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0-50+ Rental units in 7 years, how to get more?

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blown | 13 Aug 2014, 01:09 PM Agree 0
I am looking for someone to point me in the right direction, or someone that has done this, I will start with sharing my story for those that would find it interesting to learn how I built my portfolio up to 52 units in 7 years.

It all started after I graduated Engineering from the University of Western Ontario where I met allot of people that came from wealth (this was not the case for me). I got a job as an engineer for General Motors and quickly learned that it was not what I wanted to do, and it was not what was going to get me rich. Within the first year my twin brother and I bought a duplex and flipped it in 2 months to make a poor profit of $10,000. It was more of a learning experience than anything else. The following spring we decided that rentals is what we were going to get into, we both took 12.5K out of our personal savings and started looking for rentals…..we bought two student rentals, a duplex near the University and a 5 bedroom house near the collage one for 0% down and the other for 5% down. Both of these properties were in bad shape so we renovated them, rented them and remortgaged them to pull out approximately 70K combined. We then decided that student rentals were not the direction we wanted to head so we started looking at properties that needed repair but had multiple units. We found a 9 plex in an up and coming but rough part of town and bought that for a great price. We spent almost every night after work fixing the place up unit by unit as they went vacant and after 3.5 years we remortgaged that to pull out approximately 120K to buy another 2 four plex’s and a 9 plex over the course of 3 years. With each property up and running and making a generous profit, and dipping into personal savings and LOC’s we then bought a 23 unit building in a decent part of town.

This was the result of 7 years of renovating nearly every night of the week when units were vacant, and aggressively looking for rentals and showing vacant units day in and day out. None of this was easy, but we now have a decent portfolio and a part time employee to do most of the grunt work.

My question is, how do some of these companies blow up to 1000’s of units in a matter of one generation. I really think the bottle neck is money, I don’t know if these other landlords come from money or somehow get investors, but if that is the case, how do I go about getting the buy-in of investors?

Thanks for taking the time to reply, I’d be more than happy to offer any advice for anyone that would like to know more about my experience.
  • cyber6 | 15 Aug 2014, 11:37 AM Agree 0
    Check out REIN Canada. I've taken their ACRE weekend program a year ago and walked away with some much knowledge on cash flow properties.
  • James Wanja | 21 Jan 2017, 09:23 PM Agree 0
    Email me at
    I will help you With this, there is no secret at all. It's all about "scale" let's chat more and I will help you further.
  • WGJB | 30 Jan 2017, 08:52 AM Agree 0
    Hey @blown,

    Great story! Yours is of particular interest to me as I am just starting out and my focus is on the London market. Funny enough I also went to UWO. Would love to pick your brain on some of the moves you made over the past years. Please let me know if you have some time.

    Appreciate the time.

    • Marcus | 19 Apr 2017, 03:34 PM Agree 0
      Hey @WGJB,

      Funny enough, I also went to UWO! Let me know if you have any questions about financing rental properties. I am an agent with Devonshire Financial in London. I would be glad to assist any way I can!


      All the best.
  • mary | 18 Apr 2017, 11:48 AM Agree 0
    Very good story! I am sharing my experience of Renting services with all. This was the easiest time I've ever had trying to find a place to live, and it wouldn't have been if it weren't the Circlapp website and the email updated send by them. The ads were plentiful and informative, which allowed me to save the apartments I was most interested in and disregard those I couldn't afford or weren't for the right dates. If any one looking for renting services Circlapp looking for a place to live.

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