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With only $190 to his name, self-taught via YouTube and book curriculum, and the fire to do more with his life, Antonio Edwards transformed himself from a truck driver to a real estate entrepreneur and CEO of REI Rich and Famous, with over $20 million in real estate capital.
With a baby on the way at just 17, Edwards knew that he had to grow up fast. The young single dad drove trucks for $6.50 an hour, 12 hours a day, and cleaned banks on weekends, desperate to change his story and make a way for him and his son to have a better life.
“I knew I didn’t want to live this life I was living until 65 years old,” said Edwards. “So, I had to figure out how to make a change for my present and future.”
Edwards’ mom gave him a copy of “Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki & Sharon Lechter, and the wheels in his head started turning. Fascinated by the prospect of real estate investing, he became completely obsessed with finding out everything about real estate that he could: studying, Googling, watching YouTube videos, and devouring investment books. Edwards moved back in to his parents’ home at 26 with barely any money to his name to start his real estate investing career and quickly made his first deal with no money out of pocket for $12,500. Six months later, Edwards had made $105,000. A year later, he had closed 26 deals.
Since then? Edwards has closed more than 400 deals in addition to traveling the country as a speaker, appearing on everything from CBS and NBC to ABC and FOX affiliates, and becoming an Amazon bestseller for his book, “Be You, Be Great!” As a completely self-taught entrepreneur, he’s built himself up from the bottom to the top.
“Most people think you need a license, but a license is irrelevant in the real estate investing business,” said Edwards. “With the right specialized knowledge, you can flip and/or buy real estate all day long even if you’re a newbie, using none of your money [or] credit.”
When you look past the real estate jargon and the investment know-how, Edwards has a story of breakthrough that’s ridiculously inspiring. His family was under constant financial stress while he grew up, and he always felt like “the slow one” in class. Reading wasn’t his strong suit, he was a small kid compared to his classmates, and his confidence was cut in half when he was cut from his basketball team due to his size. However, a medley of hard work, perseverance, and self-confidence has helped him rise to the top of the field — an inspiring lesson in working furiously for what you want.
“I know there are times that are challenging, and it may seem like you can’t get out of it,” said Edwards. “I’m living proof that you can.”
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