Arman & Tony Abedini

Quick Facts:

  • Profit Strategy: Buy, rehab and resell
  • Number of Units: 2
  • Amount Earned: Expect to earn around $30k profit once they sell
  • Prior Experience: First apartment. Purchased a SFH prior.

Here’s their story:

One of the most fascinating and inspiring success stories emerging from Lance Edwards’ Small Apartment Bootcamp is the unique father-son partnership of Arman and Tony Abedini. While such family-fueled dynamics are not uncommon in the world of real estate investing, the Beaverton, OR based Abedini duo boasts a unique twist: Arman is only 11 years old!

At an age when most sixth graders still receive an allowance from their parents and play computer video games and outdoor sports after finishing their homework, Arman, under the mentorship of his dad, is already an experienced dealmaker. He is currently drawing income on investments that he and Tony made on a single family home in Alabama and a duplex they found via an agent, post boot camp, in Youngstown, OH.

With the help of credit lines tied to Tony’s other businesses through a local Oregon bank, they bought the latter property for $52,000 and have spent nearly $3500 in minor repairs and cosmetic touch ups. While actively looking for a buyer, they have rented out both units to lower income tenants. Ever the stats whiz, Arman knows exactly how much his yearly income will be, assuming full occupancy: gross $13,800, net $10,686.

“Whatever we ultimately sell it for, over the purchase price and what we have already sunk into it, is a win-win because of the experience Arman and I have both gained,” says Tony, who invested for years with his wife Melika in Subway shops, then gas stations and motels before plunging into real estate in 2016. “Whatever the money turns out to be, the learning process with each transaction and all the details of owning, fixing up and maintaining the property is invaluable.”

Arman adds, “We can take the experience we’ve gained on this property and other current properties and use that to make the process even more efficient and profitable on the next ones. One of the greatest things I have learned having gone through the Youngstown transaction with my dad’s help is, when you’re doing deals, don’t hesitate. Be strict on how much money you want from the buyer. If they come in wanting to negotiate, tell them this is the lowest you’ll take and nothing beyond that, if they want the property. If they don’t agree, you tell them you’ll go find someone else.”

While it may seem unusual to adults to have a boy of grade school age participate fully in a transaction – and Tony admits there are “haters” who ignorantly question the legality of it – Arman is beyond his years’ confidence and intelligence. Tony and Melika talk freely about their real estate deals in front of Arman and his eight year old brother Eideen and involve them to some degree in every venture. For several years now, Arman has been assigned with taking care of writing their checks; in addition, every week while they had their previous businesses, he would bring home their bills from the mailbox, open and sort them into envelopes representing each different endeavor.

“They don’t teach them those kinds of things in school,” Tony says, and it’s something they can’t buy with after-hours classes. The way I see it, he has advantages over most kids his age. Though we are Iranian by culture, he goes to a Chinese immersion charter school in Beaverton and so he’s fluent in Mandarin, in addition to English and our native Farsi. Combine these skills with his real estate savvy and it allows him to communicate effortlessly with adults from other companies, as well as investors who speak those languages.

“When Arman talks about real estate with adults,” he adds, “they do a double take at first, like it’s something unusual, but then they realize he’s really on the ball and knows what he’s talking about. Once they get over their shock, they ask how they can get their kids involved.”

Arman adds, “When people think it’s unusual for me to know this much, I use my dad for credibility. He’s more experienced dealing with people, and I do most of the work behind the scenes. I feel like I’m still at the beginner phase, and I definitely need more help even if I’ve already done these few deals. In the next couple years I am going to try to do a deal all by myself and start flipping properties on my own.”

Tony’s desire to impart his knowledge and wisdom to his sons to ensure that they are financially self-sufficient by their mid-teens traces back to his own father’s intense work ethic and a difficult childhood growing up in a family that immigrated from Iran to the U.S. (after several years living in Turkey) to escape an oppressive regime. He left Iran at 13 and arrived with his family in the States at 15 after his parents were granted political asylum. Tony describes those years as a “nightmare of emotional distress” and says that he spent his first years in his new country watching his dad – a former officer in the Iranian military –  work up to 18 hours a day, 7 days a week at a print shop and gas station. The first time he recalls going on a vacation was on a business trip once he was an adult. He vowed when he became a father that his sons would have a better life than he had. 

“I attribute my strong work ethic to my mom and dad who set a wonderful example for me and my siblings to work hard and make solid investments,” Tony says. “My wife and I set out on that path as well, working and building our investment portfolio during our prime years so we don’t have to work as hard as we get older. Because we don’t want our kids to experience the same hardship I did growing up, we want them to earn their own keep and make, spend, save and invest their own money. My wife and I also plan to open up a financial education institute to teach younger people about things like credit, investments and how to turn credit into investments!”

While Arman has his heart set on buying his own Alfa Romeo 4C Spider convertible when he’s 16, he’s also eager to earn what his mom calls “mailbox money” in the intervening years that he can save and invest in other properties. Long term, of course, he wants to build a portfolio that will allow him to have more financial and career choices in his life upon entering young adulthood. At the rate he’s going, Tony estimates that by the time his son is 13, he should have $12-15,000 in annual passive income; and by 16, $30,000 a year – over half the average salary of recent college graduates in 2019.

“It seems very brave of my grandfather, almost impossible to survive the attacks he did as a military officer and go through all those difficult trials to ensure safe passage to the U.S. for his family,” Arman says. “I think it’s amazing everything worked out so well in the end. I am inspired by his story, his hard work and dedication to his family so that we all could have a better life and opportunities to succeed. I work hard in honor of the sacrifices he and my dad have made for us. They make my life happen so I strive by my own hard work to make their lives better.”

Arman & Tony Abedini

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