Neal Patel

Quick Facts:

  • Profit Strategy: Rehab and hold
  • Number of Units: 14
  • Personal Money Invested: $390k
  • Prior Experience: As a physician, Neal did not have prior real estate experience, but did benefit from the guidance of his father, Harish, who had 8 years of experience through owning 3 single family rentals in Cleveland, OH

Neal’s Story

Neal has been a physician for the last two years. Med school was expensive, and while being a doctor pays better than many occupations, he realized early on that he would need another source of income.

Neal’s Call To Adventure

He began educating himself on different options for financial independence. He started with “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.” From that, he sought mentorship through seminars.

He dipped his toes into real estate investments by partnering with his father. He was exposed to the process when his father purchased a four-plex. But Neal was new, so he wasn’t very active in it.

He decided to focus on a buy-and-hold strategy because his time was limited, and he was striving for passive income. He wants to create a legacy. He is seeking financial freedom.

He’s realized that financial independence will allow him to pursue other interests rather than simply seeing patients constantly. He loves educating others and has determined that between lectures and media appearances, he will be able to share his expertise with other people.

Neal’s Quest

To trigger his extracurricular dreams, he needs more time. He determined that investing in multifamily real estate is the best way to get this. His goal is to own 100 doors in five years. It’s not a specific dollar amount he’s seeking but rather enough passive income to “live without having to look at the bill and to work as a hobby.” He has set his time frame to achieve that goal at ten years.

Outside Guidance

Neal is an intelligent guy. He recognized he was a good student, but he was never taught financial strategies in school. He knew “you can only learn so much from books, YouTube videos, and other online sources.” He sought like-minded people and mentorship. Enter center stage — Lance Edwards’ Bootcamp.

Neal’s Obstacles

He candidly shares, “there are many different moving parts in real estate. I needed to determine the type of real estate, number one, and how to approach people in the real estate industry and talk to them. I didn’t know the terminology well, so I wasn’t confident in having a conversation with realtors. I didn’t want to look foolish.”

He also learned how competitive the real estate industry can be. “Where do I start? Where do I find deals? That’s a big challenge. A lot of people are investing in multifamily buildings. How do I learn to find the right market, navigate, and study it?”

He sought guidance from Lance’s group and subsequently closed on a 14-unit property. But it wasn’t smooth sailing. Many units weren’t occupied, and the property needed some repairs. But the timing was poor.

He wanted to rent the units, even though he hadn’t yet remodeled them. However, COVID limited his ability to do that. Now the property remains unoccupied, and the renovation is beginning. He looks forward to the income the apartments will bring.

His Realization

Neal had worked through obstacles during his ten years in med school. So he had learned not to give up. While he’d experienced the trials and tribulation of extensive education, he knew a financial education was even more critical.

“Finance isn’t taught in school. You learn how to be a good worker. But I thought, is this what I’m going to be? So I had an internal conflict. I started thinking maybe there is another way. I looked outside the box. I had been taught there’s only one way to practice medicine: you have to work, see patients, and then retire. This didn’t make sense to me.”

He shares, “investing in real estate has given me peace of mind. Now I can work in my practice and have comfort knowing I am now multifaceted. I can say with confidence that not only am I in the medical field, but I’m also doing real estate. Now I have the assurance to go to another project, maybe even a bigger one.”

But he recognizes that real estate can be a slow game — especially a buy-and-hold strategy. “I’m not looking for a quick jump and a huge boost. I’m seeking passive income. Even if I get a little bit monthly initially, I know my money will work for me. As a physician, I have to work for money, and while I enjoy what I do, it’s nice to know that now I can sleep and still generate income.”

Lessons Learned

His first investment was a 14-unit property in Ohio. Because he bought a property in another state, he realized he needed “to have eyes on the ground. So having people there to help me was necessary. But you must do thorough due diligence and homework on the property management company.” He had to learn this the hard way. His first management team “looked good on paper. They were good talkers. But they didn’t do their part. Things started breaking. The units — already in poor shape — got worse. The management company went out of business and left me with a mess. I did more extensive interviews and became more involved.”

He adds, “I wish I had kept some of the tenants, but I went in aggressively.”

He also learned to visit the property before purchasing and do a better job with due diligence. The numbers looked good, and he didn’t want to lose the deal. He may have made a different decision. But, lesson learned!

Since one of his most significant discoveries was the necessity to thoroughly investigate the property managers, he offers this advice, “ask how much experience they have. Ask them what type of properties they have managed. Another question is to find out what type of support they have and how big the team is. Find out how often they will report to you.” He clarifies, “Lance has a great set of questions to ask property management companies.”

Neal’s Excited

Despite the challenges, Neal feels that “real estate is incredible. It’s a strategy that has been tried and tested to create millionaires. It excites me to know that there are many possibilities for different real estate avenues. The language is fun. The financial game is fun, too. Once you learn the ins and outs and see there are ways to make money outside of your job, it’s inspiring.”

He adds, “there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I thought I was going to work until I couldn’t think anymore. As a doctor, it is kind of disheartening and discouraging. But with passive income and new knowledge, I’m very excited to know that I have a lot of potential outside of just having to work a job and still be financially safe. Now I can sleep at night.”

Finally, he can envision a future where he’s happily married, can do his hobbies and has a strong team running his real estate business. He knows he won’t have to work until his mind gives out and can now create a lifestyle for a family that he can feel proud of. And leave a legacy, yes, leave a legacy.

His Advice

His first suggestion stems from his experience with property managers. “Don’t be so trusting. Be involved. Don’t just sit back and think the management company will do everything. I realized I had to do my part. Get on top of things, so you get it done right.”

He explains that you have to act. “Some people might just take lectures and seminars and use YouTube but never act on it. Lance stresses action. It’s all about action. And I was very hesitant. Nervous. But I’m so proud of myself for doing it. If you don’t do it, you have nothing to show. Now I can say good or bad – I was able to do something.”

Expanding on this, “do whatever you have to do. Make a change, so you sleep at night. The biggest thing is to do something. If you do nothing, nothing will happen. If you do something, something will happen. Hopefully, real estate investing will help you sleep like a baby, just like I do.”

Do. Something.


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