Episode #50 – Trevis McConaghy, Cultivating the Seeds of Growth

You see your average person…and they want to have a better life; how do I help them get a better life? They’re inspiring me, I’m inspiring them and it’s not all about money. At end of the day it’s fulfilling to help people and see people getting ahead. I’m really enjoying that part of the journey.” – Trevis McConaghy

Growing up in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Trevis McConaghy was the next generation of “farmer” in a line of farmers who had come from Ireland and Norway. Growing up, he had lots of pigs and a few cattle and was cleaning the barn before he started kindergarten.

Being an entrepreneur was encoded in Trevis’ DNA and while still in his teens, his parents backed him and his brothers to buy their first farmland. Expansion was next, and they kept growing their farm to 10,000 acres; 3,000 of which he still owns.

Trevis completed two degrees in University; Agriculture Economics as well as a Bachelor of Commerce. It was after completing his second degree, back on the farm, time on his hands during the slower months of winter that he decided to get his hands dirty and bought his first home. From that experience he learned about drywall, framing, flooring, electrical and plumbing which gave him the necessary groundwork to start growing his real estate portfolio. And grow it he certainly did.

Employing numerous creative buying strategies combined with an unquenchable desire to grow his business Trevis has bought and sold well over one hundred doors so far. With a solid foundation in residential real estate, Trevis is venturing into multi-family, commercial and industrial deals and has even physically moved a house from Alberta to Saskatchewan!

At the core of Trevis’ accomplishments is his desire to give back. Not only is he of massive contribution within the REIN and real estate investment community, Trevis also gives four scholarships at the University of Saskatoon to students who are active in the community. His assertion is that for every hour he donates, it comes back to him 300 percent.

Travel is one of Trevis’ great passions and as he expands his business, he further expands his opportunities to create travel memories. Newly married this year, Trevis is excited about creating more memories with his wife and growing their life, together.

  • Show Notes
  • [02:00] Patrick introduces his next guest in the REIN Member series: Trevis McConaghy
  • Trevis and Patrick plow into it!
  • Trevis gives us his speedy thirty second elevator pitch.
  • [05:04] Let’s dig into Trevis’ farming background in Melfort, SK and the catalyst that had him more vigorously pursue real estate investing.
  • [06:17] Trevis describes how he and his family started with farming and the expansion they undertook. Innovation has always been at the forefront of their business which planted the seed for Trevis’ investing pursuits.
  • [10:10] Trevis outlines the scope of the sizable investment required for the type of machinery they’re using in their farming endeavours.
  • [12:23] Trevis comes from a lineage of farmers so it was natural for him to get involved. His entrepreneurial spirit was pretty much ingrained in his DNA.
  • [13:43] Although the farm is still operating, Trevis talks about how his role shifted along with his business of real estate investing which he began to grow aggressively.
  • [15:14] Providing some context for how he grew his business, Trevis talks about the beginnings of his real estate investing journey starting in the year 2000 and the continuum to 2010 where he started aggressively buying.
  • [18:35] Prior to farming full time, Trevis talks about his academic adventures, achieving two degrees in Agriculture Economics and a Bachelor of Commerce.
  • [19:48] Trevis explains his strategies for real estate investing in Saskatchewan that include buy, renovate, increase value, generate cash flow, mortgage pay-down, and hold.
  • [21:15] Although not afraid to “jump off his horse” and get into the trenches with his properties, Trevis primarily provides a leadership role to his teams.
  • [23:22] Trevis takes us back to the changes and realizations that slowly unfolded for him to transition out of farming and down the path to REIN.
  • [27:24] Trevis paints a picture of the conversations happening with his parents at that time and the circumstances of their multiple businesses that compelled him to pause, take stock and reconfigure.
  • [30:15] Much like the business of joint venturing in real estate, Trevis and his family find a like-minded individual to successfully operate their business of farming.
  • [31:29] Trevis shares his mindset around the significant transitions he was making and his realization that while he had success financially and in business, it was coming at the expense of success in relationships.
  • [34:32] The steady process that shifted Trevis from being IN the business to working ON the business and moving it forward in the most mindful, responsible manner.
  • [36:45] Moving past the struggle of finding like-minded real estate investors Trevis finds his community through his membership in REIN which helped him create a meet up in Saskatchewan for local investors and fellow REIN Members.
  • [39:40] Introvert or extravert? Where Trevis finds himself naturally and on the situational spectrum.
  • [40:22] Trevis’ business philosophy keeps his business world rocking; take immediate, decisive action.
  • [43:20] Quick decision making became an inherent part of Trevis’ farming life which cleanly transferred to real estate investing. There’s always time to work on buying the property. Seizing the opportunity and getting the property under contract is the first decisive action.
  • [44:55] Trevis illustrates where rapid or aggressive decision making has presented challenges for him.
  • [46:33] Trevis shares how he operates the property management aspect {often a tricky aspect} of his real estate investing business.
  • [48:17] Trevis imparts his advice for growing in business and elevating in life plus he shares one of the mistakes he’s made in business that he’s had to clarify and clean up.
  • [52:31] While it might seem like Trevis had access to capital with his farming business, in truth, Trevis employed several creative strategies independent of that capital in order to rapidly build his portfolio.
  • [57:00] Stable real estate markets do exist and Trevis shines a light on areas in which investors can find a great deal; and that might dwell outside of their home province.
  • [58:55] Trevis explains how he approached his education and recognized the possibilities within creative buying strategies. At the root of it is the network he created within the REIN community.
  • [62:20] Trevis gives us the lowdown on some of the books he’s read along his journey that inspired him and expanded his mindset.
  • [64:04] Speaking of mindset – Trevis shares the pivotal moment that shifted his singular mindset from work-focused-weekends to fun-focused and being in choice.
  • [65:58] Did guilt have any place in Trevis’ mindset shift “off the tractor”?
  • [67:13] Trevis shares how being newly married has given him renewed perspective on life balance.
  • [68:49] Trevis’ desire to continually grow as an entrepreneur drives him to continue his business but he’s excited that it’s also created opportunity to take off, travel and have adventures with his loved ones.
  • [71:17] Trevis shares a bit about what his wife does and how that aligns nicely with his business!
  • [72:10] Goal setting: how does that process show up in Trevis’ life?
  • [73:53] How does Trevis define success?
  • [74:59] Although Trevis has realized a great deal of growth and success in his transition, it’s apparent he isn’t making farming wrong. Trevis was simply no longer aligned with the way he was working in it and took action to change his focus.
  • [76:55] Trevis discusses the leadership he’s both witnessed and undertaken that naturally comes with being a REIN Member and being in contribution to help other investors achieve their goals.
  • [78:40] Trevis and Patrick riff on the power of being in contribution and giving back both within the real estate community and the volunteer community.
  • [82:38] Let’s roll with some rapid fire: the book Trevis gifts the most, favourite inspirational quote, favourite swear word, alternate profession, message at the pearly gates, Trevis’ weirdness scale, what he’s not very good at, room-desk-car, favourite music, favourite movies.
  • [84:48] Trevis’ abundant gratitude.

Connect with: Trevis McConaghy

Selected Links and People Mentioned from this episode:

REIN: Real Estate Intelligence Network
Real Estate Investing in Canada by Don R. Campbell
The Four-Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferriss
The Ultimate Wealth Strategy by Quentin D’Souza

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