So the big question is this, what would you do if money didn’t matter? So you had millions in your bank account, what would you focus on? Would you spend more time with your family, with your wife, with your kids, take family vacations. Would you pursue your gifts and talents in dreams?
Serve your local community, teach others, serve your church. You see if what you would do if money didn’t matter, it was, pursue your gifts and talents and drains to serve others. And that is probably what you should be doing. The problem is most people are in the rat race, living five inches in front of their face with no time to pursue what they were born to do.
That is the problem. And the solution is to develop enough passive income to replace your working income. So you can quit your job and be free to live your life the way you were created to. That is a solution. And this podcast will show you how.
Ryan Enk: What’s going on everybody? This is Ryan Enk with cashflow dad life coming at you with another episode. We’ve got an amazing guest on a probably one of the most impressive people that I can think of. He’s a great teacher.
Rob Reynolds: Okay.
Ryan Enk: Let me start off by…Actually, we have similar stories except I didn’t have the level of success that you have, but he went from teacher cranked out a bunch of kids, was like, crap, I need to find a way to provide for my family. He’s got some credit lines and bought two, four plexes and now owns a company, Avesta, that owns one point, one $3 billion in assets and a which in a pretty amazing feat.
So guys were on the line here with an absolute, a Trojan. I don’t know if that’s the right word. I just, Trojan just came to mind. I don’t even know why. It’s like a, like a tycoon real estate tycoon.
Robert Reynolds, I want to see if you’re there and on the line and if you can hear me. All right.
Robert Reynolds: Okay. Thanks a lot Ryan. Thanks for having me. And yeah man, alls, alls a clear. I was also thrown off by that Trojan comment.
Ryan Enk: I wasn’t, I wasn’t sure what to say after that. I was like, Trojan or I dunno, I dunno, I threw myself off. Sorry about that. Can you kind of walk us through your, you actually have a really incredible story and as a husband, how many kids you have now?
Robert Reynolds: I have six daughters
Ryan Enk:.. and completely opposite of me. I don’t know how to make girls. And you don’t know how to make a penis…
Robert Reynolds: Yeah, I guess I don’t have any y chromosomes. I’m not sure, man. I kind of hold to the fact that my, I think my wife must be killing all the y chromosomes and in utero. So…
Ryan Enk: Don’t let her around my wife because she might share some secrets. I don’t have a wedding to pay for right now. Six of them, unless they all go to the combine, which is, you know…
Robert Reynolds: Hopefully a tradition changes with that whole, uh, bride’s family paying for the wedding…
Ryan Enk: Haha! Good luck. Good luck between now and the time they get married…
So can you kinda walk us through like, so you’re a teacher, you’ve got, you’ve got a couple of kids and probably like most teachers, you’re thinking, man, this isn’t, this just isn’t going to make things, it’s just not going to make ends meet. Sure.
Robert Reynolds: Yeah. And you know, my, my wife Maria, she was kind of the mentality of “Hey listen, when we started having kids I would really like to stay at home.” You know, I thought to myself, “Man, that’s, that’s cool.” My parents didn’t do that. They were, they were actually both teachers themselves.
But I thought, you know, there’s no better person to raise my kids and her. So like, all right. I’ll figure it out…
So I was, I was teaching in the northeast actually in New York and um, yeah, I, early on I realized okay, I’m going to have to have some other type of supplemental income. And my brother Peter graduated after me from college and really was passionate about getting into real estate and he’s like, “Yo Rob, let’s, let’s do this.” So did I want to go? Sure. Real estate sounds good.
Ryan Enk: Sounded to me like a passive income play I think. And uh, you know, I’m like, cool. So you just get some property and you just collect rent, you know, and it’s that easy. Right? Obviously it has very, as almost. It’s definitely not like that.
Especially especially not the way you did it and you, a lot of people come out of college and they, they, they think there’s something with their degree which is nothing and uh, and then they think they’re not going to have to work for, you know, to really come up, you know.
And I see this all the time too and owning a company and, and, and people, you know, the young people coming out of college, they want to be CEO in five years. I’m like to, it doesn’t work like that. So. So I get out, I’m teaching, looking for, for other income or brother graduated college.
