How Ricardo Rosales Retired from His Oil Industry Career

From working in the oil industry to real estate investor, Ricardo Rosales has done it all!

Wholesaling, flipping, land lording, and coaching others in the real estate business, he is a wealth of knowledge for anyone trying to break into real estate.

Listen and learn from a real estate legend!

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Speaker 1 (00:00):

I didn’t like it. I did not like being a landlord. I hated it. I didn’t enjoy it, and I’ll tell you why. Now, one thing I would’ve done different, which my business partner at the time advised me to do, which I didn’t want to do.

Speaker 2 (00:18):

Chris Miles was able to retire twice by the time he was 39 years old. But he’s not content to just enjoy his own financial freedom and peace of mind. Chris wants you to have your own ripple effect so you can live free today. He’s not the financial advisor you expected. He’s the anti Financianal advisor you deserve. He’s jumping behind the mic right now, ready to make waves. Here’s Chris Miles.

Speaker 3 (00:49):

Hello, my fellow Ripples. This is Chris Miles, your cashflow expert in an anti Financianal advisor, one of our show for you. Those that work so hard for your money and you’re now ready for your money, start working harder for you today. You want that freedom. You want that cashflow right now. You don’t have to wait 30 or 40 years, but you want to be able to create that life that you love today so you can spend the time doing what you love with those that you love. But most importantly, I know it’s not just about getting rich. You want to create a rich life because as you are blessed financially, you now have a greater capacity to bless the lives of others and create a ripple effect through their lives. And that is exactly what we’re here to do today. Thank you for tuning in.

Thank you for allowing me to create that ripple effect through you. As a reminder, if you haven’t done so already, guys, go check out money Keep deepening your education. Go down that freaking rabbit hole, learn more, whether it’s about infinite banking or even if it’s about just how to create more passive income, we’ve got plenty of resources for you to check out now. So today, guys, I actually brought on a guest here, somebody who’s becoming a new friend of mine, and we’re actually going to hang out in Florida here in just a few days. Ricardo Rosales, he’s actually based out of Texas, out of Houston, Texas, but originally from Venezuela, successful real estate investors since 2008. Actually, like many of you or what you’re either doing right now or you’re hoping to do, he started out as a passive investor buying real estate properties and rentals. Eventually in 2015, he was laid off, which was perfect, perfect timing for him because then he went to real estate full time. Now he has multiple businesses including one. We had Robert Allen, our show before. He’s even a partner with Robert Allen and has a mastermind group with them and does things with VAs and you name it. So excited to have Ricardo on. So Ricardo, welcome to our show today.

Speaker 1 (02:30):

Chris, thank you so much for the invitation, brother, and I am honored that I am here today with you and to raise your audience with a bunch of my experiences. I’ve made a lot of mistakes and I’ve had a lot of successes, but I believe in order to achieve success, you’re going to have to some downfalls, and I am the perfect example of that.

Speaker 3 (02:49):

Yeah, it’s funny, you’re wearing the family Mastermind t-shirt right now. I almost threw it on just before the show. I was like, I got my red. It’s

Speaker 1 (02:56):

Almost like my uniform, man. I have so many of ’em, and I cannot wait actually to get there on Sunday so I can get some more.

Speaker 3 (03:05):

That’s right, exactly. It’s like, okay, what else can I get? I’ve already got the sweaters now I’ve got the T-shirts. Well, what else they got now, right? Yeah, it’s true. I don’t have to go shopping. They provide my wardrobe between my own, my money Ripple shirts, and then I’ve got my family.

Speaker 1 (03:19):

Just speak a color. Just speak a color and you’re good.

Speaker 3 (03:22):

Exactly. Yep. I just got to make sure it’s in my little color wheelhouse there. That’s right. Well, Ricardo, tell us more about your background and how you even came to be where you are today.

Speaker 1 (03:31):

Look, I just got to give you, I know this is a short call. So I grew up in Venezuela. I was born in the US by pure luck, okay? My father was going to school here in the US with my mother, and I just happened to be born here. So I am grateful for that opportunity that they gave me to be a US citizen. But I grew up in Venezuela, so I went to Venezuela when I was very little. I was like nine months old, and I stayed there until I was 17. I started working for my father when I was eight in his insurance business. My dad is a very successful insurance operator. He sells life health, ransom insurance. Also, he’s got a local company in Venezuela where they do the local policies and all that. And from a very young age, I learned the arts of sales because of him.

