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WS380: Becoming Financially Free with Tim Rhode

On today’s episode, we are joined by Tim Rhode, to discuss his take on being financially free. Despite a slow start in life and bleak prospects, Tim managed to retire financially free at the age of 40. It was not about getting rich quick. He put in the hard work and did things that others were often not willing to do in order to get to where he needed to be.

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The skills he learned from working in the business sector have served him well in helping others reach their own financial freedom, freeing them up to spend time on things they love. Tim shares with us his strong beliefs about the power of the collective. He believes that by surrounding yourself with others who are in the position you hope to one day be in, you will get there too. Tim offers plenty of other fresh insights into how to be financially free. To learn more, join us today!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Some of Tim’s background and how he turned his life around in 15 years.
  • An explanation of Tim’s six levels of finance.
  • The biggest struggles of moving from the early to late levels of financial freedom.
  • What the ABCs of finance means.
  • Some advice on how to find a tribe to surround yourselves with
  • Our only real limits are our negative beliefs.
  • Some of the struggles that tribe newcomers face being around older high achievers.
  • You have to be willing to do the work that others will not do to get to where you want to be.
  • Insights into the work that 1Life Fully Lived does.
  • How to become part of Gobundance.
  • Delegation and strategic relationships are some of the keys to continued success.

[bctt tweet=”Don’t mindlessly keep up with the Joneses buying crap you don’t need. — Tim Rhode” username=”whitney_sewell”]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Tim Rhode on LinkedIn


Gobundance Women

Tribe of Millionaires

Tribe of Millionaires on Amazon

1Life Fully Lived

1Life Roadmap Journal on Amazon

Matt Aitchison

Sam Wegert

Christopher Lochhead

Will Little

About Tim Rhode

Tim Rhode comes from a very humble background, growing up in a blue-collar family in a rural blue-collar Northern California town. His family’s tight financial situation left an indelible mark on Tim, and although he barely graduated high school and never attended college, Tim went on to dream, plan, and create his own “magnificent life” and retired financially free at the age of 40. Having gotten off to a very slow start in life and working hard to build success inspired Tim to help others find their own paths. Tim is one of the Founders of Gobundance, and also the Founder/ CEO and visionary behind 1Life Fully Lived; a non-profit organization he started in 2011. He is totally committed to helping people of all ages plan their best future; including helping transform the “life education” of young people. Tim can be found daily either out “Getting the goods” or chilling locally with family and friends, or he’s busy helping humanity find their most fulfilling lives Tim’s passions include his family, skiing, hiking, and mountain biking.

Full Transcript


[00:00:00] ANNOUNCER: Welcome to The Real Estate Syndication Show. Whether you are a seasoned investor or building a new real estate business, this is the show for you. Whitney Sewell talks to top experts in the business. Our goal is to help you master real estate syndication.

And now your host, Whitney Sewell.


[00:00:24] WS: This is your daily Real Estate Syndication Show. I’m your host, Whitney Sewell. Today, our guest is Tim Rhode. Thanks for being on the show, Tim.   

[00:00:32]: TR: Hey! It’s my pleasure, Whitney. I look forward to hopefully adding value to your listeners.

[00:00:36] WS: I know you will, Tim. I have no doubt, Tim. If you’ve heard of Tim before, you’ve probably heard that he’s a co-founder of Gobundance. He’s also the author of Tribe of Millionaires and founder of nonprofit 1Life Fully Lived. He co-founded Gobundance in an effort to build a quality peer group of other successful men who could hold one another accountable to their own high standards, who choose to live life at the peak.

Since its official founding in 2013, the Gobundance tribe has grown to nearly 250 members who connect at seasonal tribe gatherings and annual international bucket list trips. And one other thing about Tim, he just told me he retired at the age of 40 and has been enjoying that retirement and because of these great decisions he’s made for the last 20 years. So, congratulations you, Tim, for being able to accomplish that. And today, I want you to go into a little bit about who you are in case a listener hasn’t heard of you. Then we’re going to get into these six levels of financial freedom that you and I were discussing.

