In this episode of the Truly Passive Income podcast, hosts Neil Henderson and Clint Harris sit down with Robert Shortsleeves, a real estate investor who has paved his own path to financial freedom. Starting in Alabama, Robert ventured into the world of real estate after a career in the Army, utilizing off-market deals to build his real estate empire. He shares his journey, offering unique insights into the importance of building a reliable team, and how to level up in the world of real estate by focusing on adding value to those just ahead of you on the journey.

Robert brings a wealth of knowledge to the table, discussing everything from real estate syndications to the importance of learning from those just a few steps ahead of you. His refreshing honesty about the challenges and triumphs of his journey provides listeners with a candid look into the world of real estate investing.

In addition to his real estate success, Robert speaks about his inspiring three-month vacation/remote work trip to Bali, demonstrating the life-changing potential of financial independence. This episode is a must-listen for anyone interested in real estate investing, financial freedom, and the pursuit of a life lived on your own terms.

Time Stamps:

[00:00] Intro

[01:52] Introduction to Robert Shortsleeves

[02:49] Robert’s journey into real estate investing

[07:25] The power of timing in real estate

[10:20] Robert’s experience with his first deal

[13:05] How Robert leverages off-market deals

[18:10] Robert’s big move to Bali

[22:15] The importance of learning from others in the industry

[27:00] Robert’s approach to giving back to the community

[33:59] How to get in touch with Robert Shortsleeves

[34:54] Closing remarks

Key Takeaways:

  • The Potential of Off-Market Deals: Robert Shortsleeves emphasizes the potential of off-market deals in real estate, which can often offer great opportunities for investors. His success in this area shows that off-market properties can be a lucrative avenue for generating passive income.
  • Learn from Those Ahead of You: Robert advocates for learning from people who are just a few steps ahead of you on the path to financial freedom. This practical advice encourages individuals to seek mentors who still have a fresh perspective on the challenges beginners might face.
  • Financial Freedom Enables Adventure: Robert’s ability to plan a three-month remote work trip to Bali highlights the freedom that financial independence can provide. By achieving financial stability, one can have the flexibility to explore new places and experiences without financial constraints.
  • The Importance of Giving Back: Robert believes in giving back to the community and helps others achieve their goals in real estate. This approach not only contributes to the community but also fosters a culture of shared knowledge and success.
  • The Journey Towards Financial Independence: Robert’s story underscores the journey towards financial independence, with its challenges and rewards. His experience serves as a testament to the fact that with hard work, determination, and strategic thinking, financial independence through real estate investing is achievable.

Books and Resources Mentioned:

Website: Shortsleeves Real Estate

Facebook: Robert Shortsleeves’ Facebook

Follow Us:

Facebook: facebook.com/TrulyPassiveInc

Twitter: twitter.com/trulypassive

YouTube: Truly Passive Income

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Transcript
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robert Short sleeves is a real estate investor. Who's built a successful wholesale and career from the ground up doing over 80 deals a year. From his humble beginnings in Alabama to a career in the army to his real estate adventures to a three month remote work trip and Bally, robert shares his insights on sourcing off-market real estate deals, struggles around building a reliable team and how to level up in the world of real estate. By focusing on adding value to those just ahead of you on your journey.

Neil Henderson:

Welcome to the Truly Passive Income Podcast. I'm Neil.

Clint Harris:

And I'm Clint. And today we have a friend of mine, Robert Short Sleeves from Short Sleeves Real Estate out of Fayetteville, North Carolina. Bob, thank you for coming on the show today. Welcome. How are you, man?

Robert Shortsleeves:

Doing well. Appreciate y'all having me.

