Working Capital The Real Estate Podcast
Crowdfunding and Managing Properties with Joyhub Founder Justin Hughes|EP8
Jun 23, 2020
In This Episode
Justin is the CEO and Co-Founder of JoyHub and was a former CTO and Co-Founder of Realty Mogul. In this episode, we talked about his passion for both technology and real estate, which lead him to real estate, Realty Mogul mission, company’s technical challenges and syndication. He also talked about Joyhub, which provides technology for landlords and tenants to engage in meaningful ways, how it helps them in interaction, engagement, data-driven and decision making. You’ll surely learn more about Justin!
- “Generically speaking from a startup entrepreneur perspective is, maintaining focus is one of the hardest things you can do to do but it’s also the most important thing to do.”
- “I know where I’m good at and I know where I am not good at and finding intelligent people to surround yourself really helps”
Resources and Links
Email Joyhub: email@example.com
Welcome to the Working Capital The Real Estate Podcast my name’s Jesse Fragale. And this show, we discuss all things real estate with investors and experts in a variety of industries that impact real estate. Whether you’re looking at your first investment or raising your first fund, join me. And let’s build that portfolio one square foot at a time, a little work in capital listener’s. This is your host Jesse for galleon. We have a special show for you today. I interviewed a gentlemen named Justin Hughes Justin is the former CTO and co Founder of Realty Mogul real estate crowdfunding and investing company. And his new venture today is called Joyhub. And Joyhub what it is is its a real estate data company and it provides solution for rental property operators.
So if you have a couple rental properties or a handful in your portfolio, it helps facilitate the rental and property management of the actual real estate asset. So really cool on that front, if you’re interested at all in Crowdfunding property management and just Justin story, which is really cool, kind of seeing it from the perspective of a FinTech leader, as well as a real estate investor, you’re going to love this show. Hope you enjoy it. Ladies and gentlemen, I have Justin Hughes on a show today, a special guests while they’re all special Justin is the co founder and CEO of Joyhub. And just after that, a brief intro, maybe a maybe first of all, how are you today? Justin
Justin (1m 22s):
Doing great. Thank you for having me
Jesse (1m 25s):
Pleasure. Yeah. So maybe, maybe a bit of a background, you know, we briefly talked about how you were previously Co Founder for Realty Mogul M and now a co founder again with Joyhub. So it seems like you, you like starting companies and you like the real estate space. So what we could maybe start off with was how did you get into real estate, ah, and where you’re at today? Because from our previous conversation, it wasn’t a complete direct path there.
Justin (1m 52s):
Yeah, sure. So yeah, as you said, I love technology. I love real estate and I do love building things and starting companies. And I mean, obviously I guess, I guess I do have a bit of a pattern starting real estate technology companies, but yeah. So how I got into real estate, you know, I didn’t have much exposure to it growing up. I don’t, I’m not from a real estate family. My dad was in computers. I was more of a computer guy I, you know, taken apart computers, fixing computers for some spending cash growing up and through high school. And it wasn’t until college that a actually picked up the Robert Kiyosaki, rich dad, poor dad book. And I got my first, a little exposure into finance in real estate.
Justin (2m 34s):
And then that guy that piqued my interest, I got really curious about it. I started digging deeper and deeper and deeper. I even went so far just to get my a broker’s license in 2009, a you know, out of five years after I graduated college. And, and then as my career progressed and on the technology side, my plan was always to make my money in tech, but invest my money in real estate and grow my wealth as part of my plan and strategy for retirement. But what I was not expecting list to have a friend of mine approached me with an idea a and that, and that friend was Jillian Helman. Who’s the CEO of Realty Mogul. And the idea was that four Realty Mogul, which offered me an opportunity to marry my passions for both the technology and real estate.
Justin (3m 20s):
Andy had a blast, a building that did some really amazing and cool things there. And so, and then through that experience, I got a lot more exposure into a real estate and it started in investing, but my first apartment building about five years ago, we also own another house that was a kind of a buy rehab, refi rent strategy, which one
Jesse (3m 45s):
In the old Burr strategy,
Justin (3m 48s):
The fall of that one, a layered on some short term rental operations. That’s not like that I’ve done a 10 31 exchange I’ve invested in a first read a first trust, ah, the notes, a hard money lending. So I’ve, I’ve kind of sampled across the spectrum. So, and you know, I just really, really love it all.
Jesse (4m 9s):
That’s cool. So just to get a little bit granular, cause there’s a lot of investors that listened to the show, a in terms of the, the first apartment building, what, what kind of deal was that? What did that look like? You know, from, from kind of first start looking to acquire and then actually purchasing? Sure,
Justin (4m 25s):
Sure. So, you know, it took, it took some advice that a for, for my first deal, I wanted to do something that it wasn’t super far away, something that I could drive to a unfortunately when you live in Los Angeles, there’s not a whole lot that’s affordable that you can drive to. But, you know, I spent, it probably took me about six months to identify something that that would fit the bill. For me, ended up picking up a, a, an apartment building. It needed a lot of work. It had the pre previous ownership left a lot of deferred maintenance. So, you know, I was able to get a good price on it and which left some money leftover.
