Welcome to The Accelerated Investor Podcast with Josh Cantwell, if you love entrepreneurship and investing in real estate then you are in the right place. Josh is the CEO of Freeland Ventures Real Estate Private Equity and has personally invested in well over 500 properties all across the country. He’s also made hundreds of private lender loans and owns over 1,000 units of apartments. Josh is an expert at raising private money for deals and he prides himself on never having had a boss in his entire adult life. Josh and his team also mentor investors and entrepreneurs from all over the world. He doesn’t dream about doing deals, he actually does them and so do his listeners and students. Now sit back, listen, learn, and accelerate your business, your life, and your investing with The Accelerated Investor Podcast.
Josh: Hey, guys, welcome back. It’s Josh with Accelerated Investor, and I’m really excited to deliver this podcast interview. My guest on this call, which you’re about to hear from, is Dave Seymour. Dave has been a friend of mine for over 12 years. We first met back in 2009 at an affiliate and joint venture and real estate marketing summit. Dave is the host of Flipping Boston. You may have watched that show on HGTV where him and his partners flip houses and wholesale properties in the Boston market and submarkets. And in this interview, Dave and I talk about everything from what he’s up to now, which includes a commercial apartment, investing in an assets between 50 units and 150 units. We also talk about the impact that COVID has had on private lending.
Josh: We talk a little bit about Dave’s introduction to real estate and attending seminars and how he put twenty-seven thousand dollars on his wife’s credit card. How he talks about his wife was his very first private lender during that transaction so he could get his real estate education. There’s a lot of nuggets in here about building your business. There’s several nuggets in here about raising capital and finding deals. And finally, we talked to Dave about the advice that he would give his younger former self. Dave is currently standing up a hundred-million-dollar fund to invest in multi-family and apartments, and they already have eight to 10 million dollars committed. He’s an active investor. He’s a longtime friend of mine. I really hope you enjoy this interview with Dave Seymour from Flipping Boston.
Josh: So, Dave, so excited to have you on the show. Thanks so much for jumping on. Hey, Dave. Tell me. Let’s jump in right away. Tell me about some projects, some things in your real estate business and your entrepreneurial journey that you’re working on right now. This week. This month that you’re excited about.
Dave: Yeah, man. Absolutely. Thanks for having me on, brother. It’s been a while. Man, great to reconnect with you. You know, great question. What are we doing right now, today in this environment, in this real estate environment? And let’s just be frank, my man. It’s a challenge, right? It’s a challenge. So, you know, I met with some experts, some people in my network, some real good friends of mine that I trust, know and love, you know, operate as performers. And we’ve transitioned over into commercial real estate at a very high level. We’re in the middle right now of looking at multifamily real estate.
Dave: We went through our Securities and Exchange Commission, reg these certifications so I can market for capital to give my investors returns. I was talking to an attorney yesterday, and you’ll appreciate this one, Joh. I was telling him about the business model. Buying 60 to 150 commercial multi-family apartment complexes in the Florida market. You know, fluff and buff. Make them a little prettier, raise the rents, raise the value, boom, sell them. And you’ll love this. He says to me he goes, Dave, you know, I’m a really, really good personal injury attorney.
Dave: That’s what he said. He goes, I don’t know anything about real estate. He said, but can I dumb it down? I go, yeah. It goes to your TV show flipping Boston on steroids, right? And you know what, man? Like, I’m used at all the big fancy terminology of words and, you know, prefreturn a mez lending and, you know, 70, 30 loan. I’m giving him the whole real estate spiel that you and I just live in day in, day out. And he’s like, Oh, it’s like flipping Boston. It’s like taking a little house and you know, putting that on steroids.
Dave: You know what, brother? You’re absolutely right. So that’s where we’re at, man. We’re buying large apartment complexes. And we’ve got about, say, eight to 10 million committed and the fund is one hundred million dollar raise. And we anticipate raising that and deploying that capital by the end of the year. So, it’s on, baby.
