Updated: Apr 5
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Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: I have a very special guest with you today, Dr. Latifat. And she's a practicing gastroenterologist. But she's also an active real estate investor. So today's episode is all about financial freedom through real estate investing. She's the founder of MoneyFitMD, which has her own blog and podcast. And she's been featured in conferences such as the Semi-Retired MD Conference, as well as the upcoming White Coat Investors Conference. So as you know, in our show, we advocate for four types of freedoms. So first is financial freedom. And second is time, location and emotional freedom. So, without much ado, let's bring Dr. Latifat on the show. Welcome.
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: Thank you so much, Chris. I'm really excited to be here.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: I'm happy to be able to do this recording with you and collaborate with you. So tell us a little bit about your story, your background. I know a lot of physicians are interested in real estate investing. And we'll take it from there.
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: Absolutely. So I'm Latifat, am a GI Doc, and based in California, I'm also the mom of three little ladies that keep me pretty busy and engaged. I am also a money coach. And what that means is that I help women physicians go from wherever they are to wherever they want to be when it comes to their finances. And I am a huge fan of Chris, and I'll tell you why. Because he believes in financial freedom. And I love, love, love that he talks about money in terms of numbers, he talks about freedom in terms of your time and location, and also emotional because ultimately, one without the other is just incomplete. So I'm a huge, huge fan. And a lot of times when it comes to money, we hear about the numbers, but not the other stuff. So anyway, again, huge fan.
The way that my journey has actually started about six years ago, I knew nothing about money, I was embarrassed to admit it. I knew zero, the only thing I knew was how to make it and how to kind of spend it, even though it disappeared. And I didn't quite know how that was happening. So for me, I decided six years ago that I wanted to have a better future for my kids, that I wanted to be the kind of physician that I wanted to be, which is a practicing GI Doc with a focus in IBD. I love IBD patients, but I also know that in order to practice medicine on my terms, I need it to face my numbers and know my money.
So that's where my journey started from and was nothing fancy. It was just literally figuring out, where's my money going? What is this lingos that everyone's talking about? Unfortunately, there weren't too many spaces that felt safe and comfortable for me to do it at that point. So, now what I do with MoneyFitMD is I've created a space especially for women physicians, to not only learn about the numbers, but also combine the power of psychology so that they can have the money in terms of numbers. And they can also feel the satisfaction and emotional fulfillment that they've always wanted to feel when it comes to money. So that's kind of my journey.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: That's wonderful. I love how you focused on one particular niche in terms of mindset and really focused on your audience who you can relate to and which is the women physicians, and I know mindset is a huge thing because if you don't have your mind right then nothing is right, so you're gonna self sabotage. So, what are some of the common self sabotaging beliefs that you find among, especially physicians, when it comes to money.
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: I will combine the psychology and also the emotional part of it. So, shame is a big one. And I call shame self sabotaging, because there’s usually a few reasons why we feel shame. One is we may not know what we think we need to know, or we may not have what we think we should have, or some people actually have and feel shame about the fact that they have, and all that can actually affect our ability to learn more when it comes to money, our ability to invest, and our ability to do good with it. So shame is definitely a huge one.
And also just what is possible versus what's impossible, right? A lot of times as physicians we’re like well, this is, it's not my thing, or I don't have time, oh, well, doctors don't do that. Right. And we create all those mind blocks ourselves. And I use the word create intentionally, because when you create it, you're empowered enough to remove it. As opposed to when you think it's not of your own doing, then it feels more disempowering, and you have no ability to do it. So those are some of the most common, but it's a really, really powerful tool, because whether you're trying to learn where your money's going, or you're trying to invest in a property, there is the mindset part of it, right? And the difference between you that thinks you can do it versus you that thinks you cannot can literally be your mindset.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: That's so, so powerful. I know. because a lot of physician influencers, yourself, me, we're doing these and, a lot of times we're doing it to get awareness out and word out. And then here comes a book or a course, or coaching, and then all of a sudden now, the physicians, they're “Oh, you're charging too much, or you're not supposed to ask for that,” it's sort of like looked down and frowned upon, to, charge your, what you're worth in your services. So I know exactly what you're talking about, guilt and shame. And so yeah, that's great. So you do a lot of money, mindsets, and let's transition to real estate, because I know a lot of my audience is interested, what got you interested in real estate? And, how have you used that to achieve financial freedom?
