Real Estate

How to Grow Your Rental Portfolio EVEN Faster


Do you really need a real estate partnership for your deals? What are the benefits, and do they outweigh the risks? Well, it depends. The truth is that, while great partnerships will deliver value to both sides, bad partnerships will turn belly-up in no time.

Welcome a very special edition of the Real Estate Rookie podcast, where our hosts, Tony and Ashley, talk about their latest book, Real Estate Partnerships. There are several reasons why a rookie investor might benefit from having a partner. Maybe they lack the capital for a particular deal, or maybe there are knowledge gaps where the expertise of a more seasoned investor might prove helpful.

If you’ve wondered whether forming a partnership is the right move for you, you’re in luck—this episode is all about partnerships! Tune in to learn where to look for a partner, how to structure a partnership, and the differences between equity partnerships and debt partnerships. Our hosts also share the single greatest sign of whether a partnership will succeed.

Remember to grab your copy of Real Estate Partnerships and use code “PARTNER310” at checkout for an exclusive discount!

Ashley:
This is Real Estate Rookie, episode 310. If one partner wants to grow and scale and get to a billion dollar portfolio, the other one just wants enough money to retire and then go live on a boat in the Bahamas, those might not be the same paths for everyone. Those are definitely going to cause a why in your partnership. So it’s important to have those conversations to understand where are we going to go, where are we going to continue to go.
My name is Ashley Kehr and today I am hosting the Real Estate Rookie Podcast and the BiggerPockets Real Estate podcast.

Tony:
And we’re here live in Los Angeles in the Spotify recording podcast studios and we’re here with David Greene and Robert Abasolo. All in person, four podcast hosts doing the thing, man. We’re excited to be here.

Rob:
The podcast dream team. We did it. We did it in the land where dreams are made.

Ashley:
Yeah. Feel walking into Spotify today.

Rob:
Very legit.

Tony:
How cool is you guys, you were going to be on our podcast today.

Rob:
Extremely cool. Extremely cool.

David:
I thought that you guys own Spotify, actually, when I was walking in here that you just recorded here all the time.

Tony:
Yeah, we do.

Ashley:
I’m living my Alex Cooper dream. I just got my $60 million Spotify deal.

Tony:
We got the spot bugs.

Rob:
Yeah, we walked in and we’re like, “We’re here with BiggerPockets,” and they’re like, “Sorry, what is that? Are you one of the vendors? Are you the coffee guy?” I’m like, “Okay. Yeah, it’s my studio.”

Ashley:
Who ordered DoorDash?

Rob:
Exactly.

David:
We’re a dry cleaning company and we get rid of clothes with very large pockets.

Tony:
Very large pockets. Yeah. Well guys, we’re here today to talk about a book. So David Greene, you’re obviously an author a few times over, but Ash and I have partnered together to write a book about real estate partnerships and it’s launching on August 10th. If you guys want to learn more about the book, head over to biggerpockets.com/partnerships.

Ashley:
If you guys are interested in getting your own partnership, go to biggerpockets.com/partnership and you can use the code partner 310 to get a nice little discount.

David:
In today’s show, we’re talking all things partnership. Should you have one? How should you have one? How should they be structured? Should you be debt? Should you be equity? What to look for in a partner, what to look for in someone that shouldn’t be your partner. How to get out of a partnership. This is probably the most thorough show we’ve ever done talking about partnerships and you guys wrote a book about it. So if you guys like this, go pick up the book and if you don’t like this show, I don’t know what to tell you. You need to see a therapist, because this is great work.

Rob:
This is was a good show. This might be my favorite show ever.

David:
Yeah, you guys even get into my life a little bit here.

Tony:
We do.

Ashley:
Do a little therapy session.

Tony:
We get David Greene to open up a little bit.

Rob:
So legitimately, that’s what I liked about this episode is we talked about the concepts of partnerships in the world of real estate, but we also contextualize a lot of the concepts with our own personal stories and anecdotes of many, many years of investing. So I think no matter if you’re a rookie investor or someone looking to scale up and get into the a partnership, this is going to be a very useful episode for you.

David:
And make sure you listen all the way to the end because we get deep into a concept of communication. If you’ve had a hard time communicating with other people or you feel like you’re not seen and you’re not heard, this could really help with getting your point across so other people can understand. Ashley, Tony, thank you very much for having Rob and I on your podcast and thank you for being on our podcast. We’ve got a bit of a crossover going.

Tony:
Yeah, yeah. It’s like an inception thing going on. It’s a podcast within-

Rob:
The Marvel Cinematic podcasting universe coming together.

Tony:
That’s true.

David:
Do you remember when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles first had a GI Joe crossover?

Tony:
I was not born yet, I don’t think when that happened-

Rob:
That was before my time.

Tony:
Yeah.

David:
Well, this is what it felt like. Smart ass. So yes, we all do the podcast together. Me, the old man, you, the young pups, and we’re going to be talking about your new book Real Estate Partnerships. Congratulations, by the way in writing the book. Before we get into it, what was the thing about writing a book that nobody knows will happen that clearly happened?

Ashley:
It’s really aggravating.

Rob:
Isn’t it?

Tony:
I think the bigger challenge for me was just taking the time, we’re entrepreneurs or business people, and it’s dedicating however many hours of your day to just sit down in front of the computer and do nothing else but write. That was a challenge for me, but the actual process I thought was actually, it was pretty cool.

Rob:
Kind of funny, because it’s kind of like y’all partnered up to write a book about partnerships.

Tony:
That was actually intentional.

Ashley:
Yeah.

Rob:
And stick around until the very end of the podcast and I’m actually going to read the endorsement that I wrote that never made it into the book, but they’re very good.

David:
Exclusive content. They cannot find it anywhere else. Literally-

Rob:
Subscribe to the Patreon.

David:
Because it does not exist anywhere else, because it didn’t make it into the book. So if you guys want to hear the mediocre at best endorsement that wasn’t making the cut stick around and you’re going to hear-

Rob:
Stick around to the end.

David:
This is why Rob has it written a book.

Rob:
And that’s what we call a hook in Hollywood because we’re live in Los Angeles from the Spotify studios. We’ve arrived.

David:
All right, so let’s talk partnerships. Do I need a partner? I’ve always been a bit of a desperado from that Old Eagle song that you guys also won’t know because if you didn’t know what GI Joe was, you definitely won’t know The Eagles, but I’ve always done things myself. Should people like me get a partner? Who’s the right person to get a partner? What’s your thoughts there/

Tony:
I think first let me ask, why have you always gone the lone wolf route? What has made you shy away from partnerships and we can kind of break into why it might be beneficial.

David:
Much like the song Desperado-

Ashley:
This is now a therapy session.

David:
Yes. I’ve been out riding fences for so long now-

Rob:
We go lay down on that ottoman really fast and we’re just going to break this down.

David:
Tell me how do you feel?

Rob:
What does it make you feel when you hear the word partnership? I can see our producer’s eyes. He’s like, “We’re going to edit this so much.”

David:
That is a good question. I think that the conflict of vision has been a problem. The times I have had a partner, it’s usually in a business, not with a property, but the conflict of vision is tough. Somebody is going to have to submit to someone else. That’s like a dirty word in today’s culture. Nobody wants to submit to anything. But it’s the reality.
Like Rob and I have a property together and I typically end up submitting or deferring to his judgment because he has more experience in the short-term rental space. So I trust myself to recognize when I don’t know what the right move is. We were just at the house yesterday having a conversation about the decor and I was like, “I can’t tell if it’s ugly or not. I really don’t know.”