Josh: That’s awesome. I just had a great a great call with a commercial broker on Friday. And so this is secondary information. But he was on a call with the CEO of Starwood, which is one of the top five apartment owners in the country. And they were talking about how B class, solid, stable apartments is like the best asset class to own. Like malls have gotten killed, office retail is getting killed. There’s a little bit of a crack in A class apartments because those people aren’t really paying for luxury. They’re paying for the amenities. Little bit of a crack in the C class markets because a lot of those people are more on, not government support, not Section eight, but, you know, more of the bartenders, the waitresses, that type of stuff. But that B class workforce housing has held up really well during COVID. So I love to talk about that stuff. So let’s talk about that.
Josh:So you haven’t been in that space forever? Dave as long as I’ve known you over 10 years. We’ve done joint venture affiliate stuff in the info space. You’ve been a hard money lender. You’ve done tons of wholesaling, rehabbing. You had this amazing show Flipping Boston. You’re on national networks for that. You’ve done a little bit of everything. So out of all of that, I always like to hear like, what’s your favorite thing you’ve ever done? Or maybe one of your favorite deals that you’ve ever done and why?
Dave: Yeah, that’s a great question. You know, I just doubled back a little bit on that, Josh, because you’ve got a great point, right? Perception in business and in life, is everything right? What are you known for? If people say, oh, that’s that guy. What’s their next commentary afterwards? And I was always known as that flipping guy. And I was in a marketing meeting with my team earlier on this week. And we got a young intern fresh out of college, wet behind the ears. And he’s like, please don’t bark at me. Don’t get upset with me. It’s like, but why are we talking about you as this apartment guy, like this commercial real estate investor? You’re the guy from Flipping Boston, you throw a hammer or you do a wholesale transaction.
Dave: And I’m like, you know, immediately my ego steps up like, who the hell do you think you are? Yeah, right puff my chest out then, you know, out of the mouth of babes. It was one of those moments. The truth that a matter is, brother, I have always been in commercial real estate. It’s just not sexy. You don’t see that on a TV show, right. So there’s no drama in it. So, you know, my very best deals are the deals that have taken care of my family and my and my investors. I’ll give you a perfect example of one. It was generated through a single-family deal that we did recently. There was some marketing that was out, so I’ll say within 18 months. The marketing went out 18 months back. I’ll make it quick. But it’s a really pertinent story.
Dave: The lady inherited a house. The house was abandoned. Her daughter at some issues with some substances. Very sad situation, the woman herself was sick and she had a predatory attorney and a predatory real estate agent on her deal. And they were like manipulating the crap out of this thing. And, you know, they were high school friends back in the day, so she trusted them. Anyway, long story short, you don’t put a property in a fast market on the market for one point one million when it’s really only worth 400, right? You don’t put it on and have them sign a three-year listing agreement. So you see what I’m saying?
Dave: Right. Yeah. Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding. Long story short, I couldn’t pay what she expected on the deal. We gave a comparable and work and everything else. Anyway, here’s the deal, man. Here’s what happened. We went in there, rattled some cages, pissed off some attorneys, slapped some real estate agents. Brought the lady a half a million dollars and invest the capital to buy the house, not our capital. I made no money on this transaction at all, Josh, none. But it was the right thing to do. But here’s what’s interesting.
Dave: Within six months of that particular deal, going to the closing table and coming away with that capital. Guess what she’s doing now with that money? She’s investing it with us. You see what I’m saying? And you and I talked about this. Well, you know, in the years that we’ve known each other do good works and make great money. Being of service first.
Josh: It’s a relationship business. I mean, everybody that’s invested with us. We’re not like Wells Fargo or Chase or JP Morgan. They like the fact that there’s a even though we have about 300 investors, they like the fact that there’s this personal relationship and it is known as a private placement memorandum. Right. Iraq deals offering. It’s private. So people are really investing with you. The relationship with you and a guy just put it twenty thousand dollars into one of our latest departments is like, Josh, I don’t really know the deal that well.
Josh: I’m not really good at underwriting deals, but I’m investing this tune a thousand dollars because of you. Right, so do good works, make great money, man. That really, really resonates. Dave, help me understand.
Dave:It’s reputation, Josh. People have to have faith in that. You can do what you say you’re going to do, because I was thinking about this the other day, and I know you’ll back me up on this. I’m never, ever going to say the stock market is bad, right? It’s not right or wrong. It’s left or right. It’s somebodies DNA, they’re commitment to the operators. Which is us, we’re the operators, man. You, me, my partners, we’re the operators. And when it makes sense, people will say yes. But if it confusing, if it’s shrouded in, Yeah, but no, and oh my God. What about this? What about that? You know, we don’t have time for that.