I wanted to be like him. What happened was somewhere around 20, when I was like 20 years old, I had a boss and I didn’t feel like I had a father. So by the time I was running his company, his operations, everything, the whole nine yards, now I live in Miami, Florida, because now he went international and I just went on my own and I don’t know if he fired me or I left him. He claims that he fired me. I claimed that I left him. So we always laugh at that, him and I when we’re drinking wine. Long story short, I joined the US Navy and in the Navy, one of the reasons I joined the Navy was because I needed insurance for my daughter. I had a daughter at a very young age. I was 19 and I needed a paycheck, and I had no clue on what I wanted to do with my life.

Chris, I didn’t know. I knew I wanted to be a salesperson, but because I was so immature and so irresponsible, I would say, and that I have to give credit to my dad for being right about that, I just needed something that could get me lined up in the right direction. And so I figured joining the military and serving my country will do that, and sure it did. I got straightened up, and while I was in the Navy, I realized that the politics of the Navy weren’t going to help me stay there for 20 years. I wanted to at the beginning, and that’s when I started seeing oil rigs, and I went and started looking for jobs offshore. Eventually I did my four years, got out of the Navy, started working offshore, made a beautiful offshore career. Was out there for close to 12 years roughly, and I went from working in the shop, putting the valves together all the way to running 120 million business in the oil and gas business.

So I climbed through the ranks, but something interesting happened while I was offshore, if I was not on the rig, I was going to be free. So I didn’t have to go to an office. I didn’t have to go clock in or out or anything like that. And I started watching TV and I saw the show Flip This House, and I said, man, I wonder if I can do that. I mean, buy a property that’s distressed, rehab it, fix it up, and then either set it or rent it. And now this is in 2008, 2009, when things are just, the world is just coming to an end. Literally. I said, this is what I want to do. And I started doing a lot of research and I bought my first property for $13,000. I remember try that today, and I rehabbed it, and it took me a whole year.

So it was a very painful experience because in real estate, you’re either going to pay a mentor so they can show you the way or you’re going to pay the streets, and it’s worst when you pay the streets. So I always say pick a mentor, have them help you avoid the problems and the challenges that they avoided when they started or whatnot. So you are going to make mistakes and you’re going to run into challenges, but they’re not going to be as painful financially if you go on your own. I did it on my own, but at the time, Chris, there was not a lot of these connections today that you can just go on Google and find an educator or a school or something that can teach you real estate. Back then, it was like nothing. It was very hard to network with other real estate investors. So

Speaker 3 (07:47):

Right then there’s a lot of companies that got shut down during that last recession

Speaker 1 (07:51):

From FC. Absolutely, absolutely. But I just went and figured it out on my own man, and it took me a whole year to flip one house. And also the reason why it took so long is because, number one, I got money stolen from the contractors. So I had to go offshore, make some money, come back so I can continue the projects, and finally I finished the project. Now at this time, nobody’s getting financed for our property, so my agent will say, Ricardo, let’s just put it for rent. And I said, no, I don’t want to rent it. I want the money back. And by the way, I use private money on my first deal without even knowing what private money was like. My mother-in-law gave me a loan of like $40,000, and he helped me buy the house for some repairs and all that, plus my money.

I just ended up renting that property. I became a landlord by necessity, if you will, and then I refinanced it. Then later on, four years later, I sold it. But then when I realized, hold on a second, I can do this over and over and over and over again, and I just start accumulating properties four or five years later, back in 2015, I had already done a hundred. So the thing is I didn’t like it. I did not like being a landlord. I hated it. I didn’t enjoy it. And I’ll tell you why. When I first started and I saw a friend of mine here in the Houston area, his name is Blake, he’s very well known. He was selling loans. He still is. He’s in the mortgage business, but he’ll get up in front of the local S and say, you can make 40,000 passively if you only have a hundred rentals making $400 a piece.