Rob:
It’s true.

David:
And he’s so confident. He’s like, “Oh no, no, no, that has to go. Absolutely not.”

Rob:
I was like, that is the ugliest thing I’ve ever seen. He’s like, “It’s nice.” I’m like, “It’s not.”

David:
Yeah, it’s bad. So I know, all right, when it comes to that, I’m going to let Rob do his thing. I know the things that I’m good at. The partnerships I’ve been in outside of Rob have usually been the other person fighting with me. They think they know better. They want to go with what their gut says, and often motivations are not the same. So my motivation is what makes the most money. Theirs may be their ego wants to get it. They want to use this as some shining beacon to sell courses outside of our partnership so that they want a property that doesn’t perform well but looks really good, so they can tell people.
They want to be able to brag to a girl at a bar that they’re a business owner of some type and so the business isn’t being run well. There’s always a problem in that degree. So just owning the thing myself and then delegating out the work has been a little bit easier for me, but clearly you guys have scaled to a level that I haven’t in some areas of life and I think that’s due to partnership. So now that I put my baggage out there, what do you guys think about this? Doctor fill me?

Tony:
Yeah. Well, I mean first I totally agree. I think the alignment of goals of long-term vision is super important and Ashley and I talk about this all the time. I think you wrote that chapter on the alignment piece, right?

Ashley:
Yeah.

Tony:
I mean dive into that.

Ashley:
So keeping aligned when you start your business, it’s easy to be excited like, this is what we want, we want to buy a house, but what often people don’t think about is, okay, what about five years from now, 10 years from now, what’s the long term play and kind of setting those goals in the beginning of the relationship and when you’re kind of building out your roadmap is having those quarterly, those yearly alignment meetings to make sure that you still are on the same page.
If one partner wants to grow and scale and get to a billion dollar portfolio, the other one just wants enough money to retire and then go live on a boat in the Bahamas, those might not be the same path for everyone. Those are definitely going to cause a why in your partnership because one person’s going to be ready to be done and the other person is going to be grind, grind, grind, grind.
So it’s important to have those conversations to understand where are we going to go, where are we going to continue to go, what do we want, but then if that does happen, where you come to that why in the road or you know that it’s going to come up, what are the exit strategies? How does that person get out? How do you get out of it and kind of planning out the future and that was mistakes Tony and I didn’t make in some of our partnerships where we just looked at, “Yay, we have a partner, let’s do this. This is fun,” and not planning out the road what happens.

Rob:
Totally. Yeah. I think a exit strategy is probably the first thing I talk about a lot of times because if you jump into a partnership and you’re like, what happens in five years when one of us wants to sell it, you should probably have the answer to that before you go into any real estate partnership, but really where I felt like the alignment piece sort of ends up working itself out, and I’ll defer to y’all’s experiences here, but for me, you kind of talk out a lot of things as partners and you think for the most part you’re on the same page, but then if you actually go to a real estate attorney and start drafting up the LLC, he starts asking, like my lawyer, his name is Gaylord, awesome and Gaylord Gardner the III, just such a great name-

Ashley:
So regal.

Rob:
Exactly. So he started asking us a ton of questions like, well what happens when my partners are a married couple, what happens when a spouse one wants to sell but spouse two doesn’t, and then the other partner does want to sell and then you start getting into the voting rights and majorities and super majorities and then what happens when if one of you pass away, what happens at that point and so he started asking us a lot of questions that were like, whoa, I never would’ve thought all that kind of stuff out had I not gone to an attorney.
So I do think that is sort of the problem with handshake agreements, which is what most of us step into in our first or second or third partnership and then once you actually have an attorney kind of lay out the key principles of your partnership, that’s when it’s crystal clear, that’s what I found in my experience anyway.

Tony:
I totally agree with that, man. I think it’s first you and that partner just talking about what do we actually want out of this. Going back to your point, David, what is our vision, what’s our goal and then that secondary step of going to the attorney to actually draft things up, because they’re going to poke holes in everything that you guys thought you had agreed on and point out where you’re kind of missing.

Rob:
And it just looks weird on paper. You agree on something and then he writes it down and you’re like, “Yeah, I guess that’s a little, that doesn’t really make sense.”

Tony:
But I want to go back to what you said too, right, about the deferring to someone else or what did you use?

Rob:
Submission.

Tony:
Submission, right. Yeah. It’s so important because part of what makes partnerships work is that you guys have to be complimentary to each other one way, shape or form and if two people who are the exact same person get into a partnership, there’s a good chance that that partnership is going to be lacking something. So you guys partnered up because Rob knows short-term rentals really well, which is an area that you hadn’t done yet. So it made sense for you guys to partner because he was able to give his expertise. You know a lot about real estate and finding the deals, putting everything together-

David:
Negotiating, picking the house, the vision for the property, the area where you should buy in, yes.

Tony:
All of that and you guys put those two skill sets together and it makes sense. So I think what’s important in a partnership is identifying upfront what roles are we going to play and then once you identify those roles, trust the other person to do their job and then get out of their way and let them do it.

Ashley:
Yeah. So one thing we’ve talked about is defining each other roles. You are the head of acquisitions and you are the head of operations or whatever those roles may be and then if there is a decision that needs to be made on the operations, ultimately Rob’s decision, okay, you discuss it, you communicate it, but since you guys are 50/50, he’s the tie breaker because it’s in his realm, his expertise, but if it’s something that overall encompasses your whole business, then that’s where you have in your agreement what is the tie breaker if we don’t agree on something? Is it a third party person? Is it our CPA? Is it our attorney? Who’s going to make that kind of tie breaker decision for us?

Rob:
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense, and I feel like that’s… I’m in the day-to-day with our partnership and I deal with everything that’s like happening, all the guests, the one that’s the money management, all that kind of stuff. For the most part it is autonomous. David lets me kind of run that business and I really only check in on things that would cost a lot of money. So if I got to make a $500 or a thousand dollars repair, no big deal, I’m just going to do that, but now we’re talking about reinvesting, right? So for example, we just did a pickleball court at our Scottsdale property a couple months ago, and that was a year of discussion. We had to really talk that out, say, “Hey, what’s the benefit of this? It’s 22,000 bucks. Is that something we actually want to do?” And that’s something that we have to actually talk about as a partnership because the financial stakes are so high at that point, and now we’re talking about even more renovations and more amenities that cost more money. So that’s not really stuff I can do on my own.

David:
There is a benefit in the synergy of it where because you can find people to do some of this work, you have other short-term rentals. You have a community of short-term rental investors, so you found a person that would do the pickleball court cheaper than it normally would’ve been and we get ideas from the person who does the pickleball court because they’re doing other people’s rentals, and they can come and say, “Hey, have you considered it like this?” Same for the mini golf course that you’re putting in that we’re going to be looking.
So I benefit from some of the ideas that you’re going to have and then you bring it to me and I say, “Well, if we did it like this, it would cost less money. If we did it during this timeframe, we could get something else done at the same time. We could add value to the property if we did it this way instead of that,” and then I’ll hear you go, “Oh, that’s a good idea.”
When you partner with people that have resources, all four of us are bringing something different to this room. All four of us leave with more information than we got because we get it from everyone else. In my mind, the right partnership has additional benefits other than just you handle X and I handle Y, but what about the wrong partnerships? Do you ever run into situations where you are actually less productive because your partner’s holding you back?

Ashley:
We actually just did a YouTube video that recorded yesterday, and it’s five red flags that your partner could say, that means you should run.

