- Jason Paetow endured hardship during his earlier life, yet purchased his first property at the age of 20
- He later began building a property protfolio- he now has seven properties
- He hopes his story and advice inspires budding property investors
AllianceCorp’s Managing Director, Jason Paetow, has had an extraordinary life.
Despite finding himself homeless at just 15 years old after a tragic illness in the family, he would go on to purchasing his first property at 20, before owning seven more by the time he turned 30.
He uses this experience to passionately educate Australians about how to achieve financial freedom.
The Property Tribune spoke with Mr Paetow where he discussed difficulties in his earlier life, how he got onto the property ladder and advice for budding property investors – including younger ones.
The early years
Mr Paetow had a turbulent childhood.
His parents got divorced and initially, he lived with his mother and brother. He had difficulty concentrating at school and was later diagnosed with ADHD.
The diagnosis caused more problems at both school and home. In particular, his relationship with his mother came under pressure.
Mr Paetow was eventually expelled from high school.
He moved in with his father, his partner and their newborn. He had a close relationship with his father, who also was a successful businessman.
However, just six months after moving in, his father’s multiple sclerosis worsened. He lost both his partner and the business.
“It was then just Dad and I, but his condition became so bad that he was put into a home, and then I started living with a friend’s dad. Not long after social services put me in housing with other homeless kids.”
“I then enrolled into another high school but then decided to go into the workforce and return to my education at a later date.”
The experience shaped Mr Paetow determination to build a successful life for himself.
After taking on multiple jobs, he saved enough money to buy his first property at the age of 20.
Through renovations, he achieved greater equity in the property.
He cited his father’s determination as a major influence on his own behaviour.
“As traumatic as it was to watch my father fight his condition for over 20 years, he taught me the power of the mind. He never complained and no task was too difficult.
“He taught me that no matter how hard the challenge is, there are people out there having to deal with much more.
“Throughout all the challenges of growing up, relationships and building my business from scratch with no experience, nothing I endured looked to be as difficult as what my father went through.
“Until the very end, he remained positive.”
Developing his business and portfolio
At the age of 27, Jason became a buyers advocate, earning his REA license along with financial planning and mortgage broking certificates.
He also became a registered builder, allowing him to turn his passion into a career.
Mr Paetow started AllianceCorp after recognising a gap for buyers advocates.
Educating others to achieve financial freedom has become his passion; he now has over 2000 clients across Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.
He said developing the business was “very difficult” due to lack of experience with starting and managing a business.
“I was fortunate in that I could leverage off my equity to start the business but very quickly the GFC struck and I had to learn fast.”
In terms of developing his portfolio, he understood the concept of adding value, which is why he deliberately acquired run-down properties.
“Unfortunately, my vision of all my friends [coming] over the weekend to help me renovate didn’t exactly turn out to plan. Yes, they came over and swam in the pool and drank my beer, but getting them to chip in was more challenging.”
“What I did not fully grasp at a young age was the power of leverage and the requirement to replicate my work into further purchases. It wasn’t until my mid 20’s that I released my equity and started purchasing more run down properties.”
Advice for budding property investors
In terms of advice for property investors, Mr Paetow said it was imperative to consult a professional before entering into property investment in order to establish a strategy that suits your income and lifestyle.
He also said to seek a mortgage broker to ensure the best rate.
“You don’t know what you don’t know. Everyone likes to think they know about property because maybe they have purchased their own home. But even investors who have multiple investment properties still don’t really understand how property works. They have simply purchased a couple of properties over the past 10 years or so.
“To be successful in property (+6 investment properties) you need to understand how finance works and get professional advice.
“Once investors are empowered with the knowledge on how to build a portfolio this gives them greater confidence and results in them being more proactive with their portfolios.”
In terms of younger budding investors, he noted that the concept of ‘rentvesting‘ has become really popular.
He said rentvesting suits young people who are priced out of certain locations due to the rising costs.
“The landscape has changed over the past 20-30 years. While interest rates are much lower, the median price of a property can be over 10 times the average income, versus just 3-4 times when their parents purchased property.
“Younger people now need to be more disciplined also with their budgeting as the deposit requirements are so much greater. My advice is to get your parents on board, and where possible, do a JV (joint venture) to access their equity.”