What is YOUR Freedom Number? with Clayton Morris

About Clayton Morris

  • Clayton is a news anchor on breakfast show Fox & Friends
  • He is the president of Morris Investments
  • He has his own podcast called Invest in Real Estate about buy and hold rental properties.

Clayton became interested in real estate investing when he was renting a property and had to drive to deliver his rent money. He realized that the owners lived 3 hours away from this property and had to do very little except collect money each month; this was Clayton’s light bulb moment. He found his first investment off-market in his apartment complex when someone passed away, so he bought it and renovated it himself each day after work and sold it for a profit. Clayton believes that the way we view money is incredibly important, and as soon as we see it as something that flows through us rather than something to hold onto; this is when the changes can be seen.

Clayton is a big proponent of financial freedom and helps people to work out how many properties they need to own to cover all their monthly expenses. He calls this figure the freedom number. True financial freedom isn’t about being a millionaire, it’s having all your expenses covered each month without having to worry. Clayton has four steps to help you find your own freedom number. Step one is look at all your bank accounts and make an average of the last six months’ worth of expenses. Don’t do this over a holiday period as that will skew the figures. Step two is add 10% to that expenses figure as “walking around money” to give a buffer. Step three is calculate how many rental properties would you need to cover this figure. Always estimate on the conservative side and use average market rental rates and then remove 40% of the rental cost to cover vacancies and repairs. Step four is to take the expenses figure and divide it by the rental cost to calculate how many rental properties you need to cover expenses.

If these calculations tell you that you need to own 12 properties, how do you find these deals? Clayton advises that you start with an investing group like Morris Investments who take care of everything from finding the deal to managing the property. Alternatively you can walk around your chosen market and talk to people to find off-market properties. Other off-market properties can be found through Craigslist. Clayton recommends that you note down each call you make so that you can do call backs. Use Evernote or something similar to keep a record of all your messages so that you can keep calling if they don’t answer first time. Clayton notes that the people who are most successful in this business aren’t stopping after one call, they’re making multiple calls and going outside to get the work done.

In order to create time to go out and find deals Clayton advises delegating as much as possible. For example by hiring a team like his who will find the property, do the rehab and organize property management. His property management team will take a 10% fee but they do all the background checks on potential tenants. He will also manage the rehab of the property including all the main systems; heating, air, pipes etc to ensure that the house will need no more significant work for another 15 years. By putting in all this work Clayton has been able to introduce a rent guarantee for the first year for each new client.

Top 5 Investing Tips

  • Most successfully habit – Get Things Done method by David Allen and automating repeated tasks using things like Text Expander
  • Most influential tool in your RE business – Good systems for follow up for example High-Rise or Salesforce
  • Most exciting project right now – Building the business, hiring new members of the team and sparing up time work on a book about financial freedom.
  • Who is your most influential person – Robert Sherman who owns over 500 single family homes and has several bestselling books about real estate investment.
  • Best US deal to date – Wholesaling with a double close, this was a deal made from a follow up call and the largest profit to date.

Contact Clayton

Expenses calculation – claytonmorris.com/freedom – download

Until next week! Happy Investing!

Listen to Podcast