Recently, my business partner said, “Some people build a business. Not you. You build a business and you build your house!” What can I say? The smart answer is that I ‘totally got this’ and I’m pulling it off flawlessly, according to plan. The realistic answer is that I jump into things when they feel right and figure things out on the fly. I look for well-timed opportunities with the potential for strong upside and major personal growth. But I don’t know what twists and challenges await, what may go off track, or the shape of the outcome.
We didn’t plan on completely rebuilding the property. It was supposed to be a quick DIY remodel that we’d flip in 2-3 years. Two years later the property is not quite finished, and is basically new, save for the footprint and the framing.
As things stand, we’re not leaving anytime soon. It’s no longer a flip, it’s a hold. And it’s home. What happened? On the one hand, we made the first-timer “mistake” of designing to our tastes rather than doing the MVP needed for a true flip. On the other hand, we assessed market trends and data, as well as our ability, resourcefulness, and willingness to put in the work for a long-term growth play.
What an experience! Frustrating, even infuriating at times but also fun, challenging and rewarding. The process was so different than I thought it would be. Did we overspend? Probably. Could we have done less? Possibly. Have I developed new skills, abilities, and know-how? Absolutely. Will I do it again? Ask me later!
This experience, I realize, isn’t dissimilar to building a business. I’ve been an entrepreneur for a decade, launching brands and businesses; failing at some, succeeding at others. I don’t always need all the details up front – where would be the fun in that?! I’ve learned that adaptability, perseverance, curiosity, and optimism are requisites, especially during tough times. Most importantly, I’ve learned that innovation rooted in a desire to do good work and to make a meaningful impact leads to success, no matter how you measure it.
I feel this way about crowdfunding, crowdfinancing and the impact that regulations, startups, and the omnipresent Internet are having in real estate and finance. With AI, advanced algorithms and machine learning coming into play, we’re on the crest of the next wave of change, progress, and uncertainty as to where it will all lead.
While I cannot predict the future, every day is an opportunity to work towards goals, growth, and a better future. What I can count on is that I always put my passion and vision into anything I jump into, never knowing where it will lead but trusting that the process is the teacher and that I’ll forever be a student.
This was my contribution to Private Lender magazine's 'Last Call' section of the July-August edition. As many know, I've been rebuilding the house I bought two years ago, and working with emerging companies in the fintech space - first with Patch of Land and now with AlphaFlow.