Dave: I’ve turned away more money because people ask stupid questions. Right. And invest in some time and energy to educate our investors first through webinar, through zoom meetings like we are doing right now. And then them saying, OK, I get it now. I understand. Yeah. And I can see that you’ve done it before and you start showing, you know, cash on cash returns target of eight to 10 percent and internal rates of return north of 20 percent targeted, proven business models. And, you know, then they get excited. But again, we only bring in accredited investors into our funds. We don’t go any Reg A stuff. It’s all Reg D.
Josh:So you’ve made this kind of pivot recently, you’ve gone from, and you’ve always done commercial, but kind of known as flipping Boston, flipping houses, wholesaling deals, made some private lender loans. Just love to hear your commentary on COVID specifically. Obviously, we’re still in the middle of it. By the time this podcast is released, which is just coming up in a couple of weeks, COVID’s not going to be gone. It might be gone on November 4th after the election is over, but it’s not going to be gone yet. So how has it impacted your business? What kind of challenges have you faced because of it? And also, what new opportunities are you seeing because of it?
Dave: Yeah, you know, great questions, man. Look, COVID is unprecedented. We know that. How many times have we heard that said since it came out? So I was sharing with you before we jumped on, and I’ll make it quick as well. I was asked by a hard money lending company to open a branch office out here in Boston. They’re from San Diego. And I’m like, yeah, let’s do it, man. I like it. That’s my wheelhouse. I can put some loan officers together. We can move some capital. This particular company worked their business model with a 50-million-dollar line of credit that they wrote the loans from closed. And then what there was is those loans were bought out by Wall Street non QM. Right. Secondarily, tertiary market.
Dave: And it was looking great, man. I mean, January, February. We’re kicking ass. We’re taking names. We got fifteen million in the pipe. The loan originators are excited. You know, we’re branding it around Dave Seymour from Flipping Boston has money. I mean, it’s great. It’s a great story. And then COVID hit and COVID literally kicked me right in the nuts man. It took the wind and took the capital and everything because Wall Street said, we don’t want those anymore. We’re not going to buy those loans. We’re not doing them. They’re risky loans. Forget about it. So now I’m out of business. Probably about 35, 40 thousand dollar hit, you know, not a huge amount of money, but it’s still a hit. Licked some wounds, sat in the corner and cried for about ten minutes. No more than that.
Josh: I like it. Sulk for a second. I like to call it sulk for a second and move on.
Dave: That’s it. I’m done with that. What’s next? That’s right. I just stepped out of it, man. And I looked at the scenario and I said, you know, it’s controlling the capital is really the magic. If I control the capital, nobody can ever take it away from me. It’s mine. It’s mine to put to work. That’s why we ended up with the fund. So, you know, COVID has created massive opportunities for us. Like I said, in the commercial world. But here’s the other thing. If somebody says to me, you know, how has COVID impacted business, et cetera, et cetera. For those who pay attention yesterday or the day before, I can remember, they’re all blending in.
Dave: And if you follow the big banks, they just allocated 30 billion with a B, billion dollars of their balance sheet has been allocated for what they know to be default loans coming down the pike. No doubt. Now, you and I know what that means. I know that you broke your bones and, in the crisis,, two thousand seven, eight, nine like I did. You guys in Ohio created business plans, if you will. Ohio and your market was the blueprint for what the country should do next.
Dave: I mean I refer back to that so many times. And all these guys came out afterwards and said, I’m the single-family guy. I created this. No, you didn’t. And it was Josh and his crew back in Ohio. That’s right. Because we used to make fun of Ohio. We ‘d say you can buy a house in Ohio for three thousand dollars and you could.
Josh: Not anymore. We’re proud to say the prices about 25 or 30 now.
Dave: In a really good neighborhood. But you know what I’m saying. Well, it’s people. It kills me, man. Like I’m screamin on social media. Now, will you pay attention? Like everybody was asked me in the past three to four months. Hey, Dave, what do you think about this one? This looks like a great deal. I say it’s not a deal I would do. Because you know what the value is going to be in six months? Because that’s what we do for a single family, buy, fix, flip. I need six months with the running numbers. And then I want to know what the after-repair value is. And we always use intelligence. And intelligence says there’s gonna be a foreclosure crisis. Nine percent of the mortgages in our country are in forbearance. And when the forbearance, look at me I’m getting elevated.
