David Toupin is a Top Millennial real estate investor, speaker, and entrepreneur. David is the co-founder of Obsidian Capital, an Austin Texas based real estate investment firm. David started investing at the age of 20 in Michigan where he bought his first property in college, a 12 unit apartment complex. Prior to graduating with a Finance degree at the University of Detroit Mercy, David had acquired $7M in multifamily real estate holdings.
– How to get started early.
– Management is a hands-on business
– It’s surprisingly easy for the operations to go south if you’re not paying attention to it.
– Execution is the key.
– Learn how to manage employees based on their performance not on your emotion.
– 3rd party over self management?
– Do your due diligence.
– It’s always a good thing to ask around or get referrals when selecting a management company.
– People is everything!
– Never expect that everything will be perfect.
– Having a clean and safe property might be a small thing but it can go a long way.
– Retention is key to operations success!
– Taking pride in the ownership.
– It’s never the big things when it comes to retention, it’s all about the million little things.
– Having a good referral program can decrease your expenses for advertising.
– Be eager to learn.
– Importance of buying right.
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Welcome everybody to the Multifamily Operators podcast.
This is Joseph Golan, your host, and today we have David Toin. David, how are you today? I’m doing great man. It’s good. Good to catch up with you here. Thanks, Jeremy. Awesome. Yeah, thanks for coming. We usually start the podcast with just a few minutes where our guests tell our audience who they are, what they’ve done, just so we’ll have a bit, a better background of who you are.
Awesome. Yeah. So nice to meet you everybody. I’m David Tupin. Joseph and I have actually been friends for a couple years and Joseph’s. Been a mentor to me in a lot of ways. So it’s cool to be here. I’m a, a deal junkie. I guess it’s probably the best way to describe me. I freaking love real estate every part of it.
I’m 25 years old. I started investing when I was 1920 in college up in Michigan, where I bought my first apartment building with no money down using investors capital. It was a 12 unit complex, and since then, in the past four and a half, five years, I’ve bought a little under a thousand apartment.
As a primary sponsor and now have 200 units under development as well. And so been really growing that business focused on buying more solid apartment deals. Doing some more JVs now. And I also started a real estate tech company recently called a Real Estate Lab. where I’m building a multi, multi-family acquisitions platform.
First of its kind web, web and cloud-based. And so that’ll be launching early next year. And so now I guess I’m a software guy as well. . So this is all you’ve done and you’re already 25. Come on. You know, . I know. I need to step it up. . So just our audience is not used to having a guest that is that young.
Right. Which is why I wanted you on this podcast to show that there. Operators out there that are not 35, 40, 50 years old that have decades of experience. Right. So as you know, there’s a lot of podcasts out there that talk about the acquisition side and the financing side and how to find deals. This podcast focuses on operations.
Right. And I know you started hardcore operation Yeah. As young as it gets. Right. So, le let’s take that step back and, and you started with 19. Nine year old kid. Yep. Starting to be an operator right out of the blue. Right. So tell us a little bit about how did it go and some, some lessons of a 19 year old person when it comes to operation.
Yeah, it was I, I, it was tough to say the least because the first couple properties I bought the first 120 units, I self-managed all those. And I don’t know how I convinced the bank to let me do that, but I did somehow . But I self-managed ’em meaning that we handled the leasing oversaw the maintenance my, my third property, which is a little bigger as 96 units, I finally had onsite staff.
But the first two properties, 24 units. I did not. And so I had to hire an assistant in-house that would handle the leasing and you know, manage the tenants and the billing and all that in AppFolio. And so what I really learned quickly on is. management is a very hands-on business. It’s like, man, you wanna, you wanna take a break for a week, but you can’t because it, it is just something new day after day.
There’s always things that come up. You have to be on the ball. And it, it just showed me that it’s very easy to drop the ball and, and to let a property go. If you’re not paying attention to it. It’s very easy for it to start trending downwards instead of upwards. And. What I noticed is, you know, everyone that’s buying apartments and syndicating whatnot, we all have these great plans to bring the rents up and to improve the properties and do, do all these great things.
But there is so much work behind the scenes that goes into that, and execution is key. So I have, I learned not the hard way, school hard my man getting into it. That that’s great. And you know, as a, as a 19 year old kid, you, you can always say, you know what, not. Right, right. The hell with it. I’m going back to live with mom or I’m going to school and get a degree and just get a job.
