The Real Estate Way to Wealth and Freedom podcast with Jacob Ayers

Are you overwhelmed with the thought of investing in real estate?

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I'm Jacob and as the host of The Real Estate Way to Wealth and Freedom podcast, my aim is to help you achieve financial freedom with concrete, actionable content.

The Real Estate Way to Wealth and Freedom Podcast

178: Capital Raising and Market Updates with David Thompson


David has strong experiences in real estate investing in both domestic and international projects covering single-family, multi-family and land development. He earned his MBA in finance from Thunderbird School of Global Management, and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. degree from Arizona State University. David spent over 20 years in high-tech management positions at Dell, AT&T, and Lucent Technologies. At Lucent he managed a $2.5B investment portfolio and raised over $1B in funds for acquisitions.

After leaving the corporate world, David started Thompson Investing and has raised significant private equity capital. He helped provide investor funds to Ashcroft Capital (a strategic partner) to purchase over 1450 apartment units in six separate communities worth over $120M. He’s also helped fund a $50M self storage and mobile home park fund sponsored by the CoveMark Group.

David prides himself on building long-term relationships with investors and partners while providing a great customer experience. David has lived in Austin, Texas for twenty years with his wife and has two daughters.

Key Points
Investing in small multi’s (duplexes, triplexes, fouplexes) requires you to have a W-2 to qualify for loans
Raising capital for syndication deals
Identifies strong asset classes to invest in by analyzing demographics, economics, and historical performance
How you can raise capital
Lightning Questions
What was your biggest hurdle getting started in real estate investing, and how did you overcome it?
David was listening to the negatives of real estate, and let that impact his perception. He eventually listened to the right people and took the plunge.
Do you have a personal habit that contributes to your success.
David values reading and learning.
Do you have an online resource that you find valuable?
What book would you recommend to the listeners and why?
Deep Work by Cal Newport
If you were to give advice to your 20 year old self to get started in real estate investing, what would it be?
Start networking and look at different types of real estate that can provide income. Figure out what it is that you like. Also, don’t be fearful!
Contact David
Thompson Investing

177: Syndication – Friday Fundamentals


The life cycle of a real estate investor looks something like this: save up your money, buy an investment property, and repeat. Building a real estate portfolio on your own is certainly possible. You can save your money, put that money towards investment properties, and repeat that process as quickly as you are able to. What many real estate investors quickly realize is they have limited resources, whether that’s time, money, experience, or deals. Having limited resources slows your growth. It takes you longer to find that next deal, or save up the capital to invest in that next deal, or find the time in your busy schedule to look for deals to invest in.

No matter how much money, time, experience, or deal flow you might have, you’ll eventually hit a ceiling if you are active enough. You’ll eventually run out of your own capital if you are doing lots of deals. You’ll eventually run out of time. You’ll eventually run out of deals, and you’ll inevitably come across something you don’t quite have experience with. This is just the nature of the business.

So here you are, as an active real estate investor and you’ve hit this wall. What are you to do? You could slow down and wait until you personally have the resources to grow, OR you could look to pool together those resources you need. This is called syndication.

Syndication is a fancy term for pooling together resources. It’s actually quite common, but you may not realize it. When you buy a ticket on an airline to go on vacation, you are participating in a syndication. You and 100 other passengers are pooling together money in the form of air fares to travel to the same destination. Without this syndication, you would have to save up capital to afford the entire costs of travelling alone.

Syndication works the same way with real estate investing. You can syndicate not only capital, but experience, time, deals, and almost anything else that will provide value to the goal or project.

Syndicating capital, experience, deals, time or any other resource allows you to grow and scale by removing these bottleneck of these resources. You can tap into an almost unlimited supply of resources.  The role of a synidcator is to organize and pool together resources. Real estate syndicators will pool together capital for a deal, manage the project, communicate with the group, and be the general sponsor of the deal. In exchange for being the sponsor, they will receive a piece of the equity typically.

