Hey everybody, welcome back to the show! I’m excited to have my good friend, Shayla Dempsey on the show today! Shayla and her husband, Neil, work together in the business and are members of the Investor Fuel Mastermind. Today, we are going to talk about working with a spouse, the pros and cons but generally how that can be a good thing! 

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[00:00:00] Mike: Hey everybody. Welcome back to the show. Excited today to interview my good friend, Shayla Dempsey it Shayla and her husband. Neil are also in my market a little bit West of here in the DFW area, members of investor fuel and, uh, work together in their business, obviously. And my wife and I do too. So we’re gonna talk about that today, working with your spouse and how to, uh, how that could be a good thing and not necessarily a bad thing.

professional real estate investors know that it’s not really about the real estate. That real estate is just a vehicle to freedom. A group of over a hundred of a nation’s leading real estate investors from across the country. Meet several times a year at the investor fuel real estate mastermind to share ideas on how to strengthen each other’s businesses, but also to come together as friends.

And builds more fulfilling lives for all of those around us on today’s show, we’re going to continue our [00:01:00] conversation of fueling our businesses and our lives. I’m glad you’re here.

Uh, Shayla, welcome to the show.

Shayla: Hi, thank you. Thank you.

Mike: How’s it going? Yeah, I can throw it a lot of little jokes there. Cause I think when spouses work together, there’s there, there are times when you might want to kill each other, but of course we all, we all got in this so that we could, you know, live a better life.

And so I know you’d agree with that. That’s what we’re going to kind of talk about today. But, uh, I always, uh, I guess there’s a soft spot in my heart for couples that work together. Cause I know there’s pros and cons and there’s challenges and some people could probably never do it. And um, but glad you guys are so Hey, before we get started, why don’t you tell us about you and your background?

Shayla: Uh, my background, I was an insurance adjusting for 10 years. Um, met, uh, met some people that knew some people and ended up, um, [00:02:00] I think this guy knew like two people total in Texas and decided that we needed to meet each other and go on a blind date. And I was like, Texas is huge just because we’re from the same state does not mean that we need to meet each other.

Yeah. So we, uh, we went on a blind date and there you go. Um, ever since, so he was actually an intern suggesting for a while as well. Um, and then once we got married, it was kind of jumped on board, the real estate train, whether you, uh, ready or not

Mike: as Neil was at the time was he was, he was pretty much a buy and hold guy back then.


Shayla: Yeah. He started buying holes in those seven. Okay. Okay. So you had been in it for awhile? We got married in 13. Okay.

Mike: Okay, awesome. Awesome. And so, um, and you guys, you have a brokerage, uh, you do fix and flip. You do some wholesale wholesaling. You do starting to do some owner finance, you have rentals.

You pretty much do all the, all the tools that are in your tool belt,

Shayla: right? Yeah, I would say of all of those. We, uh, we [00:03:00] don’t do wholesaling very much. Um, I have a couple of guys that, you know, if it doesn’t fit in my box, if it’s outside my, my tiny little and I like to stay in, um, I don’t even send Neil on the inspection.

I call up one of my wholesale guys. Um, I think it got like two and they go out, so I wouldn’t call it trouble sailing, but it’s our version of it.

Mike: So let’s talk a little bit about, um, you know, some of the, you know, working with your spouse issues. And I know some of it is I think just having clear roles and I know you guys have different strengths.

And I think when most people start, I don’t know how you guys were, but we were kind of stepping all over each other, like try and do the same things. Um, but ultimately you have to kind of find like what you’re good at and divide and conquer. Right,

Shayla: right, right. Yeah. Yeah. So, um, I guess just to step back just a little bit, so when you was buying, um, [00:04:00] back in Oh seven, you know, through the turn, all that stuff, it was all on MLS.

So, you know, he knew how to write contracts. He knew how to buy properties, all that good stuff. But when it comes to actual direct to seller marketing, you know, there, there was nothing that didn’t even exist back then. So, uh, we started. Uh, direct to seller marketing, just he and I, um, not, not knowing anything.

So it was just kinda like a sink or swim. Let’s figure out what we’re doing here. Um, and we had no set goals, no plans, no strategies. Um, did a lot of Facebook. Uh, I just wait here, YouTube. I don’t know. Um, so we both just dove in and it was so clear so quickly, uh, what I was good at and what I was really bad at.