Rob:
Before getting into it?

Ashley:
Yes or even while you’re doing it, that’s a red flag. So one of the ones, and I kind of thought of this as you were talking as to when you’re giving someone constructive criticism, so maybe Rob says, “Here, I want to do this mini golf course,” and you start kind of maybe poking holes into it, whatever. If Rob all of a sudden goes, “You know what? Fine, you just do it,” like that, right there is a red flag. So the way that you’re communicating with each other can be such a telltale sign as to if this is going to be a good or bad partnership, can that person have an actual conversation and in a way, in a sense argue with each other without getting frustrated, angry, and just throwing their hands up?
Can they actually have a healthy debate, I guess in a sense about something and it seems like you guys really can do that when you’re talking about something is looking at all sides of it and not having that you just do it, you know what, nevermind I quit.

Rob:
So I like to think of it as if we’re floating around in outer space, I’m the astronaut that’s out exploring, and then David is the tether that keeps me to the ship so that I don’t just get lost in outer space and I sort of think that that’s really important is having someone in a partnership that has the vision, has crazy ideas, and then the other person who would, and another one of my partnerships, Clint, he’s the guy that says like, “Hey dude, that’s going to cost this much money and we can’t actually do that.”
So I definitely think there is a healthy back and forth, a yes or no poking holes and not getting super, super, super defensive. I think, yeah, I agree. That’s a good red flag. You do it. That’s pretty rare that that happens. I can’t say that that’s really happened in any of my partnerships because-

David:
Way to bring Interstellar into this conversation.

Rob:
Well, I’ve been trying to get you to watch it for years.

David:
Rob, Easter egg. Absolutely put that inside.

Ashley:
I feel a movie night going on in your rear view tonight.

Tony:
But I do think it’s important to try and identify those potential issues upfront before the partnership starts and if it’s difficult to get into a partnership with someone, then the partnership itself will probably be difficult also. So as you guys are talking about, “Hey, what do we want to do? How do we want to make this work?” If they’re just a hard person to have those kind of conversations with and just imagine what you’re setting yourself up for an actual partnership and we’ve canceled partnerships before they even started.
We had someone where it was a rehab project. We were turning into a short-term rental. They were bringing all the capital. We were supposed to manage the rehab and then manage it long-term as a short-term rental. We start the rehab process, we buy the property and they’re fantastic people, but during the entire rehab process, I felt like an employee instead of a partner. There was just the way that the dynamic was set, I was like-

David:
So it felt like because they brought the money, they could boss you around.

Tony:
Yeah, to an extent and I was like, I don’t really like the way this feels. So once we finished the rehab, we were supposed to hold 50% equity in that property once it was done, once we finished the rehab, we told them like, “Look guys, we love you, all fine people, but we don’t think this is the partnership for us. We’re going to hand you back the keys to the property. We’ll help you get it onboarded to short-term rental. We don’t want any equity, we don’t want any compensation for the last four months-”

David:
Wow, you want out of the marriage that bad.

Tony:
Yeah. It is just like-

David:
You can have the dog, you can have the car, you can have the house. I just want out.

Tony:
But it’s important because I’d already given up four months of my life managing this rehab and I kind of saw that dynamic.

David:
That’s smart.

Rob:
But you still have to make good on your initial promise and that’s why you finished it and you’re like, “Listen, this was free. You can have it,” and now you’re still the hero in that, which is awesome.

David:
So what are some examples of things other people can do to test the relationship before they say form the LLC, buy the properties, jump in and have a shotgun wedding?

Ashley:
I think one of the first things is ask about the other person’s business and then start to poke holes. If they’re all ready getting defensive about their own business or they’re saying, “Yes, everything is great and wonderful, I have the best business ever.” Have you guys talked to anyone lately who couldn’t tell you one thing that they were working on in their business or that was wrong in their business? Probably not. No one you know that is a successful investor is going to say, “I’m super successful. Everything is going great.”
So I think looking at those two things, sitting down, having that conversation with them, asking about their business and if they actually receive advice you give them or if you’re able to ask them questions, they don’t get defensive, things like that. I think that’s a huge telltale sign because if they’re already building up this wall because you’re trying to look inside their business, there may be something they’re hiding, they’re not telling you or they’re embarrassed of or whatever it may be, but you want someone who’s going to be open like, “Yeah, I’m actually really struggling to hire VAs. I’ve gone through three of them. It’s my fault. I’m not following up with them. I’m not training them well,” things like that I think are kind of telltale red flags you can look for in the first initial conversation.

David:
Yeah, I think I lean towards telling you what’s wrong when someone say like, “Hey, what’s going on?” Oh, I failed at this. I failed at that. We’re sucking here. This isn’t going well. The stuff that is doing good, I just tell it should go good. I don’t expect it to, but it could give the impression to an inexperienced person that I suck at business or I’m doing terribly because I only talk about what’s bad versus the new person might be the opposite. They’re masking their warts. They got a lot of makeup on their business plan, their profit and loss is doctored up. That’s why they say sometimes the first time you take a girl out, you got to go swimming. You’re like, what does she look like? Without all that makeup, how do you find out what your business partner’s actually doing versus the version of them they presented a meetup where they’re like, “Oh yeah, I’ve got 19 doors,” and they don’t tell you that’s the garage door, the front door, the porch door, the bathroom door, the screen door-

Ashley:
Or they’re just investing in a syndication where they own 1% of [inaudible 00:20:13].

David:
That’s a very good point. I think a lot of people looking for partners are doing it because they know they can’t do it on their own. They’re hoping that they can just hitch their wagon to someone else, and you don’t want to be that hardworking person that ends up carrying the wrong one.

Tony:
Yeah. I think the other thing you can do too is try and start small. You definitely shouldn’t, I think on your first partnership with someone, create an entire business together. I think if you can start small, for example, Rob and I focus a lot in the short term rental space. Instead of going out and buying a luxury property in Arizona, can you do an arbitrage deal where instead of signing on for a 30 year mortgage, you’re signing a 12 month lease and your capital to start is $3,000 instead of $300,000, something that’s small.
Maybe do a cosmetic flip together where you’re in and out in six months and that kind of gives you the opportunity to say, absolutely, do I like working with this person, but signing up for something long term I think would get you in trouble.

Rob:
I mean, effectively crawl, walk, run. That’s what I tell a lot of people because like I’ll go to conferences and a lot of times I’m meeting people and they’re shooting their shot and they’ll like be like, “All right, I’ve got this 100 acre development. I need $5 million. Do you want to partner with me on this?” And I’m like, I just literally… That’s the first thing. You didn’t even tell me your name. How about first you send me a deal, let me look at a deal for myself, add value to me, and then maybe I can consult you on a deal and then maybe I can invest in a deal, but I’m not immediately trying to go to a 10 million development.

Tony:
Dude, that’s the equivalent of a marriage proposal in your first Dm.

Rob:
Yeah.

David:
Yeah.

Rob:
So for example, I went to a conference and there’s someone that came and started talking about things that they’re doing. They have this amazing geodesic dome couple homes in Asheville. So he’s like, “I would really love to work with you. What can I do to make that happen?” I said, “Let’s crawl, walk, run before we go out and develop 10 of these things,” and he was like, “Great.” He’s like, “How can I add value to you?” And I was like, “Well, I’m building this tiny house village in Tennessee.” He’s like, “I can help with that. That’s an hour and a half away. I’ll go, I’ll consult your construction crew, tell them how to build this stuff,” and I was like, “Okay, great.”
And then it turned into, “Hey, I’m a general contractor as well. How about I just build you a house in my backyard, like a cool A-frame, and then if you like that, then we can partner on one together?” So right now he is currently bidding out a house that he’s going to build as a general contractor for us and then if that goes well, happy to partner in something a little bit bigger. So there’s a crawl, walk, run there and I feel like I can get to know that person through the process.

