Mike Hardy

An accomplished business leader, investor, and entrepreneur.

Living with Intention and Purpose.

About Mike

Mike Hardy is a true renaissance man – he’s an Ironman, student pilot, real estate investor, sought after speaker, leadership expert, fund manager, and a business coach for mortgage and real estate professionals.

He has spoken at national conferences and events such as Todd Duncan’s High Trust Sales Mastery, with an audience of over 30,000 people, and has been quoted on Fox Business News and interviewed by USA Today.

Mike is an authority in the real estate and mortgage business, often sought out for his unique insights into such issues as the comparison between the 2007 and 2024 housing markets. He is currently the Managing Partner of California & Nevada business for Churchill Mortgage, leading a top 1% nationwide $100 million origination team, and overseeing 30 employees managing $500 million. His teams help more than 1,200 families annually with a purchase or refinance.

As the Principal and Co-Founder of CYRUS Opportunity Zone Fund, Mike lends his expertise to helping investors harness the power of tax free investing through OZs. CYRUS was launched in 2019, and is currently developing 100+ cash flowing units in addition to multiple fix and flip projects.

Mike is a husband of 25 years, a father to 4 kids, and is actively involved in philanthropic efforts throughout his Southern California community. He loves using his experience to add value to people's lives through speaking and interview opportunities.

Mike's Areas of Expertise

  • Mortgage & Lending

  • Opportunity Zone Investing

  • Leadership & Development

Upcoming Events



[LIVESTREAM] 2024 Housing Market Update: Buy, Sell, or Hold?

12pm PST - Wed. July 17th



[LIVESTREAM] 2024 Housing Market Update: Buy, Sell, or Hold?

12pm PST - Wed. August 21st



[LIVESTREAM] 2024 Housing Market Update: Buy, Sell, or Hold?

12pm PST - Wed. September 18th

Engage With Mike

Mike Hardy enjoys utilizing his vast knowledge and experience by sharing his insights with audiences in a number of formats. If you would like to reach out to Mike for a podcast interview, written article, speaking event, or to request private coaching, please use the contact form below.

Podcast Interviews

Mike has been interviewed on a number of podcasts and YouTube shows, discussing everything from his personal philosophies on life and business, to opportunity zone investing, to mortgage brokerage and the state of the housing market, and much more. Click below to listen to past episodes.


Mike has a wide breadth of experience, in the professional world and beyond. He has completed an Ironman, studied to be a student pilot, completed the Warrior Hell week, competed in a bodybuilding physique competition, and much more. Through this blog he shares those experiences and the lessons learned along the way.


Between CYRUS Opportunity Zone Fund and Churchill Mortgage, Mike presents regularly on webinars. With CYRUS, he helps investors understand the benefits of OZ investing. With Churchill Mortgage, he and his partner Rick Mount give regular updates on mortgage strategies and the housing market.

Business Coaching

Mike has decades of experience as a high achiever in multiple fields, and is always looking to share that knowledge.

He provides structured and personalized coaching on a case-by-case basis for professionals who are looking to take their business and personal lives to the next level.

Reach out below to request more information.

Current Projects


Opportunity Zone Fund


CYRUS OZ Fund was founded in 2019 with the vision of tackling the daunting housing shortage in Southern California and beyond through the beneficial treatment afforded by OZs.

Taking advantage of the massive tax benefits available through 2017's Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, CYRUS Opportunity Zone Fund helps investors with capital gains defer the taxes due immediately, while also growing the initial investment in a completely tax free manner. To learn more, request the fund pitch deck, or schedule a call with Mike, click below.

Churchill Mortgage

Managing Partner

California & Nevada

Mike brings his vast leadership capabilities to Churchill Mortgage PSW Division, leading 30 employees that help over 1,000 families each year. His group is in the top 1% of production nationwide.