Robert Reynolds: He’s like, let’s do real estate. Cool men have no idea what that’s about. My parents being teachers like, are you crazy? Don’t do this. And a 2005, we get a couple for unit rental properties in the northeast and you know, within a year we know it was, it was 2005. So anyone who, who was an adult for that time period, you realize that’s before the recession of 2008.
I would say mid 2007 is really what had happened to us…
But so everything was going great and you could, you know, you didn’t have, you know, there was people that couldn’t pay their cell phone bills that were buying homes. Yeah, something had to give, right. But we didn’t, we didn’t see it, but we, we got to 40 into places, rented them out.
We even got money at closing, like it was 103 percent finance. So, you know, we were in leverage heaven or hell looking back at it.
…But uh, we put in this, the money that we got back at closing, we put it into the, into the property and within a year they’re both worth a lot more, um, when they’re reappraised for a lot more money. So we took out lines of credit on both and then we got a lot more stuff in, in, in the northeast, and by 2007 we had about, let’s say between me and my brother and one other friend of ours, a Dan French.
We had probably like 90 apartments and probably 25 buildings. And um, yeah, so that was by 2007 and we, you know, we thought we were. Yeah, we felt we were ballers, man, hip hoppers and all was good. We just thought anything we touched was gold and um, and then the market turned man and we realized what we were touching was dust and yeah, we, we had to fight through it.
Robert Reynolds: I remember Ryan, it was like, okay, June 2007, it was a month after my first daughter was born. We were married for a year and it was stuff hit the fan. We went through three different property managers for most of our apartments and they were just like screwing us left and right. And you know, charging 60 bucks to change a light bulb type thing on their invoices and like what the heck?
People stopped paying rent, they couldn’t find new renters, you know, it was just, it was chaotic and we just, I remember looking at each other and were like, Yo, we were either going to go bankrupt or we gotta move up to the capital region in New York and try to figure out how to manage real estate and that’s what we did. So…
Ryan Enk: So before then you weren’t working full time, uh, managing apartments, but you still were you still a teacher?
Robert Reynolds: I was still a teacher and I’ve, I was a teacher until 2011. So that was a full time teacher until 2011 public school high school. And I was doing full time real estate managing my own properties and learning how to do that. I mean, again, you know, drinking out of a fire hose type thing and stuff.
When you look back on it, man, and I’m sure you know, as in, in starting your own companies in all this, you look back at what the heck man, how did I get through that?
You know, and right. Yeah. And have little babies at home that are crying through the night. And then I’m going up to the capital region, which is two and a half hours from where I lived.
I basically lived there the entire summer in 2007. And we were just, my brother and I were hustling and at the end of the summer he was going to law school. So, and I was going back to teaching. So we had a tight deadline. We got to figure this out in two and a half months or else it’s bankruptcy. So we wouldn’t do that.
Ryan Enk: You know, it’s interesting how you mentioned that and you started off with talking about how your degree is pretty much worthless when it, when it comes down to it. Because, you know, as one of those things that Robert Kiyosaki talks about is that we were kind of told in our life to avoid failure. And uh, and that’s what school teaches us is to avoid failure. Like failing on a test is bad. B
But in reality it’s those pressure moments, um, and those failures and those mistakes, it Kinda push us in a certain direction. And it definitely pushed you guys into launching something pretty substantial, a with a pretty high purpose…
Robert Reynolds: Yeah. Yeah. So what, what I discovered over that, that period of time, you know, every, every book we’re reading on property management and real estate was, it was the mantra was treat people as income. This is business and you know, just put up a wall between you and the tenants and you’re just there to collect money.
And that’s just not the way I was raised, man. You know, you know, I’m a person deep deep with faith and love of God. And I was like, you know, I see. I see other human beings as equal in the eyes of God. And I just wasn’t. I wasn’t down with that mentality and that. But I had already gotten into it.
So I’m like, man, I’m not treating people like that. Like if I’m going to Ryan’s house and collecting rent, I want to, I want to know how he’s doing, how his family, his wife and kids are doing how you know, how his business is going…
Robert Reynolds: And then I want to see if there’s anything I can do to improve his home. Um, and that’s what I did. And I thought for years, man, I thought I was doing that at the, at the cost of profit, you know, I thought, oh, I guess I’m just not a good businessman and um, I must be living in profit on the table, but you know, my, my vertical relationships more important and I’m going to do it.