Tony:
I think one important thing to call out is it’s easier for us to be picky about the people that we partner with, because we’ve already built real estate businesses. I think for the new investors, especially for the rookie that, especially the one that’s like cash strapped and say that they find that partner that’s willing to contribute the capital for whatever deal it is that they’ve been dreaming of, it’s easy to jump at that first person that offers you cash. So I think just for the rookies that are listening, just have that discipline to do what Rob just said of the crawl, walk, run, even if it’s someone that could solve all of your problems with one signing of a check.

Ashley:
Because it might solve that one problem, but it might create a lot more problems.

Rob:
So let’s talk about that. Let’s talk about it from a rookie standpoint for people even thinking about partnerships because we’ve identified a lot of the things to look for in a partnership, but how do you even find a partner? Where can you actually go and find someone else that meshes with your mindset that has the same goals? Do y’all have any ways of sourcing the partnership pool?

Ashley:
So the first thing is just sitting down and writing a list as friends and family, even writing them down, but I guess even a step before that is to thinking about what you need in a partner and what you’re bringing to the table too. So then it can help you narrow down as to who you can actually solicit, I guess, or provide an opportunity to somebody else based on what your needs and desires are. So attending meetups, sharing what you’re doing on social media online, joining masterminds or just tons of people do free meetup, Zoom calls once a week or every month and you can go on and meet other people. Even webinars like BiggerPockets has the webinars that David does. Everybody can interact in the chats you put in there and say, “Hey, I’m an investor from here. This is what I’m looking for.”
I see all the time people sending each other phone numbers, emails, things like that connecting in there. So I think friends and family, meetups, virtual or in person and then just social media.

Rob:
Yeah, that’s a great tip. I actually often see in webinars, people will change, on Zoom, they’ll change their name to be like Tony Robinson-512 555. You did it before. You did it to yourself, but I do think that meetups are a really good place. I think talking about real estate just in general, that’s how you actually find other people that might. One of the first partnerships I ever got into was here in LA. I was taking a improv class at UCB and they asked us, what do you do and I was like, “I do real estate.” Whatever, this was at the beginning of my stuff. Then we went out to a bar and hung out, and one of the guys in that group was like, “Hey, so you do real estate. I’ve always wanted to learn how to do this. I’ll fund it if you just teach me how to do it,” and we’ve been partners to this day. We’ve done a bunch of different projects and it’s because I even just talked about it.
A lot of people are scared to talk about real estate, and you’d be surprised at how many people in your inner circle, friends and family want to be on that journey, but they don’t know how to do it and so they’d be happy to partner.

Ashley:
Well, talk about your first partner?

Tony:
So my first partner, and actually Dave, I don’t know if I’ve ever told you this story, but you were the impetus for my first partnership. So Sarah’s my wife, Sarah, her cousin, he was my first partner, and I was on Instagram and you had posted something and he was also following you and so he was like a distant cousin. We would see each other on the holidays and stuff. So the next time I saw him, I was like, “Hey, man.” I was like, “You follow David Greene?” He was like, “Yeah, I’ve been reading some books and thinking about doing this thing,” and we just kind of kept in touch and then a few months later, I ended up getting this deal that I needed to partner for. I reached out to him, I said, “Hey man, I know we’ve been talking like look at the numbers. What do you think about this?”
He’s like, “Man, this is a pretty solid deal. I think we should do it together,” but it was all because social media, us talking about it and kind of sharing that journey, but back to your point, Rob, I tell everyone, even if you’re just starting, you should be sharing your journey about real estate investing.

Rob:
A hundred percent.

Tony:
I started before I became a co-host for the Rookie show, I had my own podcast. It was called Your First Real Estate Investment and I started that podcast before I actually closed on my first deal. So I had zero real estate investments, but I had a podcast where I was interviewing other investors about how they got started. It was just tell me about your first year. That’s all the podcast was and through that, I was able to meet, I was putting out three episodes a week for almost a year, and I met so many people through that podcast and one of those people, led me here. So it’s like if you just share your journey, create content, you would be amazed at the people that you might meet.

David:
So chapter one of this book, I believe it is, why do I need a partner? What are the four areas that somebody looks at when they’re determining if they need a partner and how they’d benefit?

Tony:
I actually don’t even remember. What are we writing in the book?

Ashley:
Okay, the first one is-

Rob:
Bring us home Ashley.

Tony:
Oh, there you go. There you go.

Ashley:
Time, okay, so you just don’t have time. Maybe you make crazy money at your W2 job, but you don’t have the time to learn about real estate investing, or you just don’t want to make the time to learn about real estate investing. The next one is money. You don’t have the money, you don’t have the capital, and you need somebody to bring that in, whether that’s for the purchase price, the rehab, or even just have reserves. You have no money at all, and you don’t want to go and buy a deal with seller financing, because you have no reserves. The next thing is having confidence.
You don’t have confidence. You are afraid something bad is going to happen. So that was me. That’s what I was, I afraid the roof was going to fly off. Somebody was going to fall down the stairs and sue me. All those bad things and then the last thing is knowledge and skills. So having the knowledge, and a lot of times rookie investors think, I’m not experienced, I’ve never done a deal. If you’ve spent the last year in analysis paralysis, you probably have more knowledge than half of the people out there in this world.
You have a lot of knowledge more than you think and so those are kind of the four pieces there that we like to look at.

Rob:
Yeah, I mean it’s kind of funny how as you said, every single one of those, I’m like, yep, I was there. Yep, I was there. The knowledge or skill, or sorry, the confidence, but I mean those are just, it’s funny because I just kind of think of it all as one set of barriers, but it is funny how specific they are and a lot of those confidence things like the roof flying off or what happens when the toilet leaks or you hear in the short term rental space, people are like, “What about parties?” Or in the midterm rental space, people are like, “What about squatters?” and it’s like there’s a lot of confidence issues that I think that when you talk to someone in the industry and they come to me and I’m like, “It’s not that big of a deal.”
You just do this one little thing and it’s like boom to go, and then you can really start unlocking someone’s mind that way.

Tony:
I just want to add one thing I’m reading this book right now, and it talked about the differences between confidence and courage and it said that confidence is something that happens out of repetition, as you repeat a skill, you build confidence. Courage is scary, because it means you’re stepping out to do something that you’re not confident in yet and I think people underestimate how much courage it takes to get started in this business, because usually you’re the only person in your circle that’s even doing it.
Your friends, your mom, your dad, your brother, no one else is drinking the Kool-Aid the way that you are. So it does take a certain level of courage to be able to step out to start building that confidence.

David:
No, you want to wait till you have confidence before you start. That’s the problem and it doesn’t work that way. It’s like saying, “I’m going to go to the gym and work out once I’m strong and…”

Rob:
Yeah, that’s totally-

Tony:
Once I get a six pack, then I’ll go to the gym.