Um, and his was the exact opposite. So none of it was actually planned thankfully. Um, and thankfully I’m really bad at taxes and banking and papers in [00:05:00] general, uh, keeping up with that. Um, and he’s really great at it. So, um, basically, you know, it took a little bit and we figured out, Hey, his, his job is to make my phone ring.

Um, and then, you know, he doesn’t answer my phone and I don’t, I don’t such as marketing. So

Mike: yeah, that too, she’s very detail oriented. She’s really our CFO and handles a lot of the operations parts of the business of businesses. And I was always more on the sales side, whether acquisitions and dispositions and, uh, more on the marketing side, even as well. So. Um, yeah, so, but I think it’s great to start to have those clearly defined roles, because even if you’re a couple, um, or you have a small team or whatever, like you still have to organize yourself, like you’re a fortune 500 company.

I mean, you still need a marketing department and sales and, um, the operations and the finance side, for sure. Like those things still have to exist in right. Ultimately one person needs to be held accountable for those things. Right?

[00:06:00] Shayla: Absolutely. And that’s what we’ve found whenever, whatever we have made mistakes on, you know, different process, you know, different areas going through, um, entire flips, something of the sort.

If you go back and find out it’s because, you know, somebody didn’t stay in their lane. Um, and that’s where the mistake happened. Um, and what happened just recently on a property, uh, in front of people, my husband was going woman stay in your lane. The one, I don’t know if that’s very nice in front of people, but it was, it was pretty funny.

I was like, got a good chuckle out of it, but yeah, we just got to learn to stay, stay in what you’re good at and, and don’t step on toes and it makes for a happy life.

Mike: Um, Yeah. Yeah. So how do you guys come together? Because there’s always some gray area on, you know, like you said, it’s everybody has the lane, but then there’s like, you know, somebody that’s might want to pick out.

For example, I used to manage all my rehabs and Lindsay didn’t go to any of them. And every once in a while she’d like swing by one and she’s like, [00:07:00] maybe give her advice on what to do. And I was like, now we’re already this, this, uh, this, uh, things already left the. You know, we’re, we’re already moving forward at, this is what we’re doing and, you know, so how do you, how do you overcome those issues of when somebody has an opinion on something and they’re kind of maybe out of their lane or it’s in a gray area, how do you, how do you overcome those issues and still maintain a strong relationship?


Shayla: it’s funny you use that exact example because last week I stomped my property and I are flipped. Um, but I don’t do the rehab on our flips. So that’s, that’s kind of, it gets into that little bit of gray there. If I’m like, Hey, if I’m the one going to be in charge of this with the buyer, like, you know, so I try to step on his toes every once in a while in that category specifically.

Um, and it never works out well. Um, I stopped by there and he wasn’t doing something that I thought should be done. And, um, you know, the contractors had already started the work and really it just muddies the water and you have to step back and say, okay, from a business perspective, This is, this is how it’s going to go.

Um, you know, [00:08:00] he technically is the president. I am technically vice president. However you want to look at that. Like he is going to have the final say when it comes down to it, um, mama can get mad, but it’s not going to work out with it as you’ve gone through, you know, however many of these properties now.


Mike: And you, you know, after you’ve been in this for a while, it’s like, ah, paint colors, and some of the things are ultimately not going to make a difference, ultimately. And if you don’t like do something crazy. Right. But, um, you know, at the end of the day, a lot of those things like on converting a garage or leaving it as is, or whatever, you know, you could ask 10.

Prospective buyers, what they would do. And five would say one thing and five would say the other. So it doesn’t, you know, something, a lot of those things don’t ultimately matter much. We make a bigger deal out of it. Cause we just want to insert ourselves in things sometimes. But from a business perspective, it’s like, eh, it doesn’t really know.

Shayla: Yeah. Now one thing we both do is we both comp properties. Um, and we always, [00:09:00] always, always come up with a different price. Uh, and that’s one that he lets me have the final say. So yeah, that’s, that’s kinda nice. And that’s, you know, you know, you’re allowed to come in and share that line and then, you know, who’s, who’s gonna have a condensate on him as well.

So a lot of

Mike: respect. Yeah. So how do you guys balance your, your work and life? And I’ll just tell you that we don’t like, we just, it’s kind of all one in the same, but I know a lot of people try and they never get there. Some people actually do a really good job at it, but I’d say most probably don’t how much you guys.


