Chasing Financial Freedom

Ep 268: Navigating the Pathway to Real Estate Mastery and Personal Growth

February 21, 2024 Ryan DeMent Episode 268
Chasing Financial Freedom
Ep 268: Navigating the Pathway to Real Estate Mastery and Personal Growth
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Join us as David Dippong, a formidable force in the Southern California real estate market and self-development realm, brings a treasure trove of insights to the Chasing Financial Freedom podcast. Prepare to shatter the myths of the unattainable American dream as David lays out the blueprint for first-time homebuyers and realtors alike, illuminating the path to ownership and professional growth through meticulous market analysis and client-centered strategy. This episode promises a glimpse and a deep understanding of the financial habits that pave the way to success in real estate investment.

Our dialogue with David transcends mere transactional advice, venturing into the essential discipline of financial literacy and the overarching journey of personal growth. Witness how mastering the ebb and flow of interest rates can unlock the doors to property investment, even as we probe the rise of 'buy now, pay later' consumerism and its implications. David's expertise is a guiding light, revealing how a commitment to service can foster enduring customer relationships and drive the growth of your real estate and lending endeavors. Embrace the wisdom shared in this conversation, and arm yourself with the tools to navigate the intricacies of financial freedom and long-term wealth.

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Speaker 1:

Hey guys, ryan Diment from Chasing Financial Freedom podcast. I hope you guys are having a great day. It's President's Day and I have the honor of having David Dipong on the actual show today. Professional Realtor, real Estate Advisor, author and Self-Development Coach. So we're going to have a lot to talk about. But he's in the real estate space my favorite space so guys, tune in and let's get going. So, david, welcome to the show. Thanks, ryan, happy to be here. You're more than welcome. Thanks for coming on. I know it was a little bit of a short notice, but thank you.

Speaker 2:

Right, if you have the time, use it. That's what I like to say.

Speaker 1:

So before we get into real estate and what you're doing, tell the listeners a little bit about you and what you have going on.

Speaker 2:

So I work primarily in the Southern California counties of Orange County and Los Angeles County.

Speaker 2:

I live on the West side, do a lot of coastal properties and over the course of the past decade in real estate I naturally transitioned in figuring out how to help all the people I couldn't reach with just my license. Because I'm licensed in California, I can work with people on real estate in California. And where the book about building the habits of success and investing in real estate came into play is not only to find a way to reach everybody else, everybody in the entire. Whether they want to consult with me or not, at least give them some of the tools they might not know they need to know to start building that type of life for themselves. And then it naturally transitioned into some people reaching out and wanting to be coach. So I do a little bit of coaching on both the real estate and the success the life develop guide, because people meet, have a need and I want, as long as I've got the time, I like to use it to achieve my goals through being of service.

Speaker 1:

Ten years as a realtor and I would say you've probably seen some ups and downs in the market there in Southern California. Yeah, everybody always needs tones right.

Speaker 2:

People want those the American tree but they're slow tithes and they're fast tithes. You have to build those into your long term outlook. You have to establish and save for those times so that when they come you can just weather them. You can use that time to shift into other parts of your business. You wish you had time to work on before.

Speaker 1:

So if a new agent or a realtor excuse me is coming into the market today, what would you mean? Let's just go right down and deep to what would be two things you'd want him or her to focus in on to be successful. I wanted to actually know the data.

Speaker 2:

Real estate classes are great, but they don't actually teach you about the micro markets you're going to be working in. I'd want them to look at the cities that he was interested in working in, or they were interested in working in, and say, hey, how much home supply is there? Look at the value players. Look at the places that have gone up, look at the places that have gone down, like why I'd want them to start to look at the value of the value, of the value of the down, like why I'd want them to start building a story as to how they can help people.

Speaker 2:

If you just want to help people open doors and help them write offers, that's great, you can do it, but you're not really serving their highest and best interests. If they're trying to buy a home and that home is supposed to be their starter home, it's supposed to build the funds that needed for their second home and it's supposed to meet their children's needs right now as school. And you have to know the data. You have to know exactly where those cities, those neighborhoods are. That would best help and hit their goals instead of just saying, hey, here, look at this house, do you like it? You have to actually build skills around crafting the, helping your clients see the best past and then letting them choose what's best for them, as opposed to just cold calling and selling anybody anything.

Speaker 1:

So is the American dream unaffordable in Southern California for first time homebuyers? No, I don't think it is at all.