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: So it really is interesting, when I was growing up, my dad actually did real estate, this is back in Nigeria. But we were never involved in it. We never knew much about it. It was just something that he kind of did, but not much conversation was had about it, we had no idea. And I never considered myself someone that would be interested in real estate, it was too complicated. It was too chaotic. And I had that mind block that a lot of people say, which is, “I don't want to be called at two o'clock in the morning to fix a leaking sink.” I mean, I've never been called at two o'clock. But that was my thought of our real estate. And then a couple years ago, about three years ago, we started looking at our finances, and the fact that we wanted to diversify our finances. We were doing stocks and index funds and those sorts of things. But we're like, you know what, real estate would be interesting to learn as a way of not just growing our wealth in terms of cash flow, but also in terms of decreasing our tax liability. That's about a year and a half or two years ago now. And, we went from, hmm this is interesting, this is curious to this is really interesting. And the thing is this, what I found is there's always going to be reasons why you may not think you can achieve what you want to achieve. And I think I’m great as a money coach, because I was filled with all those blocks to the maximum. So there's literally no excuse you can give me that I maybe have never had before, personally, but we had to work through all those mind blocks and throughout the financial part, like how to get money. we had student loans, we had just paid off our student loans, how to create finances in order to be able to fund this real estate empire that we wanted to build. So that's how we started. And our goal was to invest in California primarily, but we found out that cash flow was a little harder to do in California. So now we do have properties here in California, and also in Washington State.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: Oh, nice. Yeah. And what have you found along your journey in terms of this but Look at the advantages that real estate has had for your portfolio either in terms of taxes or, more control over your time and passive income.
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: Absolutely. So I'm sure your audience probably knows by now. But when it comes to real estate, there are different ways of doing it. You can be very, very active, you can be very, very passive, right? And for us, we initially did the extremely passive, which was doing ReiTs, that's where we kind of started from, but of course, that did not give us some of the values or the advantages that we wanted. So when it comes to wealth building, for us, the important thing is one money coming in, but also a decrease in money going out. And when I say money going out, I would, I would rephrase that and call it more of, having control of what the money going out is used for. So for my husband and I, giving is a huge part of our core, we truly, truly believe in giving. We believe that the more you give, whether that's investment or as a gift to people, the more you will receive, enjoy, and intangibles and intangibles. So we're not against paying taxes or giving money out. However, we believe in having more control over it.
And we live in California. So we pay a ton of taxes. For us, the ideal real estate had to combine the money coming in, as well as decreasing our tax liability. So we did the real estate professional status tax strategy through my husband, he was a real estate investor, that was last year, and we were able to shelter some money through our taxes in that way. And this year, we're actually actively looking at and will be investing in short term rentals. So we've already locked up a property. So depending on when this airs, we probably would be owners already. But that's going to be our strategy for tax purposes for 2021.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: You touched on control, which is very powerful. Nothing against taxes, but the Fed can print money at their whim. So we as professionals are working hard for our money. So we want to make sure that you know that those taxes are well spent, it's okay to pay your taxes. But you want to make sure that you have some control over it. So, yeah. Then it's wonderful to see your evolution from, long term in the short term rentals, getting reps for tax advantage. So, what's next on the horizon?