[00:01:38] TR: Cool. Well, if I could do a quick introduction, I was the kid voted least likely to succeed in their class and probably got off of the worse start than most of you. I barely graduated high school. I never went to college. And at 25, I’m a part-time grocery clerk not getting enough hours at the grocery store. So, I’m literally going door-to-door selling, painting your address on the curve flop. Ed Kouneski came behind with the stencils and did the work.

So, then I found my niche selling real estate, and I was really good, and I cared about coming through and giving great service. And I did something else that we’re going to talk about today. I lived well beneath my means. I played ironclad defense. I learned all I could about investing. I made a lot of right moves from 25 to 40. Literally, as Robert Kiyosaki talks about turning your cash flow [inaudible 00:02:34] over at 40, I chose to say, “I don’t want to list and sell another home. I don’t want to work hard in investing. I just want to get the goods in the woods and enjoy my family and move up to the mountains and just start this whole new adventure, whole new incarnation, if you will.”

[00:02:50] WS: What I love about that is not like you didn’t just like sit back and just lay at the beach every day, all day. Maybe you did that a little bit, but you had bigger plans. I mean, you did that, and it’s allowed you to free up so much time to start this nonprofit that I hope we’ll hear a little bit about. It’s allowed you to begin or be the founder of Gobundance and help so many people get to the same level, and it’s just incredible the freedom it’s allowed you. But through that freedom, it’s allowed you to have that impact on so many other people as well. So, I’d – Go ahead.

[00:03:24] TR: Well, what I’d like to think is when I quit working and started living, that’s when my life really took off. I made a bold choice. It wasn’t like I had a ton of money coming in. I want to challenge some of you, syndicators, some of you that are doing really well. Maybe you were 10, 20, 30, 50, 100 million, and you’re still chasing more, especially 50, 100, 200. I challenge you to – I’m kind of stopping you kindly upside the head and saying, “Just check yourself. Are you sure you’re living a fulfilling life?” And maybe that really turned you on, man.

A good friend of mine, my accountant, says he wants to work till he’s 70 years old, helping people with their businesses. That’s wonderful, if you love it. For me, I was done and just didn’t want to do it again and wanted new adventures, new incarnations, a way to take all these tools I had learn on how to run businesses and how to work with people and just start whole new ventures with other teams. Now, 1Life and Gobundance have both evolved slowly, organically, and to just these amazing ecosystems of excellence.

[00:04:37] WS: That’s awesome, Tim. Tell us though – I’d love to go through those, like the six levels of financial freedom you and I talked about, and maybe we dive in a little bit to those.

[00:04:45] TR: Sure. I’ve asked who your listeners were. You said a lot of them are either starting to do syndications, want to do syndications, or are doing them. I said, “Well, this is what I see. There’s like six levels of people knowing their finances.” Level one is where most people are. They have no clue. They’re a paycheck away. We know them. They’re all around us unfortunately. Some are at level two. They own their house. They maybe started a retirement. They just got over a few of the things on the way.

Level three, they own a few rentals. They understand the game. They are working towards becoming in Gobundance what we call a 100%er, when you’re financially passive income, financially free. And then level four is where a lot of you are that maybe you could retire. You’re doing a few syndicates. You’re well in the trenches, and you’ve got a good game going, just getting on that financial freedom piece. Level five is your ship has come in. You’re financially free. You get to wake up every day and choose what you want to do.

And for me, I spend about no more than 5% of my working time just moving money I want and looking at packages, and all I do is waterski and people like [inaudible 00:05:58]. I find good, talented people. I want to touch on that [inaudible 00:06:03], Whitney. But I find good, talented people that know what they’re doing and let them do all the work and then just go out and get the goods and enjoy them, because that’s what works for me.

Then level six is when you’d have like a blind trust, and you just put all your money into that, and you wouldn’t even spend that 5 to 10 hours. You just have somebody you better trust really well that’s just managing that and giving you [inaudible 00:06:28]. So, that’s my six levels of financial freedom.