Shayla: no, probably not. Um, I would go with, um, you know, we joined investor fuel, um, to be around like-minded people. And really it’s kinda turned into our vacations. You know, you get an actual, um, you know, kids go to the grandparents for four full days, which you know, is amazing. Um, and we get to go be adults by ourselves and talk about what we love to do.

Um, so both of us are super passionate about [00:10:00] what we do. Um, I look forward to Mondays. He looks forward to Mondays like that’s right. Um, so, you know, I would say that, you know, Oh, we do such a great job leaving the office. And when you walk into the house, it’s it’s home time and no, no, that’s not it at all.

Um, my three-year-old is going to know way more about real estate than any, any three year old should. So he already drives by and goes, mommy, we should buy that house. You’re right. Yeah, right? Yeah.

Mike: Yeah. That’s funny. We tried for a long time to be like, well, Hey, we’re going to have date night tonight.

We’re not going to talk about work at all. And like, you know, maybe a minute in we’re deep in some conversation about work. I were like, Oh, so we’re going to do this. But like what, what else you wanna talk about? I don’t know. This is kind of where our, what we do for a living and part of it is because we love what we do.

Right. You know, generally. Um, but, um, it’s just. Like my personal life and my work life are one in

Shayla: the same now. Absolutely. Absolutely. You know, we, we have all the same goals, all the same passions, all the [00:11:00] same, you know? So it’s, it’s not like you’re talking about work. It’s like, you’re talking about life.


Mike: Yeah, that’s true. That’s true. Yeah. That’s great. So about goals, I talk about that. Cause I think sometimes, um, people that work together have different, they, you know, they start to it’s, it’s diff your goals have to be aligned. Otherwise, you know, one person’s working harder than the other. What I found is whether it’s spouses or I’ve known a bunch of people that were friends and became partners, and then those partnerships have gone South right business, and it’s usually around.

One person feeling like, well, Hey, we’re 50 50 partners, but I’m doing 75% of the work. And so I’m working harder than you. And so it’s, it’s it basically festers, like somebody feels like they’re doing more of the work and the communication’s not really there now. And, and, you know, in marriages, um, Like Lindsay does way more on the home front than I do by far.

And she does a lot of work in the business. And so we’re, Hey, like we’re a team, we have like multiple things [00:12:00] going on, but how do you, how do you guys stay on the same page with goals and make sure that somebody doesn’t want to grow faster or slower than you?

Shayla: Yeah. Well, I guess those, um, my, my mind kind of went two different directions there.

One would be time of, of who puts in more time and effort and that kind of thing. Um, which I don’t. Um, I know there’s been some times where Neil would go fishing in the middle of the week and I was going, Oh, I have a really, really hard day today. Um, I hope he gets numbered, um, you know, with love. Um, you know, but for the most part, we, we, we are both going the same direction.

We know where the training’s is headed. Um, however you get yours done. However, I get mine done. We’re both going the same way and we want what’s best. Because we’re all on the same team here. Um, as far as goals, you know, Neil is very much a go big, um, you know, [00:13:00] I’m, I’m more about time. Um, so Neil’s like, Hey, let’s, let’s do this, this many properties this year with, you know, and break it down.

And he does the whole KPI thing and I’m like, Oh cool. We paid bills. That’s exciting. Um, you know, so we have totally different aspects on that. But really, whenever you ask him his why behind his goals, It’s tough. So, you know, we both hate a hundred degrees. If it’s a hundred degrees, I don’t want to be here.

Um, I want to be in the mountains where it’s cool. Um, so, you know, I want a life built to where we can load up the kids. And be in the mountains for the month of August. Um, so even though his goals are set more in a, you know, trackable measurement, which is from investor fuel. Thank you. You put that on him.

Uh, so now he tracks KPIs, um, You know, but, but the reason behind it is what matters is why. So the goals are both the same because [00:14:00] mine is in time. Isn’t

Mike: it? Yeah. Yeah. That’s that I’ve always felt that way too. Like, it takes a while for your business to get stable when you first start. But once you get there, like we have, sometimes we’re like, you know, we work hard, but the truth is, is.

You know, we start our days later than most people I could just disappear for a week if I wanted to, or we could, we could, you know, and so there’s so much flexibility in what we do. And I think, um, you know, it’s a blessing. We can do that together. Cause I know I have, I know, uh, I have friends that are in real estate and their, their spouse has like a W2 job.

And so they’re like, well, they can’t, you know, they, and it’s because they love their job. Not necessarily because they need the money, but you know, they could, they don’t, they don’t. They probably get two or three weeks of paid vacation a year. So they can’t just like leave, you know? So yeah. That’s, that’s kind of why we got into this.