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: So that's a great question. And a lot of people start with the very passive. I think we, like a lot of things, tend to jump into cold water by just doing the harder stuff on my platform. I started with blogging. And now I'm doing podcasting, which is easier. And with our real estate investment, we started very actively, now we're going to be doing short term rentals this year. At this point in our financial journey. Ultimately you have to decide what your goal is. Our goal last year was different from our goal for this year. And our goal for next year. Now as we're growing pot of wealth for us is not just the money, but also being able to enjoy the quality of life. So short term rentals fits in that, in terms of being able to buy properties that you can use for short term rentals, but also enjoy for a certain amount of time of the year. So I like that strategy. It's aligned with my money principles, as well as enjoying the quality of life principles. So next year, we're probably going to be doing syndications and short term rentals. And I'm smiling because I'm thinking of participating, like a limited partner or something in city [?], but even my past and my history have shown anything, I would not be surprised if we end up being the ones funding, to organize them at some point.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: Your journey speaks so much of growth. What are some resources, like books or courses or things that helped you along your journey?
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: So I have read a bunch of books, and I think for every book that I read, I probably get like 10%. And so my brain in one is a combination of resources that I've gathered throughout, whatever I can't even tell you what sources they are. But a classic is, Rich Dad, Poor Dad is a classic, Think and Grow Rich is a classic. For me, having access to coaching is huge. And I say that from a financial perspective, but also from a wealthy life and wellness perspective. And I invest a lot in personal development in that way and it's given me a lot back in terms of wellness and also in terms of my wealth growth. So I created a coach for a lot of things. and I know you kind of mentioned the last couple of months. We've had stuff going on, we had a loss in the family, that was someone, my dad, and for me just the access to tools like grief counseling and those things. And I know we don't talk enough about that when it comes to financial freedom. But that is just all part of wealth building is your emotional wellness. If you're not well, you're going to overspend, you're not going to invest well, you're not going to enjoy life fully. So if you're listening to this, I definitely recommend and encourage you to make sure you invest in your wellness. And the more you invest in that the more your net worth is going to grow. I can tell you that for sure.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: Yeah, that's, that's so you dropped so many positive gems. So if people were interested in contacting you, to talk more about you or to learn more about you? How would they do that?
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: They can check out my podcast where I talk. My audience is a lot of women physicians, but I will tell you that some of my loudest fans are actually men, some of them are physicians, but so wherever you are, feel free to go check out my past podcast. It's the The MoneyFitMD Podcast, where I talk about money mindset, and all the things that you really need to create a rich life. You can also find me on Instagram or on Facebook, MoneyFitMD and of course on my website as well, which is www.MoneyFitMD.com.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: And all the for the listeners all of Dr. Latifat resources will be included in the show notes. So what's your final parting words for the audience?
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: My parting word is, see, if you’re listening to this, it gives me a lot of joy because that means that as a physician, you're talking about financial freedom. And not only the number sense of the way, which is absolutely important, but also in all the things that Dr. Loo talks about some of the emotional wellness and also the time and location flexibility. And I believe that medicine is going through a change. That's been a long time coming. And physicians that are well, physicians that are financially free, are going to be the tools in creating the future of medicine that we all want. Because I totally believe that when physicians win, patients win, our communities win. You’re listening to this, I'm glad you are and I'm rooting for you.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: That's awesome. We're taking back medicine, one podcast, one influencer at a time.
Dr. Latifat Akintade, MD: Amen. Amen.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: All right. Well, thanks so much. And we'll look forward to having you as a future guest on future episodes.
Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD: Many thanks again for being here. If you’re new, you can find me online at Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD, where I have links to other episodes or links to online resources that will support you on your financial literacy journey. I’ll see you there in on next week’s show. While I bring you thoroughly vetted information on this show regarding a variety of financial topics, I cannot promise you a one size fits all solution. This is why I caution you to continue to learn. Educate yourself and seek professional advice unique to your situation. If you want to talk to me, I welcome it. Please reach out via my website or email at Chris@drchrisloomdphd.com. I read and personally respond to all of my emails. Talk soon!
Editor's note: This transcript has been edited for brevity and clarity.