When you syndicate resources for a project, you aren’t doing so only for your own benefit. You are also providing value for others. The investors in a syndication have the opportunity to be involved in a deal they otherwise wouldn’t likely have. For example, you as a real estate investor, have found a great opportunity in a value-add 50 unit apartment community. But, you have limited capital and can’t take on the project alone. This is where syndication can be a beneficial strategy. You could raise the capital required for the down payment from investors. In return, the investors will be given an equity stake in the property. If you, as the sponsor, never syndicated this deal, then likely no one would have had the opportunity to invest in this deal alone.  This group benefit is just one of the many advantages of syndication.

As a syndicator, you are being a steward of other people’s money. This is a huge responsibility, and not one to be taken lightly. You must be diligent in preserving investors’ capital, while making sound judgments on how to best maximize returns and mitigate risks. This is a tall order. When you are handling other people’s money, there are laws that you must follow. The Securities and Exchange Commission is the governing body that regulates these partnerships and transactions. It’s vitally important that you consult with an SEC experienced attorney before syndicating deals.

Some great resources I’ve found around the topics of raising capital, syndicating deals, and following and the rules and regulations include:

Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book by Joe Fairless and Theo Hicks
Raising Private Capital by Matt Faircloth
The Art of Raising Capital by Darren Weeks
It’s a Whole New Business! by Gene Trowbridge
Syndication can be a great strategy growing and scaling your real estate empire. Done right, it can yield great results, and ones that you might not be able to acheive without the benefit of working with a group of people.

There’s no right or wrong way by either investing alone, or investing with other people. Find whichever is right for you and fits your goals, and that’s the right one for you. Remember, real estate investing isn’t a a way to get rich quick. Real estate investing is a way to build wealth and achieve financial freedom over the long-term. Scale and grow your portfolio at your own pace, as fast or slow as you want. Eventually you will have built a real estate empire and achieved financial milestones you only once dreamed of.

176: Building Wealth Through Apartments with Mark Kenney


Mark Kenney is a seasoned real estate investor, entrepreneur and founder of Think Multifamily. Mark started his real estate career over 20 years ago and has extensive experience in property valuation, acquisition, and operations. He has a passion for helping other succeed in the multifamily arena. Mark is invested in over 3,500 units and has a top-notch reputation among the multifamily investment community for providing exceptional value to investors and the community while being easy to work with.

Mark is a 1993 graduate at Michigan State University, Accounting and is a CPA. Mark has also provided IT technical and business consulting for 20 years and is leveraging his vast IT experience to bring new creative technologies that will help others in the multifamily space. He has worked for large organizations such as KPMG Consulting, EDS, SAP, and HP; he founded Simplifying-IT in 2008 which provides IT services to fortune 500 companies.

Key Points
Turning the corner from small multifamily properties to large apartment deals
How to position yourself to raise capital
What value you can bring to partnerships
 Real estate is a relationship business – you have to build personal relationships 
Be willing to be scared 
Lightning Questions
What was your biggest hurdle getting started in real estate investing, and how did you overcome it?
Mark’s biggest hurdle was the fear of raising capital. TO overcome that fear, he put himself out there by going to events and talking with people. 
Do you have a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Always stay humble and exercise. 
Do you have an online resource that you find valuable?
What book would you recommend to the listeners and why?
The ABC’s or Real Estate Investing by Ken McElroy
If you were to give advice to your 20 year old self to get started in real estate investing, what would it be?
You don’t have to start out small. Find someone who is doing what you want, and learn from them. 
Visit Audible for a free trail and free audio book download!

Think Multifamily


175: Make Things Happen – Friday Fundamentals


In life you are faced with an almost unlimited number of options. In fact, some studies suggest that the average person makes up to 35,000 decision every single day. Most of these decisions are menial – what color shirt will you wear for the day, what social media app will you open on your phone, will you make coffee at home or pick it up at your local coffee shop, etc. Very few decisions you make are big picture questions, for example – what am I doing today that puts me closer to my long term goals, how do I want to spend my time in my 30’s, 40’s, or 50’s, what am I doing now that brings me gratification, etc.  We tend to just go through the motions making the small easy decisions, while avoiding the harder questions and decisions.

Anything worth pursuing in life comes with challenges. Starting that side hustle, learning that new skill, travelling to that new place, saving for that investment opportunity, or anything else you want comes with challenges. These things require your time, dedication, and mental toughness. These are the things that won’t simply just fall in your lap. You have to work for them. You have to want them enough. You have to make them happen.