Shayla: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, yeah.

Mike: Yeah. Um, speaking of the mountains, by the way, I don’t know if you saw, I’ll tell you after the show here, but, uh, we have a trip planned the investor field trip plan to Beaver Creek, Colorado, and, uh, Right [00:15:00] before, uh, July 1st through third. So anyway, I’ll tell you about that. We, we, we love it out there.

So, um, and then, and then talk about you guys. Uh, you know, when you have kids talk about like how you instill those things in them. Cause I mean, when we first started, my son is, uh, he turned 13 this past summer. And when we first started, he was, uh, about to turn one. So it’s been a long time. He’s never known anything other than this.

And so, you know, we’re, we’re definitely not. Perfect in this regard, but it’s like, how do you instill the things that we learn about, you know, another way to make a living than what I was taught and what I did before I was in real estate and your kids, and there’s, you probably have goals, like money-wise financially things you want to do for your family to kind of build a legacy.

But I think there’s also those things that you can kind of teach your kids about how to live a better life. Right. And so do you guys, do you. What w you don’t have to tell me your specific plans, but just talk about how that, how important that is, I guess, for you guys as a couple. Yeah,

Shayla: actually we were talking [00:16:00] about this not very long ago.

Um, it, it comes up regularly obviously, but, um, the other day we’re talking about Romans 12 one and two basically says be different. Like if you’re going to abbreviate, you know, those two verses it says be different with this. God calls us to be different. Um, stand out in, in, in a, a way that is glorifying to God.

So everything we do in life, I feel like is already different. In many, put us in the world of real estate. We don’t fit in at all. Nobody fits this. You know, we, I had a bad day with the kids Monday and Neil was like, you know, load up. We’re we’re going to the zoo. Like we’re skipping work today. Like who can do that?

You know? Um, so it’s. It’s about teaching them to be different, but it just goes in line with everything else to be different. Uh, the, the fact that I want them to follow the stats so bad, um, you know, we, uh, we go and walk properties and it’s really, [00:17:00] really common for me to have a baby in a backpack. Um, I don’t let them down because a lot of the houses we buy are really gross.

They’re not allowed to get down, but baby, in a backpack and off we go. So, um, they’re going to be immersed in it and hopefully they’ll love it as much as we do

Mike: and stuff. That’s right. I definitely remember taking my son to when he was small, lots of properties. I’m like, do not touch anything. I said, yeah, absolutely.

No, it’s interesting. Cause I have, we just have one son who is 13 and my nephew just moved in with us. He’s 18 from Illinois, which is where I am from. And, uh, just got done with high school early. So I’m like, well, just come down and do like a four month internship. And so, so, uh, we’re kind of feeling our way through that, how he can get the most out of it.

Honestly, it’s kind of nice cause a little bit of a trial run for potentially my son. And so, you know, we’re just trying to. Teach him some things and get him immersed in some things that he wouldn’t have done otherwise, you know, so yeah. [00:18:00] Well full transparency.

Shayla: My little guys are one in three, so we’re not quite there yet, but as big plans, internship program doesn’t

Mike: have to start yet.

Shayla: Yeah. Well, they’re, they’re learning shapes and colors and. Um, in houses all at the same time. So yeah,

Mike: I do very much, uh, you know, we don’t have to get you and I won’t get political here cause I know where you lean. Uh, and we’re, we’re pretty much on the same page. We won’t get political here, but I will say that, um, when I grew up, I grew up in a very blue collar family and you know, the thought was, go to school, try to get good grades.

Try to go to college, get a good job. It was all just the normal kind of process of America. That’s kind of this factory of teaching you basically to work for somebody else. And, um, and so I think it’s important for our kids when you are an entrepreneur to be able to teach your kids that there’s another way like that.

Isn’t, that’s not the route you have to take if that’s what you want to do. That’s great. But, um, you know, there’s another way,

Shayla: right? Super super [00:19:00] blessed in the fact that, um, both my parents own their own businesses growing up. Um, but on the same page, I had no idea. So everybody were seniors in high school and everybody was decided that they want to go be a nurse or go to this.

And I was like, um, it, you know, I don’t know, but going to the same place nine to five every day for the rest of my license, miserable, like, I don’t know why y’all were volunteering to do this. I don’t know what I want to do, but it’s not that. Um, you know, but I remember being in junior high and my dad didn’t sign me out of school.

