Garth's experience. Your advantage.

Disclosure: Garth Chapman is a licensed Mortgage Advisor with Jencor Mortgage Corporation in Calgary Alberta. Garth Chapman is not a Financial Planner.  Roadmap should not be considered as a substitute for what a licensed Financial Planner provides.  The information contained in this website should not be construed as personalized investment, financial planning, or tax advice.

RoadMap to Financial Freedom

What do I mean by Financial Independence?
By Financial Independence I mean that you are living where you want and doing what you want without a need to trade time for income (work) beyond any work that you truly want to do by choice.  And I really have to say early on that achieving Financial Independence is not a get rich quick scheme.  It takes a firm commitment to the time and effort and focus that is required over a sustained period.  The good news is that it is quite achievable for just about anyone with the self-discipline required to achieve any worthwhile life goal.  In our quest for Financial Independence my wife and I created challenging but realistic and achievable goals and a timeline within which to achieve them.  And we are now living a financially independent life, and I am one of those who choose to continue to do work, in my case by helping others to set a path to their own Financial Independence with Garth’s Roadmap to Financial Independence and also of course by providing mortgages in my capacity as a Mortgage Broker.  You don’t have to be a genius to do this, nor wealthy, nor highly educated.  I am proof of that, as I was none of those things in 2002 when we embarked on this journey.  And that if nothing else, demonstrates that we all have the capacity to control our own destiny. 

Some Background
In 1996, after 25 years of very hard work in two careers with the benefit of the guidance of 3 mentors, I sold out of the business I was in and made my big move.  And within 18 months, at a point when we were ‘that close’ to reaching our financial independence, the bank put the company into receivership, and just like that, all the capital we had was gone. We still had some RRSP savings and a home with a LOC on it. So after a period of depression and then a couple of years working for two firms, I started my 3rd career in 2002 by making a (scary to us) move into owning, developing and operating investment real estate, something I always wanted to do but knew nothing about. 

There are many ways to invest in real estate, from active to arm-chair and everything in between.  And we did them all.  We purchased 90 residential properties in 6 years, renovating most of them.  Our strategy was to operate on a 2 to 1 ratio - so we flipped 60 properties and kept 30 as long-term rentals.  During that time we also purchased 7 apartment buildings, with partners, which we then renovated substantially, converted to condos and then sold the individual units.  In 2004 my wife joined the effort full-time and by 2007) we had reached our goals, and that was because we worked at it full-time plus, and because we were lucky enough to be investing during boom times in Alberta.  Normally I would say this would take 15 years at minimum, and often more like 20-25 years, assuming one approached it as a part-time endeavour, meaning that it would swallow up about as much time as people spend on an active hobby.

My Work with Investors Over the Years
Since my start in real estate back in 2002 I have worked with literally hundreds of property investors in as many roles as you could imagine.  I have partnered with, coached, advised, loaned money to, and provided mortgages for in my capacity as Mortgage Broker.  I have crafted work-out plans for investors who were about to hit the wall, which sometimes meant connecting them with experts in various fields to address specific needs.  In doing all this I learned that investors often bought the properties that did not serve their interests because they didn’t truly understand how to analyze the financial potential of properties, and also that most did not have the business training needed to properly manage their cash-flow.  So with those lessons in mind I co-wrote the REMA Real Estate software suite during 2007-2008 to assist investors with analysis of prospective purchases, cash-flow projections and management of their existing properties.  Then in 2009 I became a Mortgage Broker specializing in property investors’ needs.  That move allowed me to continue my work with investors and actually be paid by the banks for my efforts, which made it a win-win. 

Since 2002 I have provided Consulting Services for Investors and Small Business Owners primarily around business and real estate analysis, budgeting, projecting and planning.  For example, I developed a sophisticated financial analysis process for investment property portfolios that allows me to then walk investors through what my analysis reveals to find opportunities to improve the performance of their portfolios, and to make those decisions within the context of their long-term life plans.  I am always open to a conversation to see if there is a way I can make a meaningful contribution to the performance or direction of your business or real estate investments. 

Why do People Buy Rental Properties?
I can safely say that nearly all the investors I know of buy rental properties because they have decided that will be their path to providing at least some degree of financial independence.  But in working with investors as I described above, I learned that very few of them actually had a clearly defined set of objectives, and that even fewer knew how much income they needed those properties to generate to create that FIL, or how many properties and of what type it would take to generate the required income.  So I took to asking investors how much income they needed at their point of financial freedom, and nearly every single one answered with exactly the same figure - $10,000 per month!  So I decided that I had to create a process to address this gap so that investors could define clearly the financial elements of both their goals around financial independence and of the strategies they would use to achieve those goals.  And that brings me to Garth’s Roadmap to Financial Independence.  So let’s take a look at a summary of how my process will allow you to clearly define the following, with each section unfolding in a clear and simple step-by-step process.


  • Defining the when and the basic outline of your life at that point when you no longer have to work for income in a quantifiable and measurable format.
  • Defining when you expect to achieve your FIL, let’s call that your ‘Financial Freedom Date’ (FFD).


  • ‘Cost out’ your financially independent life as you have now described it per the above, in other words determine what will it cost to live that life.
  • Determining the ongoing income you will need in order to fund your living costs.
  • Defining all the sources of income you expect to receive from all sources at that time.
  • Deciding how the additional required income will be generated.


  • To determine how many rental properties will be needed to compliment your other investment strategies to arrive at the required income and to do that within the desired timeline. 




  • Adjusting your figures and dates you have made as you see the need or as you want to experiment with various scenarios.  The resulting figures driven by your entries will change along with your adjustments.

For those who want to generate the income in ways other than investment real estate there are experts in many fields who can help create those plans, but this process through Parts 1 & 2 will get you to a point where you know what you need to generate, and that is the key to then determining how to go about doing it.


  • "We found the service from Garth and his staff to be beyond exceptional."

    - Jim Osterreicher, 2015

  • "I recommend Garth's services, and refer him often."

    - Robert McLeod, Realtor and Managing Partner, McLeod Project Marketing, 2010

  • "What sets Garth apart from other brokers, is his involvement in your real estate deal."

    - Chris Pryce, Client , 2015

  • "I'm tough to impress having been a real estate lawyer for 35 years. I'm glad to say Garth has impressed me."

    - Barry McGuire, Ritchie Mill Law Office, 2016

  • "Garth's experience and expertise are second only to his integrity."

    - Jim Hassett, Partner, Hassett & Reid LLP, 2010

  • "You've made what has been a nightmare in the past a breeze."

    - Norman Glover, 2013

  • "Garth is not just another mortgage broker."

    - Tony La, Client, 2013

  • "Garth is an experienced knowledgeable kind person who cares for his clients and their overall well being."

    - Linda & Rod Nagata, 2015

  • "I appreciate the amount of time you spent analyzing my mountains of data."

    - Wade Fenner, Edmonton, 2015

  • "Garth is a trustworthy individual who can be relied upon."

    - Thomas Beyer, Properties Group, Majority Owner, President, CEO, 2010

  • "Garth's understanding of financing strategies is far away the most advanced I’ve ever met"

    - David Sanbrand, Client, 2015

    Disclosure: Garth Chapman is a licensed Mortgage Advisor with Jencor Mortgage Corporation in Calgary Alberta. Garth is not a Financial Planner. Roadmap should not be considered as a substitute for what a licensed Financial Planner provides. The information contained in this website should not be construed as personalized investment, financial planning, or tax advice.

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