David:
It does require courage, a hundred percent. I think part of the key is making moves with a limited downside because you’re going to mess up, you’re going to fall off the bike. So don’t go learn how to ride a bike on a cliff side where the downside could be really big, right? You want to put yourself in positions where these mistakes are something you could bounce back from. You don’t want to… Another analogy, learning to play poker, you don’t want to bet all your chips when you first start. You’re just like, how do I just play little tiny bets as I figure out the rhythm of this and then as you get better, the bets become bigger, but you have things on your side.
Something I like to talk about partnerships, because not all partnerships are the same. We tend to think every partnership is 50/50 equity split, but there’s different equity splits and then there’s different debt splits. So talk a little bit about equity partnerships, debt partnerships, and what’s right for who.

Tony:
Yeah, so yeah, two different types of partnerships. You have equity partnerships where you’re sharing ownership in the actual property. You have debt where typically one person is the one that actually owns the property and the other person has the debt against it. So there’s pros and cons to each. We’ve used both models in our business. I’ll talk the debt side first. So with the debt partnership, you have one partner who is the borrower, one partner that’s the lender, the person who’s borrowing the money, their name is typically going to go on the deed of the property, but there will be a lien against that property by the person who’s lending those funds. The benefits of, and there’s benefits to both sides, but the benefits of doing a debt partnership is that A, if I’m the borrower, I own all of the property. I don’t have to worry about answering to anyone else. I don’t have to consult. I make all of the decisions.
The downside is that if this deal goes south, I still owe that person their money. I don’t have an exit.

David:
More of the upside and more of the downside.

Tony:
More of the downside, right. The inverse is true for the lender where they get a fixed return, they know that they’re going to get whatever, 10% on their money, but say that this person crushes it and they could have got an 80% return, they’re still stuck at the 10. So there’s pluses and minuses to each. On the equity side, you share both in the upside and the downside. So if we do an equity partnership together, like you said David, there’s different structures you can have, but say I’m going to do all the work and maybe I get 40% of the equity, you get 60% and then maybe once you’re repaid back, then it goes from 60/40 to 50/50 or maybe to 60/40, maybe I get 70 after you’re paid back.
So you can set it up and structure it in so many different ways, but in an equity partnership, both of you guys are owners and both of you guys share on the upside and the downside.

David:
What’s your favorite? Do you have a one that you prefer, Ash?

Ashley:
My first one that I did was kind of a mix of both, where we actually, so we split it 50/50. So we both got 50% equity, 50% cash flow, but we also did do a loan payable to him where he was carrying the debt on the property too. So he got equity in the property, he was ownership of the LLC, and then he also was paid a mortgage payment every month. So principal and interest. I would never do this again. He made out on that deal. He didn’t have to do anything. I acquired the property, I did the property management, everything, but that got me started. So I think the point is that it may not be the best return for you and the best structure ship in your favor, that first one, but if it gets you started, if that means you can start now instead of years down the road.
So every month he’d get a check for 50% of cashflow. He’d also get a check with his principle paid back, and then also five and a half percent interest. So it was great for him, but also he put so much trust and confidence in me. As the years went on, after that first deal, I only did partners that actually had equity in the deal and then we would contribute capital or whatever it was. Now I’ve kind of transitioned and I’m leaning more towards just the debt partner.

Tony:
I just want to add one thing to that because I think for a lot of rookies, especially, they undervalue their contribution if they’re not bringing the capital, but if the other partners literally just wiring money on the day of closing, but you’re the person that found the deal, you’re the person that’s going to manage the rehab or if it’s a flip, you’ll do that or if it’s a long term rental, you’re going to manage the tenants. If it’s a short term, you’re going to manage your guests. You’re going to do the work for as long as you guys hold that deal.
So your involvement in that significantly outweighs the person that’s just writing the check. So for all of you rookies that are listening, just make sure that you don’t undervalue your time, your energy, your effort, and sell yourself short. I mean, like Ashley said, she would never do that deal again and it’s true. A lot of people end up making that mistake.

Rob:
Yeah. I mean, I think when you’re getting started out, you have to be pretty flexible. You have to be very, very flexible with what you get. You kind of take what you can get. As much as I like to tell people, go out, get 50% equity, raise the money, that’s great. That’s how I did it, but at the end of the day, I think walking into something where I do want to say, I guess if you’re walking into something where the investor’s willing to front the cash and let’s say bring the borrowing power, I think you as the person that’s seeking that out, a 25% stake in, it’s really not all that bad. I think any amount of equity is fine for a partnership, if you have an investor that’s easy to work with and you’re just really paying free experience at that point, I think.

David:
I want to ask you guys about how to structure the partnership before I do, I have a pet peeve about newer investors, inexperienced people, really not investors, just anyone who’s new to any asset class, negotiating for the wrong things, fighting the wrong battle. So I will often see this as a real estate agent with a person with a house for sale, and they want to negotiate their commission against a listing agent. They’re just voracious. They have to win and what happens is, especially in some of the higher end markets where I work, let’s say San Jose, South Bay, we could put your house on the market for 1.1 million depending how much effort we as an agent put into it. You might get 1.3, you might get 1.1. It is a huge deal. The offers come in. If I just take them to you and say, “Hey Ashley, which offer do you want?”
“I’ll take the highest one.” Okay. That’s how most agents do their job, versus if I go call every single buyer’s agent and I figure out who has the client that’s written six offers and been rejected six times in a row, they’re desperate. The school’s starting. They have a place they need to put their kid, dude, you make different decisions when you’re in that frame of mind, I bump them up to 1.2, 2.5, and then I get another offer to do the same thing and then I go back and say, “It’s going to have to be 1.3 or we’re going to go with them.”
You can really put effort into getting your client more money, but if you started our relationship off by saying, “I don’t want to pay 6%, I’m going to do 4,” the agents are going to be like, “Fine, you can win the battle, but you’ll lose the war.” I’m not doing anything and you lost $200,000 to save 10 grand or something. This happens a lot and same with contractors. I don’t want to pay for that contractor, they’re expensive and they go with the cheapest one and then it takes nine months instead of two months-

Ashley:
And there’s a million change orders and you end up spending more.

David:
Yes. So as experienced people, we’ve recognized you got to pick your battles. Not every battle has the same, but you’ll often see with partnerships, they’ll worry about their equity split. What is your experience with people that want to get into partnerships? What should they focus on? How do they know if they’re focused on the wrong thing?

Tony:
That’s a great question, man. I mean, I think it almost comes down to what’s the right way to structure a partnership, because that’s something that people ask all the time, and I think ultimately it’s like what are your goals getting into this partnership? Ashley’s goal in that first deal wasn’t necessarily to make a ton of money. Her intentions in that first partnership was, I want proof of concept that I can be a successful real estate investor. So if that means I need to give up more equity in order to make that happen, then that’s my goal. If my goal is to not bring any money to the table, then I need to make sure that that’s my focus. If my goal is to maximize my equity, then maybe that’s… So I think every person’s going to have a different thing that they hang their hat on, but you just have to understand that you have to be flexible and you got to give something, but you can’t say, I want this, I want this, I want this, I want this, and take it or leave it. There’s got to be some give there.

Ashley:
It’s just negotiating with a seller. You want to find out what they want. Is it purchase price, is it terms, do they care about interest rate, do they not care about interest rate and when negotiating with your partner on the structure of it, the same thing, what do they want of out of it, what do you want out of it and then how can you map that out and make it work?

Rob:
Yeah, so let’s talk about that and there are a lot of different ways to structure a partnership, but can you just walk us through some of the big ways that maybe someone not new or maybe someone new to partnerships may want to consider when they’re walking into one?

