Hidden fees may cost you money and you’re not aware of it. You need to take charge and protect your finances. Monick Halm’s guest today is Tamar Hermes, the CEO and founder of Wealth Warrior Woman. Tamar discusses with Monick that if you don’t understand what’s going on, get out of it. Chances are, money’s leaking. Listen to this episode and be aware of your money. Tune in, step up and take charge!
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How To Avoid Hidden Fees And Take Charge Of Your Money With Tamar Hermes
On this show, I interview badass women, real estate investors, women who are crushing it in the real estate investing space. My guest is certainly no exception to that. Tamar Hermes is a full-time real estate investor, educator and money coach. She’s the CEO and Founder of Wealth Warrior Woman, where she guides women to become financially free through real estate investing and creating an empowering relationship to money. This is so important as I work with women around real estate investing. It is a money game and getting clear about money is so important. I’m super excited to have her here and talk about this.Even when a trusted recommendation comes in, you still need a vet. Click To Tweet
Tamar is a contributing blogger on Bigger Pockets and she appeared on the podcast. She has an extensive portfolio and coaches clients across the country. I feel like she’s a soul-sister about wanting to support women in real estate. She supports women to be free to choose how to spend their time and have the means to afford whatever they want for themselves, their families and others. She believes real estate investing is the best way to grow well. She was in my neck of the woods. She was in Los Angeles but relocated to Austin, joining small city life and no state taxes. I’m happy to have her.
Thank you. I’m so excited to be here.
I’m excited to have you here. I know you have an interesting past. Part of your history is you are the child of a Holocaust survivor, my husband as well. You said that you grew up poor and you had no idea how people got rich. How did you get into real estate investing?
I always was looking at people that had money and wondering, “How did they get there?” I thought, “People that have money are born that way.” That is what it is that your lot in your life is your lot in your life. As I was trudging through and working towards wanting more for myself, I was an executive in television, I had saved a certain amount of money and still felt I was trudging through life and wanted an easier way. I figured out that if I could not pay rent then I could save on that bottom line. It seemed that real estate was a good idea because I had no idea. I lived in this cute area in LA. I remember the landlord. He was an entertainment. I used to give him a check every month. I thought, “What if somebody was giving me a check? I like that.” That’s what I bought my first duplex and realized, “This is pretty smooth.”
You started with a duplex in LA so you wouldn’t have to pay rent and somebody else will pay you rent. How did you move on from there?
I started buying more properties in Los Angeles, which is where I lived for many years. I was doing my thing. I had a company at that time after I had left the entertainment industry and started another company. I was doing well. My husband is a director. He was doing well. We kept buying pretty much. When we’d see a property, we’d buy it. You and I were saying LA is not the best place for cashflow. It never has been and it never will be but it is a great place for appreciation. As an educator of investing, I wouldn’t necessarily say buy for appreciation. If you’re in for the long haul, you’re going to put your money into properties, leave them there, and they will take care of themselves, they might not cashflow but at least you can break even but eventually, they will because rents go up. We did a lot of that.Joy comes when you help other people. Click To Tweet
Ultimately, we ended up selling our portfolio when we came to Austin. Now, we’re investing in Texas mostly and also across the country in syndications. I started selling some properties a couple of years ago in LA. As I said, it’s the kind of thing where it didn’t pay a lot as we went, but I realized I wanted to change my strategy from an appreciation to cash flow because I felt like I was moving into a different chapter. I wanted to pike up the cashflow. It was easy. We sell a couple and change the assets.
What did you change into? You said you’re doing some syndications and you changed your markets.
I’m a Real Estate Professional. That means that I have to be active for a certain amount of hours a year. I need to be managing a certain amount of properties. I bought some single-family homes, which I love. They’re a great mainstay in a portfolio. You can pretty much get rid of them almost any time. They’re easy to manage. I got a couple of more Airbnb’s. I have those. The rest is investments across the country. It’s mixed. It’s a mobile home parks, storage units, multifamily, and Airbnb’s that I have with partners. It is also now expanded into crypto, cannabis, and businesses. I like to have a well-rounded portfolio because I think that if one investment doesn’t go, then you’ve got 30 other that will. It’s a balancing game. We can’t think that everything is going to make us the kind of returns that we are projecting because it’s unpredictable. I try to mitigate that by expanding the portfolio.