I’m going to do it this way because I want to, I want to glorify people and acknowledge her dignity. And I’m doing it. It was, it turned out the opposite.
I mean, what happened was Ryan in turn took better care of, of his home, not of not of his, you know, um, he wasn’t just a tenant, he was a resident, you know, and it wasn’t a unit that he lived and he lived in a home, you know, and us walking them in language is so important and people forget that, you know, and we, we use that language because we believed it and it helped them believe it too.
And it really just gave them a sense of ownership and more pride in where they lived. And we were, we were in all tough areas, lower income areas, tough neighborhoods.
And over time people’s behavior started changing so they went, you know, they would start paying rent on time or early so we wouldn’t have to chase them down all the time…
Robert Reynolds: And time is money. So not having to chase is you’re saving money. Then they would clean up common areas, you know, instead of me doing it or me having to pay people to do it, they would just do it themselves because again, this pride of ownership, man, they’re taking ownership and it was just from me respecting them and acknowledging them as human beings, you know?
And then they, they would tell us if there was other like shady neighbors, drug dealers or whatever, and, and we would evict them and then they would refer other good people in. So they’re doing our marketing. You’re also, all this stuff was cutting down our expenses and it was costing us nothing. Yeah. I’m like, Dang man.
I mean, I’m a slow learner man. It took me like three or four years. I’m like, wait, I’m like, this is actually the better way to do business…
Robert Reynolds: I’m like, what’s, what are all these books talking about? So that’s kind of how we founded invested in on those principles, you know?
Um, in 2010 was when we had from a brother graduated law school, I was still living in Connecticut. We got together with another guy from his law school made Fisher and we said, let’s, let’s make this big.
My brother Pete was like, let’s, let’s blow this out…
You know, we had learned our lessons from those years and uh, you know, we kind of broke down that approach that I just shared with you. And my brother was like, yeah, that’s how we got to do it. So that’s how we started.
Ryan Enk: So you didn’t just set up, I mean, you started off like, Hey, I’m gonna make some passive income with a couple of fourplexes. And what that turned into is not just a real estate company or real estate investment.
What it turned into was a, uh, a very principle centered business…
Can you walk us through like the stages of like what was going on in your head when you were sitting down, you sat down and mapped out all your values and you’re like, we want this to be people centered and we want to improve communities. What were some of those pillars? Uh, those foundations of setting up this company?
Robert Reynolds: Yeah. So for one, you know, in a bigger scheme I would say I’ve never been much of a, I’m a very longterm think thinker in terms of lifetime length, you know, and where I want to be at the end of my life. I think you have to be, if you’re going to have a lot of kids or be willing to have a lot of kids and you got to delay some gratification and, and invest in your retirement through, through having company that loves you rather than a, you know, just vacations or something.
So a longterm thing or in that way. But I’m not like a five year goal type of guy…
And if I had been, I could tell you right now, there was never a time five years ago that I would know at all that I would be where I’m at right now, five years later, you know what I’m saying? So when I got into real estate,
Robert Reynolds: I was not thinking, oh yeah, and you know, 13 years you’re going to have 400 employees and you just don’t like, that wasn’t on my radar, that wasn’t, wasn’t a bucket list thing, it was nothing. It was like, no, I got into real estate for practical reasons. But then there came a person purpose behind it, you know, and a mission.
So it was founded on, to answer your question that, that idea that men, you can really, by acknowledging people’s dignity and like really respecting them, you can actually start building community, you know, interactive community for, for people and just to acknowledging them and their families and all that.
And then you’re creating these positive environments for people to live just by taking the little extra time and screening the people that are moving in there. You know.
Ryan Enk: So you were actually, part of your strategy was actually going into some of these areas that might’ve been a little worn down, people not paying their rent, maybe even drug dealers around and you’d improve these communities and definitely start treating people like people instead of a rent number and, and you’d, you’d see major differences…
Robert Reynolds: Major differences that I went through before. I mean if you start treating people like people, they’ll start acting like people, you know. Um, and again, man, you’re, you’re a teacher. I think most people who, who would be listening to this can relate if, if their parents are or if they’ve had to influence anyone.