Tony:
Yeah, so if we focus on an equity partnership, there’s a few things to look at there. You can look at who is carrying the mortgage, you can look at who’s bringing the down payment, you can look at who’s, if there’s any rehab or setup involved, who’s going to fund that. So all of the kind of acquisition pieces, how are you going to hold title, what is your equity stake in that deal, how are you going to share profits and I think people often don’t realize that you can have one set of numbers for equity ownership and then a different set of numbers for profit sharing and we have that on one of our deals where we own only 25% of the equity in the property, but we get 40% of the profits on that property. So you can have different setups there.
You can think about capital recapture. So say one partner brings all of the capital, are you going to pay them back through the partnership and if so, what does that look like? On one of our partnerships, we have it set up, this partner brought almost $200,000 for us to buy a cabin and we set up a capital recapture so that if we ever sell or refinance the property, they get paid back their 200K first, and then we split the profits afterwards 50/50. There were some capital recaptures where it could be over the life of the ownership of the property. So hey, we’re getting back whatever, $3,000 a month in cash flow, 10% of that’s going to go back to repay that partner, whatever they put up. So you can look at the capital recapture piece, you can look at the actual work that’s going into the partnership. How are you compensating each other? Am I just going to get an hourly flat rate? If I’m going out there and I’m doing maintenance on the property, if I’m going to be the property manager, do I get a percentage of the revenue?
So just all of the duties to go into actually managing it. So these are all the different levers you can look at as you’re putting your partnership together to identify what’s the right mix for us in this unique deal.

Rob:
Yeah, let me put a little bit of context to the debt recapture, because I kind of just worked out a deal like this with somebody. We’re effectively water falling the profit. So we’re going into a deal, and I am guess the OPM in this moment, which is kind of weird. So I’m investing with someone else, she’s going out and getting the unit and we’ve basically structured it to where I get 75% of the profits and she gets 25% of the profits until I get paid back. Once I get paid back, then we waterfall that to 50/50 basically and so that’s like to me a win-win because she’s incentivized to crush it, make money in this Airbnb, for example, get herself paid back, that way we can become 50/50 partners.
At that point, for me as an investor, I feel she’s proved herself. She’s hustled for it, but I think that’s a really, the debt recaptures a good show of faith to an investor to show them like, “Hey, I’m going to work hard to get you paid back as soon as possible.”

Ashley:
For everyone listening to OPM is other people’s money.

Rob:
That’s right. Yeah. Sorry

Tony:
It’s a rookie podcast.

Rob:
Yeah, yeah, that’s right. That’s right. Other people’s money.

David:
So what’s your recommendations for what someone should look for in a good partner? You’re at a meetup, you’re at work, you’re talking about real estate, you’re at a family event and you’re like, “Oh, you follow BiggerPockets too,” something like that. What are things that you feel like would stand out that would make someone a good partner when it comes to real estate investing?

Ashley:
For all of my partners, and I know you’re different than this, they’ve all been friends first and whether it’s real estate that connected us or we were childhood friends, whatever that may be, but I built a personal connection with them first before actually doing a deal with them and that I think has been a huge advantage to me where every partner that I’ve partnered with, I still have deals with and still would consider doing more deals with in the future.
So understanding the person and also learning how to work with them, I think are big things. So if you start to know their personality, you could do a DISC profile, figure out what their Enneagram is and things like that I think can really help you learn about a person-

David:
How to communicate with them.

Ashley:
Yes, exactly.

David:
Can we talk about that a little bit? It’s not X’s and O’s of investing, but I think it has a lot to do with how successful the relationship works. So let’s just start with DISC. Can you explain what DISC is and how it can be useful for-

Ashley:
You’re honestly going to be able to do it better than me.

Rob:
We were just talking about this a minute this morning.

Ashley:
I already know that my description is not going to be satisfying.

David:
Start with what you know of it. We’ll go there.

Ashley:
Okay. So DISC profiling is a personality test. So it goes through as to what kind of factors about you and how people engage with you or different… So if you’re a, and you’ll know the examples better, a high D then this is how this person, their mind works and how they communicate and how is it they see things.

Tony:
I’m going to take… Are you high D?

David:
Yes.

Tony:
Yeah, I’m a super high C. Do you know what you are, Rob? Have you taken it?

Rob:
He says I’m a high I, with a little bit of a C in there.

Tony:
I would totally think high I for you and Ash, I would think you’re probably like a high S, honestly.

Ashley:
I am. Yeah.

David:
So I actually wrote a blog article for BiggerPockets that detailed this. People can go read that if they want to get a better understanding, but the summary would be, DISC is measuring what you value in life and therefore what you communicate and what you’re drawn to. So high D stands for decisiveness and dominance. It’s a measurement of how quickly you make decisions in an environment you’ve never been. Ds tend to be very decisive. They tend to be in leadership positions. They’re more comfortable. You drop them in something new, they’ve never seen it before, they make a decision. So you ask a D, which way are we going, left, why are we going left, because the way we go, we have to do something, right? So they’re often abrasive. They can seem like buttheads to people. They can be hard to get along with, but they value production.
So Ds are asking, are we moving the needle? What’s our sales? What’s our numbers? What’s our net worth? Their scoreboard watchers, they want to win and they’ll pay attention to how productive something is, which is why they’re typically good business people, because they can focus on the bottom line. Their downside is that they can step on people’s toes. They don’t realize that they can kind of come across as jerks and their biggest fear is being taken advantage of. Ds like to make decisions quickly. They don’t want to get caught up in details. They’re like, “What’s the most important thing? Let’s go do that.” So they don’t watch their back. People could steal from them. People can change the contract. They’re like, just sign it for me. They need people around them. They can trust. Your I score measures how interactive you are. This is how much you want to be liked, how charismatic you are. High Is are the people that were the most popular ones in high school. The life of the party.

Ashley:
Oh, Rob.

Rob:
Have really nice coughs, charming, endearing on camera.

David:
They’re going to pay more attention to fashion. They’re going to pay more attention to how they’re perceived. Their clothes are going to match. They know how to make you laugh. They’ll pick up on little nuances that could hurt somebody’s feelings, because they don’t want to not be liked.

Rob:
Oh, man, that is definitely me.

David:
Right? Your I’s biggest fear is not being liked. So you can crush an I’s soul by just ignoring them or just, “Dude, you’re just annoying. Get away from me.”

Rob:
But you all three like me, right?

Ashley:
Yes.

David:
That’s how we were able to peg Rob as a high I. Your best salespeople are high I. They’re usually a combination of I and D because they love people and they can get things done and they can make decisions. So if you look at the top agents, the top loan officers, the top course makers, whatever it is that they’re doing in business, they’re usually some form of I, D if they’re in people sales. I’s weaknesses are that they don’t pay attention to details often. They’re not just as important. They’re like, “I know how it looks. I know how I feel. The numbers, the spreadsheets. Some nerd can look at that. I don’t want to deal with it,” right?
So if you’re an I, you probably love meetups, you love meeting people, you love going to BP Con, you’re just sucking up all the energy-

Rob:
Check, check, check.

David:
There it is, right, but to guys like me, an I can appear to be shallow, not you, of course you’re different. We’re good friends, right?

Rob:
Let me have it.

David:
Or to you an I can appear to be sloppy. You’re just like, “I don’t trust Is because they’re like…” We’re going to get to see is where you’re at. That’s engineers, architects, doctors, scientists. They’re like, “It needs to be accurate.” You could look at an I and the guy’s wearing Bugle Boy jeans and he’s got his shirt tucked in with his pocket protector. He has no idea how he looks, but he knows that he’s right. Whereas the I, like right shmite, who cares? Is it fun? So to win with an I, you have to be interesting. You will lose an I every time if you show up and they find you boring.
They have to see something in you that keeps it interesting.

