How We turned 40K in Cash into Est $500K Net Worth in 3 Years

Hey there everyone, how are you doing? So one thing I wanted to do before we sort of head into the long weekend here is, maybe give you a picture of our first couple of years of real estate investing, right? So we started again back in 2003 we didn’t have a lot, we had about $40,000 in cash saved up between us, and I get asked all the time to kind of relive or paint or give a timeline of, of how we used or leverage that capital to grow. PR you know, a decent-sized portfolio. So I thought I’d do is just give you a flavor of it. You know, obviously, the full story is documented in our book one rental at a time and you can get that on Amazon. But why don’t we go and kind of give you the timeline and, and share with you, you know, how it all started.
Cause it’s a, it’s fun. Yeah. So again, let me expand this out. So I did my best to go back and kind of relive the story, kind of what use frankly used Zillow to kind of document purchase dates and things of that nature. And basically highlight how we rolled from 2003 to 2007, how we turned $40,000 in cash into approximately 500K in net worth. Obviously, I use the word estimate because again, net worth is one of those numbers that I think is kind of squishy. You know, you could, you know, one appraiser could say this, another one can say that and you know, all of those details. So I did my best to kind of call that out where appropriate. Again, if you want to see the full story right, the full 15 years, you need to go ahead and get the book one rental at a time.
It is on Amazon. It talks about all the things we did pre-crash, what saved us, how we leveraged the crash. You, you know, used it to buy a lot more stuff. And then finally what we did is the market return. So it’s, it’s a very detailed story of what we did and hopefully, you enjoy it, but this is how it all starts. So it started for us in 2003 when we finally realized that the Bay area though our home market, 30 minutes from our house wasn’t going to work. We had to look elsewhere. That’s when we decided to pursue Fresno. We didn’t buy our first property or it didn’t close on it until December of Oh three. So you will start to see these kinds of numbers repeat. So we bought a single-family home. This was a single-family home.
One is, it will be referenced throughout this for 107. We bought it at the market. We didn’t know any different. We paid full retail and we used you know, $20,000 roughly as our down payment. Then we can move on to August of Oh four. We buy another single-family home for, you know, 110. We did buy this one under market. We estimate this to be about 20 K under market and we sent to learn that you don’t have to put 20% down, you can put 10% down again is 2004 pre-bubble, all of those things. So a couple of things. First note that it took us, you know, almost seven months or eight months to buy the next one. You know, we didn’t, we didn’t run out and you know, just by three riding a row you really do gotta read the book because we tell them a horrible story with our first rental that almost crushed us.
You know, we almost stopped investing cause it was so painful. Thankfully Olivia gets all the, all the credit in the world for, you know, staying true to our plan and moving forward because as you will read in the book, I was unsure if we wanted to go do this again cause it was pretty painful. Then we did buy a third property. Again, this one for one 20. We did buy it a little smarter. Again, we thought it was about 30 K under market and we put 10% down. So, in the end, this is kinda how we broke down net worth through 2004. So we started with 40 K that was kind of actual, right? That’s, that was what we had. It was cash after our first purchase. We still were about 40 K, cause again, we didn’t buy it under the market.
We didn’t know any different. So we were sitting on approximately 20 Kane cash and we had equity in that first purchase of 20 K. Moving forward again, after buying that second house we estimated our net worth to be about 80, which broke down 10 K in cash. That’s what we had left. We had 40 K now in the first home cause appreciation. And then we bought that third house again, we put 10 K down and we bought it for about 20 K under market. So our net worth after our second purchase was starting to you know, get close to a hundred K. And then finally, after purchasing our third one there in November we had no cash left. We were cash for our first house now was or was 40 K in equity.
We thought our third one was 30 K and again, our fourth one, because we bought it under market was 40 K. So again, these are estimates. You know, I did the best I can. You can argue is it 90 K is at one 20. I don’t know. But this is where I thought we were sitting as of November 2004. So moving forward we do our first cash-out refi. Again, I talk about this a bunch in the book. We took a positive cash flow property and turned it negative. As you’ll see in the book, I call that an alligator. It’s very painful. Don’t ever do it. It was stupid, but I didn’t know any better. So we took 40 K out of that. We did very soon after that by single-family home four and single-family house five both were about 20 K in the market.
And we put 10 K down heading into March of Oh six. We did another cash-out refi this time a little smarter. We didn’t create an, we made sure we had at least a little bit of cash flow. It didn’t always work, but at least that’s what we were thinking. So we pulled again cash out of our second single-family home of about 40 grand and then that helped us buy two more single-family homes. So we got up to single-family homes, six and single-family homes, seven both were about 20 K under market. And this time we had to put about 15 K down. So how does this all work out? So if we go back to July Oh five or the cashout refi, we, we went from zero cash to 40 K. Our net worth has gone up mainly because of equity.
So we have 40 K cash, our single-family home one. We have 20 K left. Again, we had an appraisal. So you know, we still had that equity. As it turns out it was kind of false equity, but that’s where we were sitting on a single-family home and a single-family home. Two and three both have appreciated nicely. Do you want to go back and look at it? You can look at Fresno’s appreciation from like 2002 to 2007, it was double digits. And if you bought right, you could really do some special things back then. And as we move forward with the purchase of single-family homes, four and five, our net worth went up again. Cause again we bought it, right? We bought 20 can to market. And we put 10 K down. So our cash went down by 20 K. A single-family home one was 22, two and three where there’s still that 70. And then again, we bought a single-family home, four and five, right? 20 K under plus 10 K down. And that’s where we sat with [inaudible].
It’s heading forward March of Oh six. You know, time’s going by, appreciation is good on us. We are again pulling cash out. So we got a now 60 K cash after our second refi, a 40 K equity in house one 50 K in the house too now 90 [inaudible] in house, three 70 K in a house, four and 70 [inaudible] in house five. We then exceed half a million dollars because we buy houses six and seven, right? Our cash goes down to 30 K cause we had to put 15 K down each. You know, so we’re sitting with 30 K cash, 50K equity in house one 60 K in the house to 110 in house, three 90 K in house four 90 Kane house five. And then how S four and or how six and seven both were sitting on 40 K as we bought an under market and put some down.
So again, this is how it, this is how it rolled. Three short years, 2003 to 2006. It was obviously a time of great appreciation. You know, again, check out the charts, kind of double digits, year on year on year. Again, and if you know our story at all it goes exponential from there. You know, we went from houses to apartments. We can talk about that. It’s all in the book. We can talk about hard money and private money, which is something we leveraged extensively again, all in the book. So again, if you’re looking to have a good read you want to read something that Forbes recommended is one of the top 15 books to read before you get started. We are a self-published author telling our story and you can find it on Amazon. Just either look up the title one rental at a time or just search by my name. So hopefully that makes sense. Hopefully, you saw that I tried to put out the full timeline details kind of kept trying to keep all the numbers straight and see how appreciation buying under market can really help you. So hopefully that made sense. Hopefully, you enjoyed that. You have any questions you can leave comments below. Take care.

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