What got you through all those obstacles, what got you through all the pain? Because there’s a lot of pain in, in what we do. But you know, it takes a special kind of person to persevere to all that and still wanna buy more. Right? Yeah. So, so what was it for you? What got you through all. Yeah, I mean, you know, I mean, you know me a little bit, I’m just, I’m just like highly motivated to continue growing and I wanted to keep buying more and more properties and for me it was just like, that was just the only option at the time.
I mean, I probably could have hired a management company, but. , I did it myself on those first couple properties. I, instead of charging eight to 10% on the small properties, I charged like 4%. So I really wasn’t even making as much as I should, but I did it because I really wanted those first deals to go well and to get a lot of money to the investors.
And so I also knew that being hands-on for a little while would probably slow me down and buying other deals. But what it did was I learned so much and so. You know, and funny you say that because I actually did live with my mom and my parents, right? I did. I was living with him. She could probably recall, he put ladder onto the car and down to the properties to go change a light bulb outside or whatever.
You know, I was, I was that hands on. I was doing a lot of little things every day. You know, sometimes I’d even go in and paint a unit to save some money. I’d do it myself and. So, you know, there’s, there’s just a lot that goes into it, figuring out that it, it’s, it’s not as simple as just doing it online either.
Somebody’s gotta be there every season. When the, you know, when it starts getting dark earlier to go in and change the timers on the outdoor lights. I mean, somebody’s gotta be there to do that. So it’s not dark in the parking lots and it’s not unsafe. There’s just all these little things that you start figuring out.
And so I just realized like, man, this is a very constant. and for me, I really did not, you know, and to this day, I don’t like management. I like subbing it out to third party because of it. The biggest learning experience was when I moved onsite and I house hacked at larger property. I really saw day-to-day and actually had to perform day-to-day management, including when one of my onsite managers quit, I had to jump in and do it for a couple months.
I was the leasing agent, I was handling the bookkeeping, the billing, cutting the checks, depositing the rent payments, like all that. I, I was doing it hands on. You know, and, and so I learned. how to hire, how to fire. You know, I’d fire my first employees. I had to hire some of my first employees. And going through all that was just a, was a good learning experience and, and just have a lot of good little nuggets that I got from that.
Okay. Yeah, that’s great. That kind of leads us to a question we ask all of our guests, third party versus in-house management. And we had one of your partners on the podcast earlier Mike, and he kind of suggested. , they went from in this previous company from self-management into third party.
And you’re talking about, I started self-managing and now I prefer third party, which is kind of the opposite direction of most of our guests so far including myself. We started with third party and we transitioned to self-management with all the pain that comes with it. So, so what is your insight on third party versus self?
I prefer third party. If you could find a good one. I totally prefer third party management over self-management. I see why people bring management in house to control it better. It is not a profitable business. I think you’d probably attest to that, and most people would attest to that. You’re not making money and you’re actually creating more headaches, but you can maintain more control over it if you do.
especially if you’re in a position or in a market where there’s not good management companies, which there’s a lot of markets like that, and you just can’t find a good one, and you strike out, and you strike out and, and you can’t find a good regional or whatever. It’s, and you need to take over to take control of it.
I totally get that. I hate management, so I, you know, I don’t want anything to do with it. So my business partners know a lot more. Owning management company. They’ve done it before. You know Glenn and mm-hmm. . And then Mike, who you interviewed recently, he, you know, he worked with Glenn a lot that on their former company.
I, I haven’t been in a position yet where I’ve had enough assets at one time. You know, I’ve bought a thousand units, but right now I only have a couple hundred because a lot of those I’ve sold and flipped. So I’ve never had like a thousand at one time where it makes sense scale-wise to bring it in-house.
So I, my mind might change at some. You know, as we’re buying more and more assets and growing, like, hey, it makes sense. But for right now, I mean it, we have good management companies on the assets we have in different markets. Yeah. And, and that’s kind of like, I wanna go back to a statement you made in, in this last answer is kind of, if you can find a good one.
So as you mentioned, there are some markets that finding a good one is really challenging. So how do you go about finding a good one, finding a good property management that you can trust or what are you looking in a property management company that that fits your criteria? Yeah, I mean, this is, it’s a huge decision choosing a property management company.
