It’s Build Your Team Thursday with Elijah Randall, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jerry Ta

By 2018-10-12Radio Show

RPRE 171 | Build Your Team


As investors, some of us have this fear of not doing everything we can. That is why we continue to hold on to a number of things on our own and find ourselves slumped and paralyzed. We are here to assure you that you don’t have to do everything alone. It is time that you start to build your team and delegate tasks in order to make you more productive and efficient. Elijah Randall of Fast Track Remodeling mitigates the fear of construction and remodeling as he shows how you can buy your time back. Michelle Rodriguez of NextGen Appraisals shows how they got the appraisals covered, showing investors as much information about properties with help from experts. Lastly, Jerry Ta from Propertycare takes the interest to expose your portfolio to rentals in good hands.

Listen to the podcast here:

It’s Build Your Team Thursday with Elijah Randall, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jerry Ta

We’ve got Elijah Randall of Fast Track Remodeling. There’s no better person to start when you’re building your team, that’s for sure.

Thanks for that.

One thing I was talking to Elijah is that we have a mission statement with Right Path. Our mission is to help people create a life of abundance by shifting mindsets, implementing proven systems and facilitating a community of action takers. This is something we’re very excited about. We’re drawing out what our mission is to let people know what it is that we’re doing here and Fast Track is a big part of that.

We’re helping people to know that they don’t have to do it on their own. They can let those fears go and it won’t stand in their own way as much. A lot of times I see people fail to take action because they feel that they don’t know enough about something. They may know somebody though who knows about it, but then they feel that they have to do all of it themselves. There are a lot of things that can be done in this industry. What I know most is that an investor just has to know how to make decisions toward their goal. That’s the only thing that an investor has to do. They have to be able to pull the trigger on something they’ve analyzed and they don’t even need to analyze it all completely. They could get tools or help to analyze the deals to know what it is that they should be doing to get to their goal. I know you do a lot of that.

Our main goal here is to help people to understand what the proven system is because we have it and it’s a replicative hole. Anybody can do it. Our members are doing that using Fast Track in that process.

We’re part of that. One of the key things that we help with is just with the mindset of an investor because there’s so much with remodeling. There are so many ideas, programs and stuff that you can see online. There are different ideas that are floating around. Some of them are great and some of them are more fattish, but most of them are more custom because that’s what gets attention. When you start over customizing a job, then you can get into trouble of making decisions for the future buyer or the future occupant. When you neutralize with good quality proven products, it’s a similar concept to the proven systems. Proven products that work that helped people to be able to maximize money returned for money spent, that’s what we specialize in is helping that mindset. We’re part of the key to keeping that one statement or one philosophy of sorts. You start from the beginning to the end. When you can connect with these network people like us and with lenders that know the industry and with insurance companies that know the industry and appraiser’s that know the industry or property managers and realtors. We are one band, one sound of sorts. The mindset is, you’re an investor here. This isn’t going to be your house. That’s what I love to do. I love to see people walk through a house, see things they’ve never seen before then realize, “I didn’t have to see those things.”

What we’re talking about is real estate and teaching real estate. You’ve got to have that mindset. For you in your part, you’re mitigating the fear of construction, which is a big part. I don’t know about building a house or rebuilding a house or remodeling. We also talk about what is your time worth. As an investor, you want to buy your time back. You want to be spending more time with your family and spend more time volunteering. That’s a major thing. A lot of people have this notion like, “I’m going to save money by doing it myself.” That’s the first misnomer. “I’m going to save money by going with someone who doesn’t understand the investment.”

People fail to take action because they feel that they don't know enough about something. Click To Tweet

Maybe they are just trying to get a job and they don’t have all the qualifications. The reason why people are in the investment industry is not to save money, but to make money. When you focus too much on the saving, then you diminish your chances of scaling to the degree that you’d like to. Either that person doesn’t necessarily know their goals, which you all help them understand or they just can’t get out of their own way.

That’s a major thing. Understand truly what your goal is. A lot of people come in and they go, “I want ten houses,” but why? What is that going to accomplish along those lines and that piece of it? Understand that saving money is not making money.

