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Diego Corzo, DACA DREAMer is the definition of the “American Dream”.
Yet because of his undocumented status he faces the threat of deportation despite being a successful business owner who has paid more than $28,000 in taxes and whom employs US citizens in his business.
Diego Corzo is a 27 year old entrepreneur from Austin, TX.
He was born in Lima, Peru and moved to the United States with his family when he was 9 years old.
Diego’s parents told him that the United States was the land of opportunity and that with hard work and determination all his dreams will be possible.
Diego graduated top 1% from Florida State University with 2 bachelor degrees in less than 4 years and $0 student debt.
He started working in corporate America as a software developer for General Motors and soon discovered that he wanted a career shift.
After realizing that corporate America wasn’t for him, Diego pursued his passion in Real Estate. Now, Diego is a realtor for Keller Williams alongside an incredible team, and currently owns 8 rentals properties, both in Texas and in Florida.
Diego is on a path to financial freedom and aspires to help others, especially millennials, become financially free and reach their full potential.
I had the pleasure of sitting down and getting to know Diego in-depth and learn that some of his hobbies are salsa dancing, running, and reading.
His story is incredible and could not be more timely based on the current events revolving around DACA and the Trump’s administration ambition to deport 800,000 DACA DREAMers.
DACA DREAMers were given an opportunity for citizen by President Barack Obama because these dreamers were brought here illegally by their parents as children.
This Future Sharks interview shares both VALUE and PERSPECTIVE.
Here we go ..
What is your favorite quote?
“Live a bigger life…not a bigger lifestyle” – Adam Carroll
What are you working on?
One of the projects I am excited to be working on is a course on House Hacking. The course is designed to teach others how to buy real estate with low money down and be able to reduce their monthly housing expenses. This course is a great way to get started in real estate and will build the foundation for growing one’s wealth.
I have been house hacking since 2014 and living for free has helped me reduce my expenses and connect with other likeminded people. I know have a portfolio of 12 doors and it’s still growing. I love it!
How did you come up with this idea?
95% of the population works on their active income by climbing the corporate ladder. I believe it is crucial for anyone who doesn’t want to be average, to start building passive income streams. One of the best ways to create passive income is through House Hacking.
I have had some success with House Hacking, and it was this strategy that helped me quit my full time job working in corporate America.
In sharing my story with others and my mindset about building wealth, a lot of my friends and actually random people in social media began asking me how I did it and how I have been able to build a portfolio making me over $5K a month.
I then realized that many other people would benefit from my househacking strategies and I decided to make a course teaching others how they can househack their home and live for free, while getting rent paid as well.
What’s your dream with your course?
My dream with my House Hacking course is to impact the lives of as many people as possible, especially millennials who are stuck in the rat race. People who change their valuable time for money, just so that they can pay the bills and their debts. There is more to life than that, which is why I believe everyone should start building passive income streams.
What were your biggest obstacles and biggest success? What did you learn from them?
I am a DACA recipient, or what the United States Congress call me, a DREAMER. One of the biggest obstacles that I have had in my life is that I am undocumented. I was brought as a kid to the United States in a hope of a better future by my parents.
I didn’t really understand what it meant to be undocumented until I wanted to get my driver’s license at the age of 16. It was then that I begin to see the obstacles that I will face in the years to come. But I dealt with them head on.
I graduated 3rd in my high school class and decided to go to Florida State University to get 2 bachelor degrees. Even though I couldn’t qualify for student loans or grants at the time due to my immigration status, I decided to apply to merit based scholarships.
I won some scholarships, but a few got taken away from me because one of the requirements included being a US Citizen or having a Green Card. Even with these obstacles, I was able to put myself through college with the help of my parents and with the money I got by working as a contractor designing websites for small businesses & nonprofits.
In 2012 I became the first one in my family to graduate college in the United States. And not only that but I was able to graduate top 1% of Florida State with 2 Bachelor degrees in less than 4 years without any debt.
Even though there were a lot of obstacles through those years, I only saw the opportunities and I become resourceful. There was no other choice. I began to focus on my vision and not my current circumstances.
Give the readers the best entrepreneurship advice you have:
You either succeed or you learn… there is no failure. One of my mentors, Rock Thomas, taught me that: when you change the way to you look at things, the things you look at change.
Perspective is key when you are an entrepreneur and working on your own business. This is one of the reasons why many businesses fail after the first year. Too many people give up when things get tough or when some mistakes occur.
You just have to ask yourself, “What is great about this?” and look at it from all angles because there is always a lesson in every obstacle.
What’s something new you’ve learned in the past month?
One of the ways that I have started automating part of my business is to film my screen doing a specific task, then hiring a virtual assistant from the Philippines (for a few bucks an hour) to write each step in a procedure manual and then hire an employee in my office to do those tasks.
It has given me more freedom and I don’t have to do the tasks that are not dollar-productive activities. It’s all about you, as the entrepreneur, doing the most important tasks, and automate the rest. Your time is valuable, use it wisely.
So this week, I urge to analyze and write down all the tasks that you are doing everyday and ask yourself: “What is something that I do that can be done by an assistant by just following procedures or a checklist?”
What do you think you do better than most people?
I believe that I am one of the most resourceful people I know, but resourcefulness means nothing if you don’t take action and implement. Implementation is what has sets me apart from others.
Even if sometimes the implementation is wrong or has some mistakes on them, it’s all about failing forward and learning from your mistakes.
What should an entrepreneur focus on?
An entrepreneur should focus on working “on” the business, rather than “in” the business once the systems are in place and scalability is an option.
The entrepreneur should also focus on surrounding himself with people who are doing better than they are so that they can learn from other’s experiences and mistakes.
Success leaves clues, use them to your advantage and make sure you take action on them every day.
What are some of the best books you’ve ever read?
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
- The Go Giver by Bob Burg , John David Mann
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Mason
- Secrets of the Millionaire Mind
Where do you see yourself and your product in a couple years?
In a few years I see myself being a speaker and sharing my story in the hopes to inspire millennials on how to live a life worth living and help them become financially free.
I see myself coaching others, both personally and as part of a mastermind of over 500 students who are House Hacking.
Where have you been featured before?
Most notably I have been featured in Forbes
and the Young Pros Show – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3EBVnj_vSg&t=2921s
Here are some other links that you can check me out:
What does Leave Normal Behind mean to you?
To me Leave Normal Behind means not being average and living life to a higher standard.
The standard that when you die, you will look back and say: “What a hell of a ride!” Rather than having regrets.
Also, doing things that scare you and acting in spite of fear. It is being courageous in the good times and bad times.
Where can the Future Sharks audience connect with you?
Connect with Diego:
I am appreciative to have the incredible honor of speaking with Diego for his Future Sharks interview because he is leaving normal behind and becoming the best version of himself.
If you or anyone you know is a Future Shark who is leaving normal behind then please send me a message on Facebook or email: firstname.lastname@example.org