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Creating Calm in the Chaos

Why we created ACP and the portfolio asset management team...

The other day on a call with Auben Capital Partners team member, Cole Thompson, and some Auben Realty team members, we discussed a sales strategy for one of our current clients. We dove into a discussion of how many items are beyond our control in a real estate investment sale. 

To name only a few: 

  • The market cycle 
  • Client financial needs and emotions 
  • Debt market
  • Market supply
  • Market demand
  • Other sales agents 

We discussed how, with all of the aspects beyond our control, we have to be extremely dedicated, attuned and faithful to what we can control. 

As my long time physical trainer, Torsten Abel, a German, former world-class professional triathlete says, Control the Controllables

It’s become a mantra for me. 

And as my trainer Torsten has also taught me, a big part of controlling the controllables is knowing what you can control and also, equally important, knowing (and accepting) what you cannot control.

The amount of variables in single family rental management and investing beyond your control can be extremely overwhelming. And furthermore, they are all related! 

It’s like the old-school Operation game; as you seek to fix or influence one aspect of the puzzle, you have to be very careful not to inadvertently trigger something else that could cause further damage. 

How do you keep up with everything and keep everything on track? 

The answer for a lot of single family rental investors, agents and managers (particularly during the past decade) has been data and tech. The mindset being, if you can just harness enough data and tech, you can process out the problems. We believe data and tech are definitely part of the process and solution… But we also believe data and tech are absolutely not the only part of the solution. 

It is why we created a holistic vertically-integrated POD Model with specialists, performing in tandem, various parts of the puzzle.

When we created this model over 6 years ago, we thought we had found the Rosetta Stone for operational excellence. Our results, communication and performance were better (slightly). But something was missing. We looked at many things from many angles and focused on the difference between investments where we helped investors acquire the asset(s) (and had the opportunity to help set the investment expectations) versus assets where we inherited the expectations and investment objectives (often from other managers)—which caused us to spend a large amount of time resetting expectations.

We decided being part of the initial acquisition process was very, very important. Not only for the sales revenue we could generate, but equally important for our ability to be part of the process of setting the investment strategy and objectives from the onset.

We focused on scenarios which allowed us to be involved in the management of assets from the beginning of the investment cycle. But something was still missing. Things kept getting lost in translation. 

I communicated to the team the need to have a single-page, memorialized investment strategy. Conceptually, we were getting closer, but structurally we were still a long way away. The beautiful integrated POD design we created was not performing in the way it was intended. And so, we kept working at it. 

Eventually, realizing we needed additional guidance and perspective, we brought in Thom Liggett to help consult on how we could have a better structure.

Over the course of months of conversations and analysis, Thom was the first person to help us really realize the flaw in the blueprint. The investment objective, strategy and mandate could be interwoven into the operations, but it had to be a separate function. 

Even if we can all think and act like asset managers, we needed to separate the strategic and tactical aspects long enough to memorialize them and communicate them effectively, so we could better integrate and assimilate them later.

And so we created Auben Capital Partners to ensure we got the investment objective and corresponding servicing of the asset right from the beginning. 

Throughout the past year of planning, we also realized there is a way to offer this control of the investment process without being part of the acquisition via our asset management owner’s representative services. Essentially, following a deep analysis and screening of your assets and an understanding of your objectives: We can be you, the owner, in your investment while you begin to regain your time and life. 

If you are interested in learning more about our Auben Capital Partner asset manager owner representative services, please reach out to Cole Thompsoon for additional info at cthompson@aubenrealty.com 

Thanks for reading and supporting us on this journey to create a unique SFR investing and management experience. Please feel free to share any topics you would like to see further discussion on from our team.