Dave: When the forbearance is done, my brother. The bank says, OK, pay time. What are you going to do? I was talking to my local banker yesterday, the guys who’s refinancing some of my commercial portfolio. And he said to me, Dave, we’re having to have really unpleasant conversations with really good people. And that’s the opportunity again, because they buy them on a tight line. Josh, how many times have we seen it? Like, if one thing goes wrong, it’s over. You’re going to lose money.
Dave: The assets are going to devalue. And that’s what we’re targeting in the commercial world. So, you know, on a business scale, it’s an unprecedented opportunity. On a personal scale, it’s also an unprecedented opportunity. We have a responsibility to take care of each other. Everybody and I don’t care who you are. Good people are good people. Shitty people are shitty people.
Josh:Well, the opportunity is coming, right? Both resi and commercial. There’s not I don’t see there’s going to be a huge crack in the multi-family space. But what I do see is potentially, for example this whole case study around Starwood that I talked about. Starwood is also one of the top five owners of malls in the country. So there’s going to be such a big crack in malls, office and retail that those commercial investors may be forced to offer up their multi-family properties at a discount because they’ve got to create cash and liquidity. Same thing on the residential side. You might have residential people that are good people that had performing mortgages.
Josh: Now they’re in forbearance, but maybe they also owned three or four or five rental properties over here and they may be forced to sell off their rentals, which were great performing assets in January, in February, because they’ve got to create cash to take care of their personal business. That’s coming. And what I would say, look, what did I learn from 2007 89 was cash flow. So even if I had an asset back then and I saw so many people like, well, I don’t want to sell it, I want to keep trying to sell it. The values were going down. More foreclosures. Values go down. Less liquidity, less buyers.
Josh: The way you get through a recession is with cash flow. So even if you’re able to cash flow that asset and just break even or even lose a few hundred dollars a month, rather than do that and hold on to the asset long term, that piece of real estate, when you really need to sell it is maybe 10 and 20, 15 or 30 years from now. That’s when it’s really going to be worth the money. The idea of, you know, there’s gonna be market cycles, right, Dave? There’s going to be times in 2008. There’s a lot of people that held on through 2007, eight, nine, not everybody got slaughtered, but it came from cash flow.
Josh:So renting those properties out, getting them stabilized, getting people into them, selling off what you can now. The market’s still good. There’s lots of people buying and selling houses right now, but there’s going to be a lot more foreclosures. Forbearances, defaults coming up over the next six to 24 months. It’s inevitable. You’ve got 40 million people out of work. So it’s just gotta happen. Got to happen.
Dave: It’s three times. It’s almost three and a half times the unemployment. That’s how many times it’s jumped. It’s always interesting. You listen to the politicians and we know November the fourth is coming around. So, you know, use some intelligence when you listen to this information, please, I beg of you. Right. But, you know, jobs, job creation, job creation. Job creation. Yeah, that’s fantastic. But we’re still three times the unemployment rate that we were in January of this year and that has an impact. And look, man, you know as well as I do, you cannot prop up an economy with magic money, which is what they’ve done. PPP, another round of PPP. The unemployment just ended this week. So then no more six hundred dollars coming in anymore.
Dave: And some people say, Dave, you’re a jerk, man. People got to live. I get it. I do have to live. But if we forget the frickin fundamentals, if we forget that there is a transparence of service to create money. My transfer of service is I have rental properties that people live in and pay me to live in those properties. Transfer a service, intelligence, education, gadgets, gizmos, whatever it is, there has to be a transfer. There’s no transfer and there’s no transfer in these unemployment numbers. So everything is based on it’s that house of cards all over again. And to your point, brother, you are so on the money, honey, because if there is not a cash flow scenario, I am not interested. End of conversation, end of conversation. And these mom and pops, these smaller family run 60 to 150 unit complexes or even smaller 10, 12 sites.