Some people say, “I’d like to do both.” I’m like, “What are your goals and what’s the best route to take that?” The reason why we even bringing this up is that there are ways to get work done sometimes at a discount if you manage it yourself or if you do some of the work yourself. The point there being, what if you don’t manage it as well? What if you don’t have time to manage it? A lot of people say, “That was the biggest headache that I’ve had.” They get called by Home Depot in the middle of their work day and they’re going to sneak out acting that they don’t get a side gig going on. They’re going to tell their credit card number, “What are you buying?”

You’re talking about doing a phone sale. Your contractors have all the materials waiting for him. It’s a little insight.

Usually, you’re not having a general contractor buy it for you and do the work. It’s usually labor only type things so you’re having to hustle.

In real estate, a lot of people don’t understand that they get bogged down in the technical side. It’s a relationship business. When we are talking about building your team, we’re talking about building relationships. In Right Path, we’ve already had those relationships built. It’s pre-existing. For contractors in general, a lot of people aren’t able to build those relationships because they are trying to save money. They beat down their contractor and try to get a cheaper ride and contractors overall don’t respond well.

They don’t respond well unless they’re hungry for business. It means that the industry is a little slow possibly during that time or that they may not have enough going on in that moment. They’re answering the call for you, but then you beat him down a little too much and now they’re busy. You thought you built your team and then you call them again and they don’t answer. Why don’t they answer? It’s because you didn’t make it a win-win in that moment.

RPRE 171 | Build Your Team

Build Your Team: When you focus too much on the saving, then you diminish your chances of scaling to the degree that you’d like to.


We talk about what is your time worth? Then also valuing other people’s time along those lines.

We work for investors only on remodeling. We will do roofs and HVAC as standalone for single-family homes. That’s the mindset that we keep because that’s what we do. That is our niche for investors. We’ve been doing it now as a team for over seven years and we are over 900 homes now. It’s a little harder to keep track of it sometimes, but it’s fun. We enjoy it and we got a good team that works on the front end helping a very detailed bid to get fourth and then on the back end with a great project management teams to keep these well-trained crews going. We’re excited about this so it’s good to get to know us now. Our phone number is (832) 742-9992 and you can look at our Flickr account if you go to our website,

It’s good to have you in. We appreciate what you do for our members. It is the relationships that make a difference in this business and being able to have relationships with all the vendors that are out here. They’re doing it every day. It’s not a theory. We’re working on it and having that, it mitigates your fear along those lines of, “I’ve been wanting to do something other than the stock market.” We saw a little tip in the stock market. I don’t watch it too much because I’m not a part of that, but I want to do something to protect my nest egg and real estate seems a good idea. Having people in this industry who are doing it every day, who have a proven track record of doing it, it should mitigate your fear along those lines.

This is where they start. When they’re asking, “Where is it that we start?” I hear a lot of people say, “I don’t even know how to get started in something like that.” It makes sense because there’s so much spattered around with the custom stuff. If anybody has done a remodel on their own home, they know the decision-making process.

It’s the anxiety when you’re just talking about construction when you say the word foundation or plumbing and electrical.

Have a company like us or a system like yours where people can plug into it and realize, “I’m not only going to be helped, but I’m going to also in my mindset be prodded along to not overthink it, to not get in my own way and to consider what I’m doing it for.” I’m not thinking, “This is where I’m going to be living. I need to make it so it’s comfortable for me.”

It is the relationships that make a difference in this business. Click To Tweet

You’re getting enough information to make educated decisions about your financial future. That’s what Right Path does. I appreciate you coming in. It’s always good to have you and it’s always good to see you.

Thank you.

I’m with Michelle Rodriguez of NextGen Appraisals. How is it going?

It’s going great. I am highly motivated for some reason.

Are you jacked up?

I’m checking emails and going through the motion a little bit. It’s a little bit of autopilot, get your coffee and everything.

We were talking about our mission statement. That mission is to help people create a life of abundance by shifting mindsets, implementing proven systems and facilitating a community of action takers. Michelle, I have known you for a long time. This is not something that’s new, but it’s new that we’re putting out and we’re sharing that message.

