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Armando Novelo

Episode 105

Heal Yourself, Heal Your Finances - Armando Novelo

Armando Novelo is an SGV mortgage guy! He immigrated to the United States as a child. He was born in Mexico and at a very young age, he and his family moved to Los Angeles, California, in search of better opportunities.

Coming from a single mother household, Armando learned some life struggles early on, specifically around money, but hard work and perseverance helped him excel In his studies. He attended UCLA, where he earned a degree in Psychology and also fell into the world of Real Estate and Mortgage. Armando started his career in mortgage while attending UCLA. Today, he ranks in the top 1% of loan officers nationwide and runs a successful branch of a local mortgage firm.

Armando has been happily married to the love of his wife for 17 years, and they have two children together. In his free time, Armando enjoys spending time with his family, time in nature and giving back to the community by teaching the finance hacks people should know.

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Armando Novelo Quotes

  • “My father one day just decided it was his time and his family was no longer serving him, so he decided to move on and he started a new family. So that was a shock for us.”
  • “You kind of learn that forgiving someone, you’re not really forgiving them. You’re not forgiving them for the sake of them. You’re forgiving them for the sake of yourself.”
  • “And it was my mom’s dream to really pull us out of there. She would always say, I’m going to make it with my kids. My kids will make it. And she worked really hard. She got into the real estate industry and she worked really hard and was able to kind of get out and bought her first house in 1995, and she’s still there.”
  • “So my goal is not necessarily do one mortgage for one person today, but my goal is to help educate the clients forever. So we do things like we bring financial advisors to teach classes to all of our past clients once a month, or even CPAs or tax guys.”
  • Armando Novelo grew up in Mexico and migrated to the United States
  • He grew up in the San Gabriel Valley, living in Montebello, Monterey Park, and West Covina
  • Armando attended UCLA and earned a degree in Psychology but pivoted to mortgage and real estate
  • Armando loves helping people learn better ways to save and invest their money

What is Armando’s connection to the San Gabriel Valley?

Armando grew up in the San Gabriel Valley. He is an immigrant and came from an immigrant family from Mexico. He grew up in Montebello, East LA, Monterey Park, and then went to high school in West Covina.

Now he runs a business in West Covina.

Armando Novelo

What is a loan officer?

So essentially when someone’s buying a home, unless they have a lot of money to pay cash, most of the time they’re going to need some sort of financing and we provide that financing for them.

What did Armando’s family do when he got to the SGV?

They owned a restaurant called El Camino Restaurant. However, it is no longer there.

What impact did having Armando’s father leave have on him?

It was very sudden for Armando. One day they had a party, his parents got into a heated argument, and he left.

He called them every now and then, but he started a new family with his best friend’s wife. And that was that.

It led to a lot of trauma for Armando and a lot of hurt. It took him a long time to heal from these emotional wounds and he discovered that sometimes when you forgive someone it is for their sake, not your own.

He commends his mother for being so awesome and helping Armando and his brother be able to succeed in life during all of the trauma.

Was it Armando’s mother that decided they should move to West Covina?

When his father left, Armando’s mother had nothing. They ended up having to move into his grandparents house, which he admits was pretty difficult.

There were quite a few people already living in the house. So, they slept on the couch or the floor in the living room. It became Armando’s mother’s dream to get them out of there.

She got into the real estate industry and worked incredibly hard to buy her first house in 1995.

Where did Armando Novelo attend college?

Armando felt lucky to be able to attend UCLA. At UCLA he met a woman who brought him into the mortgage business. This was kind of against what his mother would tell him – not to get into the real estate or mortgage business. But Armando found it fulfilling.

Armando acknowledges so many people have their priorities backwards, they want to buy expensive shoes, cars, and purses. No one teaches people how to properly invest.

In Armando’s mind, if he could change one person every month to think differently and get out of the paycheck to paycheck rut, he’ll change hundreds of lives.

Does Armando work for himself?

He works for a company called Golden Empire Mortgage, but it is run similar to a franchise. Essentially, it is a hybrid where they own the corporate and we own the little office.

What fulfillment does Armando Novelo get when educating people?

A quote from the episode:

“I’ll tell you. I remember being young, I was maybe eleven or twelve, and I overheard my mom talking to my grandparents about opportunities in this country. And I’ve seen this through my clients because a lot of my clients are immigrants. But we come to this country as immigrants and everyone comes for the same reason, right? We come for the opportunity for the American dream. But most people, when they get here, it becomes a nightmare. Right. We’re not taught how to do anything, or even we’re taught how to do just enough. And that’s everyone, not just immigrants, we’re taught how to do just enough to keep feeding the system. But we’re rarely taught how to get out of the rat race. Right. And I think that if we can teach more people how to do that and build generational wealth, then I mean, that for me means more because I’ll be long gone, but people will still be benefiting from what I taught them.”

Where did Armando develop his idea of teaching?

When he was around 11 years old, he heard his mother talking to his grandparents about how she didn’t know she was going to support the family after his father left.

His family has never been great with money and they live the way the world tells them to live, overspend and be a non-stop consumer.

People are too programmed to spend and never save or invest. However, Armando didn’t feel as though he could teach until he knew the best practices himself. He joined a coaching program that changed his perspective on saving.

That is when he learned how to invest in the stock market and how to use life insurance properly. Armando has the type of personality that when he learns something new, he gets excited and tries to teach others.

How was Armando’s teaching received by his clients?

It was a gradual process where he would conduct a class and invite a financial planner. They used to do these type of classes in person but once COVID hit, it got moved to Zoom, which he admits was a bit more challenging.

He always had a fear that people wouldn’t show or he wasn’t truly helping anyone, until one lady showed up. She had poor credit, thought she would never be able to buy a house, and was in a ton of debt.

She told him that she immigrated there and that really resonated with Armando. She asked for his advice, he gave it to her, and a year and a half later she went from making $30,000 to $85,000. Her life turned around and she bought a house.

What is Commission Breath?

It is an industry term, where essentially every time someone talks you think they are trying to sell you something. It gives off a sense of not being genuine at all.

What matters most when it comes to being a loan officer?

They must truly have the desire to help people. There is a lot of money per transaction, but it can’t just become a numbers game. You have to focus on the people, not the financials.

How active is Armando Novelo on social media?

He likes to create posts that give people ideas that they can implement. Prompts that help them think differently. That includes ideas on investments, how to buy houses with low money down, how to fix their credit score, and more.

Picture of Armando Novelo

Armando Novelo

Kaiser in Baldam Park

Whittier Narrows

Armando’s mother’s house