I’d like you to meet Joe. Joe had a beautiful home, a thriving business and a happy life. Suddenly, Joe’s luck ran out, and everything he touched failed. His customers were leaving him. New accounts were no longer interested in his products and his business was hemorrhaging money. He began borrowing excessively from his vendors and banks to cover his overhead. Before he knew it, Joe was drowning in debt. He was on the brink of desperation and depression.
His wife encouraged him to reach out to his wealthy Uncle Henry, who could perhaps help with some suggestions, ideas or maybe even a job offer. Joe agreed and went to his uncle’s home. He was escorted into the study, where Joe poured out his heart. After listening attentively to everything he needed to hear, Henry opened his desk drawer, pulled out his checkbook and grabbed his executive gold pen.
Holding the signed check in hand, Henry told Joe, “I am giving you a check for $250,000 on three conditions. Condition number one is that it must be repaid, without question, three years from today—not sooner and not later. Condition number two, as you see on the check—it is post-dated for 30 days from now, so it cannot be cashed yet. This leads to condition number three, which is that the money should only be used in case of emergency when you have exhausted every other possible option available to you.”
They embraced and Joe was on his way. The next day he went to work, and for the first time in years, Joe had a little bounce in his step. He called some old accounts and got them to come back. His marketing initiatives slowly started to reap results. He launched a few new initiatives, which all blossomed beyond expectation. Every venture Joe invested in was flourishing. Slowly Joe started to pay down his loans and obligations. By year two, he was debt free and starting to amass his small fortune again.
On the third anniversary of the loan from his uncle, he knocked on the door and entered the study. Before sitting, Joe reached into his pocket and pulled out a crumpled and mostly withered paper. It was the exact check Uncle Henry had given him three years prior. He said, “I never cashed your check. Knowing that I had it available gave me the motivation and confidence to jumpstart my business and rebuild my life.” Henry took the check, tore it into pieces, and said, “Joe, I will be honest—that account had been closed out for years. There was never any $250,000.”
Unfortunately, many of us don’t have a wealthy Uncle Henry who can write out an actual check for hundreds of thousands of dollars without hesitation. Even more unlikely is that most people do not have an uncle who is proficient in the science of neuroplasticity or cognitive reframing and restructuring and can brain-hack them after hardships in life. However, what is accessible to those who are interested, is the tools, resources and, most importantly, the people, who can help navigate your particular circumstances.
I was recently approached by a gentleman who was down on his luck and had been out of work for almost a year. Fortunately, he was offered $75,000 by a family member who encouraged him to invest it in real estate with his assistance. The man was given a lifeline but didn’t quite know what to do from there. Together, we created a plan from A to Z on how to find, analyze and finance his first investment.
I am so privileged and honored to work with so many incredible organizations that can help with education, mentorship and tools, such as Project Ezrah, The OU’s Living Smarter Jewish, The Jewish Entrepreneur and Living L’Chaim’s Kosher Money—to name a few. Don’t hesitate to contact them or me if we can assist you!
Shmuel Shayowitz (NMLS#19871) is President and Chief Lending Officer at Approved Funding, a privately held local mortgage banker and direct lender. Approved Funding is a mortgage company offering competitive interest rates as well as specialty niche programs on all types of Residential and Commercial properties. Shmuel has over 20 years of industry experience, including licenses and certifications as a certified mortgage underwriter, residential review appraiser, licensed real estate agent, and direct FHA specialized underwriter. He can be reached via email at Shmuel@approvedfunding.com.
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