Clint Harris:

Absolutely. Yep. Thanks for being here. So I first met you, Bob at the Pints and Properties in Fayetteville, North Carolina a couple years ago. In passing, we were talking about short term rentals at the time. and I got the word that you're a wholesaler, up and coming and doing some big things, and since then, There's a group of people there that I become good friends with. There's a lot of, there's a lot of active real estate investors in that market. A lot of very sharp people, a lot of young hungry people, military, disciplined, just going for it, right? So I've followed the career of a lot of those people. And, one of the reasons I wanted you on the show is that We talk about truly passive income a lot, and I think that there's some overlay with some of the things you're doing. Some of it not so much, but I think there's some really important lessons to be learned. But from that time, I was there a couple years ago. Of the people I've watched, I think you probably, you'll have to correct me if I'm wrong, but I have a feeling you probably closed more deals than anybody else in that room of 70 to 80 people. I would be surprised if you didn't close more deals than probably the top three to five people put together. and you tend to talk about your family and about your wholesaling business and not much else. You're not really flashy about a lot of the stuff you're dealing with and what you're doing, and so I wanted to try to pry some of that outta you today. So with that being said, I've already talked too much. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Sure man. Yeah. grew up in Alabama, so graduated high school and all that from Alabama and joined the Army right away. as I think I was hanging drywall at the time and, yeah, it was hard for me to decide if I wanted to buy beer. or food kind of thing. so I ended up deciding I need a career. So joined the Army and, yeah, I spent 15 years in the army, did about 10 years as a truck driver, bunch of deployments and all that stuff. And then, switched over to special operations for like my last five years and then, got medically retired and all that. But but yeah, I was actively doing real estate, obsessed with it while I was in the military, Mornings lunch, afternoons dinner, dragging my family around on the weekends for six hours, driving for dollars and all that stuff, right? but yeah, right now we got a nice little wholesale business that's running pretty well. And, most people will categorize me as a wholesaler, but I started off. As a buy and hold investor, like I'm, I wholesale, I assign deals in order to generate revenue to buy rentals. So it's, it's a means to an end kind of thing. but yeah, we got here in Fayetteville, we have 30 units. It's a mix of, some small multi-family, some mobile home parks. we're now getting into commercial, so we got two commercial properties, warehouses that we own right now. and yeah, life is good. Life is good.

Clint Harris:

Excellent man. How many wholesale deals are you doing now a year or per month, however you wanna categorize it versus, a couple years ago?

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah. Last year we did, it was a total of it's 85 assignments or double closes, And then, and of course there's a handful of stuff that I bought as well. so 80 to 90 deals total, maybe something like that.

Clint Harris:

Getting it. Good for you, man. That's awesome. So tell me about when you said you first got started and you were obsessed with real estate. What were you look when you picked, when you chose real estate? Were you looking at what am I gonna do after the military? Or what am I gonna do that's get gonna get me to an end goal? And then what did your first foray into real estate look like? obviously you had the benefit of. Being able to use hopefully, a VA loan or something like that. Tell me about what that looked like. What assets did you have to get started and did that push you into wholesaling? Cuz you didn't have the money so you were trading for hustle for money. So walk me through quickly that first couple years.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Sure. Yeah. I think I was stationed in Germany at the time, but, there, there was a point when, my wife and I were looking on Zillow and just clicking through stuff to buy here in Fayetteville to live in, and I was just clicking on Zillow for 6, 7, 8 hours. and I knew then there was like, I lost track of time and the wife had to remind me. You gotta eat something. Did you use the bathroom? so like I, I was just like zoned in on Zillow and I knew then there was something, right? Like the just real estate clicked in my, like I enjoyed looking at real estate kind of thing. so yeah, I started studying stuff and started going down the bigger pockets rabbit hole that everyone goes down when they're initially starting. And, yeah, my actually here, this is funny. My very, I think Brandon Turner said something about this is how I heard it in my mind. Don't be a little punk. Go out and make a move and buy something, right? And, so I heard Brandon Turner say something to that effect. And then, and then I bought a rice field in Indonesia, so

Clint Harris:

Great. Cash flow.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yep. not so much. So my wife's Indonesian, Yeah, an opportunity popped up. So I, I cashed out my Roth IRA and bought a rice field for $20,000. So that was my very first investment. We're in the process of selling it right now, but yeah. A tail as old time. I've heard that one a million times. That old chestnut,

Neil Henderson:

that's the strangest beginning of real estate investing I've heard since, There's a woman who's a turnkey operator, and her very first, real estate transaction was like some sort of development in Panama, and she lost all of her money.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Okay.

Clint Harris:

At least, yeah, at least you, the rice field is still there. That's,

Neil Henderson:

yes, exactly.

