Running a successful business is not as easy as some entrepreneurs might make it look; there is always going to be trial and error and risk taking. Becoming an entrepreneur, whether it’s in real estate or something else, is so exciting, but there is risk involved. However, if there is a risk, you are still learning. There’s going to be a lot of trial and error when you get started, and there is also a false belief that you’re going to get to a point sometime in the future, it could be five years, ten or even 20 years from now, and you think that all of a sudden your business will be perfect and you won’t have to take any risks, it will just run smoothly, and you’ll know exactly what to do for the best outcome. You might think you will reach a point where you will no longer have to learn, and you’ll never have to have trial and error. But this is not true. And the most successful entrepreneurs are five, ten, or even over 20 years into their careers and are still learning.
Take a look, for example, at Daniil Kleyman, a real estate entrepreneur and a software developer from Richmond, Virginia. Daniil owns over a hundred units of properties, both single-family duplexes, and commercial buildings. He is a developer, a builder, and he also has a software company that helps real estate investors. His business primarily revolves around the development.
Daniil started out rehabbing single-family houses, then moved into rehabbing duplexes and quads. And over the last couple of years, he largely transitioned to building ground up. Primarily his business right now revolves around building properties to then keep in his rental portfolio. This portfolio includes duplexes, quads, larger apartment buildings, and a number of projects which are in development, which will be mixed-use.
“It’s still trial and error, and over the years, I’ve got to be comfortable not knowing if I’m going to expand, if I’m going to do more things, I’m going to be constantly learning and that’s uncomfortable. And you have to realize that you’re never going to be totally comfortable probably.” He said.
Taking Risks Builds Up Your Portfolio
Part of what motivates Daniil is that he wants to do the deal once and keep getting paid for it. So most of his focus revolves around building assets that will then stay in his portfolio.
“I just finished a little six-unit building where we had leases before the drywall went out. Tenants walk through a new construction project when we still barely have insulation hanging out the walls, yet we have still been able to get leases at a top dollar because we can show them the rest of our portfolio.
“They know that we build a great product, and so that’s kind of what I’m passionate about. “
Your Pipe Dream is Reachable
Building your financially unstoppable (FU) wall and gaining financial freedom may sound like a cliché or a pipe dream, but it’s totally within your reach. What makes it possible is to do something that you love and are passionate about because the challenges and learning never stops.
“At the end of the day, if you asked me about my goals and we all have to do things that the money is great, but we all have to do things that we feel are, to a degree, our calling in this world, right? That’s where you’re going to prosper.” He added.
“If I had $1 billion -all the money in the world that I needed, if I never had to work a day again in my life, if I had great family relationships if I had great everything, would I still wake up and develop real estate? The answer is yes, I would. Because I truly enjoy it. So the money is great, but this is what I feel like I was really meant to be doing. And I’m slowly working my way to doing on a bigger scale.”
Daniil believes he is getting there organically, mostly self-funding and not really bringing in outside investors. If he can afford to do those projects on his own, then he’s still learning every day. Daniil believes in doing something where he has to learn every single day.
“I wake up, and I learn something new about commercial development every single day. And I’ve been doing that for years. And it’s one of those things where there is no end in sight to what you can learn.”
You Find the Right People
You also need to find the right people, and the best source of people in your market is going to be referrals from other investors and then test slow. Engage with somebody on a small project. If it’s a new architect, then you should look for referrals, research them and have a look at their past work. If there is a smaller project that you can work on with them first, then this might be a better idea than jumping into a big project.
Working with different people is again, trial and error. You have to see who you have chemistry with, who you can get along with, and who does what they say when they say they’re going to do it. Those people are few and far between, and when you find those people, hang onto them with dear life because your team will make all the difference in the world.
Whether it is a team you have outsourced or your own in-house team, it is these people that will determine everything. They will determine your success. So, finding good people is crucial, and it’s just like finding good contractors. It’s referrals and then trial and error and sorry to say, but you are going to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince charming. But then when you find your prince charming, treat them well, pay them fast, don’t mess them around, and keep hold of them. They are usually worth every penny.
You have to put yourself out there – take some risks in some way in order to learn something new.