Simply saying you want to achieve something isn’t enough. You have to do things today that will put you in position to achieve those goals tomorrow. If you don’t wan’t that thing enough, then the challenges and hurdles to get there may prevent you from making that big decision to pursue it.

“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty. I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life. I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well.”  ― Theodore Roosevelt

When you’ve made the decision to pursue something challenging, take on that endeavor with the mentality that you are going to make it happen by doing whatever it takes. If you stick with that mindset and don’t quit, then you will most assuredly achieve that goal. Understand that you can achieve any goal that you set your mind to. You just have to make the decision, stick with it, and make it happen.

Here are 5 steps to achieving any goal:

Start with your mindset. Understand why you want to achieve your goal. Use emotionally based reasoning here. Describe to yourself how you will feel if you do or don’t achieve the goal. Identify how you will feel if you don’t give it your best effort. This emotionally based reasoning will resonate with you and give you the motivation you need to achieve your goals.
Decide that you are going to make it happen by doing whatever it takes. Commit to yourself that you will stop at no barrier. You will find a way to make it work.
Write your goals down. One of the best ways I’ve found to make something happen starts with writing it down every single day. When you do this, you are keeping that fresh in your mind and reminding yourself of it daily. There’s significant research and psychological studies around this topic, if you want to learn more about it. I can speak from personal experience that writing down your goals every day does impact your mindset. If that goal is fresh in your mind every day, your mind begins to find ways to make it happen.
Take action. This is where the rubber meets the road. You’ve laid the foundation with your mindset and you’re prepared to take action. Do something every single day that puts you one step closer to your goal. Chances are it will be a long journey, and you are in this for the long haul.
Lastly, don’t give up. If you have built a strong mindset anchored by your reasons why and coupled that mindset with action, then you have a recipe for achieving any goal you set your mind to, so long as you never give up. This is where you make things happen. You will run into unexpected challenges. You have to find a way to make it happen.
Limiting beliefs are the biggest killer of dreams and goals. Limiting beliefs are the negative thoughts that creep in your mind and make you doubt yourself. These are just excuses though. Don’t let these limiting beliefs affect your decisions. This is easier said than done. Limiting beliefs will come from your conscious, from your environment, and from other people. Avoid these like the plague.

Remember that anything you set your mind to is possible. You are capable of achieving your wildest dreams if you set your mind to it, and make it happen. So what are you going to make happen?

174: Time Wealth with Mark Dolfini


Mark Dolfini is the author of The Time-Wealthy Investor.  He is a husband, father, and a veteran of the United States Marines.  He is a real person who owns several million dollars worth of real estate, and has actively managed over $40 million in real estate in his 20 years of being in the real estate business.  That is not what makes his story so compelling.  He has  Time-Wealth.  He is now able to control his calendar to do the things he wants, when he wants, and with whom he wants to do them.  What makes my story compelling is not that I have concocted the latest real estate scheme or similar nonsense.  No, he thinks what others find so compelling in his story is that:

Key Points
From Marine to millionaire real estate investor
Learning from this mistakes of managing 92 single family properties 
Being over-leveraged n 2008
VIP – Vision, Infrastructure, & Process
Lightning Questions
What was your biggest hurdle getting started in real estate investing, and how did you overcome it?
Figuring out how the banks underwrite deals. 
Do you have a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Mark is viscous about how he spends his time, by batching activities (ex. – email)
Do you have an online resource that you find valuable?
What book would you recommend to the listeners and why?
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
If you were to give advice to your 20 year old self to get started in real estate investing, what would it be?
Value your time. Not every day is promised. 
Visit Audible for a free trail and free audio book download!

Landlord Coach Instagram

173: Be Personable- Friday Fundamentals


Real estate investing is a dollars and numbers driven game, from cap rates and internal rates of return, to lead generation response rates, and occupancy rates. It can be easy to to get lost in all of the numbers, looking at each and every opportunity through a spreadsheet.

Sure, the numbers are important. Afterall, that’s why you are investing in the first place. But it’s important to remember that behind every number, behind every deal, behind every loan, insurance policy, management company, mailing list, and contract is a person.