Let me ask you a question. This is one of my favorite questions because I find that we’ll get so much more when things don’t work out than when they do. What was your biggest mistake and what did you learn from it?
Lots of mistakes. It’s interesting. The biggest mistake. We were also talking about all the mindset work and work that we’ve done to develop ourselves. I do look at mistakes as opportunities. Although, it doesn’t feel like that as I’m going through it. It feels like, “I’m so mad.” The biggest mistakes haven’t been real estate mistakes. They’ve been more mistakes where I hired professionals. People with credentials next to their names that were referred to me. They started selling me annuities or certain investment vehicles that served them more than it served me.
I hired a CPA. He’s great. He’s very high-end CPA but I realized we weren’t on the same page with the tax code and finance. There’s always a lot of ways to go. Those kinds of things sting because I don’t have control over them, then I have to unwind everything. You get into a deal with somebody or you buy these certain annuities that you realize, “This doesn’t make any sense to me. I don’t understand what happened here,” then you got to get out of it. You got to deal with the institutions and the thing. It’s a mess. I would say those are the things that sting the most. That’s the reason why I do the work I do now because I feel like I’ve made the most money managing my portfolio.
I feel like women should understand what is going on with their money and how to make money on their money. That is critical because otherwise, you are like a handicap. I give my money to somebody. They’re taking 2% of my money and they’re making 5% for me, which means they’re removing the 3%, and they’re barely getting me out of inflation. They’re telling me that it’s safe. They’re telling me, “You won’t lose your money.” Most real estate investments, if you do them, you look at your numbers, you pick proper sponsors that are vetted, understand what they’re doing, you look at the deal, and it make sense to you, the likelihood of you losing money.
It is not that great. To me, I make 10% or 20% on my money and you realize, “I’d much rather make that than maybe make 3% depending on what kind of deal they decide to put me in that’ll make them the most money.” That’s a generalization because I know there are people that are very ethical and do it very well, even those people were acting in my best interest. To me, anyone that’s selling me something that’s going to make me 3% of my money but they’re still making 2% regardless of what anything happens. It doesn’t sound so sweet.
I don’t necessarily think people mean badly, but maybe that’s what they’re taught. They have this small limited menu of things that they can offer you. Their companies will win but regular people, not so much. This is why I prefer investing in Main Street versus Wall Street and other fancy vehicles. In terms of that mistake, let’s extended this one, what did you learn from it? What would you do differently?
It’s interesting because I’ve been dealing with another scenario. That’s the thing. You learn but it happens again and again. Sometimes, we need to get the lesson over and over. What I’ve learned is that even when a trusted recommendation comes in, I still need to vet it. This feeling like we want to get it done, we want to move on to the next thing, we don’t want to get bottlenecked into like, “I have to call another person to check and see.” This happens even on a very simple basis in terms of when we rent our units to renters. How much do we vet?
Do we say, “They seem like they are nice. They got a good credit score. Let’s rent to them?” That’s not enough. You need to call the old landlords, call their job, and verify employment. It’s the same thing at a different level. These days, even when I get a trusted recommendation, I vet the heck out of everything. The reason is because I feel like, “I’m doing the work on the forefront, so I don’t have to do it on the back end because on the back end, it a lot more. It usually costs me money and cost me time. I can’t get either of those back.” The money I can still get back, but it’s still, “Who wants to lose money?”
Due diligence is super important for sure. What are you most proud of?
When I look at my life and where I came from to where I am, I’m most proud of the heart that I put into it. The determination that I put into my life. I feel like I show up every day and I want to get the most out of my life. I want the life I want to have. Sometimes, I don’t even know what that is, but I want more or I want it to feel a certain way. I look outside my window and see a certain view. There are things that I have visualized that I’ve created in my life like my family, wealth, friends, and health because that takes work too. We have to take care of ourselves. All those things I’m proud of.