Dave: I’m underwriting one right now, eight units in in California or L.A., one on the beach areas there. But they are run by mom and pops. And because they didn’t buy them right, they didn’t manage them right. They don’t have professional skills like we do. They don’t maximize the dollar value. And as soon as they lose one tenant, as soon as they lose one rent, as soon as the city says now there’s a violation, X, Y, Z, they’re done, they’re out of the game. And COVID creates that opportunity for us. Sorry to get a little elevated, man.
Josh: Appreciate it, man. I like the elevation. People love to feel the passion. So where’s the opportunity for all of you listeners? Listen, this feels like there’s some similarities to two thousand, seven, eight, nine. Dave and I were both investing in that market. We were both educating in that market. And the opportunity, if you’re new to real estate, is to be what I call a real estate transaction entrepreneur. And entrepreneur means you don’t have to have a lot of money. You don’t have to have a lot of cash. You are essentially in the middle of a deal being resourceful. You don’t have to have even tons of experience. So what Dave’s explaining, and I don’t know if you realize what we’re talking about here, but there is still a lot of capital, private investors and institutional capital that’s going to be looking for deal flow.
Josh: And so there is a lot of buyers out there. And then for those of you that don’t have a lot of money, sourcing deals, underwriting deals, finding properties, locking them up, being some sort of acquisitions manager, wholesaler, realtor that can then sell or flip or turn those properties over as an entrepreneur to the people with money, people like Dave, people like us that run funds, that have cash, that are looking for assets. There is still this massive opportunity. And if you have a bunch of assets and you’re thinking, oh, my God, I’m going to get slaughtered, get cash flowing those right now. Those are two or three of the actual real opportunities to describe them. Specifically, where’s the opportunity? That’s it. If you can recruit capital, there’s gonna be an opportunity buy assets.
Josh: If you can’t recruit capital, there’s an opportunity to be a transaction entrepreneur and find deals, resource deals and flip them to other people. If you currently have assets and you’re gonna start to see some cracks in your cash flow, again, get as much cash flow as you can as being as resourceful as you can. Dave, let me back up for a minute. You and I have tons of experience. I love for my audience to learn more about you and your start. Everybody starts somewhere. Everybody’s freaking scared. Everybody starts with no experience and practically no money. So what interested you in real estate at the beginning? And tell us about your first start?
Dave: Yeah, man, that’s always an interesting story for people who don’t know me. I’m actually an immigrant to this country. Shhh, don’t tell anyone. I’m an immigrant. But no, seriously, man, I came from working class background. My dad, I’m from London, England originally. And I could put the London accent on, but half of the people wouldn’t understand a word I’m talking about.
Josh:That’s the British bulldog.
Dave: You remember, British bulldog of real estate and laughter they used to call me. But, you know, I immigrated. I farted around, dude. I tried to figure some stuff out, but I got a blue-collar attitude and I wasn’t always I wasn’t always smart when it came to finance. All right. I’ll tell you the truth. I was a financial illiterate. I was a donkey when it came to finance. So anyway, I knew how to work. I was all good at digging ditches and etc., etc.. Anyway, I’ve got to go get that good government job. I landed a position as a firefighter and then graduated to power medicine as well. So I was a medic and a firefighter just north of Boston. Loved it. I mean, the camaraderie. The similarities to that and real estate investing today are huge. But I had champagne tastes on a cheap beer budget, you know what I mean?
Dave: Trying to keep up with the Joneses, big house, wife, cars, boats and leather coats. My buddy used to say to me, none of that’s gonna make you happy. And in 2007, you know, I was in pre foreclosure in my primary residence, I was working 120 hours a week between three jobs, fire department, construction and retail security. Straight up, dude. Closed circuit TV cameras that jump up and down on shoplifters. And this like they were I was more broke than they were and they’re stealing and and I wasn’t. Anyway. It was garbage, man. It cost me a marriage. Almost cost me a relationship with my now oldest boy. Twenty-four.
Dave:Twenty-five. Robert. He was eight years old. Anyway, I ended up in a seminar, dude. I ended up in a teach me foreclosure for three half hours. And I went and I got divorced and I was dating my now wife, Mary Beth. She was a labor and delivery nurse. I was a firefighter paramedic. We met in the hospital delivering a baby together. And she’s been the rock that I get to stand on ever since so I can look cool, you know what I mean? To overcome adversity and challenges. We invested twenty-seven thousand dollars on her credit cards. So she was my first private lender.