[00:06:32] WS: Wow. Well, help us to walk through some of them. I know that a lot of people are listening and thinking, ” Wait a minute. Maybe I am just a paycheck away or maybe they do have a few rentals.” They are in the first one or two stages of that. But it’s so much of a mindset shift. What are some of the most common struggles you see there in helping us to get to know from those first one or two levels to own up to level six?

[00:06:52] TR: Well, that’s when you get into the ABC’s of finances. A, offense. How can I earn more? B, defense. How can I live within my means? C, how can I learn how to hopefully not get rid of debt but how to invest wisely? So, I put rocket fuel to the whole plan. So, A is offense, B is defense, C is invest wisely. So, look at each piece of those. How can I earn more? Can I get some sort of a new certificate or can I get a side hustle? If I’m already flipping homes, can I bring on a partner that might do a lot of the marketing?

Remember I said that Ed Kouneski did the stencils. Find your Ed Kouneski who can do the pieces where you’re weak. And maybe you’re good at sales or maybe you’re good at marketing and you need that sales person. Just looking at how you can play your game better and that’s what I did. I got into real estate and started listing and selling them and making some money. I got that ball juggling, “Oh, let’s buy some rentals [inaudible 00:07:57].” But I’m juggling but, “Oh, let’s flip some homes. Oh, let’s do some exchanges.” Just kept learning more, growing.

And by the way, all of this happened over 15, 20, 25 years. It’s get rich slow. When you see somebody with all of the bling and Rolls-Royces and jets, run. That ain’t it. It’s the wealthy barber. It’s the millionaire next door. I’m not saying to have a frugal, scarcity mindset. I’m saying, and believe me, I believe in 1Life Fully Lived. But I’m saying don’t mindlessly keep up with the Joneses buying crap you don’t need.

[00:08:34] WS: That’s hard to do sometimes, isn’t it?

[00:08:36] TR: Yeah.

[00:08:36] WS: It is. I know you – Personally, I’ve seen so many who get caught up in that.

[00:08:40] TR: It’s so hard that, but it is the difference. Whitney, let me just be honest with your listeners. I’ve met thousands, tens of thousands of investors and realtors and business people, and I’ve met less than a thousand who are financially free. Think about that. Everybody wants it, but few get it. I will give a plug for our book right now. How do you get that? You hang around people, by the millionaires, who are already on their way and well on their way and know all these concepts and are just an ecosystem where this is the norm.

[00:09:15] WS: So, I’d love to talk about that a little bit. Obviously, you’re the founder of Gobundance. It’s just an amazing tribe of men who have done this. Tell me about how that changes somebody when they’re able to be a part of a group like this. Because it’s exactly what you just said, like surrounding yourself with people that are already there that are way ahead of you. Tell us about just how that works and how you see that happen with people. Maybe they can’t be part of Gobundance, but we can find groups of other professionals who are way ahead of us.

[00:09:46] TR: Totally, yeah. If it’s not Gobundance, find your tribe. But listen to these six events, effects, the influence effect, the multiplier effect, the accountability effect, the authenticity effect, the purpose effect, and the connection effect. Think of the layers of that almost like a spider web and think of getting around people that understand life, if you will, the depth of life. Success is making a lot of money. Fulfillment is knowing what to do with that money to build you a lifetime of wealth and building a rich full life worthy of it. That’s what we’re all about is creating fulfilling lives which is successful with that.

[00:10:31] WS: What about being able to be a part of a group like that? Could you talk on just like finding our tribe, finding that group that we should be a part of? How do we know one from another? Or what distinguishes one from another personally?

[00:10:47] TR: By the way, if you go to, there’s like a audit on those six layers of effects, six effect. There’s also what we call our one sheet. It’s like your baseball score card of where you are with all of these [inaudible 00:11:02]. So, check that out at and either get the book there or at Amazon.

