Who are you?
See the About the Author section for that answer…
What prompted the world traveling?
Long story short, I had a high-end mortgage company that went bust and decided to do what I’ve always dreamed of doing… world traveling.
The full story is: I worked harder in the business than anything than I’ve ever done in my life and it was really painful to shut it down. I had a beautiful highrise office in Vegas and one in Vail, Colorado. I had about 20 people working for me and was gearing up to open in Hawaii when the secondary market (the wholesale banks from which I got the money to loan out) came to a standstill. These wholesale lenders all started going bust and bankruptcy quickly ensued. Things got worse and worse in the marketplace but ironically, our sales leads from borrowers went up like crazy. Imagine, you’ve got hundreds of clients wanting financing EVERYDAY but you can’t loan any of them money and hence, you can’t make any money either! Also, at the same time, my companies press and media attention skyrocketed and I appeared in numerous magazines, major newspaper articles and TV appearances including two on CNBC’s national news. It was beyond comprehension for me because everyone was working harder and harder but we couldn’t get access to any money to loan out so in the end we were all making zero. I finally had to shut down the business and fire everyone when we hadn’t turned a profit after considerable months.
During the real estate boom I was fortunate to build up a considerable net worth from real estate flipping, rehabbing, hard money lending and a high income. I sold as many investment homes as I could when I saw the bust coming but I still got stuck with seven that were worth 33-50% of their previous values. In the end I made the business decision to let them all go. Even my primary residence! I let it all go. I made the decision to go and see the world instead. I’ve always wanted to be a perpetual tourist for a few years and figured this was the time to do it…
What did you do with your worldly possessions?
I sold nearly everything via Ebay and Craigslist over a two month period. I had a LOT of possessions built up from my previous homes and even had a 20 ft shipping container filled with personal and business items. In the end I only made about $25,000 from selling everything but it was better than nothing.
How are you funding this experience?
I have income while I’m traveling. I’m doing better than I ever have because I have no bills besides airfare, food, cheap pre-paid phones and hotels. In the 2nd and 3rd world where I’m traveling now, things are cheap so I’m living like a king! See this page for more info on how I make money while traveling.
It’s liberating to sell everything and travel. Nearly everything I own is contained in one suitcase and one backpack. The funny thing is that I still feel that I have too much junk. I want to get rid of more but it’s hard for me to part with things. I used to be a big time pack-rat and I guess I still am on a smaller scale now. Also, it’s really neat to be able to go to the airport whenever I want and just pick a destination. I have true autonomous freedom with my life and I don’t think many people ever get to experience this level of freedom. I feel as though I’m the luckiest person on the planet for my situation.
As for the negatives, there are many, but the positives outweigh them nevertheless. At times, traveling alone gets lonely. Cuddling up to a pillow just doesn’t do it for me. Ironically, I’d say the biggest negative of traveling is re-packing my suitcase. Everytime I check into a new hotel I have to crack open the bags and pull my junk out. Then when I leave I have to repack everything. Really it’s only 15 to 60 minutes of work each time but it really gets old after a while.
As far as sleeping in different places, I love it. Staying in new hotels all the time is thrilling for me. I love the continual change and many of the hotels I stay in are luxurious 5 star places. Sometimes I go for zero star hostels to experience the other side but I usually end up choosing a higher end crash pad the very next night.
May all your travels be as liberating as mine,