I mean, if you treat people the way that you want them to act, they’ll start acting that way, you know, um, if you disrespect them all the time, they’re going to start at acting disrespectfully, back, you know. And, but the same is true if you hold them to a high standard. Um, so yeah, that’s what we do. And, and, and there was high standards too, man.
Like at first there were times where I would allow people to pay their rent later than normal late fee, you know, because of the bleeding heart stories and the bills and all this other stuff that they had to pay or their husband’s sick and Yada Yada.
Robert Reynolds: And I’d walk out of there and pat myself on the back and be like, yeah, you just did a good deed. And then five days later the baby, hey, can I get another five days? I’m like, oh, it’s a okay, you know, okay. A Pat on the back. Then it’s like going in the next month.
And I remember thinking one day I’m like, they may as well just come right into my apartment and stolen $700 off my table. I’m like, this is, this is stealing like anything else. I’m like, yeah, if, if I have a cart full of groceries and I’m walking out of a grocery store and the person at the register, the cashier was like, hey, where are you going with that? I’m like, Oh, thanks Ryan. I’ll pay you later…
I will walk out of the store like what does everybody say that is?
Robert Reynolds: Yeah, stealing, right? But when it comes to not paying for your shelter, like, man, you’re a slum Lord, like what are you doing? So I realized that early on, so I would be very, I’d be very nice. And I learned from teaching, like you don’t have to yell to have to have authority, man, you just have to be consistent. So that’s, that’s what we did.
And you know, people would get evicted and once one person will get evicted, the whole everybody knew like, Oh crap, this guy in playing. And he’s also respectful. So you know, when they tried to manipulate me for being nice and realized that didn’t work, it’s still, I was still being loving the whole time I’m going to get.
If you’re not paying, it’s not fair to anyone else, including me. So you’re out. Well, you know, so that was it. But you know, building that community, Ryan, that was, that was a big thing and just giving people a home where they could live abundantly. That’s, that’s our mission.
Give people a home where they can live abundantly.
Ryan Enk: So when you, when you would acquire these properties, would you immediately evict people? Um, or like there was a rest of a restoration aspect to them or renovation aspect to them as well, right?
Robert Reynolds: Yeah, I mean it would, I wouldn’t say it was immediate, but it be more, you know, we would, we would evaluate where people are at so we’d, we’d go and with teams we just introduced, you know, at first it would just be us.
We’d introduce ourselves and tell him what’s up and see how everything is and what needs, what needs to be improved and all the stuff where, where are your frustrations, you know, get a pulse that, that was our first thing.
Get a pulse and nss things. How’s The neighborhood? How are your neighbors? So if like five different people are like, Oh Ryan, he’s a scumbag, please get them out of here. This guy’s trouble. And then I go to Ryan. He’s like, Super Nice. And it’s like, yeah man, I love this place. Everybody loves me. I’m like, yeah, I haven’t paid your rent…
Robert Reynolds: He’s like, yeah, no, I, I already drew up a deal with the previous owner. I was paying the 20th. I’ll be like, okay, Ryan’s about to be out of here, you know, so we get a pulse and then yeah, some people if they, if they couldn’t, if they couldn’t pay the rent or whatever, then they’d have to leave. We typically work with, hey, how much time do you need?
You’re not, uh, um, we’ll give you some time to help them in their transition. Cool. Or connect them to agencies. We tried that, but a lot of times we put that on, we put that on them and, and do our best to help out, you know, we try to give people ownership man.
And in order to take ownership, you got it. You got to give it. Yeah. To give responsibility. So. So yeah, that’s what we did. Oh, that’s awesome. Been doing…
Ryan Enk: So when I’m, you don’t get to 12,000 apartments in one point. One, $3, billion in assets on your own. So tell me a little bit about how you structured the team and the responsibilities that each team member had when you were in this growth phase.
Robert Reynolds: Well, when, when you reached out out to me two to kind of connect and speak with you about this. My first reservation was like, man, this isn’t about me, you know, because this didn’t happen just because of me. We have, we have 400 teammates here to greet people.
