The Latest Episodes of INSIGHT with Chris Van Vliet
April 22, 2022

Financial Freedom Is Possible For You - Saen Higgins On Creating Generational Wealth

Financial Freedom Is Possible For You - Saen Higgins On Creating Generational Wealth


Saen Higgins (@saen_higgins) is an author, speaker, coach, serial entrepreneur and philanthropist who has been in the Real Estate and Financial Services Industry for over three decades. He joins Chris Van Vliet to talk about how you can build generational wealth, what to look for in a real estate investment, how he has taught over half a million students to build wealth, his favorite books, the best lesson he has ever learned in life, how he started his first business and much more!

 

Let’s take it all the way back. What was the original plan when you were deciding what you wanted to do for a living?

“So for a living, it is similar to what I am doing. I invest in property taxes and property tax depots. My company sets up self managed retirement accounts too. Only in my experience the best way to manage that is to become the administrator. I knew that it would be disingenuous of me to teach people how to do that to the point where I was at a meeting and someone asked me ‘Are you going to keep teaching tax lanes.’ People laughed because that wasn’t what I was there for. I wanted to do that and share that information of financial independence. This is recession proof, inflation proof and presidential proof. In that design it was more about who I want to become.”

What do you think is the biggest mistake that people are making with money right now?

“The biggest mistake is not having a plan. Let’s take tax lanes as an example. The more time you plan the success of the business, the more successful the client is. I work with 40 to 60 clients personally, why are they more successful? Because I spend 10% teaching tax lanes and the rest teaching planning and execution. Let’s say you want to make $1 million, if you have never been on this trail, you will get lost. But if i said just do these 3 things and you will get results, and you do and it works, you know it is going in the right direction. When you go through those stages and you know what you are doing is right, your enthusiasm goes right through the ceiling.”

You talk about someone guiding you along the way. People feel like if they listen to a podcast it will be good enough. I think this idea of having someone guide you is a gamechanger.

“It is and it isn’t. I have never done anything successful without a guide. I have spent thousands of dollars on people to guide me on things like speaking. My guide told me to fly in and see the clients, I thought it was 12 to 15. But it was 364 people in a room, these were lawyers and doctors looking for things to do with their money. All I had was that I went to a Tony Robbins conference in 1992. I was told I was alright, but I needed some work. I found a book and contacted the author, and it just accelerated from there. Since then, if I know there is someone better than me, I will hire them and get better.”

This is the best and worst thing about YouTube is that there is so much information out there.

“It is interesting what you said earlier about this age of magic information where if I watch this YouTube video. But those that are younger, I love that Tony Robbins had people who said to him ‘I watched your infomercial 100 times.’ He said that he never had the heart to tell them that nothing changed in the infomercial. The information is the same, watching 100 times does not make you successful. It’s like the gym, when someone watches you do an exercise and they tweak it, you are then working it right and it hurts more.”

What is the go to book that you would recommend the most?

“Man there’s so many, I’ve got a whole living room full of them. I think some of my top books are biographies, but Man’s Search For Meaning by Viktor Frankl is great. There is one thing in that book that is key, and that is you control your own outlook. For those who don’t know the book, Victor Frankl was in WW2 and in a concentration camp, and decided to write on the behaviours and actions of people. We don’t need to talk about the atrocities of what happened in the camps. But one of the things that he identified was that you can take away everything from someone, but you can't take away their abilities to change and their attitude. It got to the point where he could figure out when the people in the camps were going to die. When there were rumours that the allies were coming on March 15th, and they didn’t, within 72 hours you knew that they weren’t going to make it. That to me is a strong book, just to get yourself around what is between your ears is the most important.”

Have you always had this mindset of controlling your destiny?

“I would say that I have. There was this old lady that lived next door to me. I used to go over and hang out with her, watch baseball and get groceries. One time she broke her hip and she had a walker, so I took the walker away from her and put it on the other side of the room, I think I was 7. I told her that she didn’t need the walker, and if she could believe that then she could walk to the walker. I am still convinced to this day that it was true, but she had to call my mom who then had a chat with me.”

With someone like yourself who has such a vast knowledge of the real estate market, what would you say to someone who is looking to buy a house right now?

“If you are looking to buy a house then buy it. If it’s for you, buy a house. When it comes to your house, I say that I don’t care about the market and the interest rates, buy it and pay it off as quickly as possible. For me, the deal is always made on the purchase.”

What if someone only has $5,000 and they can’t buy a house?

“I once bought a property for $7,000, it was rough. But somebody had passed, no heirs so there were no taxes to be paid. We had to clean out the property, didn’t go in the refrigerator because it had just been left. The property had a fair market value of $130,000. People are like ‘Oh that doesn’t happen every day, but it does.”

How are you finding the people to rehab it?

“It can be a challenge, but when I get my team we are good to go. I have always said it’s amazing what happens when you are out there. So I have never seen this property or the past few I have dealt with. Kaleb is the one who has the boots on the ground, he thought he was getting pranked. The property is hot, it’s in Savanna, this guy across the street comes over and asked if we bought this. He then said that he has a load of rental properties and made some phone calls. If you see a $7,000 property and it can go for $130,000, you’re going to go and look at it right?”

After 27 years, what drives you?

“It’s still fun. The teaching side of it is more challenging than ever, it’s new and I have to slow it down. I have done this for so long, so my thing is how do I get those people to the point of success. My motto is work like no one else for a year, and you will live like no one else for the rest of your life.”

I end every interview talking about gratitude. What are 3 things in your life that you are grateful for right now?

“My mom, health and what we have.”