Clint Harris:

Interesting. We'll get more into international travel in a little bit, okay. So that was the first one in your like, I'm assuming that was a cash purchase, of course, but from there you were like, maybe let's diversify out of agriculture in Indonesia. And, go into Fayetteville.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Right? Yeah. So at that point, yeah, I basically just cashed out my retirement, And I didn't have much more, so I was still studying and stuff, and then, but it was a long time before or after I, I bought that rice field before I bought my first rental. So my first rental was something I bought off the MLS one of our friends from five Pillars represented me on the sale. my first two purchases were rentals, so I came into this wanting to buy rentals, not wholesaling that I was planning on buying from wholesalers, right? And, and I was planning on working with agents to find me deals, but I realized that I can find deeper deals. So I bought a couple rentals and I've sold those because they doubled in value in, in the spike and all that. so like it was a return on equity thing, but, but yeah, then I came across something that, that was talking about driving for dollars and people finding deals like 50 cents on the dollar kind of thing. I was like, Really, that's the thing. So yeah, I hit the streets and, and my first wholesale deal was something I got under contract totally intended to close on it and buy it myself. But a buddy of mine was like, Hey, let me get it. and I was like, sure, let's try out this assignment of contract thing. and I made like 3000 bucks. and that was my first. Wholesale deal. So it just happened by accident. And then I started going down that rabbit hole of, active income with real estate via wholesale. To generate more revenue so I can buy more property. Yeah. What timeframe was that, Bob? So that was May of 2019. I bought my first

Neil Henderson:

That was your first, that was your first deal. May of 2019.

Robert Shortsleeves:

That was my first rental. Yeah. Then soon after that, I bought another rental about six months later. And this was the BRRRR strategy, just straight up BRRRR strategy for those I think. And then, and then, yeah, I did a wholesale deal after the second one. Yeah.

Clint Harris:

You're talking about 2019. That's a pretty fast timeline and if you talk about the velocity of what you've done, the amount of deals that you've closed, there's no way that anybody can ever do that with their own amount of capital. So you you got to the young man trading hustle. For money kind of a thing. And one of the things that I typically see, and I'm gonna try to go through this very quickly, but a lot of times what I see with wholesalers or people starting out, a lot of people that are just getting started start with wholesaling because they don't have the capital to do more than a couple deals on their own, otherwise they hit that ceiling, right? So you start trading hustle for money, you're driving for dollars, you're cold calling, you're getting those deals, you're signing some deals. And then a lot of times those people realize, Wow, there's some really good stuff here. I'm selling it to people and they're flipping it and making $30,000 to $50,000. I bet I could do that. So a lot of times that wholesaler will start flipping one or two properties and usually mess up on the first couple, supposed to make 30 grand and you make five, or maybe you lose money or whatever. But it comes out in the wash and you're making up for it with wholesaling. So you flip a few properties and then a lot of times fast forward to those people go, oh, When I sell these properties, I can flip 'em, that's great, but I only get paid once. or they'll do one or two things. They go, oh, I could make more money if I become a real estate agent. I can save myself the commissions when I sell 'em. But then they realize a lot of times, then you gotta follow the rules. As a wholesaler, you're a higher gun and you can do what you want. So some go the agent route and some go the other route. And of the ones that go the other route, a lot of times they say, listen, I'm at the end of the day, I'm still trading time for money. When I wholesale a deal or when I flip a deal, I'm trading time for money, and the day I stop working is the day I stop work getting paid. So they start using those to buy rentals. It sounds like you started the opposite. Your intention was to buy rentals originally, and this was a means to an end, but then you start buying rentals. A lot of times you start buying single family, then you understand the power of multifamily, and then from there it progresses. And a lot of times people either get in short-term rentals or hotels or mobile home parks. Eventually the end destination of that is. Everybody over time has to make a transition of, they start to realize that at some point the time is worth more than the money. And so they start looking for investment strategies that can be more passive or that they either, like in my situation, we've got 14 short-term rentals. And I thought that was gonna be passive and it was anything but, so we had to build a property management company, which took two years to do to make it passive, right? It's not passive, it's at this point it's residual. I've got all the people in place and I don't have to do anything. But it was a couple years of really hard work. fast forward through your journey of 2019 to where you are now. It of where along that spectrum, is that spectrum accurate, is it not? And then what do your next five, 10 years look like?

