How I Started In Property At Aged 17 | Samuel Leeds And Tom Soane
Tom Soane from The Anonymous Landlord podcast recently hosted me. This is a glimpse of the conversation I had with him. I got to share my story and talk about the various life lessons I have learnt over my journey.
Tom Soane: Let’s ask Samuel how he started in property. How did you buy your first property? Where did you buy it? Over to you!
Samuel Leeds: Well, I’ve never really talked much about my first property on YouTube. I am going to make a video on it pretty soon, so this could be fresh for the press right now!
I got my first property when I was 17 years old. I got it that young because right after three-four months of finishing school I knew I wanted to be in property. I wanted to have monopoly; I wanted to have financial freedom; I wanted to build an empire.
At that time I was like a sponge—I was gaining knowledge about property and looking into things. I thought I had to be 18 to get a mortgage. However, my mortgage broker told me that I had to be 21 to be able to do that. That was like a knife in my chest because I had to wait for four more years.
I wasn’t ready to wait, so I thought why not stick it onto someone else’s name? So the dagger in my chest in the form of not getting a mortgage until I was 21 became a source of motivation for me.
So I did exactly that. I got it in someone else’s name. The property is in Bournville. I still own the house. It was a few months before my 18th birthday, and I got the house on a no-money-down deal where you can refinance the property. I bought the house for a hundred-thousand pounds and refinanced it the same day for one-twenty. I got the house in my step-dad’s name. He didn’t give me any money but let me use his name for the property.
At the time I was buying the property, everyone had been telling me that the property market was crashing. They told me that properties would be worth five-thousand pounds. They said that I should be going to a university instead and get a forty-thousand-pound Art degree!
Everyone was against me at that time. Even the press was against the idea of a buy-to-let. But I became a buy-to-let landlord nonetheless. My mortgage payments were a hundred-and-sixty-six pounds per month. I rented out the rooms separately.
At that time I didn’t know if I was doing an HMO or something else, but that if I rented the rooms separately, I would get more rent. The property had two reception rooms and three bedrooms. I turned one of the reception rooms into a bedroom. I got fourteen-hundred pounds rent from it. The mortgage was hundred-and-sixty-six. So I made about a thousand pounds profit a month.
Now, the property market did start going down at the time and I had been a little skeptical. However, the property is worth two-hundred-and-fifteen-thousand pounds. I’ve made a thousand pounds of equity in it, but I’ve also made over a hundred-thousand pounds profit in rent over the last twelve years!
I made over two-thousand pounds profit with that little house when everyone told me that I shouldn’t buy it!
I’ve made several other properties after that as well. But that house had replaced my income as a seventeen-year-old. After that I got crazy with property!
Tom Soane: Having a property as a seventeen-year-old is amazing. My hats off for you for that!
You said that you got crazy with property after that. Could you tell us more about that? How did you get the money? What did you do? What sort of targets you had in mind?
Samuel Leeds: I had two targets after that: one was personal and the other was for my business.
For my business target, I wanted to make two-thousand-five-hundred pounds a month in passive income. Even though my first house was getting me a thousand pounds, the other houses I did after that were single-lets and they earned less profits. So, it took me a little while to be able to do that.
My personal goal involved traveling. I wanted to explore. I had recently become a Christian and I wanted to explore things and meet people. I did charity in Africa as well. However, there was a huge sense of achievement that I got from owning a property. My self-esteem had been built in property. I was a bit of a drop-out in school; I didn’t do well there. My brother had been much better at academics and sports than me. But getting into property gave me a whole new sense of achievement.
This was a glimpse of the discussion I had with Tom Soane.
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