Chris Ashenden: Action is my Drug of Choice – Part 2

By January 2003 I had listened to every one of JB’s tape sets and taking all of my various lunch mentor’s advice to heart I trudged off and met each of the advisors they suggested. When I had completed this, I phoned an individual who was playing aggressively in the market at the time and met him for lunch. This was great for me as it reaffirmed to me that my passion was in the game of RE and finance. In meeting this individual it also gave me a living example of what I had long considered to be a key to success. Dream VERY BIG, start small, break it into small steps and try and SYSTEMITIZE the whole thing so that it can grow itself. It also got me severely amped to get back into the game.

-NOTE: This individual turned out to be a fraud and a clown but I learnt a bunch –

Three weeks later other circumstances resulted in me and my girlfriend deciding to can our attempted business venture. While we were heavily out of pocket to the tune of $38,000 I was relieved and decided that it was past time to get back into my game.

It was now February 2003 and three months earlier I had successfully refinanced all of my Invercargill Properties, paying back all my credit cards. I decided to take stock of my situation and bought out my mother’s 10 percent stake in my little business. To do this, I paid her back her original $3000, plus a little over $15,000, which was her equity value of 10% at the time. Suffice to say, she was reasonably happy with her investment.

If you will recall less than one year previously I was over $60,000 in debt.

Looking at it, I had gone from minus $62,000 in debt, to eight houses, a net worth of over $120,000 (180K turn around) and by helping someone else make some money, now had access to some hard investor money. I decided it was time to start playing the game properly.

Total over being a policeman and deciding to own the South Auckland market I started looking for agents and kicked it up a new gear from the beginning of March 2003. I took all of my annual leave and I made about 350 WRITTEN offers in that month, of which I think only about 150 were presented as I wanted them to be. By the time I got my act together and started to figure out what I needed half of March was gone. It didn’t matter too much as in the next week I had eight offers accepted. These ranged from 67-80% of RV, all in the Auckland region, in a rising market. So basically while my strategy has changed over time the deals were and continue to be out there.

I got finance for all eight but three were sold out from under me by a vendor while on contract, one after we had gone unconditional. This was a lesson in itself but I won’t relate it now. Suffice to say neither I nor the RE company who had the sole agency with them, will deal with the vendors again.

I settled on the other five houses at the end of the month of March. My target was ten on contract so I was a little disappointed, but not too badly.

Having used up all my annual leave I quit the police to pursue property full time on the 2nd of April 2003. Three days later, I attended Keith Cunningham’s Business School for Entrepreneurs (then called the Keith Cunningham Mentoring Program). Without a doubt, this program is the best thing I have done – it completely changed my life and I am eternally grateful for attending. I also sometimes shudder and wonder “what would have been” if I had not attended. If you seriously want to achieve spectacular things in your life, then you owe it to yourself to go. Here is the first email I sent my Keith group, the first weekend after session one on this course:

“One week ago I was reborn.

The catalyst – a weekend in a room full of loving, inspiring and supportive people, and an hour in the cauldron with Keith J Cunningham.

Wow! What a feeling. Thank you Group Six. Thank you Keith Cunningham. And thank you Sandi Cunningham and Rita Davis.

I have been wandering around the last week, completely satisfied in just getting to know myself again.

What a feeling!

I love this feeling. So I decided to share it. By midday Monday I had persuaded my older sister Liana that Keith’s program was something that she needed to do. She had spent the weekend watching the light in Mae and my eyes grow and grow. I took care of the costs and Keith and Rita squeezed her in for Sydney Group 7.

Wow! Thank you Keith and Rita for your generosity of spirit and support in this.

I spoke to Liana today and WOW WOW WOW! I have already got my money’s worth from paying for three people to attend this program. BEST money I have ever spent.

I spent half an hour crying in happiness with my big ‘sis. She is a different person. What a feeling!

Thank you Keith Cunningham! And thank you Group Six!

My thanks and love to you all,


And here is my second email, around the same time:

“My only formal goal for the 120 days that Keith gave me is to write a list of 50 ‘Things I could have done’ for a failed business venture in the past, with no blame, no justification.

I will do this by May 10th, two days after I get home from boot camp.

For support I want to receive everyone’s progress emails. I will tell you where I am at every week. I will also ask for specific support when I can see I need it. If you can see I need it, then please give it!

Adding a goal of my own, I guess my 120 day plan of ACTION comes down to three things:

1) Be me
2) List of 50 things I was responsible for in this failure, no laying blame or justifying.
3) Make a million dollars

See you next week.

Chris Ashenden”

Some people seriously don’t like wishy washy stuff like I just posted in those emails. They want hard numbers and real info. Some tangible goodies. They want to know the financial power of that course, and what they really want to know is “Did I make a million dollars in 120 days after sending this email?”

The answer: No, I did not. It took me a further three and a half months to do it.

Read Part 1 of Chris’s story here …

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