These are all things that everybody in this organization I’ve heard you all say before. Maybe not altogether in that one statement but I’ve always heard the life of abundance, action takers, proven systems and processes. These are all things that you have said and teach since this company has been started and even before that. It’s great to hear that mindset that you all are focusing on and lasered in on because it embodies what you all are doing here.

RPRE 171 | Build Your Team

Build Your Team: Construction is a scary thing as well as finding the value of a property.


We’re talking about building our team. You’re part of the team and proven business systems. We bring you in to mitigate our risk along the lines.

That’s our mission statement at NextGen is to mitigate risk and give the investors as much information as possible on these properties when we’re analyzing that evaluation. A lot of times when you get an appraisal, it’s like, “That’s what it’s worth.” You move on and we’re like, “No, we need to talk about days on market. We need to talk about what’s happening with the sales prices month over month. We need to talk about rehab. Is it too much? Is it too little? Is it just right?” There are a lot of things that come with our appraisal reports and that’s why we as a team work well at Right Path. We learn from you and you have learned from us in turn. Now, we just have a great product that we were able to put out for everybody.

Construction is a scary thing and finding the value of a property is also a scary thing. A lot of what we do is to mitigate the fear of this through a proven process and understanding what it is that we need to be looking at in a market. Since we’re doing it every day, we understand that and since you are specifically an appraiser that works for investors.

It’s our whole company and not just me. We have several appraisers that are all been well trained on this. We have group meetings all the time talking to each other. We have one appraiser and she specialized in the condo market. We have another appraiser and he’s good in the Katy market. We’ve got another one and she’s tuned in to what’s going on like in the Texas City Galveston area.

You specifically appraise for each market so to speak.

I wouldn’t go that far because we all have a great overall knowledge at the greater Houston market, but we do have appraisers if we’re stuck like River Plantation.

It’s up in Conroe. It’s flooded quite a bit. Some houses flooded and some houses didn’t.

There are appraisal fails, too, if you're trying to figure it out on your own. Click To Tweet

It’s got a golf course. The houses that are on the golf course are usually the ones that flood first. There’s a lot of complications with that neighborhood. We have one appraiser and she knows that market. We’ve got another one that’s good in Katy. We cover Harris County and all the surrounding counties. We come together as a team, which is something unique to NextGen. When you have an appraisal firm, not just a solo appraiser, we all can come together and share facts and tidbits that we’ve learned about each different neighborhood. We did this when it flooded. We came together and was like, “How are we going to handle this? How are we going to analyze this now?”

Analyze it with the amount of time talking about what is going to happen in the flooded market day-to-day. Are you surprised about how it’s gone?

Going into everything, I was scared. I was like, “Where is this going?” There’s so much unknown. Fear of the unknown is the best way to put it. Now that everything is said and done, I’m happy how Houston handled this. We had a lot of great opportunities happen for a lot of investors. We had money coming in from outside of the state, not just investors coming in from outside of the area but money. You’ve got to have money to make these rehab work. It’s still a tragedy and devastating, but we made it.

You came back stronger. When we’re talking about coming in, the people that want to look at putting their money and exposing some of their portfolios to real estate, having an appraiser that understands the market along with those lines from the lens of an inspector is almost like a stockbroker looking at a stock and helping them understand the value there.

There’s always someone that’s an expert in their field. If you want to figure it out on your own and do the DIY appraisal, then great. There’s appraisal fails too if you’re trying to figure it out on your own. When you’re starting out, get those experts in there because you’re going to learn so much and it’s going to carry you.

What is your time worth and your time to try to be an appraiser to try to figure an art of appraiser because this is art form?

Tom said it first and now I’ve been saying it ever since is that it’s part science and part art. You have all this hard data. It’s inarguable and you put it all on paper and you’re like, “What does it mean?” You’ve got to interpret it. That’s where the art form comes in.

RPRE 171 | Build Your Team

Build Your Team: When a person doesn’t show up or keep their appointment, then there’s a problem.


As an investor, you don’t want to have to spend your time trying to interpret that data and that’s part of that process.