And I saw myself doing that, and I said, huh. So I bought on his dream. That was not my dream. It was his dream, and he was actively doing that and pursuing that. So I bought on that, and when I got there, I got to the destination. I was like, no, this is not what I want to do. As soon as my rentals started becoming vacant, now in 2012 to 2015, people were getting approved for loans. Damn. We were selling them left and right, and honestly, Chris, I wasn’t even making money on a lot of ’em. I just wanted to offload the debt. I wanted ’em off my plate. I didn’t want the headaches anymore. I became a motivated seller, fast cleaned out the plate, and then started focusing on rehabs, and now people are buying flips. So it’s okay, I can flip a house and make good money out of it.

And I realized that the same effort that it took to make $400 on cashflow on a property it was going to take to make 40,000 on a flip, so I’m like, why do I really want to get $400 on a property on cashflow when I can make 40 on a flip? And so I made that shift and we started flipping. And when I got laid off in 2015, it was like a blessing in disguise. At the time, I didn’t see that way. I didn’t know, I didn’t understand why it was happening, but I just went and started flipping at a scale. And we went from flipping two to three houses at a time into flipping about 50 at a time, somewhere in 2017 where we had the biggest flipping operation in the Houston area, arguably, because there’s probably somebody else out there that was doing something similar or bigger, but I just don’t know that person. And I mean, we became multi multimillionaires and it was something crazy, something I guess I could write a book about that.

Speaker 3 (11:15):

You probably could, huh? Yeah, absolutely. Now, what’s your perspective? I know flipping still can happen, but it’s definitely become a little bit more challenging from time to time or depending on the area. How have you pivoted in the last few years?

Speaker 1 (11:29):

Well, I had to pivot because in August 31st, 2017, hurricane Harvey came to Houston. I have 50 flips on my hands, all of them in private money, $250,000 a month on interest payments only. And at the beginning I didn’t think of anything, but 12 months later, I was broke. And financially I didn’t think I had in the bank, literally. I said, okay, I can last for two years if nothing happens. But at the same time, I wasn’t counting on pricing on properties dropping drastically or whatnot. So I lost a lot of equity of those projects I had, and I became a motivated seller one more time, and I needed to make 250,000 a month just to pay bills. So I had to become something else. And the only thing I could think of at the time that could make me that kind of money that I could scale was wholesaling.

Now, on a flip, if you make 40, 50 on a wholesale deal, you make 10 to 15, so the profit is a lot less, but you’re in and out quicker. And I didn’t have to sign for a loan. I didn’t have to buy the property. So I said, you know what? I’m going to shift to wholesaling and I’m going to scale the wholesaling operation, and that’s what’s going to help me get out of this hole that I’m in right now. And it did up to a certain point, not every month we made two 50, but some months we’ll make a hundred and some another month, we’ll make 300. And you balance it that way. And some months we didn’t make any money. So that’s just part of business. And by becoming a wholesaler, I focused on that in between 2018 and literally last year, 2022, we were able to navigate away from those waters.

And when I was wholesaling, I started coaching people on how to wholesale and how to fix and flip. So a whole new world opened up to me, which was the education world. And I wasn’t even thinking about being an educator. I had a negative conation about educators, but in a way it was due on demand. So the people were come into me. I wasn’t running a funnel or anything like that to attract the student. They were literally just knocking on my door saying, can you help me become a real estate investor? And then my students started asking for my virtual assistants because at some point I moved from running operations here in Houston to going to Venezuela, a hundred percent, just trying to lower my cost. Literally, that’s what it was. I was like, if an employee here in the US costs me $3,000, what can I do in Venezuela? So I started shifting away to South America, and little did I know I was starting a new business model that I had no idea about. And today, that’s my main source of income. It’s our VA company literally.

Speaker 3 (14:19):

Yeah, that’s the one thing I find really fascinating, and it kind of ties in with when we did have Robert Allen on last year, that there’s always cycles, and especially when you’re, I mean with a passive real estate investor, depending on what you’re investing in, it’s different. But for those that are active in the business, it’s very common to see go from flipping to wholesaling or maybe a little of both, or all of a sudden now you’re holding on some rentals or maybe more multifamily versus just single family. And then even your case go into education space and more kind of go in the business. And it’s fascinating to watch your evolution through the years, right? Over the really the last 16 years you’ve been doing this. It’s really kind of cool to see that.

