A Boy and His Bronco

A man in a suit stands next to a black Ford Bronco

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve been obsessed with owning a 1970 Ford Bronco. I don’t quite remember how the desire got started, but I found myself looking in the classifieds off and on for years hoping to find my dream car. In 2012, it finally happened. I saw an ad from a guy named Larry in Marana, AZ. I went to check out his Bronco, and knew I found “the one.” Larry had a chew in his mouth the size of a baseball, and I think it might have somehow helped me, because I managed to negotiate him down from $15,000 to $8,000 cash.

Amber and I drove it back to Scottsdale together, with her being newly pregnant with our oldest, and barely holding it together due to the nausea exacerbated by the heat and exhaust fumes. While Amber was likely regretting saying “yes” to my dream during that car drive, I was dreaming of what I would do with my newly acquired dream car, which definitely needed some TLC. I knew I wanted an all-black glossy exterior, 35” flat black wheels with a small lift, chrome dipped roll cage, custom bumpers, white seats with black stitching, 5.0 Mustang GT motor, and custom shocks. Amber convinced me to add A/C – I think that initial drive traumatized her. Everyone thought I was crazy for this purchase, but I just knew it was a great investment, especially at such a low purchase price. I will admit, I had my own doubts when we were a mile from home, and it broke down!

Getting the Bronco from its original state into the dream I had would be a much longer process than I could have anticipated. Once we got home, I started researching people who would be able to bring my dream to life. I found an individual in the West Valley who advertised that he worked on old Broncos. “Bingo,” I thought. It must be meant to be! Not so much. I should have known better when I took it to him, and his “shop” was not much more than an empty space in the backyard. But, he assured me he knew what he was doing, and even boasted about all of his work with Barrett Jackson. “I’ll be done in a month or two,” he promised. I checked on him a month later, and he hadn’t even started. Disappointed, I gave him a bit of a pep talk and he assured me that if I came back in another month, I’d be impressed. Unsure, I decided to give him another chance. One month later, work had still not begun.

I threatened to take the Bronco to someone else at this point, and really should have. But he assured me that work would begin that week. This process went around and around for about a year with very slow process, until he said it was completed. To my disappointment, while on a test drive, it broke down. I ended up just taking it home and taking it to another mechanic. The diagnosis: the first guy didn’t do what he said, and the new mechanic had to redo most of what the first one did, which resulted in me going through about 3 other mechanics to meet some of the specialty needs. I felt utterly defeated, and thought long and hard about selling the Bronco quite a bit.

We finally completed the Bronco in 2014. Nearly two full years after the initial purchase. When it was done, we could have sold it for around $40,000. I definitely thought about it a fair amount, given the incredibly bad experiences I had during the process of fixing it up and bringing my dreams to life. I listened to my intuition though, and have held onto it. In the last decade, Broncos have shot up in value, with ones similar to mine selling at Barrett Jackson in the range of $125,000-$150,000! I felt a lot of validation to see that I was right all along about what a great investment this dream car would be.

So why keep it, knowing I could sell it for so much now? Well, at this point, I am keeping it for the long haul because I really don’t ever want to go through the process of remodeling an old vehicle ever again. And, like I said at the beginning, this was my dream vehicle since I was a child! Why would I want to say goodbye to that dream? If I ever buy another, I’m buying one already completed. These days, we use the Bronco for date nights, rides to the coffee shop with our girls on Saturday mornings, cruising to the office when the weather is nice, and taking friends out. When I’m out with the Bronco, I get asked pretty regularly if someone can take a picture of it.

This whole process of finding my dream car, and persevering through the renovations, and now enjoying the benefits is honestly just an overflow of my passion for finding diamonds in the rough. Whether it’s cars, people, real estate opportunities… I am passionate about getting in the thick of it to see full potential realized. I know that God has given me the ability and vision to do these things, and I’m just doing my best to live that out as much as I can. These days, my focus is on helping the real estate agents in my brokerage realize their full potential, and I’m always hunting for my next real estate project too!​

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