Robert Shortsleeves:

No, that, that's absolutely correct. So yeah, we're, I'm with you with, as far as building something out, struggling and hustling for a couple years, getting the team in place and then kinda, benefiting from the fruits of your labor. Cuz it, we got a solid team right now, but it took time. It took time. And the cool thing about a wholesale business is that you can have a million dollar business with a team of five people or even less sometimes depending on the market, But ki going a step back from that though. The reason why wholesale works for me is because I'm a sales and marketing guy. And I enjoy the hunt of the deal and all that stuff. A lot of people get into wholesaling because they, it's starting to become more mainstream. it's all over YouTube and you type in make money fast, you wholesaling pops up. And but a lot of people get into it thinking they're gonna make some money, but it's not, it doesn't fit their personality traits. Sure. And then they end up. Hating it, and they blow 50, 60 K and then, and then yeah, they, you can't do what you don't like for an extended period of time. You might make a little bit, but, so yeah. Just to put a disclaimer there, I'm that guy that loves wholesaling, right? Yeah. It's, yep. but yeah, it's completely residual. Like I recently went on a trip. I do. We wanna talk about the trip now.

Clint Harris:

I gotta hear about it. Lay it on me.

Robert Shortsleeves:

You gotta hear that Looks good. Yeah. Yeah. the reason why I was able to do the trip, I, so let's just talk about it. So I went on a three month trip, my wife's Indonesian. So we went and spent three months. I basically didn't open a laptop for three months. and very rarely did I even interact with my team. I would ask them if I, If I can help somehow, some way while I, have some free time, my team just crushed it, man. So if you can build a team that can take care of stuff while you're gone, that's really what people are looking for when they say passive is to be able to dip out for three months and not have to open a laptop. but I was also able to do that because I have a portfolio that cash flows really well, and that is pretty dang passive. I got property managers and all that stuff, so they handle the portfolio and I'm able to pull money outta that. I'm able to pull money outta my wholesale business as, owner distributions or whatever. but yeah, that, that took a fair amount of time to, to set that up. Since 2019. Most people, it, it does take 'em a little a bit longer to have that, that three month vacation, but, Yeah, I just decided now's the time. And I was gonna, it was really a test for my team in some way as well. To see if they could perform without the daily input from the boss kind of thing. And they did. They did. But, going back to the truly passive income stuff, the portfolio is not completely a hundred percent passive. The wholesale business is not a hundred percent passive. I'm at the point now where I can generate enough income from my active income, from the wholesale business and drop it into, a syndication, a buddy of mine or someone else that's experienced. I can drop it into their systems, their process and then generate that actually passive income. And there's some other stuff that we're looking at too. It's like single net or, single tenant triple net lease stuff. Quite a bit more passive than the residential, single family stuff that, that we have, but yeah, I'm on the hunt. I'm on the hunt for truly passive income.

Clint Harris:

You've come to the right place.

Neil Henderson:

So I wanna ask a question. in Tim Ferris's book, the Four Hour Work Week, he talks about, Once he started traveling. And he had built a business, it forced him to build systems and build a team, and he actually made more money once he had removed himself as the bottleneck in that team, because now the team was free. To do, to work within the system without you as the block? Did you experience that at all or did things start to fall apart or what?

Robert Shortsleeves:

no, we didn't make more money, I'll tell you that we did not make more money. no things, st things definitely started going the opposite direction. So what I learned as a business owner is that, if. Because he probably had an operator that was managing stuff. So in my company, I don't have a, me like an operator. That's right. and then marketing is so important with wholesale, you gotta keep your eye on the marketing that your key performance indicators, right? So some of that stuff started to slip. but, but yeah, so keep keeping the, so now I'm back to I'm involved. Now that I'm back in the States, I am absolutely involved again to get it ramped back up. but the business was able to survive. It was not able to improve. and that's all my fault cuz I, we still had things that, that needed to be put in place before I actually probably should have done that. more systems, more SOPs, more checklists, more videos and all that stuff. But, I'm totally fine with the, it's the time. it's the time, right? The time was worth losing out on some revenue, I'd say.

