The first deal is critical. Once you get your first deal done, the second and third follow automatically. We call it the law of the first deal. But there's a bit of a different mindset with people as they approach the syndication business.
Some people stick their toe in; they do a small deal of a duplex or 10 unit. They get things scraped together, and get in the game. Then there are those who have a bigger idea in mind. They treat it more like a business. You can see the difference in the way they approach things. For example, the latter may put up a website, or put an office together. They may immediately look for a partner, or start putting a platform together.
Which is better when you're getting into real estate?
Making it a side gig that you treat like a hobby and slowly ramp up, or building a business from day one?
There's not really a right or wrong approach, but if you do want to want to create a business out of it, you have to think about who you're serving. Your income will directly relate to where you're adding value. Where are you increasing standard of living? You get paid because you're adding value for your investors.
If you're doing a two flat on the side, for example, you're only adding value to your residence and maybe a small bank at a small level, versus buying a 300 unit complex. Now you have a large staff, your property management company – a lot of dollars out there. On the debt side, you have investors, and a lot more that's happening.
We've been in both seats and it's interesting on both sides. All paths lead to the same destination, which is first deal, second deal, third deal, quitting your job, but the people who treat this as more of a business have a bigger vision in place, and they're more willing to invest early on.
For example, in the early days, I would say, look at all these asset management fees. It's pure profit, because I didn't have any overhead. I didn't want to spend any money on the overhead, so I was doing everything. But what I realized is that me doing everything held me back from really scaling.
The impact you can make in a 12-unit building is markedly different than than 300 units, both on your investors, your tenants, and the bank. People who treat it more as a business scale a lot faster because they're willing to spend money in the business. They're willing to hire a virtual assistant; they're willing to invest in content, they're going to go out and find one or more joint venture partners. They're already thinking that they are at the helm of a multi million dollar business, which all syndicators are, whether you are the hobbyist and you're just starting small, or you're going in big.
The point is, anyone who gets a syndication is at the helm of a multi million dollar business. And thinking this way sets you up for more success, helps you scale faster, and in the process – because you're surrounding yourself with people – helps you avoid some larger mistakes.
Aligning yourself with a mentor or investing in your education, for example. If you're aa hobbyist, you're gonna figure it out, but you're going to make mistakes, and it can take longer.