And the key man is it, it’s hiring. It really is…
And we, we took, we took a lot of investment into hiring the right people…
We learned that lesson early on from those early days of that great recession that are referred to. That was, that was a rough patch because you didn’t know when the recessions going to end. You know, we look back now and we’re like, oh well, you know, it only lasted two, 2010 one and you don’t know in 2009 that’s going to end in a year.
Like right now it’s just there and you’re like, holy cow, how am I going to get through this? So we would hire cheap people to do our, our maintenance and to do our, our oversight or general contracting, all this stuff or no construction, whatever. And men, we got burned so many times, man. And there’s just no, there’s no good reason to compromise virtue over talent.
Ryan Enk: So you wouldn’t hire cheap people if you had to do it again, you’d thought you’d find the best talent and pay them whatever it cost.
Robert Reynolds: Yeah, I mean within, within reason we’re, yeah,
Ryan Enk: We’re going to call…
Robert Reynolds: We’re going to pay a premium for the right people and we’re also going to take three weeks to get the right person. Even if we need them for days from now, you know, we’re going to take an additional two and a half weeks to get the right person because I’ve just been through it enough to realize man, there’s no urgency when it comes to getting the right person.
Like it’s always more important than it is urgent…
So an urgency would be like calling the fire department when there’s a fire, but when you don’t have the right person, you do not hire out of urgency. And you have to have the discipline to know that and to actually execute on that. So we, we learned it from the hard way, man, because those, those cheaper people would steal from us when we turned our heads. So they were great and they could do the work.
They knew how to do things. They had the talent, but they didn’t have the virtue.
And when we turned our backs or drive home or whatever, they start stealing stuff. And that, you know, when you, when it costs you hundreds and then thousands of dollars, you start to learn a lesson that, you know, maybe I read that in a book I don’t remember, but I do remember actually losing thousands of dollars.
I don’t make that mistake…
Ryan Enk: What are the things, uh, uh, I remember you telling me in the past is that you, uh, in your training is one of the things that your employees would come up to you and they’d say, oh, well he’s, he’s good for good, for the rent. He’s, you know, he’s just a couple. Can you tell us, tell us how you would handle that.
Robert Reynolds: So yeah, I am so when I would give training for our company, so I basically lead the recruiting, the hiring and then you know, getting the right people on the boss, right. And then training them and developing them and creating a culture around it and had people like Chevron McCullough, they’ll just run, run the hiring and just incredible guy.
But I would, I would tell the, especially the people that were inexperienced and new and young, young people that were on the leasing consultant side or leasing agents or even assistant managers, they would have to collect rent and they would have always have these stories and they call up a, hey rob a look, I want to give, you know, Ryan, he needs the 10 day extension to pay the rent, you know, and the late fee is assessed at $50 late fee that’s assessed two days from now.
Robert Reynolds: Can we just, can we just waive the late fee and give them an extra 10 days? And I’m like, okay. I’m like, listen, you know, Mike, do you really do really trust Ryan is going to do that? Oh yeah, yeah, definitely, definitely. Like I know this guy’s good dude and I’m like, you sure about that? Um, yeah, yeah, for sure. For sure. Like, okay, cool.
So look, let’s do this. I’m like, I know how much you get paid and all that stuff…
I’m like, just spot him, spot him $800, we’ll pay you back 10 days from now, Ryan will pay you back plus so that you saved them the late fee money. And on top of that man, now he knows you personally have his back and you put your money where your mouth is, you know that I would just hear silence on the other line of first and then I’d be like, yeah, you’re there, can we do you know, how about you want to do that?
Robert Reynolds: I’m like, that sounds cool man. It’s very admirable. And they’re like, now you know, which is a victim. Like, oh, I get it. What is, what did your money of generous with the company? So generous with the company’s money as if it grows on trees, right? Like how do you think you get paid? Paid from him paying his rent. So, um, yeah, so that was, and that was something I learned firsthand, man.
So, so how did you structure the company?…
I mean, you had a finance team, you had a marketing team, you have landlords essentially because you guys, you guys aren’t just in one place, right? You’re all, all across the nation now. Well, so yeah, we’re, we’re throughout Florida, so every major market in Florida. And then we’re in Texas, we’re in vague and Austin, San Antonio, Houston and Dallas.