Neil Henderson:

and it was a test run. Yeah. And you didn't know. You didn't know what you didn't know. And now you went out and you, you stress tested it. Yeah. And you figured out, all right, here's where we're falling short. Here's where we need to plus up our team. You probably need somebody who's more of an integrator on your team. That's almost a you replacement. and then now go from there. you've only been doing this since 2019. It's You're really expecting to just bam, right off the bat, be able to, it's impressive you were able to go away for three months and it still didn't come back to a smoking crater.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah. since I got back, I've hired another acquisitions that was part of the solution was h another hire to relieve the stress from and the workload from our, the one acquisitions that was actually getting contracts. So yeah, we learned.

Clint Harris:

Yeah. And what a valuable lesson. to learn that lesson by itself is important to learn it when you're traveling for three months abroad. sign me up. but like Neil said, it's a trial run. the, one of the pitfalls of being an entrepreneur and of being a sales and marketing, I'm a sales guy, just medical sales for 16 years. That's my background. And one of the pitfalls that you can fall into there, and I'm not saying I'm the best example, but on some level it applies to most people that are in that role. Is that whether you tend to like it or not. If you love it and you're passionate about it and you're good at it, a lot of times you are the business. And so when you take Bob out of the equation, it's unrealistic to get the same results because you are the business. and that's really hard to replace because you can't. You can't train the fire in the belly that you have, like your level of success and what you've achieved since I've met you just a few years ago, that's not something you can make enough videos on. And so the, like the Dan Sullivan book who not how. Was transformative for me in our property management company because I was asking those entrepreneurial questions, how do I do this? How do I do that? How do I do this? And then I listened to that book and the reality was, I don't need to know. I just need to find out who do I find or can find that does know how to do that at a better level than me? And when I got to the point of we, we found the people, and a lot of times it was right there in front of you. I just had to challenge them. The reality was, When I stepped away from my medical sales career and when I stepped away from the operations of our property management company, it was because the numbers made the decision for me. And the people that I put in place, frankly, are better than I am. they're just better and when I stepped away, It was like kinda, dipping a toe out almost eh, let's see how this goes. And it did better than when I was there and I was like, oh, that's humbling. Okay. Yeah. I kinda suck compared to these people. They're really good. But that, that who, not how book was, it, was transformative for me. but it's a problem when you are, when you're doing everything that you've done. Is, is that you are the business, right? And so that's something that's, it's really hard. It's really hard to train for and it's a pitfall.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah. The who not how was super important for me too. Yeah. The, we, and what's super important too is having the right people in the right seats. and having a business. And then if you put someone in a seat and they're floundering, right? Do another assessment of their personality. Have an open conversation with them. Sup Super important as leadership and all the stuff I learned in the military, you wanna be approachable. Like your subordinates need to be able to talk to you, right? So I had a person that was sitting in the wrong seat. Now she's working as our operations. So now I can use my visionary mind and I just say, Good ideas, blah. And I just, we have a good idea tracker, right? And I'm like, Hey Caitlin, can you go ahead and knock this stuff out? Can you do this research on this? We're, and she'll come back with three courses of action. And I get to de to decide which course of action we want to take versus spending three weeks learning how to do some technical stuff that's that takes her probably a day, right? So yeah, who not how having the people in the right seat is super valuable.

Neil Henderson:

So something to keep in mind is that a lot of people can be very good. How do I put this? very good salesman, a very good marketer, but not such a good businessman. And I think that's the struggle that so many people have, whether it's a property manager who starts off really good, and they're really, they're just on top of everything. But as they start to scale things start to break because. Their zone of genius is so specialized into whatever it was that got them to where they are and they struggle to find that who not how. Yeah. And to integrate that person into their business. And that sounds like you've gotten a lot of the way there, but it sounds like you could still get a lot further.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah, I, and this is what I struggle with often, and I think that three months in Indonesia helped me realize, and I'm part of some high level masterminds as well and some very smart guys that I respect a lot. they put something in front of me at one point, and it's been a, I think about it all the time now. I think I have the answer after the three months, is that, do you want to have a lifestyle business or do you want to get rich business? So I'm at that point where, yeah, we have a million dollar wholesale business, but do I need to grow it to where it's a three, six, 5 million or 7 million wholesale business? Because with that, with the scale, like you said, then I get outside the genius zone, that causes more stress. That's more people. That's, it's, it requires a lot more, it's a different skill level. and I don't think it's necessary. For what I'm trying to achieve. I was actually just telling my team the other day, I was like, guys, we're not building this thing out. I don't care if we close 80 deals a month or whatever. there's some of my buddies, they close Like realistically 30 to 50 deals a month, which is absurd, right? It's crazy. And they got whole teams, they got sales floors and they're managing and it's insane, right?