Speaker 2:

It's certainly a longer process than it used to. However, it's shown itself over the last 50 years to be one of the best investments you could ever make. And you can't say the same about every state, every city homes in Arkansas, homes in certain parts of Texas and certain parts of Texas but you can say it about homes in Southern California. That's over the last 40 years and we have the data. It's been one of the highest performing investments and there are few things in this world that reduce your cost of living like owning a home and paying it off, although the starting price is a little bit more expensive. That just means you have to start planning. You have a kid, you start saving for their college funds, you start saving a little bit for their down payment, their first down payment. It's no different from what we've always been doing, except to take a longer term plan and a longer term outlook and maybe an advisor for those people who don't know what they need to be doing now to prepare.

Speaker 1:

Are there, and I don't know California well enough from a real estate side. Are there any type of first-time home buyer programs in California available? Absolutely.

Speaker 2:

We've got. In Los Angeles and Orange County there's programs that'll give you anywhere between $20,000 and $150,000 to put down in your home. All you have to do is qualify with your income. So, although many people can afford to buy and do have parents or people supplementing their down payment so they can just jump into the home right away I've helped a lot of clients get zero to 3% down program and buy a duplex.

Speaker 2:

This starting with a $6,000, $7,000 mortgage and then the other units paying 2,500 to 3,000 of it, and suddenly they own a property that they're only paying $800,000 and $900,000 and they're only paying $4,000 a month. And then within the next five years, rates go down. They refinance, they rent out the other half. It's breaking even. It cash flows a little bit. They use that property to build the money they'll need to put the down payment on the forever home over the next five to ten years, depending on how fast the market goes, and then in the meantime they can go rent or buy wherever they'd like to actually live during that. So instead of you just getting the whole way becomes okay, we're going to get you exactly what you want for the last 60 years of your life, but for the first 30 to 4th, we're going to need you to make these smart real estate decisions and then wait and just do the maintenance, just have it hold it like you would any other investment.

Speaker 1:

So is that kind of what you're doing with your real estate consulting or coaching? Is you're helping people obtain that ownership?

Speaker 2:

Yes, there's so many programs that can help them, the variances and how much time it takes to qualify for them, so they can take anywhere between a few months to over a year, depending on demand. And I have plenty of clients who aren't that way, who just want to buy the nice 3, 4, 5 million dollars home coastal real estate. But the clients I've found that need the most guidance are the people starting from. Nobody in their families ever owned a home before they're working paycheck to paycheck. So those are the people I typically have to or work with to coach long term.

Speaker 2:

The other ones do invest but it's a much quicker process because they already have the funds. They make a good income. They in general families with more money just have a higher level of financial education and if their parents had money or their parents had money, those habits have been passed down. So a lot of the coaching is instilling those habits in families that have never heard of it or had the chance to build that financial education before.

Speaker 1:

So how do we get them that financial education to help them?

Speaker 2:

My answer so far have been coaching people, going on podcasts, writing a book. The simple answer is there's a difference in information. So if more or all real estate brokers, agents, financial advisors were more currently just looking out for their clients need as opposed to looking out for their bottom lines, we could have a free exchange of information. We could have everybody telling people we're not in a world where renting makes sense long term anymore. You're going to have to own something or you're going to hit hard financial times later in life as the cost of living keeps going up. That's just a truth now, based on how our economy is set up. So we need to be sharing. Hey, it might take you five years if you go down this plan, but if you go down this plan, you're only saving $100 or $200 a month and you're using these few down payment assistance programs or this grant and this down payment assistance program, and, although it seems like forever to you now, you'll get the home when you're 40 and then that home will become the first tool in your well-building machine that will take care of you for the rest of your life.

Speaker 2:

We need to start help Everybody as a whole. All of the financial industry need to start helping people make the long term a little bit easier to think of, because that's what it is. People like the short term because at the instant its gratification is right here. But if they knew that the difference between them having the last 40 years of their life please, they want them or struggling to get into a rent control department when they're 70 because they don't bring it anytime anymore and they just can't afford for their cost of living to increase, regardless of whether they have any medical issues at that time. That's a cost you cannot pay. So you gotta get on board with the long term early.

Speaker 1:

And would you say that's the difference between building relationships and being transactional?

Speaker 2:

Yes, I've spent the better part of the last two years telling my clients that it wasn't a good time for them to sell, telling them that it honestly wasn't that good of a time to buy. There's time timing the market is impossible to a certain extent, but it's also very possible to a smaller extent. It's saying, hey, if you don't have this immediate need and we can wait for these three factors to be better, why would you do something right now, unless you find the perfect time? And then it okay, now that we have all this extra time, let's set up a more of a long-term plan. What are your goals? When would be the best time to start that goal?