One of Mike's areas of expertise is in helping Loan Officers break through to a new level of production while maintaining a healthy work-life balance. He also works to educate real estate professionals, investors, and families on the similarities and differences between the 2008 and 2023 real estate markets, and has been interviewed numerous times for this topic.

If you'd like to learn more about Mike's work with Churchill or how you can join his award-winning team, please click below.

55 Capital


Mike is the founder and principal of 55 Capital, spearheading 10-20 real estate projects annually, comprising of both short and long term projects.

Over the last 10+ years the fund has executed on over 120 projects, all with positive investor returns.

Mike utilizes his proficiency and experience in the investment world to teach wealth building and investment strategies for real estate and mortgage professionals, and to provide one-on-one business and performance coaching to high level achievers.

If you are interested in requesting to participate in these private deals, please reach out to Mike below.

Recent Blog Posts

Bodybuilding Physique Challenge

Physique Competition

February 01, 20247 min read

The dedication, sacrifice, and discipline needed to compete at this level is second to none...It is a desire for self-improvement and a personal quest to maximize personal potential"

bodybuilding competition

When someone believes in you, it sparks a desire to grow, to achieve, and to satisfy that belief.  My trainer, Cayden Riley, believed in me. So did Ryan Bentson, owner of Zero Gravity gym.  Fueled by belief and encouragement, I set a goal - an ambitious one at that.  The goal was to compete in an IFBB / NPC men's physique competition.  And, to win a sword.  The swords are lined up and down the gym at Zero Gravity.  That allure of "The Sword" had captured me.

Aristotle said, "We first form our habits, and then our habits form us."  
Although I have always been a fairly disciplined person by nature, this competition and experience would require me to reach another gear of mental and physical discipline.  I needed to form some new healthy habits. Initially this new regimen seemed insurmountable as I have never embraced discipline with my daily eating, leaning on naturally high metabolism as a crutch.  

To reach my goal, I had to keep in mind and abide by the following:
1) Follow a strict nutrition plan / carb cycle for 8 weeks.
2) Keep my heart rate below 140 (sadly, no triathlons, cycling or mountain climbing)
3) Workout 5 days a week. Don't miss.
4) Understand the reality that proper diet and nutrition is 80% of the battle.
5) Learn proper stage presence/posing technique and commit to memory.
6) Course correct. Truth tellers (trainers) are essential.  Ask for guidance often.  

The physical transformation I experienced as the show approached was exciting.  I was skeptical at first, but the "carb cycle" results cannot be disputed. I did not think I had 15 pounds of fat available on my body to be burned off.  My trainer proved me wrong.

The day of the show was surreal. After spray tan is applied, (a surprising invasive experience for someone with a modest upbringing)  you look and feel like a different person. A sea of scantly clad bodies float by in every direction, leaving little to the imagination but displaying the months of hard work.  

As a competitor, I stay focused, hardly giving anyone else a second look.  However, I can't help but absorb the variety of demeanors jumping off the unnaturally tan faces of each competitor. Focused, self-absorbed, excited, anxious, proud, haughty, scared, ready, confident, lost, hopeful, eager.   

For me, anticipation builds leading up to the big moment. I am physically ready and mentally prepared for the 15-20 seconds of limelight.  

To be judged solely on appearance and physique rather than a speech, a product, intellect, or some sort of business value proposition, is a new concept for me.  My product is my physique. I will walk out on stage and will be accepted or rejected by the judges and crowd as compared to my peers.  I have always had a difficult time with vulnerability.  This experience brings vulnerability to an entire new level for me.

bodybuilding competition

Backstage I had a few powerful insights. Along the way and at the competition, it occurred to me that the "fitness" industry breeds two distinct types of people.  It seems that a significant cross section become highly self-absorbed.  When you spend large amounts of time in self critique and self focused, there is a pride and vanity that can creep in and take an individual hostage.  