Dave: I realized, and I know you’re on point with this and your listeners need to be all right. Is that day I purchased twenty seven thousand dollars’ worth of accountability. Yes. It was time to stop talking turkey, man. It was time to put up or shut up, you know? And I went after real estate investment. And in 2008, they’d say, what do you do? I’d say, I’m a real estate investor. You’d think you had a terminal illness. Oh, I’m so sorry. You’re on the wrong end. So that’s how it started, man. First, deal was a wholesale deal. Made five grand, came out of the attorney’s office and I was waiting for the cops to come and arrest me because it felt illegal.
Josh: Can I actually cash this? What if I cash it? Are they going to know I cashed it? They’re going to know the bank. Are they going to arrest me in the parking lot? Yeah.
Dave: The only saving grace I had was there was an attorney’s name on there, so I figured it must be legit.
Josh: Isn’t it weird, that first check you’re like, this doesn’t. What is this thing? It’s so …I remember having a two-thousand-dollar check. I one of my first deals on my wallet, and I just kind of opened up my wallet to show my girlfriend. I’m like, look at that. I didn’t want anybody to know or see it. And I just showed you the book just a little peek. And then I cashed it, I’m like, yeah, but nobody coming after me.
Dave: And I was waiting for the lights and sirens and the big black truck.
Josh: Now you’ve got it hundreds of times. It’s no big deal. Yeah. But I get it, man. I love it. That’s where I was.
Dave: I looked at that thing and I thought to myself, what have I been doing to make five thousand dollars? How much time did I trade? How much time away from my family? Because the crazy thing is you go to work to earn money so that you can be with your family and take care of them every time you go out and trade another hour for a dollar. It takes you away from your family. You know, nobody ever explained that to me, man. And it was tough. I used to sit there and pray the phone would ring in the firehouse so I could make an extra 200 bucks on an overtime shift, you know. I’d pray to spend another 14 hours away because I needed two bills. Crazy. And today I’m today I’m playing in a 100-million-dollar sandbox. That’s crazy. That’s how I started, brother. Just kept at it.
Josh: Yes, so let me ask you, so looking at today, right now you’re playing a hundred-million-dollar sandbox, private lending, commercial investing, TV show Fixing Flip’s wholesaling, you’ve taught hundreds, thousands of people to do what you do. You learned a lot over this journey over the last 12 years. What? And maybe three to four to five pieces of advice that you would give our audience and give your younger former less experienced self.
Josh: What would you do differently? What did you do right? What are some things that you thought, man, I’m really proud of are things that man I really screwed up that I would do differently? What are some things you can kind of pay it forward and pass back to our members?
Dave: Yeah, that’s a powerful that’s a powerful question, brother. There are so many different moments. But the first one is this the very first time we got interviewed on a like a pundit network. It was Squawk Box and the guy on the show there was trying to break my stones a little bit. And he sits me other than get yourself a reality TV show, what would you tell people they needed to do to be a successful real estate investor? And I coined a phrase back then that I’ve kept true to even up to today. And that’s educate, don’t speculate. I again, educate, don’t speculate. I think that’s probably a powerful, powerful strategy because everybody wants to pontificate about how smart they are. Like the talkers, you know what I mean, instead of the doers and surrounding yourself with people who are smarter than you is important, man.
Dave: I mean, I don’t want to be the smartest guy in the room. As CEO, if the CEO of this company today, you know, I’m not the smartest guy on my team. I just know how to attract the right people to make that team proficient. Right. So I think humility is important. I think Conga man, this isn’t like a passive, I think I’ll just dip my toe into real estate. Even as the passive investors like the doctors and the lawyers and the people that we take checks from for one hundred thousand dollars. You know, although it’s a passive investment for them, they still engage with us so that they know what’s going on. Pay attention. My first mentor used to say that to me all the time. He’d smack me upside the head. He said, hey, are you paying attention today? Are you asking questions? Just because they say a 401K is good? Is it? Ask some questions.