And so don’t take it lightly when you’re doing your due diligence. If you’re in a new market and you don’t have a contact put some time into it. I would say the easiest. Is call apartment owners in the area, ask who they’re using, call 10 different ones that are using 10 different management companies and see what their experience is and get a warm referral.
I think the, the number one way to find a good third party company is get a referral from somebody else that owns a property nearby and ask ’em how they’re doing. . Other than that, I mean, you could, you could literally just Google. A lot of people ask like, how do you find a management company? You could just Google property management companies in x, y, Z city and it’ll pop up.
You know, they have website and you can go and fi figure out, you know, which ones are in the area and start interviewing them. Ask them for references. But I think the, a warm referrals always the best way. An introduction from somebody else that’s using someone. Gotcha. So, so you’re basically looking for who do I know in that market and, and try to gauge their.
Yeah, that, that’s a good way to go at it. This would probably be better for the smaller property management companies, the bigger ones that are national, you know what I’ve found is that there are a lot of hidden miss with them, right? They can, I, I have friends that have thousands of units in, in third party, and the same natural company is doing great in one market and not so great in other markets.
It’s people. It’s all people, right? You can have a great regional manager with the same, the same company that manages 15,000. You know, let’s say in DFW, Texas, Austin and San Antonio, they might do a great job in Dallas cuz they have a really great regional on your property and some good onsite staff, but they might do terribly in San Antonio where they have, you know the employees aren’t so great, you know, so you just, it’s man, it’s, it’s people, people’s everything.
And so I can see why, you know, once you get to scale, you wanna bring it in house. Cause you could then control and go hire the right regional, hire the right onsite, and you’re more in control. Makes sense. Completely. Yeah. Okay. That’s great. So you’re currently working with property management companies, multiple property management companies, right?
So how do you work with them? Right? How does it look like? How often do you meet, who do you meet with? Do you talk to the regional, do you talk directly to the onsite managers? How does that work for you guys? Yeah, I wanna I. I’m gonna say we here, but Mike, you interviewed, he does most of this and the asset management takeover.
I, I do most of the work up until closing and then kind of hand it off. But you know, in the past I have done it and I’ll explain kind of how Mike does it a little bit further, but we just stay in constant communication with them. We have Spreadsheets and tools that we use to track all different kinds of metrics.
And so every week when we get our owner’s reports and our cash POS position documents we will go in and we’ll input these into our spreadsheets that, that track all this data. And help us asset manage. And so we maintain close oversight on, on the metrics. We track every single lease in our spreadsheets as well.
We input it and we’ll get to see, hey, is it a renovated or non renovated unit for this property? What was the original lease? What was the last lease rate? What’s our increases over each of them? So we’re looking diligently at every single lease. And then we’re communicating a couple times a week with the regional.
And then we’re also. You know, once a week or, or sometimes more or less with the onsite manager themselves. And so we’re actually talking to him. And then the next thing we’ll do is we’ll do site visits every month, every property. And ensure that, you know, they’re not missing things. There’s always little things that get missed and nobody will ever take as good care as the owner or care as much as the owner.
And so you just have to understand that going in, that it, they’re, they’re not gonna be perfect, and you kind of have to babysit ’em a little bit. And so we’ll walk through the property and say, Hey, well you missed this, or this balcony is getting a little worn down. You need to paint that. Or, Hey, this sign is hanging , you know, needs another screw.
Little things like that. And I think that’s the attention that takes to run a nice property. Really need to be hands on with the management company and, and babysit them and make sure they’re, you’re holding them accountable to the plan. You can’t, you can’t just expect to hire them and everything’s gonna go great.
I mean, and I would love for that, but I, in my experience, it’s not how it works. . That’s wishful thinking, right? Wishful thinking. So tell me a little bit about those benchmarks that you guys are measuring, right? It sounds very interesting for our audience to know what kind of things you’re tracking, right?
So you mentioned the leases. So I’m assuming you’re looking at or the, what’s the difference between the established market rate and then what the actual rate is that you got leased in and when you turn, you see if you get the bumps that you expect from the renovations, but what other market benchmarks or, or property benchmark you guys are looking at?
Yeah, so some of the biggest things we’re looking at are what are our renewal rate increases versus. New leases you know, what, how much are we increasing the renewals versus how much are we getting a bump when we have a new tenant coming in? And then we further divide that up into renovated versus classic units and for each category.
So we’re looking at those and that’s, that’s in terms of the rents. We’re also every month comparing our actual financial performance in terms of every expense category to our budget or to our original under. How are we progressing? And then how close are we on our average collections and revenue and other income every month compared to our budget?