Once that has you in your grasp, I would surmise that breaking free is next to impossible and a hollow and shallow existence potentially ensues. The need for validation only escalates to slay the insecurities.  Ironically as you age, the physical appearance slowly wanes leaving an individual struggling to be "god-like" and internal satisfaction that surfaces with the stage worthy physique.  The high that accompanies the admired physical state and related limelight it a powerful one.

This group was evident and in some cases slightly disturbing... They lived in their own world.  I have often heard and accepted that notion that "there is safety with a multitude of counselors".  I believe that human beings are masters of self-deception.  Without "truth-tellers" in your life, there are some extremes that can be accepted or justified that can push an initial healthy intention  into an unhealthy existence.

My biggest Insight and what pleasantly surprised me was another cross-section of this fitness sub-culture.  This group is the most genuine, disciplined, focused, inspiring, encouraging faction of people I have ever met.  I was highly encouraged by the quality and caliber of certain individuals as I engaged with some of the competitors.  The dedication, sacrifice, and discipline needed to compete at this level is second to none.  There is a depth of character and healthy discipline that runs deep in this group that is possibly unique to this sport. It is a desire for self-improvement and a personal quest to maximize personal potential. To conquer and to slay their internal demons while achieving a level of physical and physique excellence.  This group had inspired me and has completely changed my opinion of the industry.  

The level of self sacrifice, dedication, and discipline is worthy of the highest respect. Genuine. Focused. Disciplined. Caring. Encouraging. Motivated. Dedicated. I could go on, but you get the point. This group is truly the heart and soul of the industry - always on the edge in my opinion having an understanding of human nature, but keeping ego and ambition in check while genuinely seeking the betterment of themselves and of those around them.  "Seek to be worth knowing rather than to be well known" is the quote that comes to mind as I think about this group.

bodybuilding competition

My lesson to myself:
After a competition, take the time to focus exclusively on others for a window of time... Perhaps the same amount of time as the disciplined self focus in preparation for the show.  This will clear your mind of any vanity that may begin to surface and prevent it from taking a foothold in your life.

Most sports require you to be at your  peak physically and to "step up" mentally on game day.  The men's physique competition required a shift in thinking for me as I knew I would be depleted and at a weak point physically (and subsequently mentally as well) for my training and diet cycle to be "on point" land at the ideal aesthetic state for the physique competition.

To follow the rigors of training and strict diet for 8 weeks in exchange for 20 seconds of individual "performance" time on stage took a shift in thinking to mentally prepare in advance for every nuance of the 20 seconds of limelight.   That's about 80 thousand minutes of preparation for 20 seconds. For each second on stage it requires in my case 15 million seconds of discipline.

I know myself and that if I am depleted, I crash... and am only operating at half throttle mentally.  This was a concern of mine going into the competition.  

Having the physique posing routine down and memorized was essential to protect against any panic or potential forgetfulness that is customary under in the limelight. I practiced about 50 times and received some critique that helped immensely (in addition , special thanks to my work out partner Craig Arthur, Ryan Bentson, 4x champ Erik Bird, and Alexa.)

"We are all made up of thousands of others..."  A mentor of mine once told me that our world view is made up of the people that we meet, the books we read, and the experiences that we have.  This experience has expanded my perspective and allowed me to prove to myself that I have the internal strength of will to reach another gear.  For that I am eternally grateful.   

If you are wondering... Yes, I do plan to compete again.  It's in the blood now.  My goal is now to win the open overall and then earn a Masters pro-card.  Wish me luck.  

bodybuilding competition

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As Quoted In


"[Mike and Rick] are two of the most disciplined, the most forward thinking...they just have a passion for being their best and they're never done becoming better, and I love that about them.

The way that they lead their team on those same ideals is really spectacular to watch."



The Duncan Group

"Mike is a shining example of what is possible when you lead a life of intention and purpose, and he's an incredibly gifted leader in the mortgage industry.

You don’t want to miss hearing about the innovative wealth building and investment strategies that he’s used to build and sustain long term wealth in today’s market."


CEO & Founder,

The Defining Difference®


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