It’s interesting because there’s a learning curve at first. If you start out and you don’t know anything about this, you hire the experts and then you start to get pretty good at it. Your time starts to become more important than your money, but you get to a certain point where you say, “I can do more appraisals or more properties if I hire out these specific jobs or I can do it myself and I’ll make more of the commission, but I won’t be able to do as many.” There’s this interesting curve where it’s always important to bring an expert in. Even if maybe you start doing this and you are an appraiser, you are taking time away from looking for marketing, doing your deals, analyzing more deals and talking to wholesalers.

We talk about putting people in the place where they’re tents. We had an appraiser in our class. It was interesting to discuss that because I loved the art of appraisal. I love the process of it and working with you and your dad. We were trying to almost by the same individual. Seeing how he views things a little differently based on the fact that he’s doing retail and relocation appraisals, that his forte right along those lines and understanding what it is that you do. A lot of times, looking into the predicted future value of something that is not done yet. A lot of times we’re having to determine what repairs are necessary of upfront and you’re having to look at the market. You help us to understand what we need Elijah to do on Fast Track and figure out what this house was worth after all of that.

That’s coming full circle to what we talked about at the beginning of this conversation. That’s why it’s important to talk about days on market because what’s your holding costs going to be? That’s why it’s important to talk about what’s happening with the sales price month over month. You also need to have someone that has historical knowledge of saying, “This time of year, we start to see a decline or we start to see an increase.” Even though the month to month is telling us it’s declining, by the time you get on the market, it might go back up stabilize. You’ve got to have that experience as well.

What was the market update? What do you say?

HAR came out with a report. It’s on our Facebook page, You can go on there to see the full report. It slowed down. Their terminology was cooled off, but this is a sign of a healthy market. If we’re going red hot for so long, you should be more afraid. If everything is going up all the time, you should pull back a little bit and say, “I know I’m making money, but where are we headed with this?” It can’t go up forever. The fact that we’ve slowed down a little bit is a healthy sign, at least that’s my experience.

This is the market overall. This is not necessarily what we’re doing in investment and buy and hold specifically. HAR is looking at the market as a whole and it’s starting to cool off and that is a sign of a healthy market.

No one ever signs up for a second job when they were starting their investing career. Click To Tweet

The interesting thing is that homes priced $750,000 and up, they saw a slight increase. Flippers, it’s a great time for this report. Everything below that falls roughly 5% slowdown in the number of sales. You should go check out the full report. It’s pretty good. HAR always does a great month.

Michelle, thank you for coming. It’s always a pleasure.

Thank you.

We’re talking about building your team in the lens of shifting focus to shifting mindsets. Implementing proving systems is our mission statement. This a new thing where we have to hear at Right Path and part of that is understanding that real estate is our vehicle. We have to understand and shift our mindsets to be able to move forward along those lines. What we do here at Right Path is we shift the fear of investing in real estate. A lot of people want to expose their portfolio to rentals and you’re the guy for that. Jerry Ta from PropertyCare.

We manage rental properties but to Ryan’s point, shifting mindsets is the goal. I think everyone has this mindset like, “I need to do everything.” When I got analysis thought like, “Just try to lease out the house. Put a sign in the front yard and spend your Saturdays showing the property and one day you’ll be fine.” I had a shift of in mindset also. I was like, “I no longer want to spend my Saturdays trying to lease out my property or scheduling appointments with people who has a one in ten chance of showing up. I had this mindset that my time is more valuable. I’m spending my time with my loved ones and stuff. I’d rather go and hire a real estate agent and just lease out all my properties.” I didn’t have to figure out how to screen, how to market the property, take the phone calls to schedule appointments. At the time, I had a full-time job. It was so easy the weekends or after work. I live near downtown. I was working downtown so I’m busting my butt all the way out to Katy. It was just this frustration in the business world when you schedule a meeting with someone, the expectations that person shows up. There’s a problem if that person doesn’t show up or keep their appointment. Here I am scheduling with five people and not a single person showed up.

There are two pieces in that mindset shift that we’re talking about. We talk about what is your time worth? We have a homework assignment and people have to go home and say, “What is my time worth?” Over and above that, we’re talking about freeing yourself time-wise to be able to do what you want to do when you want to do it. Hiring people who are already tens at this. Talking about, “Are you a ten at this?” Most people are not a ten at property managing.