So we’re kind of lining it up side by side and putting that into our tracker, and then looking at that. Another thing we track that, you know, might seem a little more rudimentary, but we still do it every month, is we charge asset management fees on deals we syn. And that fee does not always get paid on autopilot, right?
You can tell ’em, Hey, every month, send me this fee. You’ll notice every month they’ll pay their, their self, the property management fee before they pay the asset management fee. And so, you know, once you start getting multiple properties, we need to make sure we’re collecting our fee and our income there.
So we have a tracker every month to ensure that the check comes in, or the wire sent for our fees, and making sure that gets paid. and then we’re tracking, you know, our, our past four quarter of distributions to our investors and ourselves. We’re tracking that actual to budgeted and, hey, what’s our, what’s our next budgeted distribution and what does our n o I need to be every month to hit that?
And then on top of that, we were tracking our monthly NOI and, you know, t3, T six T 12, and, and what’s the current valuation of the property based on that at all times. Gotcha. Okay. Yeah, that, that makes sense. You, you look at all the parameters and you also look at the big pictures. Right, exactly.
What is the property value? How are we improving or not improving? And do we get the progress against the original plan we we set up to go on? Right? Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. So I know you guys do a lot of value add. I know you’ve done that in your previous deals as well. One of the questions we repeat and ask our guests is kinda like when you come into a value add project, other than increasing rent and implementing rubs, which is an answer almost everybody gives us, right?
Give us two, three other things that you guys do to increase income. We’ll, we’ll touch on the expense side a little bit later. Other ways to generate income streams, other ways to increase income on specific line items. Things that you’ve done in the past, cuz I know you’ve, you’ve bought properties improved and sold them, right.
What was the best bank for your buck other than rubs and, and rent? Yeah, I mean, once you’re doing, you have rent and, and you’re, you’re doing rubs and you have your other main, like say there’s storage on site and you start collecting, I just bought a, a portfolio of 11 apartment buildings. Most of them have basements.
This is up in Michigan, and they you know, they have storage, but they weren’t being charged for. So we’re gonna go in and implement a plan to start charging back for the you know, the cage storage lockers in the. Stuff like that. I mean, I think once you have your other income in line and, and you’re, you’re collecting, you know, if you look at it on a per unit basis, I’d say most properties on average, collect between well-managed properties with a good management company will collect between 300 to 500 per unit annually.
And other income. If you’re, if you’re below that 300, I think there’s room to grow. If you’re above that 500, like you’re doing a hell of a job. And so if you’re in that range, I think what people, then the next level of this that people forget about. Is that, once again, the people aspect of things and you know, you obviously you budget in when you’re buying these properties.
What’s my, you know, potential loss to lease concessions, bad debt and all that stuff. And our, you know, our rent collections we obviously focus on, but how can we improve, like resident retention? And how do we improve when we have renewals or you know, lease up, you know, new leases, like how do we improve people staying longer, less, less vacancy, more retention?
Like it’s a people thing. People will stay there if they really enjoy living there. , the property’s always kept clean. So like paying attention to the little things. Always keeping a clean property, like I’ll pay extra for cleaners just to have the common areas always looking great and feeling good and no trash around the property, stuff like that.
And then making sure your on tight team is really on top of their customer service and, and, and not dropping the ball. And I think you’ll just see naturally over time, like you’re already doing all the other income. I mean, there’s no secret to that. There’s, there’s things you can do to add. , you get out a cable contract, whatever, to bring more income.
There’s all these things that people know about, but like at the end of the day, what is your service like? Are you running a good property? If you were to walk through there and lease an apartment, would you enjoy that experience? Would you enjoy living there? Do you feel safe? Those kind of things. I think people forget about the fact that we’re providing housing to people, you know, not just not just looking at spreadsheets.
So if you can improve that over time, I think you’ll see that your income will just naturally. . Yeah. I, I think you’re spot on. A lot of people that we, we, I’ve talked to in the past are always focusing on leases and, and leasing up and, and getting more leases and getting more traffic, but they kind of neglect the, the back door, right?
There’s no point in leasing 20 units if, if you lost 25. Yeah, . Exactly. And every time we lose a a resident, that means there’s gonna be a turn and we’re gonna have to spend money to make that unit ready for the next person. We’re gonna have to spend money to market it. We’re gonna have to spend money for the labor of the leasing agent to go through all the motions of finding the prospect, qualifying them, running the application.