Speaker 2:

And although you'll always lose people to other safe people will, their brothers will get their license and they'll start working with them. Building these relationships in my experience has helped me retain a lot of clients. It's just, I'm interested in doing what's best for you. I'll make enough money regardless. It's fine. Whatever we do, because I'm helping enough people, my goals will be achieved. I need to help you make your goals inevitable instead of just possible.

Speaker 1:

Do you? And this is going back to a little bit. What we talked about earlier is the inflow and the outflow of people into California. What is, what's that looking and how's that shaping the real estate market?

Speaker 2:

I mean the most honest answer and the one that isn't very click, baby, or what they want in a year, is it's not. I take a look at the US census numbers of people coming in and going out every year and from where, and the difference is, even though 800,000 leaves, 770,000 came in and then okay, so we're 30,000 different. A majority of the people coming in are expecting the price they're going to have to pay to live here. Majority of the people leaving are expect like they're leaving for a reason. They can't afford it or don't agree with how it's being run. But we're also still building a few 100,000 less that we need to build every year to keep up with the main, the fact that 80% of people have an interest rate below 6%. Most of those people are never going to enter the market again, not unless rates get close to what they bought at, and all of my clients bought between like two and a half and three.

Speaker 2:

When supply stays, oh, it's short and there's not a huge difference in demand in buyers. Not a whole lot the market can do would go up and unless a million people leave California every year and nobody comes in, it doesn't really have an effect on our prices. It's the fairy tale that if you wait, eventually the market will fall apart and then prices will come down. And people you have people that are indefinite fence sitters Every two years they tell you they want to wait and then they're definitely going to do something in two years and you do your best to coach them that waiting is just historically, by the evidence, never been the best idea. And then you end up in a market like LA where your homes are 40% more expensive than they were eight years ago and now their income isn't 40% larger and they just can't afford to buy anything. So the waiting ends up crippling you in a way that's even making a bad decision on a home woodman, as long as you're, in that, least benefiting you.

Speaker 1:

So if majority of your clients bought in the 2.5% or 3.5%, 4%, what type of clients are you seeing today in this market with the rates where they're at?

Speaker 2:

It's a split. It's a market of more people trying to buy multi units 2 to 4, and offset their mortgage, and the other ones are just buying more conservatively at lower prices. They're like, okay, prices are high, but I need to get my kid this half. They're having a baby. They need to do this. So it's an even split for me of people who really need that help and so we have to go through all these programs and buy a house and plan that they're going to rent out two of the roofs so that they can make their mortgage and the other people just not spending as much. Like a couple years ago, more of my clients would be looking at like $4 million property sideways, and now two or three might work depending on, or they stay in their current home longer and they're just going to leverage the equity out to invest in another property. Now, after the market comes down, there's a mix, but in general it's just a little bit slower because that the interest rates are making people nervous.

Speaker 1:

Do you foresee rate cuts this year from the Fed?

Speaker 2:

Yes, I've always been more cautious than they are. I've been telling my client I don't think we'll see under six this year. I think we might see under six by end of next year, considering what they did was lower it very quickly at the beginning of this year and suddenly have to backtrack because things were looking too positive. But no, I don't think we're seeing under six this year. I think we're seeing people get on board with the fact that rate will be going down over the next three to five years more consistently and in my experience that makes it a pretty good time to buy because you can at least refinance in the next few years. But you're also not competing with all of the people that need rates to go down just to be able to afford it. So I think late this year, early next year, is a great time to try buying your first thing get a balance of lower rates, a balance of refinancing.

Speaker 2:

Like my parents bought at 16%. They refinanced nine times over the next 15 years and then they get down to a three and they'll never refinance again for the rest of their likes. It's just the process that you go through. But yeah, you're not going to see rates plummet this year down to five and a half, and then all of the activity and inflation and price increases that would cause homes. They just couldn't afford it Without it. Wages having increased that much over the last few years due to open, there's no way the economy is just going to be able to recover from that.

Speaker 1:

I think there's something else in these numbers too. So these people that are stuck at these low interest rates on the mortgages and this is just me looking at the data, and I love numbers is we have a credit crunch that is building up because of interest rates and sooner or later, those people that own homes at those lower rates are either going to have to take a HELOC out or they're going to have to do a second, or they're going to have to do something because they have some credit challenges coming to fruition. And one of those ones that I see challenged because I buy in the secondary market, is buy now, pay later. It's become Amazon.