But you know what I’d like to do is just kind of give you three examples of young guys all in their 20s that came into our tribes as lone wolves, kicking butt in their own way. But then got around our tribe and their lives just took off exponentially. I’ll just drop their names. You may know them. Matt Aitchison, Diego Corso, and Sam Wegert. I don’t think that any of them are 30 yet. They’re all 100%ers, financially free. They all own multiple businesses with multiple teams working under them, and the best thing about them is they’re just the nicest freaking guys you’ll ever meet. Their art and their depth and their –

Diego is a Dreamer that dream. His parents came here from Peru when he was a kid, and he couldn’t get a driver’s license, and he bought like six houses before he could drive. This is a true story. Is this a great country or what? I mean, his parents brought him here, and he just took advantage of the opportunity. I don’t want to get into any kind of thing, but I love anybody of anywhere who gets off their butt and does something.

[00:12:23] WS: That’s a great example right there of having nothing, coming with nothing, and not even having a license, but making it happen.

[00:12:31] TR: Think about how all of our limiting beliefs, I can’t because. One of our sayings at 1Life Fully Lived is, “Who says? Who says?” Let’s go back to what I talked about before. Who says that you have to live one incarnation your whole life? That’s another thing about Gobundance is there’s a lot of us who are – They built well. They built these magnificent lives, and then they look up and go, “Wow! I don’t want to be like Robin Williams or Anthony Bourdain. I want depth. I want more.” These are the things. We have conversations. We have real conversations about them, things that matter.

[00:13:10] WS: What’s a struggle that happens when people get around people like that that are so far ahead of them? Or is there something that like these new guys, those younger guys struggled with as they get into a tribe like that and are able to start propelling themselves to a much higher level?

[00:13:27] TR: I’ll tell you a really good legitimate struggle, Whitney, is trying to, how can I put this, run from first base to third base without getting to the second base. I’m talking to all of you new, wannabe syndicators out there. You should make darn sure you never lose an investor money. That should be the first thing on your mind is no investor loses money on my watch. If you’re not absolutely diligently looking these deals over and having somebody that knows what they’re doing really looking through or had a weird time in the cycle.

My buddy, Andrew Cushman, who has the – We have the syndicate depth, I wish he’d buy so much more property than he would than he does.  But he always says, “You want me to find great deals or do you want me to find good deals?” As you know, good deals are only fair deals because something comes up now. Great deals, in a lot of times, only turn out to be good deals. Exceptional deals, a lot of times, they only turn out to be great deals. So, things are always take a little harder. So, pay your dues. Do your homework. Be willing to roll up your sleeves and do the hard work.

Whitney, do you remember. You maybe too young. But when I was a kid, we had these balsa wood airplanes. You put them with a rubber band propeller [inaudible 00:14:47].

[00:14:47] WS: I do. I had one.

[00:14:49] TR: So, if you remember, if you wound it up and you wound it like three times, they go about three feet and just fall. If you wound it pretty good, it can go across the room. But if you wound it a few times more and a few times more and then one more time, it soared. That’s what I’m talking about is being willing to do the extra things that others want to get the things you say you want. If you want the goods, you got to do the ships. You got a lot of [inaudible 00:15:17].

[00:15:18] WS: No doubt about it. You do. You have to be willing to do what other people will not do or not willing to do. I love that analogy as well. Tell me a little about 1Life. What is that?

[00:15:29] TR: So Gobundance is healthy, wealthy, generous people who choose to lead epic lives. We’ve evolved I’d say to living the best lives we possibly can. My good friend, Christopher Lochhead, one of the – Gosh! I don’t know if you know his podcast. He’s amazing with the Follow Your Different podcast. His line is when you get to the top of the mountain, throw the rope down for the next guy. That’s what – Gobundance’s way of throwing the rope down is a charity we started called 1Life Fully Lived. It’s at, and what we do is we help people who are on their way and well on their way, master these, our four core teaching areas of vision planning, relationships, finances, and wellness, so you can create an amazing life.

And then the money we raise through coaching and – We’re going to do six events next year. The money we raise from those pays for us to go into the inner cities and rural areas and help high school kids and young kids 18 to 24 just leaving the nest, think about – Think if you were 16 years old and there was an assembly teaching you about find this fulfillment triangle, where does my passions meet my talents, where there’s opportunity. How can I create the most fulfilling life and then how am I going to do it? What’s my plan? Who’s going to help me? How am I going to fund it, and how am I going to be healthy enough to pull it off? To give all these kids kind of like a playbook, like the inner coding they need to create their best lives.