Some would say real estate is a numbers game, as they measure and focus on ROI, Cash-on-Cash Returns, Cap Rates, interest rates, etc. Others will tell you it’s a operations game, as they focus on property management, leasing, implementing value add business plans, and exit strategies. Then, there are the people who say that real estate is a relationship game, as they focus on building relationships with brokers, investors, property managers, property owners, etc.

No matter what game you are playing, it’s important to remember that you are dealing with people. People who want to be treated like people, not numbers on a spreadsheet. The best way to connect with someone is to be personable.  

Being personable means you are able to relate to others and be relatable. By understanding that each person has their own agenda, challenges, and goals, you can relate to that person and understand their perspective. This is especially vital when negotiating.

Building a personal relationship with each and every person you come across will pay dividends. Here are 5 ways you can be personable.

Find a common topic you can relate to with someone. That might be the holidays, weather, sports teams, news, etc. If you can find some common ground, you can relate to that person and start to build some rapport.
Share something about yourself. If you can share a personal detail about yourself, it will show that you too are a human, with challenges and goals just like that other person.
Ask questions about the other person. Get to know them on a personal level. This might be the easiest way to connect with someone. Simply ask a question about the person and listen. Talking about yourself is easy for most people and it’s natural to want to do so. Run with that and let the other person do that majority of the talking.
Ask the person for a small favor. This one sounds weird, I know. It comes from a psychological trick I read in Robert Cialdini’s book, Influence. If you ask someone for a favor, they are inclined to say yes. Their rationalization kicks in and they come up with reasons why you are worthy of such favor. Be sure to return that favor in the future!
Be understanding of the other person’s position. Put yourself in their shoes, and think of their interests before your own. 
Real estate investing, although number and dollar focused, is a relationship business at its core. People before profits should be your mantra. If you want to be a successful real estate investor, you should focus on helping other people. Don’t focus on what you want. rather focus on the other person’s interests. 

172: Break Away Mindset with Greg McCluskey


Greg McCluskey is a professional real estate investor with over 21 years of experience. At a young age, his father instilled within him the importance of family, education and entrepreneurship.

He started his real estate training after graduating college where he worked for Franklin Covey for 3 years. With limited experience, he purchased three properties in a span of 30 days each returning a hefty profit $88,000, $76,000 and $74,000. This allowed him to quit his job and go on to build several successful businesses such as: a construction company, mortgage brokerage, real estate consulting company, development company and dealt with multiple investments in numerous real estate properties and construction projects.

In 2004, Greg was able to flip a total of 104 homes in the Salt Lake area. His success allowed him to expand his business to Arizona, Idaho, Nevada and Massachusetts. His business was involved with over $175 million in real estate. This allowed him to spend quality time with his children where they traveled often together.

In 2008, Greg was hit hard by the real estate meltdown. He lost everything; except the people whom he cared for the most, his Children. Their unconditional love and support inspired Greg to use his knowledge and expertise to bounce back and rise above his struggles despite having no money and credit.

Greg just exited a project in 2018 controlling over 1,000,000 sq. ft. of residential and commercial real estate in and around Dayton, OH; in addition to 57 properties flipped in the Columbus, OH market.

Greg has built a new business, Breakaway Training LLC, where he provides an affordable solution for people interested in learning and mastering valuable skills in real estate without breaking the bank to get an education.

Key Points
From rags to riches to rags
From picking up his first Carlton Sheets course to flipping homes
Greg has learned everything he knows in business from coaching girls soccer
Finding flip properties in foreclosure
Lightning Questions
What was your biggest hurdle getting started in real estate investing, and how did you overcome it?
Mindset. Greg improved his mindset by reading books, focusing on positive thinking.
Do you have a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Reading. Greg also wakes up everyday with faith and expectations.
Do you have an online resource that you find valuable?
What book would you recommend to the listeners and why?
Being Happy by Andrew Matthews
The Servant by James C. Hunter
If you were to give advice to your 20 year old self to get started in real estate investing, what would it be?
Go get your first property. Just do it. Don’t wait. Find a mentor and follow that person.
Visit Audible for a free trail and free audio book download!

Greg’s Facebook Profile

Greg’s LinkedIn Profile

171: Your Super Power – Friday Fundamentals


With the new year approaching, many people are considering how they can do things differently, be more effective, grow personally, do more, do less, and overall become better. Sometimes, in order to do more, you have to learn to do less.

