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The Landlording Show Episode 11: The Monopoly Strategy

Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of The Landlording Show, where you learn how to run and manage your investment properties efficiently. I'm your host, Tim Harstead, and we're here to cover everything from maintenance issues to financial strategies that will help optimize your real estate investments.

Today’s Focus: Growing Your Portfolio with the Monopoly Strategy

Today, I want to dive into a growth strategy I refer to as the "Monopoly strategy." Over the past five years, many investors have leaned heavily on the BRRRR strategy—buy, rehab, rent, refinance, and repeat. This was especially effective when interest rates were low and banks were eager to lend. However, with the current high interest rates, this strategy has become more challenging as banks are now tightening their lending criteria.

The Monopoly Strategy Explained

The Monopoly strategy involves a series of property acquisitions and upgrades, much like the board game. Here’s how it works:

  1. Start Small: Begin with manageable investments like single-family homes or duplexes. The key is to save for substantial down payments and acquire properties that you can manage financially.
  2. Build Equity and Sell to Consolidate: As you acquire more properties, focus on building equity. Eventually, sell these smaller properties to purchase larger ones, such as a five-unit building. This is akin to trading four houses for a hotel in Monopoly.
  3. Leverage Commercial Loans: Once you move into properties with more than five units, you can tap into commercial loans, which are based on property performance rather than your personal financial situation.

Advantages of Larger Properties

  • Easier Loan Approval: Commercial loans are often easier to manage because they are based on the investment's cash flow rather than your personal income.
  • Economies of Scale: Managing larger properties allows you to streamline operations and reduce per-unit costs for maintenance and renovations.
  • Increased Cash Flow: By consolidating properties, you improve operational efficiency and potentially increase rental income.

Strategic Financial Management

  • Refinancing: Keep an eye on interest rates. Refinancing at a lower rate can significantly decrease your mortgage payments and increase cash flow.
  • Eliminating PMI: As you build equity, work towards eliminating Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) which can save you a significant amount monthly.


  • Save Rigorously: The initial phase of the Monopoly strategy requires diligent saving to accumulate down payments for initial property purchases.
  • Plan for the Long Term: Think of real estate investment as a long-term game. It's about gradual growth and scaling rather than quick wins.


Remember, growing a real estate portfolio effectively requires patience, strategic financial planning, and a willingness to adapt to changing market conditions. Whether you're dealing with high interest rates or navigating new lending landscapes, the goal is to make informed decisions that align with your long-term investment objectives.

Stay Connected

Thank you for tuning into today’s episode about growing your portfolio using the Monopoly strategy. If you found this information helpful, please subscribe to our podcast on platforms like Spotify or Apple Podcasts. Join us next time as we continue to explore effective strategies for managing and expanding your real estate investments.

If you have any questions or need advice on specific scenarios, feel free to reach out through our social media platforms. We’re here to help you navigate the complexities of property management and investment.