This is where Right Path comes into play. If you’re buying a property where you have to spend all your time and effort in order for it to work, you’re not doing it right. I don’t think anyone ever signs up for a second job when they were starting their investing career. That shouldn’t be the plan at all. It should be like, “I should be able to hire someone to paint this house. I should hire someone to make a lease at this house and still make a sound investment choice.”

RPRE 171 | Build Your Team

Build Your Team: You can make your life a lot easier. It shouldn’t be where you’re completely hands-on, killing your evenings and weekends.


The one thing we’re talking about in the market is that we’re looking at multifamily. I’ve sold my multifamily because it’s the tippity top with what we feel. A lot of people come to us and that’s the dream of owning multifamily. There’s a lot of people talking about that. However, the market is not here in Houston for that. We look at what can we do to make single-family similar to multifamily and it’s being passive and being scalable. That’s why it’s so important to have a property management company because you can’t scale something where you’re having to go out there and do it. You don’t have enough time. Physically, there is not enough time to do that.

From my own experience, once you get to eight properties, you just got yourself another full-time job. In the summer you’re running around finding AC issues and stuff like that. You just brought yourself a full-time job. If you’re trying to manage contractors and stuff, you’re going out there trying to find contractors that you can trust because you don’t have enough business scale to get a continuous contractor. You always find new ones and making sure that they’re doing the work correctly.

When we’re talking about mitigating the fear of putting your money into real estate, that’s the thing that people think of first like, “I don’t want to get those phone calls. I don’t have contractors. I don’t know what to do along those lines.” The thing that I tell people when they’re like, “When should I hire a property manager?” is if they want on their very first property because in business if you’re going to scale along those lines, you don’t want to go back and do that. The two things we do to mitigate those calls is we fix the things that need to be fixed on the front end and then we hire a property manager. If you have a home that you’re managing that everything is fixed, we’ve inspected all the systems, we’ve looked at everything and we’ve replaced the things that don’t have usable life, how many calls are we getting along those lines?

You’re still getting a lot. We have a lot of out of state investors and I’m their third-party eyes and ears. We had a couple of properties that was just finished. I go out there and I got a long list of stuff that needs to get fixed. I like doing that part because if I don’t have that list and if a tenant moves in, I’m going to get the cost one way or the other. This knocks it out on the front end.

That’s the service that you’re providing for the investor. They’re not having to go walk a property.

We’re not the general contractor. We’re just making sure the general contractor is being honest and making sure that they’re doing all the work.

You need another set of eyes to be able to understand what it is they need to be doing on that. When we’re talking about implementing a proven system, that’s part of it. We had a fast track in here. When they finish a job, you’re not having as much to do. We’re talking to Michelle Rodriguez in understanding what the appraisal of that property and what repairs need to be done to hit those rental rates to hit those values. If we have that process in place and we’re using third-party people who are tens, you could trust. That takes all of the headaches out of investing in real estate completely. It mitigates everything.

Using property management makes investment tremendously more passive. Click To Tweet

They always say the pendulum swings. It’s not as passive as most people would think. It’s not a passive investment in any way. It can be more passive. It’s not literally like, “I’ll buy a house. I’ll put a tenant in there and I’ll collect mailbox money,” at that point forward. That’s not the case at all, but it can be a little bit more passive. It shouldn’t be where you completely hands on killing your evenings and weekends. You can make your life a lot easier.

Using property management makes it tremendously more passive. We started talking about the people who go and they put the signs in the yard. They take the phone calls and they do background checks. You have to be attending all those to be able to understand all that. With property care, they’re not having to do that. Tell us a little bit about how you help people from that first property mitigate the fear and keep going through that process. The first property is not going to be the thing that’s going to set them off financially free. It’s five, ten, fifteen or twenty properties.