Ashley:
So how are you guys friends?

Rob:
Sorry, what were you saying? I lost interest.

David:
You stop talking about me and my mind wandered and I just lost interest in the conversation.

Rob:
We’re halfway through the disc.

David:
Yeah. So I was thinking, okay, what’s next David? I got it. Move on. My C is my second highest score, like you, so I tend to be extra thorough, but this explains why I am like this. I talk in bullet points. I talk quickly because my D score is like get it done, move forward, and then my C score is like, but don’t ever say anything wrong. Be quick but be perfect, which can cause analysis paralysis in people like me, because it has to be perfect, but I have to win.
Your S score is your stability score. This is how much you value the pace of life and knowing what’s coming. Ss do not surprises and they don’t like mistakes. They want to know what they’re doing and they want to do the same thing. They get very good at it and they find comfort in that all the time.
S’s hate being put in environments where they have to make decisions and they don’t know what’s going on. It’s almost like the opposite of the D. So your S’s tend to be your most reliable people that support you in business, they tend to be, I think probably 70% of the population. Their S score is their dominant score. They like a W2 position. They like stability. They don’t like risk. They don’t like making mistakes. They don’t like, I don’t know what’s coming.
When we have a guest that we’re interviewing on the podcast and they don’t get the questions ahead of time and they freak out, that’s an S. Guys like me D’s, I’m like, I don’t need questions. Just fire at me. I love the fear and the chaos of not knowing I’m going to thrive. D’s love chaos. I was like, your S cops are the ones that want to be a traffic cop, just sit here and just wave the cars along. That was agony for me. I hated it until something horrible happened.
It’s like finally, it’s like now it feels like a movie. This is what I was waiting for. So S’s biggest fears are change. They hate change and I had to learn this as a real estate agent when I was interviewing a couple to sell their house, the husband might be like a D score and then the wife is an S score. He’s like, “Where’s the dotted line? Lets sign this thing. Let’s throw it up. Let’s move on,” and she’s like, “I’m not ready. I live here.” You have to go much slower and kind of give it to them in bite-sized chunks and let them get comfortable rather than rushing.
You can’t rush an S. Then your C score measures your compliance or basically your accuracy. These are guys that love to read every single form of a contract. They love spreadsheets. They’re engineers, they’re architects. They’re annoying to everyone else until you need one and then like a doctor, you don’t want your doctor to have a high I and he’s like, “Ah, just, I don’t know, 75 CCs sound good to me.” You’re like-

Ashley:
Are you happy with today’s consult though?

David:
Yeah, exactly. That’s why doctors tend to have very bad bedside manner. They’re high Cs naturally, and Cs don’t connect with people very well. They look at the X’s and the O’s and they tend to be a multi-family operator that loves to talk about cap rates and NOI and the spreadsheets. They love that stuff. That’s the C score. So guys like Rob, are going to have to surround himself with C people.
He needs that and when he gets it, he’s the high I that will draw everyone in and he sort of focuses as a magnet that brings opportunity. The C is the filter that makes sure that this is the right opportunity for us. So that is the thing I think that fits well with partnerships. Andrew Cushman’s kind of like my C, so we abide multi-family together. I bring the opportunity, I raise the money, I get people that are going to help us find properties. I say yes, and then he says, no. Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope, nope. Right? 2% of these deals will actually work. You need your Cs to do that. So the reason I think this is valuable with partnerships is we tend to all communicate our own style.
So I think as a D I talk the way everybody should talk and if someone takes too long to get to the point, I’m like, I don’t want to listen to them, but to an S that’s incredibly offensive and they just think I’m a jerk and they never want to do business with me. This is a problem with my assistant and I every day. I come into work, I got a million things in my head, I’m already stressed out. I’m like, “Hey, I need you to blah, blah, blah, blah, blah,” and she goes, “Good morning.” This is like 80% of our days start off just like-

Ashley:
That’s what I told my assistant when I hired her. I said, “Just so you know, I hate small talk. I’m so sorry, I don’t mean to be rude, but I’m just going to get to the point.”

Rob:
Yeah. I always text my assistant things without it I’ll just text her things and then I’ll be like, and then I’ll add, I’ll send another text that’s like [foreign language 00:50:56] please. Just to be like, oh yeah, sorry. I guess that does sound bossy, but I’m just like, I don’t want to be like, Hey, what’s up? Can you help me with this? I just want to be like, change the prices on this soon.

Ashley:
So I guess to your point as to why we went on that rant is when you are selecting a partner, knowing how they are, so especially if you need them because you have a weakness and you need their strength, make sure that they actually fit into that category.

David:
Yes. If you’re like, man, I’m bad at analysis, I want another person to do it. I need a partner and you tell someone, “Hey, I’ll do this, and you do the analysis,” and they go, “Okay,” but they don’t know what analysis means, you put them in front of a spreadsheet for six hours and-

Tony:
They don’t know, yeah, they don’t know what’s going on.

David:
They’re not going to hold their focus for that long. Likewise, if you get two Cs that both are nerd up, they’re best friends because they’re like, “Oh, we get to talk about Excel formulas and spreadsheets and Google sheets versus whatever.” They love it, but then one of them has to actually go call the brokers…

Ashley:
No one’s going to do it.

David:
No one.

Rob:
Exactly.

David:
They’ll both sit there with that problem. Yeah.

Ashley:
Me and Tony were talking today in the car ride here, how we don’t want to talk to anybody. We don’t want to talk to the contractors, the vendors, the residents, like nothing. We would-

David:
But you would love to look at the property, analyze the potential pitfalls, see the strengths, recognize what could be good, right?

Ashley:
Yeah and we want to know what the conversations are that are going on-

David:
But you don’t want to have to talk versus Rob literally checking his voicemail in the middle of recording because he’s like [inaudible 00:52:23]. They might not like me. I need to fix this right away.

Rob:
I have to be liked by my Airbnb guest

David:
It’s his value system and that’s part of why Rob is so successful. I would be more successful if I cared more about how I came across other people for being perfectly frank. I was telling your wife, I need people like you around that tell me what I’m supposed to do and how I appear, because I don’t realize that I sound a certain way or I could look better if I dress. I would do it if I knew how I was supposed to. My mind doesn’t know that.

Ashley:
Rodeo Drive. Let’s go shopping.

Rob:
We’re going to make you the belle of the ball.

Ashley:
That’s Pretty Woman.

Rob:
I mean, I think pretty much the way I’ve always seen the two counterparts of a relationship, like a partnership is visionary integrator, the one person, and that is a very big oversimplification probably of the DISC profile, but I need someone that has the strategy, that’s usually me, strategy and vision, someone to go and execute that and me and my best friend slash COO slash business partner, we are both visionaries and so we are the kind of guys that will sit around and dream up things and it’s like, all right, but someone’s got to do it.
So we want to work together because we’re really good at working together. So we’ve divisioned off the partnership in a way that I am the overall strategy. He is the visionary for the business and I’m overseeing that, but then we have other people that we’re putting into the fold that will actually execute the thing.

Ashley:
The integrators.

Rob:
Yeah, exactly.