We’re actually building our headquarters there now even though we’re in Tampa currently.
We’re in Colorado, a Westminster, Colorado outside of Denver and Phoenix, Arizona. So, and yet we’re expanding. We’re looking at various deals in different parts of the country. Um, we, it’s fully integrated, right?
So we have, we have a whole finance team that does the underwriting, does the modeling, really tries to assess, you know, for all those familiar with real estate.
It’s, you know, it’s um, the investment. So the, you have the valuation, you have the in the income, which is the Noi, the net operating income, and then you have the cap rates. Cap Rates is determined by the market, you’re going to get that from any, you know, you call a qualified broker and they can give you the cap rates of your specific market.
So you’ve got that cap rate. To get the valuation you got to do the income, the noi divided by the cap rate, the noi is the trick…
Robert Reynolds: You got to figure out what the NOI is. And to do that you have to do a very good underwriting process. You’ve got to figure out, okay, how much, how much rent or are they getting right now? How much rent is should they be getting compared to the competitors in the, in the neighborhood?
How much are other people getting? What can you do?…
What types of improvements with the marketplace, like how much of those improvements cost and what ramp up are you going to get? From there?…
You can figure out, okay, this is our estimated and ally and now you can come up with evaluation, a strike price that’s going to promise to us and our investors that this is going to be good investment and you’re going to get a really good irr internal rate of return on your investment or cash on cash flow, however you want to measure it.
Robert Reynolds: It’s going to be good if you, if you figure out that Noi, right, because the noi is going to inform your, what you’re going to make an offer, what price you’re gonna make an offer at. So that we have the whole marketing team that does our, you know, our website does our branding or our swag, all that stuff.
The name and image we have recruiting and hiring. So our HR we call it people development. Um, they have, you know, they’re responsible for hiring, for recruiting, for training, for developing and then of course the benefits and all that stuff that we wanted to make competitive.
So it’s appealing to be at, you know, asset management team to really assess how, how the assets are doing…
And how they’re performing numerically and can work with the community management team, which would be the, you know, the property managers or what we would call community managers.
We call it properties communities, but whatever. They’re interchangeable. Um, you got the property managers, the leasing consultants, the maintenance techs, the service foreman’s, all of that for men. That’s the internal team now. We don’t, we don’t have a construction, we have a construction team as well, but we, we do that on the GC side or we’ll hire GC.
So major ex plans, capital improvements. We hire people to do that. Then we just oversee them. We have the procurement side that has national relationships with suppliers and I’m trying to think, have we missed? And then of course the, the corporate like, oh, the accounting side as well. We have fairly large county.
Can we do all of our accounting?
So everything’s, everything’s internal man. I think the one main thing we do, we don’t do ground up construction, so we buy preexisting value and typically late eighties, nineties, you know, Class B, b minus some b plus, now c plus, you know, and the way the markets turned in, the cap rates have turned and know the market’s pretty frothy man, it’s, it’s definitely a, a seller’s market.
Robert Reynolds: So the deals we’re looking at more now are, are newer deals, you know, that are kind of b plus because you just can’t get the value out of c plus the, the, the prices are not differentiated enough. You know, class, class, seat properties are selling for too much money right now. But when the market turns out will change. So…
Ryan Enk: So do you have a specific strategy as far as what rent rate you want to study or are you trying to stay in between like $600 and a thousand on your own?
Robert Reynolds: No, I mean it’s changed. So I think now our rent is closer to a thousand 1200 $1,500. Okay. But yeah, for the first few years.
So we got our first properties in Florida in 2011, March 2011 when we bought our first 79 units across seven. Seven buildings are six buildings in Florida and that’s one of us started and yeah, so then the rents from there until 2012 rents were like, you know, 5:52, maybe 7:50…depending on number of bedrooms, you know, we’re talking, you know, from studio two, three bedrooms.
But now now they’re, yeah, it’s more expensive because the, the class a properties has gone up and that hasn’t been our strategy, you know, we’re, we’re value add, longterm hold. So we wanted to get in on where we could, which was high risk, you know, bad areas.
And our goal is to get class a luxury. Like, no, that’s not our goal. We just were trying to be flexible with the marketplace and where can we create most value right now…
Ryan Enk: Right.