So there’s just a lot of cost in every. and that’s where we always try to kind of help people understand retention is key. Right. So I, I heard some of the key factors in retention in, in what you said, and we always say people want clean, safe places to live in. Right. Amen. And, and then, you know, one of the things that I look at our team members and, and evaluating them, it’s kinda like if I walk around the property with them and they see a piece of trash on the floor, if.
Bend over, pick it up. Right. Then we got a problem. Yeah. Right. That’s something that I expect them to do right as they walk on the property, as they see trash. If the manager walks and see there’s somebody at a little party last night and it’s a little trashy outside, send our grants guy immediately out there to take care of it or send our maintenance guys, whoever we need to in order to make sure that this gets picked.
Dude, I can tell a good owner from a bad owner too, cuz I’ve seen people, I’ve driven properties with owners and you know, they’re showing me properties and I see. All over. And it’s like, dude, you’re the owner and you’re not even stopping. Like, it doesn’t matter if I’m by myself or I’m showing somebody maybe a friend or another investor, like you’ll always see me whenever I see a piece of trash on one of my properties.
I will stop every single time and I’ll pick it up and I’m gonna go throw it out. Like it doesn’t matter how much I’ll spend an hour doing it if I have to. And now I’m gonna go yell at my maintenance guy for not doing it. But, you know, we, we typically like to hire people that, and, and tell that to people we hire right away.
It’s the same thing, like you take pride of. You pick up trash. Not only, you know, it’s good for the property, but it’s good for the environment. But you know, I, yep. You gotta take good care. Keep it clean and Exactly. And safe is the other thing, right? So when you look at exterior per light perimeter lights and, and all the maybe gates fencing and all these kind of stuff, to make sure that people feel safe is also very crucial on retention.
So cleaning safe are obviously the top. Is there any other things that you guys do or you’ve done in your previous properties to increase retention? To kind of make the resident happy? I don’t know, parties or giveaways or whatever. Give us some ideas for our listeners on how they can promote retention in their properties.
Yeah, we’ve done some like giveaways, like gift card type of things. We’ve done, you know, before I had done something where we’ll bring out like a food truck, you know, a couple times a year and residents can have like a cool little get together. We’ll have like little Christmas parties, stuff like that.
Just fun things that the residents or their kids can get involved in. You know, Halloween we’ll have some candy set out and some decorations just making it feel like more like home. and just being really friendly with the residents. I think that’s always a good thing to do. Yeah. Any creative things post covid that you guys have been doing?
Because we all also used to do the parties and the open houses and all that. But now we can’t do that. Right. Yeah. It was very, very sad summer that we couldn’t do a pool party. Right. Yeah. And so on. So what, is there anything that you guys found a creative way in the Corona environment to still give something to the re residents?
Nothing that I specifically have heard about from our management company recently. Sorry, I don’t have a better, a better answer for that, but No, I, I haven’t, I haven’t really put a ton of thought into, you know, post covid. I know they’re probably still having some small gatherings and like some candy out on Halloween.
I know they, they would do for people to stop in, you know, but they gotta wear their mask now and stuff. Yeah. The larger gatherings we can’t do. So I, I think that’s been something difficult. I, I doubt you’re gonna get all the residents on like a Zoom call. Right. To join in and, and you know, if I, you know, I’ve rented from apartments before.
If I got invited to do that, I probably wouldn’t personally, so I don’t, I don’t know. I don’t know. It’s, it’s a tough question. It is something I think we all have to think about. Ha. Have you guys done anything? All different. I, I, I don’t know. I think after nine months of being shut down from the world, people might actually join a Zoom club.
I know they might now. You’re right, you’re right. They might they money. Yeah. No. One of our properties is small enough. It’s only 22 units. And it’s a, a nice area you could call class A property. So what we did is we just bought a bunch of h. Bags, like really small bags loaded up with candy and just hang a little baggie on each door.
And we got so many great feedback. Oh my God, it was so nice for us. It was like Saturday morning for Halloween. It’s a great idea. What? It was so fun to open the door and find the candy. Thank you for the candy. It’s like the cost was, I don’t know, maybe a three bucks a door. It’s nothing. But it made everybody so happy.