Neil Henderson:

that's who I'm getting the phone calls from.

Robert Shortsleeves:

those are the studs that, that's, that are blasting your phone. Yes, tho that's them. And, but yeah, so I've decided recently that I think I want a lifestyle business,

Clint Harris:

Sometimes less is more right? And is the juice worth the squeeze? I think that, having that time away for you is really valuable and helps you recenter. I stepped out of a medical sales career this past November and it's. just been transformative for me. So something that was such a big part of who I was for 16 years and now just focused on, syndication and still trying to pick up, one or two multifamily properties a year. But on top of that, my wife and I just had a baby five days ago, so it's like the focus has been completely different. Truly passive income is the podcast. That Neil and I host together that is focused on the educational platform for all things truly passive outside of that syndication that we're partnered with, that we are general partners in right now is called Nomad Capital. The reason we're partnered with that group is because of the people that are in it, specifically the two guys that we partnered with, Eric and Levi Hemingway. It, the reason it's called Nomad Capital is because. It's father and son team, and they spent three and a half years living on a sailboat. Eric and his wife had five kids. They left, they came back three and a half years later with six kids. So pretty good trip. They stopped and had a kid in Israel. So it's a whole story, but at some point in time, everybody on the team has been a real estate nomad. And a real estate nomad in our opinion is. It's what you did for three months. It's a Nomad is where you go where you want, when you want, and you do what you want. And you've got that freedom to do that because you've got assets paying for that lifestyle and they're either residual assets from a lot of years of hard work that you did to build up a team and assets in people in place. That continue to fund that lifestyle. That's not passive. It's residual, but it's it looks the same to the outside person or it can come if you put capital, you know any real estate success comes from a combination of time, experience, and money. And if you take that money and you invest it into somebody else's deal, somebody else's business, and they use their time and experience to grow that, then that can come out and be truly passive income along with a few other things, that we've talked about in various episodes. But those. At its basis level, our passion is to try to be live and build more real estate nomads where you go where you want when you want and do what you want. Because everybody's looking for financial freedom, right? That's the grind. But financial freedom by itself doesn't get you much. But when it's combined with, and I Neil, I probably said this on every episode by now, financial independence that's combined with location and time independence gives you independence of purpose, right? And independence of purpose is where you go. You take your kids and your wife and you go to Indonesia or whatever you, or you volunteer or you go skiing or fishing or build houses or whatever it may be. But you're getting your time back. And the way that we the test run that you had on your business where you stepped away for a few months and it didn't increase and arguably over it's sustained, but arguably over time it, it probably is gonna decrease. Neil uses the analogy all the time of a steam locomotive. Look, as long as you're shoveling that coal, you're rolling, right? But eventually, if you stop shoveling the coal, it can keep running for a period of time, but eventually it's gonna slow down and eventually it's gonna stop without you there shoveling the coal so that the goal is either to build a team that can keep shoveling coal for you while you get off at the next stop. Or, to put yourself in a situation where you've taken the gains that you've got from what you're currently doing, and investing in things that are truly passive to get that time back. with where you are now and you've had a taste of, look, three, that's a quarter of a year, man, that's a, it's a big deal. That's a huge accomplishment. First of all, you should give yourself a giant pat on the back that you got to spend that time with your wife and your kids, and. That's amazing. that's what everybody's going for. A lot of the people listening to this are trying to accomplish what you just did. Neil said, that's a great test run. what do you wanna do more of that? What does that look like for the rest of your life? Obviously you're talking about a lifestyle business. Does that mean a couple months here, a couple months at work? A couple months gone? A couple months back, and then for the people that don't have the time or experience to put in the amount of work that you do, And have done to get to this point, like from just a truly passive income standpoint. You have an unbelievable wealth of real estate knowledge right now, and it doesn't have to just be real estate, but what would you tell to other people that want to take three months a year and go to Indonesia or anywhere else?