Speaker 1 (14:59):

And I’m so happy today. And look, I don’t regret anything that’s happened to me or all the different experiences that I’ve gone through. I went through all the nightmares. A real estate investor can go through lawsuits. I have properties foreclosed on. I had to dig properties back to lenders. It was horrible, but it had to be done. It is part of business otherwise. So businesses are not always rainbows and unicorns, and I was not expecting a hurricane to come in and disrupt a multimillion dollar operation the way it did because we’ve been operating like that for two years, no problems. But then a major catastrophe happens and you’re like, okay, how do you prepare for something like that? Right? Very hard to do. So I’m not saying that I’m blaming the hurricane because at the end of the day, I had built a monster that needed to be fed. So whether it was a hurricane or another or covid or something, something was going to disrupt that business at some point, and I was going to go through the same hurdles. So what that gave me was a lot of wisdom now to move forward on how do I want to move forward? And believe it or not, on my VA company is very much like a rental house.

Every VA I have I cashflow, but I don’t have to get a loan. I don’t have to. There’s a lot of things that I don’t have to do to create the same amount of cashflow. Plus I can sell that business for a multiple X on the real estate. I can only get the value of the property on market value or whatnot. On single family, of course, on multifamily is different. So I’ve been focusing on that and I’m enjoying my journey right now. Like you said, Robert and Alan and I are partners on a mastermind. We call it billion dollar streams. And all we do there is we help people how to create multiple streams of income. I’ve done it multiple times. I did it when I was working in the oil and gas business with flipping on the side and then having some rentals on the side.

And then once I went to flipping full time, then we added, we also had a marketing company where we did yellow letters and things of that nature. So we always believed in being fully integrated. We had our own construction company, our own marketing company, our own wholesaling company, and then our own flipping company. And then we went into the wholesaling, and then we started adding more components to the marketing. So adding, I love this. Your show, now that I know that you’re talking about multiple streams of income and how to create that and all that, I’m going to be a listener for sure, because that’s literally what I focus on today.

Speaker 3 (17:45):

That’s awesome. What would you say if you were to go back and do everything over again, what would you change? What would you do differently or maybe how would you do your business model differently from the beginning?

Speaker 1 (17:57):

Nothing, honestly, nothing. It’s hard to say, oh, I would’ve done this and that, but in reality, that’s just the way it happened. And now, one thing I would’ve done different, which my business partner at the time advised me to do, which I didn’t want to do, and this is very hard to say, but when we had that problem with the hurricane, I would’ve stopped all the interest payments, all of them.

And I would’ve had a conversation with the lenders and I would say, look, I’m in a buying here. I don’t know what’s going on, but I need this money to fix the properties, not to pay you interest. So let’s see how we can navigate these waters together. By the way, you want your house back, you can have it. But because I was an honorable person, I wanted to do the right thing. I continued to make these interest payments for almost two years and got to the point, Chris, where we were making $500,000 a month, and at some point, Dennis and I didn’t have $50 to put on our gas tank to run around town, and that was because we were honoring, but I didn’t have a mentor at the time either. I didn’t. I grew to that level on my own. So if I would’ve had mentors and coaches and people that could show me, this is how you navigate these waters, this is what you should do on a case of emergency, I think I would’ve preserved a lot of that wealth.

We lost nearly $15 million in between cash and properties and equity and things like that. Don’t get me wrong, I still got properties, but I don’t even talk about those anymore. And it came from that whole wave of houses we were doing at the time. But that’s the one thing I would’ve probably done different is that I would’ve bused up a little bit more and said, call all my lenders and say, guys, there’s no payments. We’re just going to use the money to finish projects. I don’t care if you get mad done. They still got mad at the end of the day. So projects weren’t getting finished fast enough. Our problem was that we couldn’t find labor. Our labor walked away within a month to go work for all the insurance companies in fema, and they were just throwing so much money at it that we couldn’t pay these guys.

Speaker 3 (20:05):

Yeah, that’s rough.

Speaker 1 (20:07):

It is rough.

Speaker 3 (20:08):

Yeah, that’s horrible. But I mean, I get it those hard times, and I’ve had hard times as well, especially with the last recession and everything else, it’s like one of those things, you don’t want to ever take away those experiences. You gain wisdom, but at the same time you’re like, dang, I definitely don’t want to do that again.