And then that’s the thing that if I could give advice on, on customer retention. It’s never the big things, it’s never the big gestures or the big parties, it’s the small things. Right? I think you nailed it on the head when you said customer service. But it also, whatever little things you can do for your residents and there’s a lot of those little things that you can still do during COVID.
Yeah, I. I agree. Yeah, that gave me a good idea. We’re gonna do something like that for Christmas. I like that. Well, giveaways are easy, right? Because giveaways do not require gathering, right? So we will have, if for Christmas, we will have Christmas decoration party who’s got the nicest patio, the nicest front door, or the nicest porch, whatever.
And then we’ll give away either gift cards or what we like to give away is, Because if you look at the prices of, of TVs these days, they, they drop so low. Yeah. You buy a really nice TV for like 300 bucks or less. Right. Or less. So it’s like you can get 15 inch TV for like 150 bucks. Yeah. So, so every year, usually every year I buy like 10 of them at least.
Oh, nice. And then we give them away in, in multiple occasions throughout the year. Ah, that’s cool. And. The We do draws, we do draws for gift cards, for paying on time and, and, and all this kind of stuff. So we always try to make sure we engage the community. Mm-hmm. , even if right now we can’t bring them all to us, we’ll try to go out to them and we’ll try to reach out to them and talk to them.
That’s pretty cool. . Yeah. So we talked about the income side of things. Let’s, let’s flip the conversation to the expense. Cuz as you know, in multi-family valuation, every dollar we increase in income and every dollar we reduce in expenses are practically equal. Right. To, to the value of the property.
So give us two, three ideas that you’ve, in the past, in your properties you’ve done in order to decrease expenses. Get more. Sure. I think one of the couple biggest things, advertising costs can be reduced. And you see in bigger markets now on these, you know, large properties we have before when we were spending, you know, ad dollars, $10,000 would go a long way.
Right? And now we’re spending 20, 30, $40,000 for the same because. Because these websites are just increase apartments.com, right? They increase their prices every year. And so now we’re paying, we’re paying more for the same amount of advertising. And so one thing you can do to reduce that is, is implement a really good referral program.
And, and obviously it goes on top of the customer service thing again, right? The better of a experience you provide, the more likely somebody, even after they’ve moved out, is gonna be likely to refer. Your property goes up. So having a good referral program, you could spend a lot. You know, on that than you would on marketing.
Even if you’re giving away, you know, a $200 gift card to somebody for referring a tenant you know, if they refer a good tenant, you could drop your vacancy and and, and decrease your advertising. Repairs and maintenance is something I see that you know, people on older properties are spending, you know, 4 50, 500, 600, 700 a unit sometimes on, on repairs and maintenance.
if you buy a property and you go, or if you already own a property and you’re seeing really high, you know, annual per unit expenses that are outside the range of what a typical well-run property, well-maintained property is having, which I would say in my opinion is between like 350, 400 a unit. If you’re way outside of that or way over that, or you’re double that, Put $50,000 into your property right now to go repair the big headache issue things.
Or when you buy a property, raise money up front, extra money and, and take care of all those things. Go fix a bunch of the HVACs all at once or go you know, go repair a lot of the plumbing or take care of, you know, if you, you have units that are constantly getting water damage. Go put in a French drain outside, reroute the water, like get a new gutter system, do that big stuff up front because the money you’ll save, you know, in noi, let’s say you should be spending $40,000 a year based on market averages and you’re spending 80 or 90 a year on repairs and maintenance.
Go spend 60 grand. One time cap reduce and you’re gonna in, in CapEx or a hundred grand in CapEx and reduce your ongoing maintenance by 50,000 a year. I mean, it’ll pay itself off in two years, first of all. But $50,000 at a six cap is like a million bucks, right? So, you know, you’re, you’re increasing, increasing the value tenfold on what you’re.
Yep. I just, you gotta think about it that way. I, and I, it blows my mind how these old, old owners don’t think of things that way. They’re trying to save every penny, but it’s like, you realize your n n I gives you exponential increase over what you’re spending. So, yep. Things like that. That’s great. That’s great.
Yeah. A lot of people are looking at things black or white. I have to do this or I do that. Should I do this? Should I do that? And I’m, life is never that simple. Right. Usually the answer is it. So we’ve had the, the usual conversation. It’s like, okay, this we have a resident that’s up for renewal and he’s a hundred dollars away from market rate.