Speaker 2:

Chase does it, everybody does. Hey, look at this purchase you just bought. Would you like to pay later for it? But if you looked at the number for credit usage over the holidays. Just like it always does, it reaches new height because people want to spend that money.

Speaker 2:

They want to feel good. They want to get presents for people. The one benefit that our people have the Southern California homeowners is that so much equity was earned in that 2020, 2019 to 2022 period that they actually do have enough money and they can take a hundred grand out and pay off a bunch of credit cards. I do think there's some merit to what you said in being locked in, but at a certain point, if you're locked into a great investment and wait a couple more years and you'll have even more money in your home, I would never. I have a place at 3 and a quarter. I never sell this place, but I'll use it to buy a tick place. You know they can do these money. I say moving forward, but why would I? There's too much evidence supporting that. It's a better idea to hold a few properties long term if you ever plan to be financially free or have passive income because you don't pay taxes on the step you hold, you pay taxes on the step you sell.

Speaker 1:

There's 1031 exchanges. Go through that.

Speaker 2:

That's a whole other thing. You have to teach people, which is nerve wracking in itself.

Speaker 1:

It is because it's I don't know how it's going against the grain. That's the best way to do it.

Speaker 2:

It's one of the best things you can do, but you got to make sure you can cross your eyes, dot your T's, talk to your accountant.

Speaker 2:

A lot of what I find is a lot of the average people, the people who are just trying to have a family and work. They work hard. They don't have the capacity to learn all of this stuff. My job becomes breaking everything down into the smallest, most achievable or digestible steps and just say you don't worry about this, here are your steps for the month. Don't even think about the big fixer, but we'll talk again next month and then eventually, just by you looking at the very short time span, we'll get somewhere better at least. Maybe not to the goal, but your kids will start 50% closer to the goal. Their kids will start 50% closer to that, and that's what we think making progress.

Speaker 1:

And you said it earlier. It's that instant gratification that gets people thrown off. And I agree it's a lot of work to get yourself one financially literate but two, be able to capitalize on it and then expand out. In the recent years, when I went to college I'm not a mold, I'm turning 50 this year I didn't read a lot, no, but in my 40s, in my 30s, I started finding the love for reading and I started finding things I could read. Now I task myself every month to read at least three books and that's, and then I'm gaining knowledge from that. But it's time you have to block and tackle your calendar. I know it sounds stupid, but I've said that a hundred times in my life and I said I would never block and tackle my calendar. And guess what? I do it now. It's the only way I can get things done, Focusing on revenue-facing tasks. And then the evening I'm not going to sit there and binge Netflix or Amazon or whatever. That's when I read. I spend an hour and a half two hours reading.

Speaker 2:

I got into reading in my mid-to-late 20s. Same thing Like right. When I was getting into real estate I was like, okay, let me focus on this. But in the end I realized that I didn't like reading in my younger age because we were always reading something that did not connect with the things I wanted out of life. It was always like bail or some English literature thing and it's like it doesn't support my goals. Of course I'm not going to like it, but I started reading about real estate when I started reading about investing passive income, financial freedom, how to better help people get to their own goals without triggering their alarm, dealing with the emotions that people have, teaching me either how to do my job better or figure out how to get to my goals faster.

Speaker 2:

Suddenly, reading 12 books a year wasn't hard and because I drive all the time or because I'm doing other things, you might think you don't have time to read. So I listened to a tremendous amount of audiobooks a year. You may not remember everything the first listened through, but the great thing about audiobooks is you can listen to the whole thing about three or four times faster than somebody else can read it, so you can actually just listen to the same book, or two books, two times and instead of reading four books, you read two books two times over a month while you're doing the dishes, while you're doing other stuff that doesn't really take your primary mental focus or your critical thinking, and you start retaining this information. It's okay. I'm benefited.

Speaker 2:

Now, tomorrow, I can go talk to people with a little bit more information, I can go do this thing a little bit better than I did before, because I'm already going to be here doing it. So why, to your credit, would I be learning more about? Why would I be learning more about the Kardashians? Why would I be spending those five hours binging a show? That's one not going to help me and two not going to help my family?

Speaker 1:

Exactly. I upped that one that reading or listening to the books twice About two years ago a good friend of mine that's also a podcaster said there's a thing called Audible and I'm like, yeah, I know.

Speaker 1:

Audible Books. And I said he goes, you can connect your Audible to your Kindle app and you can actually listen while you read. And I'm like, shut the front door, you kidding me? So now when I look for a book, I make sure that it has an Audible attachment to it, because I actually comprehend a lot better when I hear it and read it. And guess what I do? I step it up to 1.5 to 1.7.