Robert Reynolds: In a longterm…
Ryan Enk: Mentality. As far as where you’re finding the properties, are you looking at mostly on, on the market deals? Are you looking at off market deals or is it just kind of a mix? You know…
Robert Reynolds: Anyone in this business would say you want off market deals of course, right? Because you know it’s going to be, you’re going to get less, less bids that raise rise, the prices and all that stuff and there’s so many people that are taking a piece that you’re going to end up paying more, but it’s hard to find off market deals.
So we have a whole part of our investment investor and finance side. We have people that are constantly bird dog and, and trying to find off market deals and relationships, you know, so we do get off market deals, but it’s not, it’s not the majority. We love it. We would love it to be only that, you know, but they’re harder to find.
Ryan Enk: Yeah. So, so one of the things I find interesting is, you know, part of your story is you built this company. Obviously you’re a part of building the company that you had a, you have a big team that he helps set up around you as well.
You built it to one point, one $3, billion in assets and uh, and you were able to quit your job teaching and now just recently you, you’re a very purpose driven person, which is, which is awesome and that’s, that’s been the cause have a lot of your success, like, you know, the virtue behind not treating people like a number or a rent payment, but treat them like people and how that ultimately affected your business and grow your business.
But now you’re at the point where you basically like, I’m going to fire myself. And the good thing is you’ve got the, you’ve got the income that’s coming in that’s allowing you, uh, to do that. Can you tell us a little bit about where you are now and how important having that purpose is, no matter how successful you get
Robert Reynolds: Yeah. So I’ve recently decided on a kind of transitioning out from day to day, you know, working through with my brother and our other partners to now, you know, being on an advisory board level only involvement. And that’s, that transition has been over like a six month period.
And No, I made it official a couple of weeks ago, so I’m no longer actively involved at added Vesta. I think looking back, I was not planning on this and again, fight a five year plan four years ago. It would definitely be like, you know, if I had a 20 year plan would be I’m going to be out of Vesta.
But I feel as I’ve been feeling a desire to, to do something else, something more intentionally related to working closer with people and um, it’s crazy. I mean we, we’ve hired so many great people that have, that have helped build the company that I feel fine walking away from it on, on a operational level to allow people, other people that were on it, you know?
I think we’ve empowered the right people to do so and I didn’t hire them so that I could eventually step away from it…
…I hired them so we could have the greatest company possible and, but they actually have allowed me to step from it when I felt called to do. So.
Ryan Enk: That’s awesome. So what are you going to focus on? You said people center, but you’re gonna know that you’re a man of faith. Is there something that you’re going to do more with that?
Robert Reynolds: No, I haven’t determined entirely. You know, there’s um, yeah, I have an idea of, you know, there’s Mr Rogers has had in my mind, funny enough, but I think he’s, I think he’s impacted a lot of my generation and older generation.
Ryan Enk: Well he’s, he’s about building communities and neighborhoods right…
Robert Reynolds: During, you know, during our youth, but just that positive impact. And there was just a movie on him recently, actually some theaters I think, but he had, he had a way of communicating the kids, um, that was very positive and really focused on, you know, values and ethics and morals and um, I think there’s still a void there and um, with, with him not being on the scene anymore.
And I think largely it’s been filled listening to spongebob’s and hey, I want to say, I don’t want to say mind numbing shows, but you know, shows that I’m not crazy about my kids watching. I’m like, man, I.
It would be great to have a show that really focused, that drew people in, young people in, um, to a relationship with, with God or just, you know, their faith and morals, um, that evolved through laughter, through humor.
And uh, I definitely, I know a couple people that, that would, that just seemed naturally cut out to do something like that and get and get out in front of a camera and do it. So…
Ryan Enk: So you’re not getting it in front of the camera?
Robert Reynolds: I don’t no. I don’t think so
Ryan Enk: …from time to time, but I was about to say, man, you’re not cut out for that. You’re not Magoo enough. I’m sorry, not me. And I’m very, you know, I’m pretty self aware to know that I do have place. I do have people that uh, I know a couple people, one in particular that would be incredible for that. And you want to get involved in like some sort of project like that and make it good, make a bigger difference…
Robert Reynolds: Yeah. Or, you know, make, make it more fulfilling. Difference for me in, in the trend in the point on that right now, you know, and I look back on, you know, pardon me, I was like, Dang man, did I waste seven years or 13 years doing this? Like, no. Like that was my purpose for the amount of time I was there and now I’m doing something else.