Robert Shortsleeves:

I'll tell you cuz I talk to a lot of people. I help a lot of people, right? I talk a lot of people out being wholesalers.

Clint Harris:

Good for you.

Robert Shortsleeves:

believe it. as much as they wanna do it or whatever, but, yeah, they, a lot of people underestimate the amount of work and energy that it takes to build something, right? the amount of obsession, right? If you're not. All right. All right, Clint, like I gotta say for you to, I didn't realize that you just retired or you just separate, you stopped your W2 in November. I know what you built and. I thought you were full time a long time ago, bro. Cause that's super, people don't, and I know the work you put in and it's gotta be similar to mine, right? Just pure obsession. Over an extended period of time, I stopped watching football. I stopped going out and drinking. I stopped all the stuff that people consider a good life and all. I stopped all that to achieve my goals, right? Most people aren't gonna cut that off for about three years. Four years, right? they wanna enjoy their weekends. they wanna have that $700 truck payment, right? That, which, that could be money invested into your business, which will result in a three month hiatus, right? So a lot of people aren't willing to sacrifice now for the benefit later, right? and to answer your question about, what we're gonna do in the future is I'm selling some stuff and we're gonna buy a villa. All right.

Clint Harris:

Hey, there we go. Going Bali.

Neil Henderson:

We've got some place to go in Bali now.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yes. Yes. You're invited. Yeah, so we're selling the rice field and then we're selling, I got 20, hopefully we get our money back. Anyways,

Clint Harris:

This is the best interview ever,

Robert Shortsleeves:

we're selling the rice field. We're, I got 26 acres out here in Tar Heel, just like 30 minutes south of me. on the way to your spot on 87, you know it.

Clint Harris:

Yep.

Robert Shortsleeves:

and then, we're selling that and we're gonna sell our primary and we got, a bunch of equity and we're gonna go buy, we're gonna go buy a villa. yeah, it, the stress test has helped me realize that I can do this, I can run this business from afar. I just have to be more involved and continually pump, shovel that coal into the steam engine. Versus the three months. I didn't shovel, I didn't pick up a shovel, and really I run my business virtually anyway. we don't have an office. We got a team of five six now, and I don't walk houses very much. I'm just looking at commercial stuff now. Anything commercial gets pushed to me. But yeah, I can manage this business from afar. So my daughter's already got signed up for school, so we'll be outta here. I like August.

Clint Harris:

That's amazing. Congratulations man.

Neil Henderson:

Yeah, that's fantastic. So one of the things I love about that story is how much it aligns with the whole concept of a real estate nomad. Yes. And is that one of the things we love about real, we all love about real estate is that you can use the power of leverage. And for me, When you're able to create a stream of income or some sort of wealth that allows you to then take the money that you've earned in a, not a necessarily a high cost of living area, but an area where there is opportunity, and then take it and spend that money someplace where the money goes. 10, 20, 30 times as far is such, it's double leverage and it's something I love and it's, I dream about this all the time. I don't know that my in-laws are gonna let me, move my family to Bali anytime soon. But, it's a squad. It can be on my bucket list. I've got it up there on my vision board. Yes. but so I applaud that. That's fantastic.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Appreciate that. Appreciate that.

Clint Harris:

