I have learned over the years while owning and operating multiple real estate holdings the importance of an exit plan. There have been two men who have been instrumental in my career and my real estate strategies that I continue to build on to this day.
The first man, Kenny Jenson, taught me to buy as much land as possible. He would say, “God is not making any more of it and people will always want it.” Kenny was one of the largest Condominium Builder-Developers in the Chicago real estate market. His company-built thousands of units within hundreds of multi-story buildings around Chicago land. This generated billions in revenue. Kenny’s company became the largest player during the Chicago condominium boom during the 1990s.
The 1990s were the years the real estate market made history. I liken this to the days of the 1849 Gold Rush. Seemingly during the 1990s, no one could make a mistake. Properties acquired became profitable as bottom lines increased before the buyer ever left the closing table. Anyone was able to raise private equity and secure funding. Sellers sold properties at prices which seemed to double in equity before leaving the closing table.
The second man was my father, who always told me, “if you go into business for yourself, choose food, shelter or clothing. You will never be without customers.” I followed his advice and chose real estate, and I have never been disappointed.