Speaker 2:

Some people are sudden just, oh, readers, I live at 1.3. I live there because I'm like, okay, let me just. And I even have a notebook. I still use old college rule notebooks because I find that we're not reinventing the wheel. Something really resonates and it really helps you Write it down. Now. You've heard it, you've read it, you've written it down. What are the odds you're going to forget it when it comes time to use that information? Little things that I know to most people who watch this like.

Speaker 2:

Suddenly it might have started to sound boring around the reading portion, but that's what it is. It's finding in my book I call time one of your most important limited resources and the way you use investors spend your time, because that's what you're doing. You're either spending it or you're investing. It makes a real difference over the one, three, five, ten year period. So when you're thinking about what you want to do, it starts with finding out just what you want, how you want to design your own light, maybe reading and maybe going back to school.

Speaker 2:

Maybe doing all these things doesn't make sense to you right now. But you connect with the goal and you say, hey, actually it'd be really nice to have two kids and not have to work after the age of 60. Then suddenly you feel a little bit more motivated. Okay, maybe I should read that book about real estate. Maybe I should call that guy, maybe I should call Ryan and see what he has to say about Investing in homes or like the programs in my area. Maybe I should start that up. Tell it true 30 year path to building the tools that generates the wealth. If none of your parents or grandparents generation did it, one generation has to be the one that works a little bit harder and benefits a little bit less from the investing, from the financial education, because every other generation that comes after it will have a exponentially easier time of getting to the end goal.

Speaker 1:

So, as we get close, we're getting wrapped up here at the end of this. I've got two. I got several questions, but we'll make them quick. So the first question is somebody that wants to do better in their life financially? I'm guessing you're, and I didn't ask you this you're. Are you taking on clients outside of California?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I don't do the real estate part there, but I help the, I lead it fully into the coaching and I help them build and establish the habits of achieving that goal and whatever they may be.

Speaker 1:

And if they're wanting to reach out to you and connect, what would be the best way for them to connect with you?

Speaker 2:

So I have a website, wwwdepongrealestate. So it's my last name, duck, and all of my information is on there or they can just email me directly and set up a time. It's my personal email is ddepong, so ddippongedmailcom, and basically when they reach out there I see where they need to go or what they need and I'll funnel them to wherever I need, that being in my other emails what? I want to do is just make it simple for people to feel comfortable reaching out to start getting that help that they need.

Speaker 1:

I'll put both of those links in the show notes so we'll get that out there. And then, lastly, I know you have a book and we didn't talk about it. Go for it, let the listeners know about it.

Speaker 2:

It'll be done within the next few months on editing and doing the final process. It's called the Long and Not so Short of it because everybody loves. My dad used to love to say the long and short of it is is summarize everything in a nice little sentence. I started thinking about it from the opposite perspective. Life is long, it's not short, and so you can't skip over all those pieces. So the Long and Not so Short of it, because there's a lot of information in here that you just shouldn't skip over.

Speaker 2:

And it's about building a life by design. It's about building the habit of success. And then the last quarter is about investing in real estate. So it's not just a real estate book where you just you learn that you need to buy a house. It's how do I become the person that gets to live a little bit more of the life I want to every day, Instead of looking at that 40 year goal and saying, okay, I'll eventually get there, and being just it's more focusing on how do I enjoy every day of my life more on the way to make. So it doesn't seem like you're sacrificing for the future. You're actually benefiting just by going through any of the steps.

Speaker 1:

Wow, there's just a lot. We could talk all day for this, but I do have to wrap it up, so thank you for being on. I'll get your links in the show notes, but the information you shared. One is great, but two you're helping people, and that's big in my space, whether it be real estate lending, whatever the case is, transactional, is just horrible, and there's just so many people still doing it and they don't. They wonder why they can't get Repeat customers. One but two get that traction for scale and you're doing that, so I thank you for that. Thank you, sir.

Speaker 2:

I'm just over the hey look how much money I sold last year. That's great, but how do you help me? Or if I'm the consumer, like, how do I help you? You shouldn't be asking how do I make more money every year? It should be how do I serve Mike Flyance a little better, because the money will happen. It's not the outcome that you need to be worried about, it's the process.

Speaker 1:

Yes, sir, it is. I thank you for coming on. It's been a great conversation and look forward to hearing about your book.

Speaker 2:

Thank you, sir, I'll let you know when it comes out. You're welcome, thank you.

Real Estate and Financial Coaching
Financial Literacy and Personal Growth
Focusing on Customer Service and Growth