Zach: [00:00:00] Hey, everybody. How’s it going? This is Zach at Black Diamond Mortgage here in Whitefish, Montana. And with me today, I have a special guest. And in basically the line of thinking, we are looking to develop our home ownership stories and actually bring in past clients. So with me today is client Mark Beck. Mark, introduce yourself. Tell our audience what you do.

Mark: [00:00:20] Yeah, of course I am Mark Beck. I’m the Broker Owner of REMAX Glacier Country, and then I also am a partner with Wanderlust Montana Property Management. So I am in the real estate industry.

Zach: [00:00:34] Love it. So we have a lot in common. So let’s dig into your homeownership story. So help me out. Start at the very beginning. We’re highlighting humble beginnings and kind of lead up to where you are today.

Mark: [00:00:47] Humble beginnings. So I was living in an apartment in Columbia Falls on Third Street Ave. Yeah, those Third Street Ave Apartments. And I was just jogging through the neighborhood and I found these lots for sale in Cedar Point. And, you know, I had this goal. I was working at Don K. I was selling cars and, you know, making making a lot of money. And I was trying to live cheap and trying to bank it and wanted to get into real estate. And so my first house deal or whatever was actually a new build. I actually built two townhomes. And so I was just jogging through the neighborhood and I saw Barb Riley sign there and I’m like, I don’t know anything about real estate really yet, you know, I call her up and I knew this guy that was, you know, his name was Doug Denmark, and I was referred to him and I kind of met him and knew a little bit about realtors. And and I called Barb first, and then I told her, well, you know, I’m actually am working with a guy and, you know, this is his name, This is who he is. And we end up putting a land deal together. So I buy the land and I’m like, I don’t really have any cash in the bank at this point. Right? Like, so I’m kind of just doing this thing on a hope and a dream and shoestring budgeting it together. You know.

Zach: [00:02:02] I love it. It’s called the Just Figure it Out method, right?

Mark: [00:02:04] It is. Yeah. Yeah. And that’s how I normally operate. I’m like, okay, you know, I don’t have any formal education. I’m just like off the cuff and just figuring it out. So. So anyways, I buy these two townhome lots, so I’ve got this.

Zach: [00:02:18] What year is this?

Mark: [00:02:20] 2016. Yeah, 16.

Zach: [00:02:22] Got it.

Mark: [00:02:22] Yep, yep. Buy these two townhouse lots. And my dream is like, okay, I’m going to I’m going to build these two units. I’m going to live in one and rent the other one out. Right? And like the neighborhood allows Airbnb, I mean, you know, it allows all these things and I’m like, Man, if I could just get like $250 bucks a night, $300 bucks a night for the one side like it pretty much pay for the whole thing, you know. And and that was kind of as far as my my head went with it. So like, fast forward, like it takes me a couple it takes me about a year and a half of like sitting on the land and I’m just basically use the land as a savings account. Like I would just pay as much principal off every month as I could. Like I’d roll all the commissions that I could afford to roll into it, into the land, and then come to the end of like a year and a half or whatever, I had like two years on the job. And then I get a call from Black Diamond Mortgage, right? One of your loan officers and and I didn’t really didn’t I was kind of shopping banks at this time and my sister knew that I was. And so my sister actually referred me to you guys and via the cold call. And so I went through five banks trying to get my project done. No, I won’t name them, but none of them. No one would do my deal and no one would let me because I needed I wanted to do sweat equity or I needed to do sweat equity. Yeah, one local bank did. And they did it with your guys preapproval letter. Nice. So that you guys. So you guys were going to do the takeout loan. And here was my, my catch 22 is I wanted to get out of the car dealership world Right. I want to get out of that at this point. And I was like, Man, I love real estate. Like, this is this is cool. Like, this is something I could do and make money at and like, you know, be in the same sales position. But but, you know, selling houses. And so my goal was, alright, so I’m going to do this new construction deal, but I got to do a cash out refinance because I need.

Zach: [00:04:16] You needed the money.

Mark: [00:04:17] I need cash out because I want to go start my real estate business, you know.

Zach: [00:04:21] Capital, right?

Mark: [00:04:22] I needed capital. Yeah. And I didn’t I didn’t have capital at that point. You know, all my money was tied up in the project. And so there was no no loan officers were doing it. I was still kind of shopping or whatever. And Black Diamond was the only one that could do cash out refinance on new brand new construction on an investment property. They had the only lender love it and I shopped everyone, man. Like I went through so much rejection and I don’t I’ve got thick skin. I’m like, you know, just like, whatever, like, tell me no, I’ll find someone who says, yes, you know,

Zach: [00:04:51] I love it.

Mark: [00:04:52] And so it was really cool that Black Diamond, they put it together and, you know, years later, I still I still own them, you know, went through a divorce and ex wife kept one and I kept the other one. But but, you know, it all worked out in the end. But no, it was that was my literally my first mortgage. And I think I’ve done four mortgages with you guys over the years now.

Zach: [00:05:14] Awesome, that is great. That’s a good story. That’s a I mean, that’s what this is all about is like there’s oftentimes there’s just a level of grit necessary and not taking no as an answer, like you said, if you want to figure out how to make next steps in your life. You have to be willing to do the hard work, right?

Mark: [00:05:31] Oh, yeah, Yeah. You got to go. Especially in sales or business or anything. You got to go through 50 no’s, 100 no’s until you get a yes. And the cool thing about working, which is why I like to refer my clients to mortgage brokers, is because it’s not just one underwriter that’s in house or whatever. It’s, you know, you’ve got the option to shop multiple investors, right, for your for the loan. And so you have a higher probability of putting the deal together for my clients and holding the deal together. So which is why and I’ve used gosh, I can’t even tell you how many loans I’ve done through Black Diamond for probably 30, 40, you know, loans over the years.

Zach: [00:06:08] I love we love it. We really appreciate you, Mark. Um, so let’s finish up with this. What’s on the horizon? So you did this great project and now you’re just absolutely crushing it in real estate. What’s coming for your home ownership story?

Mark: [00:06:22] I’m actually. I got a place on ten acres under contract right now in Browns Meadow. Yeah.

Zach: [00:06:28] WOOOO! Does it have a house on it?

Mark: [00:06:29] It’s got a house. Yeah, it’s got a house. It’s got a barn, it’s got a creek. It’s got. I mean, I’m going to be like a little bit of a kind of like a farmer type thing, you know?

Zach: [00:06:38] So that’s great, people. It is possible. You just have to start. And Mark is a good example of that.

Mark: [00:06:44] Yeah. And just keep reinventing yourself. Like keep trying something new, something that you’re not used to. I mean, shoot, i a year from now, you probably see me driving a tractor.

Zach: [00:06:53] Get some cows out there. Maybe you’ll bring some milk by the office right? That’s awesome. Well, any final parting words from you, Mark?

Mark: [00:07:01] Oh, just be authentic. Keep going. Home ownership is so important. It is literally how you build wealth like in America. So don’t wait to get in. Get in sooner rather than later. And now, right now is a fantastic time to buy. I know rates are high, but prices have come down a lot and like I haven’t bought anything over the last two years, but I’m selling property right now and buying another one and that’s because it’s a great time to buy and sell real estate.

Zach: [00:07:30] You heard it here first, folks, directly from Mark himself. Thanks for joining us. We hope you guys enjoyed this session. Have a great day.