Tony:
It’s an important point though, Rob, because one of the things we haven’t talked about is when should a partnership end and I think that’s something that people don’t recognize either. Sometimes there’s partnerships serve their purpose and they don’t need to keep going. One of my early partnerships, we bought a bunch of deals together and at a certain point I realized that this partnership has kind of run its course and it came down because we had our annual planning meeting and we were planning out the next year and when we kind of talked about our goals as we were talking, I was like, man, I don’t really know if we’re going in the same direction anymore and I had literally, it was a month of me just kind of chewing through this decision. I was like, okay, I think it’s time for us to end this partnership. So even if you find the right person today, just know that you have to continually be in touch with each other to make sure that you’re rowing in the right direction.
And if at any point you feel that you guys are starting to fork, you have to have that tough conversation to end the partnership because if you don’t, you’re doing both yourselves a disservice.

Rob:
Yeah. So is that the only partnership you’ve ever ended?

Tony:
That one and the one that [inaudible 00:54:49] before it started, yeah.

Rob:
What about you Ashley?

Ashley:
I have not done deals with them, but we still have deals together, but I would do them again. So, I guess where I’ve been is I’ll look at the deal and then I’ll look at which partner would be best to come in on this deal based upon what I need for the deal.

Rob:
I’m the same way. I’ve got six sets of partners, I’ve done deals with all of them. It was really great for that point in life would partner again if the right scenario happened, but my business goals have moved away from some of those partnerships and it’s cool. I still got these. They work, we love each other. It’s awesome if they ever want to come in, door’s always open, but I’m going to pursue partnerships that are a little bit more aligned with where I am now, because I think a lot of people don’t really realize that you’re a whole different person five years later and you’re in a whole different business and you’re in a whole different life and so one thing that I wish I knew early on when I got into these partnerships is I took a lot of these deals that at the time where I’m like, yeah, 25% equity and then I’m not going to get paid until my partners make all their money back and all this kind of stuff.
That was all five years ago. I’m barely getting paid for some of that, but I’m also still managing it myself and doing all these things where I’m like, I’m in a whole different place in life and it’s actually really difficult to do the work that I’m doing because I have so many other systems in place that are supposed to do that for me, but it would cost money to do… It’s just very complicated. So I’m just in a very different part of my life and so I just want to make sure that people understand to expect that you’re going to be successful and if that’s true, five years from now, are you still going to be happy with the terms that you negotiated?

Tony:
Rob, I’m so happy you said that, because it was literally that thought that made me realize I needed to end that partnership. I want to own a billion dollars worth of real estate and I’m giving myself nine and a half years to do that and as I was thinking about that goal, I had this partner who had a third of my business and I was like, is this person bringing enough value to get a third of a billion dollars and I was like, I don’t think so and it was that conversation with myself, Rob, of knowing that I’m going to be successful, that gave me the courage to really make that decision. So I think it’s an important thing to call out for sure.

Rob:
Yeah, totally.

David:
Well, thank you guys. This has been really good. If people want to read more about partnerships in the book, where can they go?

Ashley:
Biggerpockets.com/partnerships.

Rob:
Awesome and if people want to learn more about you and reach out, connect, do all that kind of good stuff on the internet, where can they do that?

Ashley:
You can find me on Instagram at WealthfromRentals, also on BiggerPockets, the Real Estate Rookie podcast and then also there’s the Real Estate Rookie Facebook page, Real Estate Rookie YouTube.

Tony:
And then I’m Tony J Robinson on Instagram. Also the Real Estate Robinsons on YouTube with my wife. We talk all things short-term rentals if you guys want to hang out with us there.

Rob:
David, do you want to plug, throw a couple plugs out there too before I jump into the greatest endorsements that never were?

David:
Hair plugs or social media plugs?

Rob:
Dealer’s choice. Dealer’s choice.

David:
Yeah, you can check on my Instagram. It’s been revamped and looking cool at DavidGreene24 also, all the other social medias. I even got threads. I had your phone in my hand the other day and you were getting Threads apps as we were picking out our food actually.

Rob:
That’s right.

David:
So you can find me there or YouTube at DavidGreene24. And my website’s DavidGreene24.com. What about you Rob?

Rob:
You can find me over at biggerpockets.com/partnerships. We going to go and order this book. Now with that said-

Ashley:
So selfless.

Rob:
Yeah, that’s right. I’m a hero. I’m an I.

Tony:
So let’s just tee this up. So Rob’s going to read an endorsement that he wrote for our partnership book. I emailed Rob maybe about a month before it was due. I said, “Hey Rob, endorsement’s due on this day. Please make sure you get in by this time.”

Rob:
It’s true, he did-

Tony:
Rob emails me about a week past that deadline.

Ashley:
We’re going to attach the email, and show notes for proof.

David:
So he knew he was past the deadline with his I score-

Rob:
He texted me and you’re like, “Can you get it in?” and I was like, “Yeah, give me [inaudible 00:58:42]-

David:
His high I score couldn’t let you down. So he wrote a completely useless thing, just so you wouldn’t be upset with him.

Rob:
That’s honestly probably what it was.

Ashley:
ChatGPT wrote it for him.

Rob:
Well, you’re going to feel bad for giving me poo poo once you hear this amazing endorsement. I’ve never seen anyone scale to Tony Robinson’s level of operation in the time he has done it. He’s mastered the art of forming partnerships with the right people to supercharge his portfolio. This book will teach you the exact strategies that helped Tony build a multimillion dollar real estate empire.

Tony:
That’s actually pretty good, man.

Ashley:
I’m just wondering where my name was.

Rob:
Well, he’s the one that reached out. Had you texted me…

David:
What a jerk. It’s misogynistic and it’s rude. You left Ashley out, man, you’re the worst.

Rob:
He said, will you do it for me and I did it because I did it for Jamal’s book too.

David:
You guys see the sweat coming off of him?

Rob:
Listen, I just want y’all to like me. All right. Here are two more that I actually wish would’ve made it in. This might be a little bit sweeter. Okay. You may have picked up this book thinking it was penned by the great Tony Robbins. I sure did, but you live and you learn, and this book still ended up slapping and then next, easily the best real estate book I’ve ever read and that means something considering I’ve read half of Rich Dad, Poor Dad.

David:
You’ve read my book, you said so easily better, easily the best. Not even like we weren’t even in competition. Their book is that much better than my book. I thought we were friends. I’ve had your back.

Rob:
How would that sound if I was like, this is easily the best book after Burr.

David:
Well, that would be the as a C, you feel like accuracy is important, right?

Tony:
I do, but I also don’t know if an endorsement sounds a good saying this is the fourth best real estate book I’ve ever read in my life.

Rob:
That’s true.

David:
So you’re going to hurt one our feelings.

Rob:
I got to hurt one.

David:
This is what you call poking the eye.

Rob:
I love it.

David:
All right, man. Very good endorsements. They were written very well. We all still like you. I would actually let you just write my books for me. You’re very good at writing. You used to do this in a previous life though.

Rob:
I was a copywriter.

David:
Yes, exactly. So you’re good at basically getting as close to a lie as you can get.

Rob:
It’s true. You toe the ethical line.

David:
All right, well, thank you guys for being here. Thank you for letting us on your show and thank you everyone who’s listening to this for supporting us with your attention. We love you guys. We appreciate it. Go check out this book, and if you’re having a hard time getting started in real estate or scaling, you want to get to a billion dollars, you just want to get another duplex, maybe you need to find a partner. So if you’re listening to this on the BiggerPockets Real Estate Podcast, you can get a 10% discount on this book using the Code Partner 801.
So go to biggerpockets.com/partnerships, and when you’re checking out, use the code Partner 801. Thank you guys. This has been great. This is David Greene for Rob, my partner in kuaf, Abasolo signing off.

 

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Recorded at Spotify Studios LA.

Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.



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