The house needs a lot of work. We give our two cents. It’s scalability. We have a preference for paint. We paint all our houses the same neutral color and not red or blue or anything like that. The idea is to scale. Something that we do differently from most is that we use flat paint through most of the house. Everyone was like, “You should paint it semi-gloss so you can clean the walls.” I’m like, “I’ve never seen a single person get on their hands and knees and scrubbed the wall.” You bring a can of primer and reroll the wall with the same paint color that you painted it and you’re done. No one gets on their bucket of soap and water and you clean the walls.

Clorox does not make a wall cleaner.

It doesn’t clean holes from nail holes either. A lot of times, we have real estate agents that are getting investors that buy houses and maybe neighbors that aren’t great. We advise them like, “If you’re wanting to buy in this neighborhood, there are twenty vacancies right now in this neighborhood.” It doesn’t make sense because the agent is not looking at that. They just want to get the sale.

They may not be in an investment type agent as well. They may not be a tenant at that. They’re just looking at selling a property. I appreciate you coming out. It’s always good to see and see how much you’ve grown in your business and how many people you’ve helped. A lot of folks come in here at Right Path and they look at their current financial situation. One thing we find is that they’re looking at it through the wrong understanding of finance. We start to shift that mindset along those lines. The first step in our process of shifting that mindset is our financial freedom. We always talk a lot about real estate. We always talk about the mindset that needs to be shifted to be able to understand why real estate makes sense and what is happening in the markets that it does make sense. We talk about the six ways that you make money in real estate and we go through that. That understanding and that conventional wisdom tell us one thing and we view it as the wrong path.

We look at understanding that there were living life in that conventional mindset. We’re not living a life of abundance. Here at Right Path, we do the Right Path to Financial Freedom so please come join me for that and understand what we’re doing. It’s shifting mindsets and facilitating a community of action takers and that’s what it takes to be successful in real estate. We appreciate you tuning in and we’ll see you next time. Thanks.

Important Links:

About Fast Track Remodeling


RPRE 171 | Build Your TeamFast Track Remodeling, LLC of Houston was started in 2010 by Thomas Perry. The company was reformed in January of 2015 with Jeff Perry, Elijah Randall and Peary Perry as the sole owners and shareholders.

Since its inception, Fast Track has remodeled over 750+ houses in the Houston area strictly for investors. Fast Track does not perform any work on occupied houses, with the exception of roofing and HVAC systems.

Fast Track uses their own work crews, as well as dependable quality sub-contractors to provide exceptional service and quality for the cost of the project.

The client is provided with an itemized and detailed proposal of the scope of work necessary to put the investor’s property into shape to either sell or rent for maximum profitability.

Our liability insurance certificate is provided to all clients along with copies of their proposal and a contract outlining the responsibilities of both parties.

Fast Track Remodeling is proud of its reputation to get the job done correctly and as price conscience as possible for the benefit of our clients.

About NextGen Appraisals

RPRE 171 | Build Your TeamNextGen Appraisals is a group of appraisers specializing in residential investment real estate.

We understand that investors are looking for more than just a number of what their property is worth but a comprehensive analysis of the market and want to know what they can do to maximize their investment while mitigating risk. This involves being able to answer different questions like “What repairs should be made to the property?”, “Is the market stable, increasing or declining?”, “Would these repairs be an over improvement, under improvement or follow the trend line of the market?”. At NextGen our appraisers get it and we are here to help.

NextGen offers consultations, desktop appraisals, full appraisals and 2-4 unit multi-family appraisals.

Contact us if you are looking for an honest and knowledgeable opinion of value.

About Propertycare

RPRE 171 | Build Your TeamOur focus is on building relationships to create value for you – whether you rent one of the properties we manage or trust us to make the most of your investment. Propertycare is the leading full-service property management agency in the Houston area. We proudly provide the owners and tenants we serve with the highest levels of service.

Propertycare understands that property is more than just an investment, a home, or business. Property is where lives are lived, relationships are built, and futures are secured. This is why our focus is on building relationships, not coldly managing portfolios. We start by getting to know you – you do the talking, we listen. After listening, we provide unique professional solutions to help you meet your challenges and take advantage of the incredible opportunities available in the Houston area.

When Propertycare is on your side, you not only have a competent agency to manage every detail of your investment, but you have a group of professionals that thinks and acts like a fully vested partner.

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