and surviving our hot seat and sharing your story. I definitely learned a ton from everything that you shared, and
it was a pleasure just conversing with you and doing the show.
Bill: Yeah, I had a good time. Thanks a lot for having me. It's fun.
All right, awesome. So, guys, again, go get the book and to your success. Marc Cesar and we're out.
Author / CEO
Bill Allen, a Navy pilot and real estate professional, is the CEO and owner of 7 Figure Flipping and host of the 7 Figure Flipping Podcast, where he leads the top house flipping and wholesaling mentoring groups in the world. Just a few years ago, he was stuck flipping 1 or 2 houses per year and doing all the work himself, but since then, he’s built a systematized business that runs without him. His wholesaling and flipping company, Blackjack Real Estate, is based out of Nashville, TN and does business virtually across the Southeast. Bill has been investing as a limited partner in apartment syndications since 2018 and the past few years has focused on getting more involved as a general partner. Since then he has grown his portfolio to 1,979 storage units and 247 apartment doors.
Marc Cesar is joined by special guest host Brandon Speer and is placed on the hot seat. This episode will shed light on who Marc Cesar is, his journey in Real Estate, how he got into Apartment Investing, his purpose …