by Marcos Jacober, author of “Eat This Mr. President: How a Brazilian Immigrant Went From Truck Driver to Millionaire in 4 Years“
I grew up in Sao Paulo, Brazil in the late 70’s and the 80’s in the bad part of town. Like many children who come from poor homes, I never knew I was poor. I just was. It was life. I played in the streets just like the other kids. I went to the public schools — they were good schools by the way — just like the other kids. Sure, I wanted things, like the newest and coolest shoes and the fastest and coolest car, but so did all the other kids.
The biggest thing I wanted, though, my greatest desire, was to go to America. I loved America. I was sure to watch the Olympics held there in 1984, got emotional every time I heard their National Anthem, and dreamed I was working there every time I did training for my job at McDonald’s, wondering what it must be like to work and live in America.
I finally came to America to live when I was 23 years old, landing in New York, New York almost exactly 2 weeks before the fireworks were set to erupt in the sky, announcing the celebration of the Day of the Independence of the Country I loved! I owed my mom a lot of money for my plane ticket and only had $100 to my name, but I felt like a millionaire! Little did I know that I would be one in only 19 short years.
I was very ambitious about earning money. I always have been. All I’d ever thought about from a young age was how I could earn more money.
I had come to America with a goal of earning $800 a week. After several jobs and several steps up in pay, I finally landed a job driving truck for a dairy company. It still wasn’t an $800 a week job, but I was on my way up the ladder.
I didn’t have a car at the time, but I was able to scrape together enough money to buy a bike from Toys “R” Us. Now, I was living in Newark, NJ and working in New York City, NY. You see, it was cheaper to live in NJ, so it was pretty far to ride a bike—especially in the Winter. It took me 1 hour and 39 minutes to get from home to work every day.
After being offered a different job for $550 an hour and then taking a second part-time job, I was working a total of 92 hours a week, working myself to death. Through a turn of events, I ended up offering to work for free for a few weeks at an Italian Restaurant, Virgil’s Café, if they’d teach me to cook their gourmet dishes. Virgil refused my offer and, instead, gave me a 5% stake in his business for my $15,000. He also gave me a $1,000 weekly salary, 5% profit of the business, and a promise that he’d pay all the business expenses!
Thirteen months after arriving in America, I was well on my way to owning my own business. Thirteen months after that, afraid of becoming like Virgil, who was unmotivated, refusing to put money into the business, just plain done, and burnt out (like I was starting to get from the many long hours and effort it was necessary to put in to keep the business afloat), I pulled out. I sold my part back to Virgil for $20,000 and moved my family to Florida, not only to be close to family and away from the blasted cold, but to buy my cousin’s ex-husband’s FedEx route. I would be driving for FedEx and employing drivers, using my experience to manage the route.
After buying our first home in 2000, I realized how great the housing market was, saw how everyone else was buying up houses for little or no money down to rent them out and started to do that myself. By the year 2004, I had somewhere around 12 rentals. Things were going really well, and I was loving life.
I moved on to focusing solely on real estate by May of 2006, having sold my FedEx business, which I had grown to include 3 trucks. By then, I was renting out 16 properties and working toward making my dreams of owning my own flipping TV show on HGTV a reality. However, God had other plans. I know God’s plans are always best, and I see that now, but, right then, I was questioning.
The 2007 housing crisis, hitting Florida around October of 2008, completely ruined my early retirement and my real estate business, stealing away 16 of my 17 properties. It was the worst housing crash in the history of America! Hey! I’m just glad it didn’t throw us into another Great Depression like they said it could have! Anyway…
With that crash, I made the decision to move my family to Houston, Texas. I had to start driving for FedEx again just to keep my family afloat. My dreams were shattered. With no money to invest and my credit ruined, my real estate career was over.
About 2 years later, while going through my desk, I came across a book a friend had given me 5 years prior. It was entitled “The 16% Solution“. I hadn’t read it at the time, having just thrown it in my desk drawer. At the time, I thought I had a valid reason, okay excuse, not to read it. You know what an excuse is, right? It’s “the skin of a reason stuffed with a lie”. Anyway, my excuse was that I was horrible at reading in English. I hadn’t even been learning it but for 6 years! The real reason was that I had a big head. I didn’t want to waste my time reading up on something I already knew everything about! I’d progressed so far in my life so few years earlier because I was always looking for new opportunities, and here I was turning them down when they were right under my nose because of pride! I could have slapped myself!
I read the book. Not only was it well-written, but it changed my life and, consequently, changed the lives of hundreds of others. It introduced me to two strategies that gave me an international business that allows me to travel worldwide teaching about tax deeds and tax liens, made me a millionaire, and gave me students who have gone from nothing to making hundreds of thousands of dollars. From its influence, I started the American Tax Lien Association to help people fulfill their dreams in reaching their monetary goals and beyond just like I did. You too can learn to go from blue-collar to millionaire!
My information can be found on my website at marcosjacober.com. There, you’ll find videos on our presence on the media, testimonials about the training, a link to our store, information on our training, a little about me, and more. I hope you enjoy your trip to success! If I got there, you can too!
Brazilian immigrant Marcos Jacober is an investor, author, international speaker, and teacher. He moved to the US in 1998 with only a dream and $100 in his pocket. He worked a number of blue collar jobs before saving enough to invest in real estate but he lost everything in the crash on 2008. Today, he is an authority in the real estate business, with more than 500 transactions in his portfolio. His new book is “Eat This Mr. President: How a Brazilian Immigrant Went From Truck Driver to Millionaire in 4 Years“.