'How a fishing trip inspired my multi-million dollar portfolio'

Mitchell Burge

Mitchell Burge read an article about how he could acquire 10 properties in 10 years and thought he’d give it a go. Now he’s set his sights even higher. How did this tradie rapidly build up his portfolio, and what is he going to do next?

“I bought the house that we live in when I was 20, but always wanted to invest – I just didn’t know where to go. There are a lot of things you can read about [property investment] – everyone seems to be an expert in it. 

I went for a fishing trip with [a fellow property investor] and we got talking about it, and then [Smart Property Investment] released an article – ‘10 properties in 10 years’ – and something clicked.

I got reading and it actually had details of regular people – tradesmen like myself – doing extraordinary things. Big portfolios. That kind of triggered it.

From the day I got my first mortgage, I put everything into it. And as I earned more money, I lived the same life that I’ve always lived, and never splurged out and put everything into that mortgage so I could do this.

I had $300,000 to draw down on that house. At the time, the median house price in Minto was what we were looking to invest, which was between $250,000 and $260,000. If it’s the right sale and it’s neutral yield or slightly positive, it’s not costing you a cent.

Six weeks from that fishing trip, the first investment was bought. It was in Minto, and we managed to close it for $265,000, near housing commission on a main street. Rental income at the time was $365 per week. It put money in our pockets every day, so it was a positive yield.

Now I’ve got 13 properties, including the place of residence. The total value of combined assets in my property portfolio is about $4.3 million.

As well as my portfolio, I’ve got an air-conditioning business. But I separate the portfolio – it’s a different company. We don’t mix the two at all.

I’ve found in business that it can be de-motivating because you can do a lot better in [property investment] than you can flogging yourself 10 hours a day, five or six days a week. But I love business, so I can’t help it.

The goal is now financial freedom. Stability. I was brought up quite poor. Single mother, public school. I’ve seen a lot of friends follow the wrong way down the tracks and fall apart. And I don’t want my kids to be brought up poor, or their kids.

We’re planning a big family. Every child that we have, we’re going to create a trust and put a house in that trust so they’re set for life. So this isn’t just us – we’re going to set this up for our kids, and their kids.”

'How a fishing trip inspired my multi-million dollar portfolio'
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