Speaker 1 (20:26):

Yeah, you couldn’t get me. I have friends that come to me and say, Hey, let’s go flip houses. And I’m like, nah, you go flip houses. I could do one or two projects on my own with my wife or whatnot, but I don’t even enjoy them anymore. I don’t enjoy the backsplash. I don’t enjoy the picking the roof color or the colors of the wall. I used to enjoy those things, and at some point I went from doing that to creating a cookie cutter system because I was doing so many houses. We had to buy the same paint, the same countertops, the same cabinets. My houses were boring because it was a product for scale. When you start decorating and all that, it just takes too much. It takes more money and it takes more time. So true, because I had a system in place, I couldn’t go and do something different. So if you are out there and you want a systemized rentals, make them boring, same color, same vinyl flooring, and then your leftover materials, you can use it for the next project as long as you have a next project lined up. And that’s what allowed us to scale too. Sometimes we will rehab a house, Chris, with leftover materials a hundred percent, so we would only pay for the labor.

Speaker 3 (21:45):

Yeah. One thing I’ve heard you say multiple times this interview, and I’ll kind of have you finish off on this, is that the thing you’ve said multiple times is it’s pretty much having a mentor, having a coach or somebody to guide you along. Having some kind of education is way more valuable than trying to figure out mistakes. Like you said, you can either pay for the mistakes or you can pay for a mentor. And it’s similar to what I’ve said too. I always tell people, if you think education or a mentor is expensive, try ignorance. Ignorance is the most expensive lesson you’ll ever learn, right? It

Speaker 1 (22:14):

Is. Look, I had so many limiting beliefs and I was the guy thinking, why would I pay this guy 20,000 or 30,000 or 50,000? I can figure it out on my own. And that was because that was the military in me. The military people, we can figure things out on our own, but at what cost.

Speaker 3 (22:36):


Speaker 1 (22:37):

So, and one thing I tell a lot of people is, look, if you have to go to the tallest building in New York and you got to go to the penthouse in that building, you can either take the stairs that’s free,

There is a guy by the elevator with a sign, says it’s 20,000 or 30,000 or 50,000 to get there in less than 30 seconds, which way are you going to go? Do you want to go take the stairs? And by the time you get up there, you’re probably all sweaty, tired. Most people get halfway and don’t finish. They don’t continue to go up. But if you have the money to pay the mentor, then the mentor will get you on the elevator, get you up to the paint house, and there you are. Now you just got to take action and make it happen. Right? That’s the easiest analogy I can use when it comes to trying to figure it out on your own and using a mentor.

Speaker 3 (23:29):

I love it. That’s a great analogy for sure. Yeah. Well, speaking of which, if people want to, like you said, follow you guys with the Mastermind you have with the Billion dollar Mastermind, with the multiple streams of income, especially when people want multiple streams of business income, or even if they’re looking for VAs, what’s the best they can get ahold of you?

Speaker 1 (23:46):

I me on my IG Instagram, Ricardo m Rosales, our company is called Top of the Line va. I don’t think I have anything for the billion dollar Mastermind because we do that in our events. Our next event is called Pros of Real Estate, so go to pros of or attend Although attend Growth is not live until next year. That’s why our flagship event, we only do it once a year in May. We’re going to have pros of real estate, May 17th and 18th here in Houston, Texas, and we’re going to have about 300 people. Robert Allen is coming. Go figure. And that’s where we talk about the billion dollar streams.

Speaker 3 (24:26):

Awesome. So pearls of

Speaker 1 (24:29):

Pros, pros like professionals, pros,

Speaker 3 (24:30):


Speaker 1 (24:31):

Yeah. Pros of real estate, PROS, pros of Real Estate.

Speaker 3 (24:35):

Awesome. Yeah, well be sure to put that in the show notes as well as your Instagram handle as well. So anybody, if they’re driving, they can always still get access to it later. But again, Ricardo, this is such a great conversation. Thank you for joining us today.

Speaker 1 (24:47):

No, I appreciate you, Chris, and you guys have a great day.

Speaker 3 (24:50):

You bet. The rest of you guys, hey, you heard it here. Definitely check out Ricardo’s Instagram, and if you’re looking to really build those multiple streams of income, check out that pros of as well, guys, make it a wonderful and prosperous week. See you later.