If there is anything I’ve learned in my own real estate investing journey, is you cannot do everything on your own. Real estate investing is a team sport. There are a lot of moving parts that require specific skills and expertise. From CPAs, to SEC attorneys, contract attorneys, lenders, property managers, brokers, etc., each person has something they contribute to the deal. Even further, as a real estate investor, there are even more skill that are needed just to complete one deal. From finding deals, to making offers, securing financing, raising capital, vetting property managers, managing the asset, refinancing or selling the asset, investor communication, etc., there are so many things required in sponsoring a deal.

It doesn’t make sense for someone to think they can do all of these things on their own. Instead, you have to identify what you can do well – your superpower.

Make a reference to how a superhero doesn’t do their own taxes, swim when they can fly, etc. They focus on what they are good at.

As a successful real estate investor you will have to identify your super power. Each person has their own unique skill, capability, or expertise. I’m sure you have something you are better at than anyone else you know, whether you know it or not. You might be very analytical and able to build financial models with attention to details. You might be a person with the ability to think of the big picture, and able to visualize what needs to be done on a larger scale. Maybe you are a great people person and are able to connect and relate with almost anyone. You might be able to raise capital from investors using this skill. Perhaps you are great at telling stories and would be good at marketing.

No matter who you are, you have a unique skill that you can use. If you haven’t unlocked your super power yet, here are a few ways to find that super power.

Think of what you are good at
What do you like to do?
What do others look to you for?
The intersection of these 3 things is your super power. By now, you’ve probably started to think of your super power. Even further you can enlist the help of friends and family, by asking them. Here are two simple questions you can ask them.

What is my unique ability?
What do I naturally do better than most people?
Having external feedback from people who know you well will help you further identify how others see you. This plays into point 3 above, in what do others look to you for. By asking yourself and others these few questions, you will get a really good idea of what your super power is.

Don’t worry about trying to make your weaknesses your super power. There’s too many skills when investing in real estate to master everything. Instead, focus on your super power and partner with other people with complimenting super powers. Use your super power to the best of your ability. Use it to help others and yourself.

Soon enough, you look back at all the things you’ve accomplished by focusing on using your super power.

170: Flipping Your Way to Wealth with Lee Kearney


Lee Kearney  is one of the nation’s most successful single-family real estate investors. Since 2004, he has bought/sold 7,000+ properties, and is known as the expert in leveraging real estate market cycles. He now owns several real estate businesses in Florida, all operating under the Southeast Property Investments Network (SPIN) brand, to fix and flip properties across the U.S., with a total sales volume exceeding $50M in 2017.

Lee taps into his expertise and passion for mentorship to educate others on leveraging market cycles to grow their own real estate businesses. His education platform FLIP YOUR INCOME offers several levels of training designed for beginning investors, mid-level operators who wish to scale their operations, and seasoned investors looking to manage their profits.

Key Points
Asking questions to learn the business
Parlaying flip profits into rentals
Learning from mistakes as you go
Buying properties in foreclosure 
Earning $2M in your 20’s – all good things must come to an end
Lightning Questions
What was your biggest hurdle getting started in real estate investing, and how did you overcome it?
Raising capital. Lee made raising capital a part of how he operates. 
Do you have a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Lee sets himself up for success with a morning routine. 
Do you have an online resource that you find valuable?
Google Suite – Sheets, Tasks, Calendar, etc. 
What book would you recommend to the listeners and why?
Tools of the Titans by Tim Ferris
If you were to give advice to your 20 year old self to get started in real estate investing, what would it be?
Put your foot down when you see an opportunity. 
Visit Audible for a free trail and free audio book download!

SPIN Real Estate


169: Hauling Buckets vs. Building Sprinkler Systems – Friday Fundamentals


An active income is one that requires you to do something. For most, this is working a job, either for an employer or for one’s self. Active income encompasses more than just working a job though. It can include active investing, building businesses, teaching, or even travelling.

Passive income is income that doesn’t require you to do anything. Common types of passive income include income from investments like real estate, stocks, and even investing passively in businesses.