Yeah, that's a huge deal. So for people not able to read the rewards of effort you've been putting in essentially for the last four years and the years, all before that, when you were doing research and learning and just being a sponge. what's the best way that you think other people can get involved in truly passive income? I know that as a wholesaler and I, you've probably done some flips and probably been involved, hard money lenders and things like that. And you're obviously aware of syndication. You've been doing, observations there. what is the best way in your. Mindset moving forward for you to take money that you have coming out and turn it into truly passive income or for other people, things that they can start educating themselves on to end up in Bali one day, with the lifestyle paid for by truly passive income.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah. First off, people have to find a way to increase their income, right? Like you need a way to generate active income. So that you can ultimately dump that into something that will produce truly passive income. It's just not gonna come outta anywhere. So e even if you're an operator and you're running the syndication, that's not passive brother. that's right. I've been part of those masterminds and that is work, and I pulled outta that mastermind because I don't wanna run a syndication. It's a special person to run that. A very like smart intellectual, You guys, right? I am not that guy. I want to be hitting the streets, shaking hands, kissing babies with grandma, right? that's just my personality. and that's what I learned about myself, right? But I tell folks, try to find a way within real estate to generate active income. Maybe that's, rehabbing, that's wholesaling, that's property management, whatever you're doing. Generate active income in the industry and do something that is in line with your personality one. that's super important to me. and then after you get that built out, then you start taking that money. After you got, a set business and then you start dumping it into syndications or single tenant triple net leases or some sort of other thing like that if you want truly passive income. and there's a lot of, a lot of buddies, right? Every some Fayetteville five pillar buddy. They're selling off some of their stuff because they realize that having a hundred units might not be the smartest thing. It's not passive and expenses are crazy. and there's a lot of unknowns when you buy stuff like that. But it can help you get to a certain point. But then when after you get 30 to 50 units, what's a number or 200 bucks in cash flow after you do a BRRRR deal, eh? Not worth the headache. It's not worth the headache. It's a lot of work. So once you've got that portfolio of like single family and some smaller deals that can help with some of that income that you're trying to generate, then at some point you just gotta dump it into something bigger, right? And then at that point, hopefully you're looking for some tax benefits, right? That's actually what I'm dealing with right now. So I might be dumping some cash into one of y'all's deals because I need some of those tax benefits. Yep. Super important. yeah, the, put a bow on that, it's, you gotta do something. You don't have to do something in real estate, but you need to generate some high income. Go out and get an education, become a doctor. If you love being a doctor, take that cash and dump it into someone else's deal. Don't try to learn it. it's too much. Don't do that. Just do what you love, generate the income, and then dump it into passive streams of income.

Neil Henderson:

All right, Bob, my last question, how do you like to give back?

Robert Shortsleeves:

simply just getting on the phone and helping people that just need a little bit of guidance, right? they've. Some, I've had experiences of being able to help people go from zero deals to generating like three deals a month. or just talking to people about specific situations, right? I don't charge for coaching, I don't do any of that. before I went on the trip to Indonesia, I actually had a calendar, like a Calendly link set up, and I was taking calls, throughout the week, and just simply getting on the phone and helping people. Achieve their goals in real estate. So I'm a believer in so somebody that's just trying to start, or maybe they've done three or four deals, they shouldn't be reaching out to Grant Cardone. For some help, even though he's the guru or the best or whatever, right? Or you might not wanna reach out to those guys. You might wanna reach out to someone that's about a couple years ahead of you, right? And then you learn from that person. and then it's like a and like a cog in the wheel or whatever the saying is. But you ultimately level up. by hanging out with people and talking with people that are just a couple levels above you because they haven't forgotten what hardship, because I remember it was just like, a little bit ago, I remember what hard work is, right? maybe somebody that's, got a, something crazy big. Maybe they, they don't resonate with the little guy anymore kind of thing, But yeah, the way I give back is just getting on the phone with people all the time. All the time. It's maybe it's too much in, in helping.

Neil Henderson:

Okay. Robert Short Sleeves, thank you so much for sharing with us and our audience today. If people wanna reach out to you and find out more about what you're all about, what would be the best way for them to do that?

Robert Shortsleeves:

Yeah, if, if anyone's interested in off market deals here in Fayetteville, North Carolina, you can go to shortsleevesrealestate.com, get added to our, our email distro. We'll, we push out, seems three deals a week. and then, yeah, if you guys wanna add me on Facebook or Instagram or whatever. Yeah, @BobSleeves on both of those. Sounds great.

Clint Harris:

All right. Hey Bob. Thank you for making the time for this, especially with such a lot to plan for over the next few months. I can't wait to see your success and, please keep posting pictures so that we can follow your adventure.

Robert Shortsleeves:

Will do brother.

Neil Henderson:

Thank you so much for listening and watching the truly passive income podcast. If you liked the show, if you think it would be useful for someone else, the greatest compliment that you could give us would be to share the episode, leave a comment down below. Or leave us an honest review. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to let us know down below and remember with truly passive income comes freedom of time, place and the freedom to pursue your higher purpose.