I’m proud that I wake up every day regardless of what’s going on, I show up. I give it my all. By far, I don’t always win. I don’t want anyone to think like, “She’s really.” “No, I don’t always win.” What I mean by that is that it’s hard sometimes. I don’t get the returns I want. I don’t get the answers I want, but I keep going. I’m proud of that. It’s almost like I look at the parent in myself when we look at our little inner child, I look and I think, “Good for you. You’re parenting yourself pretty well because you keep saying it’s okay, keep going.”Don’t just look up and see how much further you have to go. Look down and see how far you've climbed. Click To Tweet
It sounds like even though not everything turns out perfectly all the time, you love your life.
I do. It’s interesting because I was somebody that was used to chaos as a child. I had a lot of turmoil. There was a lot of yelling, arguments, and stress. I thought, sometimes when you’re used to something like that and when it’s quiet, you think, “I’m not alive. I’m not doing anything.” I used to create that a little bit because I thought that was what gave me my life. As I calmed down, it’s peaceful. It’s like, “It’s okay. This is good.”
To what do you attribute your success?
I attribute my success to what I was sharing that I always get back up. My parents didn’t teach me how to make money or a lot about, “You can do anything,” or a positive mindset. It was also generational and they didn’t learn that. They didn’t know how to teach me. My parents had a rough childhood too, but they did teach me how to survive. It’s like when you’re in the ring. As long as you get back up, you’re still playing. That’s what I attribute my success to. No matter what, I keep going. I keep on, “I’ll do better tomorrow or not yet,” or whatever it is.
Before you know it, when you keep that up, you also get those wins along the way. It’s pretty darn good. I wish I would have seen it sooner because, in a lot of ways, I was financially free for years before I even recognize it. I even acknowledged it. I was so into like, “Let’s go.” I was like, “What am I doing here?” It’s an interesting journey that we’re all on in terms of where we all heading. It’s good to stop once in a while and ask yourself because in certain places, you might’ve thought you were going. You may already have been there and passed that road.
For you, it’s this perseverance, grit, and a certain amount of hustle that has got you and this marked success. Now, it’s partly learning to appreciate it and celebrate it. I keep nice with it too when it happened.
When you’re a creative, excited person, and you realize that so much joy comes when we’re connecting and helping other people, it doesn’t stop. A new door opens and then there’s a bunch more where it’s like, “We get to dissect all this and do all this.” It is important to take that time no matter where you realize, “I acknowledge myself.”
What advice do you have for a woman who’s just starting out in this field?
When we start out with anything and we don’t know things, especially for women, there are been studies that have been done about how women will only apply for a job when they have 100% of the qualifications, whereas men will apply if they have 60%. We’re like, “We got to know.” It makes us so uncomfortable. We won’t even try. We don’t feel like we were 100% there. The advice that I would give is know that if you’re in the process, you’re going to keep moving. Things are going to happen for you. It feels daunting when you’re climbing a hill. You feel, “How am I going to get up there?” You have to give yourself the grace to keep moving.
This coach that I worked with, I don’t remember who even said it, but you want to look down and see how far you’ve climbed, not look up and see how much further you have to go. Wherever you’re starting, you’re here now and you realized that you want to get going. I would say, get going and if you need the support, get the support. Don’t try to be a hero. With real estate investing or any kind of money-making venture, you can’t be that cheap with yourself. You can’t think like, “I don’t want to spend $5,000 on this or $200 on that.” In real estate, it’s like that all the time. If you buy a house, it’s like, “We got to redo the wall. It’s going to be another $500. It’s going to be this and that.” You got to get used to that. You got to spend money to make money.
What do you wish you’d known at the beginning that you now know?
I think about this all the time. I want to turn back the clock every day. There are so many things that I wish I would’ve known that I keep making the same mistakes. I feel like I need to get to the next thing so I won’t vet things enough and that can get me into trouble. I haven’t had that problem with tenants. I’m pretty good about that. It’s funny because that is a big thing. I also feel like there are big things where I think, “It’ll work itself out,” then it turns into a problem. I would be a little more cognizant of that.
There were times in my life where I thought, “I’ll never find a husband, be financially free, and never have the things I want to have,” and it felt so far away. Now, I look at it and I’m like, “Wait. Check.” I wish I would’ve said like, “Believe you can do it,” and it’ll happen. That’s something that I think I would definitely wish that I would’ve had the strength to think about those things so that I would have more grace along my journey.