There are investments that can either be active or passive, depending on how you manage those investments. Real estate is a good example. If you are living in one unit of a duplex and renting out the other, then chances are that investment isn’t totally passive. You will likely be collecting rent, paying utilities, managing tenants, showing and leasing the property, hiring contractors for repairs, paying taxes, shopping insurance, etc. This structure is hardly passive.

Al alternative model would be hiring a property manager to take care of all of those things. You would simply review your monthly statement from the property manager. This is a much more passive approach.

So why do we concern ourselves with active vs. passive income anyways? If you can build passive income streams, that require little to no time to manage, then you can use that time to build more and more passive income streams. Whereas, active income streams you are limited with your time an energy. There are only so many hours in the day you can work and spend energy doing.

Passive income and active income can be compared using the analogy watering your garden. Your garden is your life. Watering is the fuel to your life.

Active income is carrying buckets of water to that garden every day. If you don’t carry water, your garden goes unattended and left on its own.

Passive income is setting up a sprinkler system that automatically waters your garden every day, whether you are attending to it or not.

So, are you carrying buckets or setting up sprinkler systems? You can ask yourself this question for more than just investing. It applies to your finances, diet, exercise, education, etc. Are you building processes and systems that will work for you? Or are you doing the same work day in and day out, wondering how you could accomplish more?

Real estate investing is one of the areas where you can set up your own sprinkler systems. If you are investing in real estate but are still carrying buckets, then what’s the point? Here are some areas in which you can set up sprinkler systems in your business.

Searching for deals – this is perhaps the most time consuming task of any full time real estate investor. Finding deals is a process that requires constant work. You can find a deal, purchase it, rent it, etc. then you’re back to square one searching for the next deal. Rather than doing this one by one approach, you could instead build a pipeline of deals that come to you. There are tons of different strategies on lead generation – from direct mail campaigns, to bandit signs, websites, etc., just to name a few. Building systems and processes that create a constant stream of deals is perhaps your most important sprinkler system. Without deals, you have no investment.
Analyzing deals. Starting out it can take hours to analyze a deal, and with one wrong assumption you can derail the entire analysis. Setting some criteria and using some rules of thumb can filter how many deals you look at in depth, leaving more time to analyze the deals that fit your investment criteria. Rather than doing napkin math on every deal, find a good calculator you can use. I like to use the rental property calculator on BiggerPockets for small multifamily rentals.
Raising capital. Raising capital is not something everyone does. Some investors only grow their real estate portfolio on their own, using their own capital. No matter who you are though, you, as a real estate investor, will eventually run out of your own capital to invest, especially if you have a strong lead generation pipeline set up. So if raising capital from investors is the route you want to take, then it’s better to start building those relationships now. Like everything else, building a sprinkler system for this component is just as important. If you can create a reputation as someone who is investing in real estate, then people will be drawn to you, rather than you having to go find investors, one by one. You can start a blog, a social media page, a YouTube channel, or even a podcast just like this one. By doing so, you are seen as an expert in your space, and people will be drawn to you.
These are just a few areas where you can set up sprinkler systems in your business. Doing these things will allow you to grow and scale your business. Instead of working in your business, work on your business.

So, what areas of your life could you build sprinkler systems where you’ve been hauling buckets? Find these areas, and automate where you can. Work towards that passive lifestyle. Soon enough you’ll have built a real estate empire that you can step away from and live the life you want.

"This podcast offers a great perspective for people who are just getting started in real estate investing. I HIGHLY recommend it!"

- Nathan B.

Houston, TX

"Don't pass this podcast up! I was unsure about adding another podcast to my library, but this one has proven to be invaluable in my investing journey!"

- Ernest D.

La Porte,  Texas

"I've tried my hand at stocks, and let's just say it didn't go as well as I planned. This podcast has helped me realize the multiple benefits of real estate investing. I just wish I would have started sooner!"

- Jonathan C.

Enid, OK

Jacob and his guests share actionable and inspiring lesson on how to become a better real estate investor and (more importantly) a better overall person. Highly recommend listening and subscribing if you want the knowledge AND mindsets to reach your overall business goals (and achieve financial freedom as a result)!

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Click below to listen to a short clip where I introduce myself and talk about the vision of The Real Estate Way to Wealth and Freedom podcast.

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