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  • Writer's pictureBen Welch | Dan Mackin

91: House Hacking for a Nomadic Lifestyle with Sarah Weaver

Matt Aitchison - Real Estate Investor

Many people, investor or not, dream of traveling the world while having the freedom of location independence. And that’s all many of those people will ever do—dream. A great deal of said individuals will choose to not look past the self imposed limitations they have placed for themselves whether it be finance, mindset, or current circumstances.

In the case of our guest, Sarah Weaver, she began her real estate investing career without the intention of ever becoming an investor. Despite her skill and aptitude for the job, Sarah suddenly felt that in order to scale and grow her business as an agent, she had to be tied down to one place. This would be a defining moment for her in life.

Not two weeks after realizing she had been bitten by the travel bug, she began working for a company that allowed her to work remotely. Since then, she has not looked back. She has lived on four different continents and is slowly but surely approaching her 50th country to visit!

As a matter of fact, at the time of this recording, she is halfway across the world in New Zealand managing her units from a van, #vanlife, helping aspiring investors to get started doing what they love, and looking to further grow her portfolio regardless of what curveballs life throws at her. She works for a broker helping to connect real estate agents and investors together, while traveling as a digital nomad.

Some key takeaways from our conversation with Sarah:

1) When renting by the room (House Hacking or traditional investing), you can use a current tenant as a property manager. There’s already trust between you both because they have been renting from you, and they are going to be more pragmatic about choosing new, potential tenants because they are the ones who are going to be living with them. Sarah wouldn’t recommend this for every property and every situation, but if you can play your cards right, there is a great deal of leverage to be had.

2) Have real estate agents and other personnel on the ground as your eyes and ears. As much as you can look at neighborhoods on Google Maps and research crime in a given area, you won’t really know how those areas feel until you are there in person. Neighborhoods can change dramatically (for better or worse) and Google Maps doesn’t update regularly. But what if you can have other, more knowledgeable people do that for you? That’s what your team is there for! Use their professional insight to create winning scenarios.

3) “Buy the damn ticket and at least try it!” For those that want to work/invest remotely, don’t let your fear or discomfort stop you from giving yourself the opportunity to. Don’t sell your car and all your belongings right away, but give yourself a few weeks to try it. AirBNB makes it so easy nowadays to live in a fully furnished unit so there’s really never been a better time to make this dream a reality. If you feel you’re tied down to a desk, ask your boss to give you a trial run working remotely for a month. Just be an amazing employee during that month and go from there! Just like becoming an investor, get pre-approved then take action.

4) Figure out what you want, see what your options are, and pick one. Whether it be traveling, buying a property, or making a career change, there’s nothing more saddening and aggravating to the three of us than seeing someone with a lot of potential waste it through paralysis by analysis. Sometimes, all you really have to do is look at the cards you are dealt with and roll the dice.

If Sarah could go back and talk to her 16 year old self, she’d tell her, “It’s all going to be better than you imagined… the world is going to be so good to you.”

An unexpected benefit of real estate investing, Sarah said, was being able to dream bigger than she ever thought possible.

A piece of advice Sarah would tell her friends looking to get started in real estate would be to “Buy a house. Get pre approved and just do something. Your first deal is never going to be your best deal… [just] make sure it’s not your worst deal.”

Sarah recommends using Wunderlist to help you keep track of tasks within a neat, digital to-do list.

She recommends reading Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard, as well as Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip and Dan Heath to help you get your mindset bigger for your business.

If you’d like to get in touch with Sarah, visit: or follow her on Instagram @sarahdweaver

Thank you to everyone that has reached out to us to connect them with our trusted real estate agents in their area! And congratulations to those who have even closed deals using our referrals! For those that didn’t know, we can help connect you with real estate investor friendly agents in your area to help you get started investing in real estate. We recently made some changes to our website that we believe will better suit you in your real estate investing needs. For more information, visit and head over to the “Start Investing” Tab. Best wishes and see you in the next one!

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