Dave:Just because they say saving money is right? Is it? Ask some questions or pay attention? And then find somebody that you can align yourself with. And it’s not always reciprocity. You and I know this to be fact, right. Reciprocity is critical. There’s an upside for you to do this call with me. There’s an upside for me to do this call with you. At the same time, it’s a couple of dudes who’ve known each other a long time and enjoy each other’s company. So it’s not work. It’s fun. But reciprocity is important. And I can’t tell you, and I’m sure you’ve experienced, too, how many newer investors they’re like. What should I do? I always say to them, here’s what you do first.
Dave: You find out what skills you have now that you can bring to somebody like me. If you’re a younger generation, is it your online ability, your computer skills? Can you make some phone calls? Can you drop some fliers? Can you participate in some way if you don’t have Ben Franklins to put into the gang? Because if you don’t have the Benjamins, people go, well you need money to make money. Well, that’s what the rich people tell the poor people so they don’ try and come in and take the money.
Dave: I don’t know if in all of that blurb if there’s a couple of gems in there, Josh. Commitment, man. Commitment, courage, commitment. And just understand. Always play worst case scenario. What’s the worst thing? Somebody says no. Yeah. Celebrate the nos cause you’re getting closer to a yes.
Josh: Absolutely. I talk about to my audience a lot like you may have a goal that you want to accomplish this year and a lot of times within this year, like people say, well, I’ve never done a real estate deal, but I want to make a million bucks. So, okay, let’s make that the goal. Let’s make it the goal this year, because you’re passionate for it. However, if you don’t accomplish it this year, don’t give up on the goal of a million dollars. Just stick with it until you actually hit that million dollars. Like, I’ve got note cards. I’ve got these three by five note cards I keep with me. And I remember writing these out in 2017. Things I wanted relationships, house, car changes, cash flow, equity, everything in my personal life, my relationship, life, my financial life, a number of things. Those things have happened, which is awesome. A number of them have not happened.
Josh: I didn’t throw the cards away and start over. I just stick with it until they actually come. They might take me an extra couple years. Fantastic. And another thing, Dave, about what you said about, listen, last night, literally last night, I brought my kids. We got home from Florida. We’re down in Florida. We were dreaming a lot. You know, you’re on the beach, you’re on the ocean. When you’re out in the boat for almost thirty-five days hanging out. We got home and all said it was kind of back to normal, back to Ohio. Kids are going to volleyball. Wife is busy with the kids. I’m kind of back to work a little bit, this and that. And all of a sudden, I could feel the dreaming kind of dissipate. And so I got out the whiteboard. I put it up on top of the big island we have in the middle of the kitchen. My wife’s like, get that, you know, get that whiteboard, that tripod thing off my countertop.
Josh: I’m like, no, I’ve got a point here. And I said, everybodysit down. You know, everybody, sit around. Everyone’s sitting in a chair, they’re up on the island. I said, guys, listen, when we were down in Florida, we were dreaming about the next house. We were dreaming about by an acre of land. Kids are dreaming about me building them a gym and a volleyball court, indoor basketball court. My wife’s dreaming about this massive pool with a waterfall and the pond in the front with the fountain. And we’ve got a beautiful home now. Way more house than we need. But we were dreaming all of a sudden, Ohio, bam, smacks us in the face and we’re like, you know, we’re back to golf lessons and school’s going to start. And so I’m like, no, I’m not going to let go of this dream. So for about a half hour, I’ve got pictures of, I’m going to post them on Instagram later today, of them, like dreaming about where would the basketball court go? Where would the house go? Where would the guest house go? Where’s the fountain?
Josh: And sure enough, I’m now aware this we’ve been dreaming about this now for about 60 days. All of a sudden, the world tends to reward people who focus, like you said, who commit. So we’re committed this. All of a sudden, I’ve come into some knowledge that the five acres directly behind my house is owned by a woman, husband recently passed away about eight years ago. I cold called that woman, Dave, about 30 days ago. And after owning this property for 40 years, she’s now thinking of selling it. And it’s landlocked. Development over here. Our beautiful neighborhood here. Another street over there. Nobody is going to buy this land except for us.
Josh:So when you commit. Right. When you’re into it and even if that goal like that I set three years ago didn’t happen three years ago. But we just stay committed to it. It’s going to happen. You and I have pivoted many times from wholesaling to residential, commercial, fund management. We just keep sticking with it until. So that’s one of my takeaways, Dave. Last couple questions. Let me just fire away with a quick question, maybe quick response. What’s your favorite acquisition strategy now, for both either residential or your commercial apartments? What’s the one thing you love to do the most to find deals.
