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Abbas Mamdani

"JUST DO IT - IT IS A LOT OF FUN! Focus on things you control and try not to leave anything to fate."


Abbas reached out to me from BiggerPockets and I was immediately excited for him because he had a passion for real estate and it was easy to see he had the skill and temperament to be successful. He has incorporated his son and they are closing on their third property and looking to get their fourth before the end of the year.  It takes confidence to get started, and Abbas is a great example of how if you get up the nerve to get started, real estate investing can be fun and profitable.
 

  • How do you make your living outside of

                     real estate investing?

           - I work full-time in Finance.

  • How old were you when you bought your

                      first property?

           - I was 45

  • Tell me about the first property we bought

                      together

           - I was quite hesitant, honestly. I have

invested over 4 years learning about real estate

and contemplating whether this is for me or not.

However, after all the research work, I got more

confidence and was ready to take the first step.

I ran endless financial models and thought

about real estate late at night. You gave me a lot of confidence as well. You knew I was informed and helped me along the way by answering excruciating questions I posed to you all throughout the process (day and night and late nights) and you patiently continued to respond to them…

This is very true :).  Honestly, none of my family and friends are as passionate about real estate as me so I love these conversations.

 

It was not the perfect first property but it has taught me invaluable lessons that allowed me to mitigate the mistakes I made earlier, in my second property. I plan on further fine-tuning my skills and continuing to acquire more assets. My strategy at this point is to buy and hold and after a certain stage, I plan on mixing in a fix-and-flip strategy. I am working through tax strategies that should help me maximize available cash to further invest. 

 

You say it wasn’t the perfect property but do you mind telling me how much you are cash-flowing because I think most people would consider it a pretty big success.

 

Net cash flow is about $800/month taken home after all the expenses.

  • How did you find the tenants?

           - First I hired a rental realtor and then transitioned into using the rental app that I have subscribed to and found quality renters utilizing a thorough in-house electronic screening process including income and asset verification, background checks, and reference checks. I have my college/high school kids (who are also fully invested in these properties) doing a lot of groundwork as I continue to focus on fine-tuning the tax leveraging strategies and planning the next move.

  • How do you communicate with your tenants?

           - I communicate with the tenants with an online rental app and sometimes by phone/text. This allows me to keep all the documentation I need for legal and tax times. 

  • What do you do to collect rent?

           - Press a button.....

  • What would you say to encourage an investor who hasn't yet bought their first property?

           - JUST DO IT - IT IS A LOT OF FUN! Focus on things you control and try not to leave anything to fate. Know what you are doing and run numbers. Always protect the downside and plan on maximizing the upside. Continue to think about better ways of doing things and your time invested in learning will eventually pay off. Not everything will work out as planned but have a plan if things go south and have an exit strategy. 

  • When you think about your future, what are your long-term goals as an investor?  How many properties do you hope to own and how much cashflow would be enough?

           - I would like to create an income stream for me in the future not only for retirement age but much earlier to support the lifestyle I would like to have, to be able to provide my family with the resources and means I was not entitled to and meaningfully help others that I am not able to now. I am a first-generation immigrant, coming from a lower-middle-class family, and I have built everything from the ground up.

  • Is being a real estate investor easier or harder than you thought it would be?

           - So far it has been easier than I thought. I have heard a lot of horror stories about all kinds of things from having a leaky and crumbling property to destructive renters. Not one friend encouraged me to go into this. They kept on saying you are a finance guy and there is no shortage of other investments outside of real estate. Why do you want to deal with a 2 AM call from the tenants? I am doing this exactly because I am a finance guy. I know what tax benefits real estate can bring to the table. None of the horror stories have come true for me. Essentially, running the real estate investment as a business vs. a passive activity is the key. That business mindset will help you create long-term sustainable strategies and significant financial wealth if done correctly. You would not know if real estate investing is hard or easy unless you try.

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