Investor In Focus - Sanjeev Sah
In the space of only three and a half years, Sanjeev Sah was able to start earning enough passive income through his property investments to quit his day job.
For many investors, Sanjeev has already achieved the dream, but he’s only just getting started.
Sanjeev's interest in property first piqued back in 2006 when he purchased his first few properties in India. It wasn’t until he moved to Australia though, that he really considered becoming a serious property investor in the hope that it would set himself up financially.
Like many, it was the arrival of his first child that prompted him to really take action and start thinking about the future of his family.
“In 2015 I started putting a lot of work into investment education and I started looking for deals in Australia. I was worried that my IT job was not going to cover it anymore.”
At the time, he faced a significant hurdle getting started. With his work hours reduced, his serviceability suffering badly as a result and only a $20,000 deposit, most people would have probably looked at other options. But Sanjeev saw a great opportunity and found a way to make it happen.
Sanjeev had identified a small subdivision opportunity around the Lithgow area, where he stood to make $85,000. So he sought out a JV partner, to get it underway and overcome those initial financial hurdles.
“I really learned how to find deals and talk to the town planners and those types of people during that period. It all went well and that gave me the confidence and showed me that it works and I can do it too.”
“So then I said, “Wow! It’s all possible. The money’s not a big problem if you’re happy to put in the hard work to find deals.”
Subdivision - JV Deal, Subdivide and build on the back of existing house, Boundary alignment for a property sitting on three titles
1# Subdivision - JV Deal,
#2 Subdivide and build on the back of existing house,
#3 Boundary alignment for a property sitting on three titles
After that point, Sanjeev started hunting for more investment opportunities. His big focus was on identifying properties that were able to pay for themselves. That way he could continue to buy and grow his portfolio on only one income.
“While the subdivision was happening, my wife then went back to work, and I bought another property again in the regional Bathurst area. And again, my strategy was to buy the property, renovate the house and potentially subdivide.”
“So I was always asking three questions. How can I come in and generate good positive cashflow and then build instant equity? And then using this deal, how can I go and buy the next one?”
“Because saving money is not going to happen, right? It’s very hard. So the property has to manufacture the equity and enough cashflow so that you can look good in the eyes of the bank.”
Since those early deals, Sanjeev has continued to build a largely positive cashflow portfolio and he currently owns five properties around Lithgow, Bathurst and Penrith in Sydney’s West. Using his current strategy he is well on his way to achieving his initial financial goals.
“My initial goal was to have $100,000 of passive income in five years time and able to quit my IT job. So I’ve got around $65,000 in the last three and a half years. But now my goal is that in the next three years I want my passive income to be $150,000 then in six years, $300,000 and in ten years time over $1,000,000 passive income through property.”
Renovation - before and after pictures
For new investors, Sanjeev suggests setting your goals first, then building a strategy that will allow you to achieve them.
“I would say anyone can start their investment journey if they’re really keen and have strong goals in mind and know why they’re doing what they’re doing.”
“And then, I think they should consider applying at least two strategies if they want to be really going hard in the property world. By applying multiple strategies you are able to manufacture equity and then hopefully the growth will be natural.“
Sanjeev also suggests that many newer investors without a large amount of capital behind them should consider investing outside the major capital cities.
“I think if people don’t have big numbers behind them or have no or little money, they can easily go regional. They can buy in regional CBDs and apply multiple strategies. There are plenty of opportunities. Leverage the skills of others. I think it’s a team game so you don’t have to play alone. And definitely don’t listen to family and friends when it comes to buying properties. Get ready to fail and learn and be playful.”