When I was teaching, I didn’t run, I didn’t leave teaching, I didn’t get into real estate and they got big enough that I could finally leave teaching…
I left teaching because I felt man, I could, I could really have a huge impact or help, you know, impacting things in big level through this real estate thing. I didn’t know he would be 12,000 apartment homes right now. Um, at the time I think we were a couple of hundred or not even, it was like 150, but I just, I saw potential man and it happened and I was like, well, but that’s why I did it.
I loved teaching and you know, I would still say right now I see myself more as a teacher than a businessman and I’m. But this next thing, it was kind of like, all right, I, this idea excites me a lot. I think there’s a lot of potential there and I think there’s a great need for it and um, someone’s got to do it…
Ryan Enk: So we’ll see what’s up. I’m looking forward to it, man. I’d like to see you pop in as a guest wearing a sweater vest. Right? Right. Beautiful Day in the neighborhood.
Robert Reynolds: That’s right man. But yeah, I was a help him create more community for awhile and now, uh, yeah, just desiring to do something else, man. And you know, it’s, it’s the last thing I’ll say about is this, it’s lowering.
It’s, it’s tempting to just stay in a place where you’re comfortable, you know. Um, but one of my favorite quotes is a, the world promises you comfort, but you’re not made for comfort…
You’re made for greatness and you know, um, you know, I can be comfortable for the rest of my life. Had VESTA and doing whatever active or not active, but you know, involved, they’re on payroll and stuff or whatever.
And I was like, man, I’m not, I’m not a mercenary, you know, I want to be a missionary and life is short and if you’re not, if you’re not working towards doing something fulfilling, if you’re not doing something for billing, then you know, you got to reevaluate things.
Robert Reynolds: And I’m not going to say I’m not one of those guys that can relate to like, oh, well if you do something you love, you didn’t work a day in your life. Like I never, I never could relate to that. That statement, you know, work is work is challenging and it’s work, but it’s rewarding.
And I think anybody from the person that’s, uh, a doorman, you know, to a port or to, you know, whatever the president of the company, you can find purpose in what you’re doing. It’s there. You just need to find it. And once you find purpose in what you’re doing, it’s a whole different level of engagement, man.
And you can bring that joy in what you’re doing, that pride in what you’re doing. You can bring that back to your family, impact them with that. And yeah man, it’s all, it’s all integrated. So…
Ryan Enk: Well said, give me that quote one more time…
Robert Reynolds: The world promises you comfort, but you’re not made for comfort. You’re made for greatness.
Ryan Enk: Yeah, that’s a good quote. I’m going to use that, my next vacation with my kids because right now the only quote I give them as a, I didn’t promise you fund. I only promised you memories will go want to make them uncomfortable. Just put rocks in their mattresses too. I mean, you know, some, some kids.
And then say the world doesn’t pro, you know, you’re not called for comfort. Called for greatness…
Yeah. So go back to sleep and stop bothering me. Right, exactly. Cool man.
Well thank you so much. Rob is awesome. I mean you shared some really amazing things with us all the way from your story and how it happened. And then some of those things throughout that story, like, you know, treating, treating people with dignity and just having a principle centered, not just purpose but principled centered business and how that actually helped your business launch.
Ryan Enk: We also talked about how some of those failures and those challenges and those hard times are some of those things that push you in the next direction of your purpose or where you’re supposed to go.
And, um, and then you also shared some incredible nuggets of just like analyzing deals and creating a structure and a team and, and shared some of the wisdom and the practical knowledge of, uh, of setting up an investment like that. So thank you so much, man. It’s been awesome having you on.
Robert Reynolds: Hey Man, I’m, I’m just a normal guy, man. I’m happy to be here and thanks for. Thanks for having me. Appreciate it.
Ryan Enk: Thanks for listening. Please remember to rate and subscribe. You’re going to want to listen to every episode as soon as it comes out…
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Until next time, my name is Ryan Enk and this was Cash Flow Dad Life!