Dave: Other people’s capital and pay great returns consistently. Period.
Josh: Got it. And what’s your favorite way to recruit capital to talking to new investors, meeting new investors?
Dave: Yeah, we do a number of different ways. I mean, there’s a lot of online marketing to get through the amount of people that are out there. So a really good online funnel system takes away a lot of the manpower hours. And then for me, I just love to sit down with them one on one or do a zoom call with them. I’ve got a bunch of doctors coming on a call later on today. We’ll go with them. Just be real and interact with people. Be honest. I find that like attracts like. That’s kind of what you just talked about. Right. The belief that they’re going to participate because it’s the right thing to do. So I use systems, processes, mail, online business, press releases, get through all the noise, get down to the real core group of people that you can help and then just interact with them and talk to them.
Josh: Fantastic. Love it. Now, Dave, you guys have come out with, you and your partner. You’ve written an amazing e-book about investing in multi-family and apartments. I think you said you’re going to make that available to our audience for free if they want to download it. Tell us where they can get that.
Dave: Yeah. Go to FreedomVenture.com. Freedom Venture, dot com. It’s our front door. Tells you a little bit about our investment strategies and what we’re doing. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and there’s a free book in there that I wrote with my property manager. He’s been an investor longer than you and I. He’s been working with investors for probably 20 years in his career. Super guy from Chicago, Johnny Desau. We wrote this book together and the title of the book is Unlocking the Code to Multifamily Investing so they can just click on. They have put in some info with Download the book forum. Good read. Good information. And then maybe we build a relationship from there. So, yeah, that’s a gift.
Josh: Fantastic. There you have it, Dave Seymour. Thanks so much for joining me today on Accelerated Investor.
Dave: Thanks, brother. Great call. Appreciate you.
Josh: I really hope you enjoyed that interview with Dave Seymour from Flipping Boston on Accelerated Investor. Please do me a favor. Go out to all the social media networks, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and share this interview with everybody that you can so we can get this out to as big of a community as possible. I just want to say thank you for engaging with me and Dave today and spending some time with us, whether you’re at the gym, whether you’re in your car, wherever you are. We love you. We support you. We’re very grateful that you’re able to join us on these interviews, that we can be part of your real estate and entrepreneurial journey.
Josh: If you enjoyed the interview, please go into iTunes right now. Leave us a five-star review and leave us a rating. Tell us what you liked about it. Maybe it was Dave’s accent. Maybe it was some of the questions I asked. Maybe some of Dave’s advice. I appreciate you being here on Accelerated Investor.
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You might know Dave Seymour as the host of Flipping Boston on HGTV who specializes in single residential units. Dave’s also been a friend of mine since 2009 when we met at a real estate marketing summit. As an immigrant from a blue-collar English family, he came to the United States to work as a firefighter and a paramedic. But his champagne tastes on a beer budget were kneecapping his lifestyle.
Today Dave is playing in a hundred million dollar sandbox, investing in multi-family units and commercial properties. A real estate seminar and a $27,000 loan from his wife’s credit card gave him the boost he needed into the real estate market. He made this pivot in 2008 when everyone around him thought it was the absolute worst time to get into real estate. But he saw an opportunity, and he was determined to make it work.
We talk about the changes Dave has had to make to flex with the pandemic, and he wants you to know that if you can recruit capital, there’s going to be an opportunity to buy assets. And if you can’t recruit capital, there’s still going to be an opportunity to be a transaction engineer. For anybody who’s starting out just like he once did, Dave has three pieces of advice for his younger self.
For our audience, Dave’s offering a free copy of his book Unlocking the Code to Multi-Family Investing available as a download on his website Freedom Venture. If you loved today’s episode, we’d love to hear from you. Leave us a five-star review on iTunes and share us on social media.
- How COVID is impacting Dave’s real estate business.
- Why you don’t always need money to invest in real estate.
- What Dave means when he says, “Educate, don’t speculate”.
- How to get Dave’s free book Unlocking the Code to Multi-Family Investing.