You can tell I’m really proud of what we’ve created, Whitney, and we’re changing lives. Gobundance is doing a trip. We’re going to be 1Lifing high school kids in Chile and Argentina. I’m talking to a group in Philly tonight that has – My good friend, Will Little, has this Poetry Nmotion group. Anyway, doing a lot of different, just learning about how to best serve those we want to serve. And it’s growing. It’s just evolved into something beautiful and worth it. 

[00:17:40] WS: I just think it’s incredible though to see that like we were talking about earlier and because of the great investment decisions that you made years ago that allowed you to do this.

[00:17:50] TR: Yeah.

[00:17:50] WS: That’s great. I mean, it motivates me too, and I hope it does the listeners to really think about how we’re investing our money or we – Those things that you listed out. So, we can earn more, and we can live within our means and invest wisely, and are we doing those things? I know the listeners are wondering. How do you become part of Gobundance or a tribe like that?

[00:18:09] TR: You can apply at, and you’re also welcome to check out our offerings at So, yeah. Those are the two ways. We do have some prerequisites with the Gobundance tribe. A lot of you may qualify, so please do. We’re looking to grow the tribe with the amazing people like I talked about Matt Aitchison and Diego Corso and Sam Wegert. Boy, I kind of told a hundred other stories of just guys we’ve all helped each other, sharpen each other’s saws.

By the way, if you’re a lady listening to this, go to, because we just started that tribe. Thanks to popular demand, we started a tribe for women this year, and that’s just taken off, because it’s already got the nucleus. Everybody already knows the tribe, and they were screaming for it. So, there’s a hard charging group of ladies that’s just like taken this and running with it. We love it.

[00:19:09] WS: That’s neat. That’s awesome. I had a few questions though before we run out of time, Tim, and I try to ask most guests these questions. What’s a way that you have improved your business or maybe you relate this to Gobundance or your nonprofit, either one? But a way that you’ve improved that we can all apply to our business. 

[00:19:24] TR: I would say the single best gift that I could pass on to you is the gift that – My motto was, “I suck,” and what I meant was there are few things I’m really good at, and I just want to do those all day. So, when I had my real estate business and Gobundance and 1Life, I do it the first time to learn how to do it. Then I find others that are really capable. I find talented people, and I take great care of them. So, it’s all about delegation. It’s all about finding strategic relationships, and that goes back to the tribe thing.

A lot of you are lone wolves, and you don’t trust. I’m here to say if it weren’t for relationships, my life would have nowhere near the depth. But I’m a part of four amazing teams, my family unit, Gobundance, 1Life Fully Lived, and another local nonprofit. I’m working on called [inaudible 00:20:14].

[00:20:16] WS: Well, tell the listeners, Tim, how they can get in touch with you and learn about you and Gobundance and all these things that you’re doing and your book.

[00:20:23] TR: Sure. So please go to and get our book or get it on Amazon, and it’s also available on Kindle. If you have kids just getting out in the world, please also check out our 1Life Roadmap Journal. It teaches those four core things I was talking about. Or if some of you are early on your journey, I suggest you buy that journal and really dial-in vision planning, relationships, finances, and wellness. It’s the basics. You guys got to master the basics. So, you got a first, second, third, and fourth.

So, you can reach me at I always answer emails and would love to get on – I’d love to help people crush your life, so you can help us.

[00:21:04] WS: That’s a wrap, Tim. Thank you so much.

[00:21:07] TR: Yeah. Pleasure.


[00:21:08] WS: Don’t go yet. Thank you for listening to today’s episode. I would love it if you would go to iTunes right now and leave a rating and written review. I want to hear your feedback. It makes a big difference in getting the podcast out there. You can also go to the Real Estate Syndication Show on Facebook, so you can connect with me and we can also receive feedback and your questions there that you want me to answer on the show. Subscribe too, so you can get the latest episodes. Lastly, I want to keep you updated. So, head over to and sign up for the newsletter. If you’re interested in partnering with me, sign up on the contact us page, so you can talk to me directly. Have a blessed day, and I will talk to you tomorrow.


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