And we talked to the resident. They say, I can only go up $50. Is it worth getting them out and, and renovating the unit and spending the money to do that? Or should we leave them and take the $50 loss to lease? Right. Well, it’s not a black and white answer. It. , if I’m in ongoing smooth operation mode, I want the tenant to stay.
Right? Because for $600, I can’t turn that unit correct. Right. On the other hand, if I’m gearing up for a refi or a sale and I wanna show max rent and I have a 99% property occupied property with a waiting list, might be worth my time to get it out, put the CapEx in so I can increase the. Yeah. So again, it all depends on which stage of stage of the property lifecycle you are and what your considerations are.
Agreed. Totally agree. Awesome. Well, I know you have a hard stop soon, so I want to ask well, this is a question we usually ask our, our guests because they are more mature than you are in, in age. What would you tell young David? But David is young, right? David is young. Wouldn’t I tell younger David
Yeah. Let’s see, what do you say? Younger David. And by the way, I, I told you that the first time I met you. Right? And I keep seeing that in you. It’s like where you are compared to your age and other people your age. It’s unbelievable. It’s phenomenal. So if to copy mark Cuban from Shark Tank
Good job, man. Glad, so glad. I appreciate it, man. Good job, man. Hey, you know, put a lot of hard work in and I, I love doing it. So it’s been, it’s been a fun and wild ride so far. I think it’s just hopefully keeps getting crazier, but so let’s take a twist on our usual question. Okay. Instead of, what would you say younger, David, what would you say to other people your age that want to do what?
How can they be like you? How can, how can they be successful as you? work as hard as I do. That’s the first thing. I mean, you know, if you really want this, the level of success and you wanna do it early and young or, or wherever you are really, I mean, expect to put in a lot of time and, and really just grab onto the industry.
If you love this and you love like apartments, right? Which is what we do you’ve gotta, you’ve gotta really want to master it. And I think that’s one thing that I’ve done since I’ve started is every aspect of it. I wanna learn. I wanna get better at, I, I’m hands on. You know, I don’t just like half-assed, I’m like fully in, immersed in it because I want to become an expert at it.
And so you know, I think the time I put in reflects that, you know, the 80 hours week every week for years and years and years is, you know, that’s just what I do. And and, and the time I put into it’s really helped me become that. So I think that’s one thing. And if I were to give a little bit more technical advice learn the numbers because this is a very numbers driven.
and you can, you can be the back of the napkin type of person. And I’ve seen it work. I’ve also seen it go wrong. To date, I’ve never bought a deal that’s lost money. I’ve never not hit projections to investors. I’ve only, I’ve only exceeded on every single deal. And the way I do that is I’m really conservative and I just, I, I think we buy right.
You know, we buy the right chance of deals. And now, you know, I’m not gonna say I. Also gotten lucky with the market doing very well over the past couple years. But in general, I think, you know, if you really understand the numbers, you can avoid buying deals that otherwise would be bad. So know the numbers.
Sounds great, man. And you know what I think another attribute that I can attest from the side is being humble, right? Because everybody at your age would be looking at the nice cars and the nice watches and the, the whatever it. And you just said 10 minutes ago, if I see trash on the floor, I’ll stop, I’ll go pick up the trash.
Yeah. Even if it takes me an hour. Right. So it’s not only hard work, it’s also the attitude of, it’s like I’m, I’ll get my hands dirty, I’ll do whatever it takes. Right? Absolutely. And, and I share that same mentality with you. If I need to load the trash in my, the back of my truck or drag a trailer you know, go put on some you know, maintenance t-shirt and yeah.
Do whatever you need to do. Good, man. I love that. And, and we do that all the time. So it’s kinda like, I, I think that’s another very important attribute that you have that people your age could really gain from copy. Yeah. I think that’s key too. Yep. I. Awesome, man. I know it’s been short, but there’s so much value in this conversation.
I really appreciate you being with us. If our guests want to find you, reach out to you, invest in one of your deals, how can they find you? And obviously we’ll put everything in the show notes. Yeah, so our website is obsidian capital code.com. And probably the best way to reach me personally is through Instagram, if you have it.
Most people do nowadays, so it’s at, at Real Estate. Jedi is my handle real estate. Jedi. Good job, man. Yep. Gimme follow. Thanks brother. Awesome. Thank you so much for being with us and for you, the audience. If you want to hear more podcasts with operators just subscribe to our podcast wherever you are.
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