Um, and then go play golf, um, because it was pretty weather like they would ask, well, why are you taking her out of school? Because it’s pretty weather. Um, you know, I haven’t feel that that’s the direction we’re going to go with our kids.

Mike: Yeah. Awesome. Awesome. That’s good stuff. So, Hey, you guys have been members of investor fuel for a little while now, would you mind just kind of sharing your experience?

Just some thoughts on how maybe investor fuel has impacted you. Yeah,

Shayla: absolutely. So I started off with a selfish part of it, of why I liked it. Um, [00:20:00] being it’s like a little vacation for us, you get a hotel room, you know, um, get to order breakfast in the mornings. My favorite part. So, um, but in addition to that, I have never met a group of people that you can just walk in and talk to.

We are so different in so many ways from across all, all parts of the nation. And yet we, we meet and go to talking like we’re best friends. As soon as you walk in the room, um, in anything you have an issue with you talk through it and somebody is going to be able to say, Hey, been there, done that. This is where, uh, where the direction I went.

Maybe recommend it, maybe don’t, but, uh, you know, at least at the, been there and done that and. I’ve never met people that want to help so much. Um, and it’s really neat because so many times we just felt like we were out on the Island for years by ourselves in this weird world of real estate. Um, and now we don’t, so there’s my little 2 cents about, uh, the selfish side of it, I guess is [00:21:00] all

Mike: yeah, like you said, uh, you know, you just gave this example of, um, your dad pulling you out of school.

Cause the weather was nice, right? It was like, you know, That’s not normal for people that have a W2 jobs. And it’s hard to, it’s hard to talk about what we do or. We’re going to pack up the car and leave for a week or a month, just ad hoc with your W2 friends or your neighbors. Cause they’re like, wait, what?

Because they don’t get to do that. And then unfortunately you start to feel sometimes like you’re bragging and you’re like, yeah, trying to brag. This is just the life that I chose. Right. And so then you just end up saying nothing and then you’re like, well, we can’t even, what are we gonna talk about to these folks?

Cause I feel like I’m bragging. If I say, you know, about travel or about. Hey, we just did an awesome deal and we’re celebrating tonight or whatever it might be. Right? Yeah. So it’s cool to be around like-minded others. So yeah. Well, Hey, if folks want it, you guys operate, uh, in kind of DFW, a few different, I guess, markets, some smaller markets in Texas, too.

If folks wanted to connect with you in any way or like what’s the best way for them to do

Shayla: that? Yeah, absolutely. So we are, we’re [00:22:00] mostly DFW. We do some Wichita falls and we are venturing off into Abaleen. Um, So if anybody wants to reach out, uh, it’s Shayla Dempsey cell is (817) 240-6163. Um, we’re four 19 properties.

So that’s F O U R one nine properties.com. So that’s where we are.

Mike: Awesome. Awesome. Well, appreciate your time today. Always. Good to see you guys looking forward to seeing you again here. Soon as we’re recording this right now, it’s like. A cold snap in Texas, which is a kind of crazy, like I saw it in a couple of days.

It’s supposed to get down to three, three. That’s pretty crazy. So that’s like, yeah, that’s not normal here. Yeah. So anyway, once it warms up a little bit, hopefully we will see you guys around, around town soon. Excellent. Well, appreciate you guys a bunch and everybody hope you got some value from today’s show.

I think, uh, working with your spouse can be a great thing. You just have to get over the hump, uh, some of the early phases of who does what and make sure you [00:23:00] have similar goals and you don’t kill each other in the process of trying to build a better life together. Cause that’s not what anybody wants. Um, but.

Hope you got some value. If you, if you haven’t really checked out investor fuel, yet, we really have an amazing community of givers. A lot of couples in the group, not everybody’s a couple, but definitely lots of, uh, spouses that work together and really just an amazing community of over a hundred real estate investing companies from across the country.

We’d love to talk to you. So just go to vest or fuel.com. You can learn a little bit more and schedule a call with us to see if it’s a fit for you. Appreciate you a bunch. We’ll see you on the next show.

Shayla: Bye-bye

Mike: Are you an active real estate investor? If so, and you want to latch onto the power of surrounding yourself with over a hundred of the nation’s leading real estate investors, all committed to building stronger businesses and living richer fuller lives. You should jump on a call with us to learn more about Investor Fuel, simply visit investorfuel.com to get started.