Before we get into our fame end of show Trinity, which is a brag, gratitude and a desire, tell us how people can connect with you.
You can visit my website at WealthWarriorWoman.com or find me on Instagram @WealthWarriorWoman. That’s a great way too.
Time for our Trinity. Your brag, gratitude and a desire. What is one thing you’re celebrating right now? What is your brag?
There are so many great things to brag about. I will say I’m going to brag about the fact that I am super healthy. I feel really good about that because I realized that at the end of the day, especially right now. Oprah Winfrey came out with a documentary about people that have depression. There’s a lot of people that are in chronic pain. When I was at my masseuse, she was saying that a lot of people come for chronic pain. I want to brag about the fact that I’m taking care of my body, my health, and honor it. I think that’s a great thing.
Well bragged. What’s one thing you’re grateful for?
I’m so grateful for my family. I am blessed to have a positive and inspired bunch by my three kids and my husband. To feel loved and accepted by them, I enjoy that. I am grateful for that.
Last but not least, what’s one thing you desire?
It’s so interesting because sometimes I’m racing somewhere and I realized like, “Why do I even want that? Why am I thinking that?” Right now, I’m desiring, for whatever reason, a little haven in another country. I was talking about the fact that I’m looking at buying a tiny house in Nicaragua. I don’t know why, but I desire that. It’s probably going to happen in the next hour or so because I’ve just need to sign my documents. That’s what I desire right now.
Shall your desire be or so much better than you can imagine. That’ll be exciting and evidently happening very soon.
That’s the thing too. There are certain urges that you get that don’t leave you for whatever reason. I know that you do so much intuitive work and getting in touch with the feminine. It’s hard to trust that and know because there are so many things coming at us all the time. I feel like when something stays with me and there’s this center in myself where it’s a clean line of something that feels like, “That’s it.” I go for it.
You said that sometimes it’s hard to trust that. I’ve learned over time that whenever I ignore that, bad things happen. When I trust it, good things happen. I didn’t have any trouble trusting it anymore. When I get that guidance, it’s like, “I’ll do it.”When you ignore your intuition, bad things happen. When you trust it, good things happen. Click To Tweet
A friend of mine was doing a concert outside in Austin, where I live. It was raining here. It’s 7:50. The show started at 8:00. Right before, it was completely dry. She said, “I have never been in my whole career rained out.” It was almost like this connection with the universe that I thought, “How powerful is this?” You can state it like, “This does not happen, universe. I’m talking to you. This is what I’m desiring right now.” All of a sudden, it was dry. It didn’t rain for the rest of the night. It was magical. It was a great example when you hone it in and connect with it, that whole feeling that the universe can work with you, it’s cool stuff.
This was such a fun conversation, Tamar. Thank you. You can connect with Tamar at WealthWarriorWoman.com. You can connect with her and find out more about what she offers. Connect with me at REIGoddesses.com. There you can get into our Investor Club, find about our passive investing opportunities, our events like our upcoming Wealth Through Real Estate Event, and our programs. Connect to this incredible community of Goddesses from all over the world. Bye-bye.
- Wealth Warrior Woman
- @WealthWarriorWoman – Instagram
- Oprah Winfrey Talks On Mental Health and Depression – YouTube
About Tamar Hermes
Tamar Hermes is a full-time Real Estate Investor, educator, and money coach. She is the CEO and founder of Wealth Warrior Woman, where she guides women to become financially free through Real Estate Investing and creating an empowering relationship to money. She is a contributing blogger on Bigger Pockets and recently appeared on the podcast.
Tamar grew up poor as the child of a Holocaust survivor and had no idea how people got rich. By chance, she stumbled upon Real Estate investing and became obsessed with the world of finance. Tamar’s Real Estate portfolio is extensive today and she coaches clients across the country.
Tamar desires to support women to be free to choose how they spend their time and have the means to afford whatever they want for themselves, their families, and others. She believes Real Estate Investing is the best way to grow wealth. She recently relocated from Los Angeles to Austin, enjoying the small city life and no state taxes!
Email: [email protected]
Website: Real Estate Investing for Women, Financial Advice, Realtor
Facebook: Tamar Hermes International
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