Justin (5m 6s):
So I could do some renovations in, fix it up and offer a better experience to my tenants in that. And, and then held that for a few years. And, you know, basically it was, my leverage had dropped enough to where I thought, OK, you know, I could either refi or a 10 31 and saw a good asset pop up that was even closer to home that, that the cellar was struggling to sell. So it is, it presented an interesting opportunity to actually the way that we’re positioning it. A, it was, it was kind of weird and they were putting off a lot of buyers, but I dug in and was able to kind of see the value it, that where I felt like the seller who is shooting himself in the foot, quite frankly, but ah, but anyway, so a 10 31 into one and a half, I’ve been holding, holding that one ever since.
Jesse (6m 1s):
Nice. So you had the, a, the 10 31 crunch finding a, finding a new place.
Justin (6m 6s):
Yeah, yeah. A, you know, the, the, the timeline, it, it didn’t really have any timeline issues on that one. Yeah. But, but cause I had a lot of good help, you know, smart people. One of the things I’ve I’ve learned is it’s just, you know, I know it I’m good at it. I know what I’m not good at and finding really intelligent people to surround yourself with that always helps.
Jesse (6m 25s):
Yeah. Amen. Amen to that. I’m in terms of the, okay, so fast forwarding too, for those that don’t know, maybe you could talk a little bit about first of all, what a, what Realty Mogul is. And you know, you’re a role in that space and maybe a little bit about maybe a little bit about the M kind of just the juxtaposition that real estate and technology has. And I’m thinking from the perspective of real estate people, quotations and technology people, and how sometimes it’s not necessarily a, a collaboration is that you would wish would happen more often than they actually do in and just being on the brokerage side as well. We would love to have more engagement on the technology side, but we seem to be slow adopters of technology.
Jesse (7m 6s):
So yeah, maybe you start with a Realty Mogul and, you know, talk a little bit about that.
Justin (7m 11s):
Yeah, sure. So I guess the simplest way to put Real two Mogul, which is at risk of an oversimplification is to call it crowdfunding for real estate. But a, you know, if Crowdfunding in real estate, it’s not exactly a new concept. It’s traditionally called syndication, but we wanted to build a marketplace that would showcase some of the best sponsors from around the country and bring their deal flow to a broader audience. And so we built the Realty Mogul marketplace. So that would allow us to showcase these investment opportunities to our, a investor or investor users’ and allow them to invest with lower minimums than they would otherwise need to do, because we would have collective buying power for our users, getting them better access to better deal flow.
Justin (7m 58s):
And ah, but then also the challenges, how do you process all this and maintain regulatory compliance? Because you know, now you’re dealing with fractional and securities a, you know, under the purview of the sec and FINRA. So, ah, that was, that was some of the technical challenges that were, we were at the forefront of what we were dealing with. So it was a lot of kind of broker dealer in the cloud kind of automation to make sure that we could fractionalize the securities, but not encumbering them to heavily with additional overhead and expenses that would bring down the rate of return. So it was really, it was really about building out that technology so that we can provide better access, but without adding in huge amounts of expense.
Justin (8m 42s):
And so doing something new in that, in that arena, and this was all on the heels of the jobs act, which was signed into law in 2012, which gave some additional avenues for fundraising through a expansions around some of the regulatory exemptions that, that helped us accomplish that goal of, of opening up opening up more opportunity with, without a, an expansion on their cost structure. So it is
Jesse (9m 9s):
Sir, just a quick question on, on the exemptions, because you mentioned syndication, a lot of people that we have on are syndicator’s and if I’m Ray, you know, if I’m remembering correctly, whether it’s reg D or a S some of the other exemptions, where does, where does, you know, if you were getting too technical, where does Crowdfunding today fall under those exemptions? And what does that mean from an accredited investor standpoint? If, you know, if you want to invest in, in a Crowdfunding kind of environment, like Realty, Mogul, <inaudible>
Justin (9m 38s):
Sure. Yeah. It a great question. A, you know, from, from my perspective, I, I would have loved to have seen more expansion out of the regulations. Umm, because you do bring up a good point and that distinction between accredited investors and non-accredited investors and a, you know, for the benefit of the listeners who may not know that there is a definition of an accredited investor where there’s either an income or a net worth threshold. Umm, so you know, as much as we would love to be able to bring the best investments to everybody, ah, the regulatory body will prohibit some people from being able to participate in them, just out of an abundance of caution of keeping people out of deals that may be too risky for their personal financial situation.
Justin (10m 23s):
So we had to work within those, those guidelines, but yeah, you’re right. A reg D is a very common except the exemption that’s utilized in this space. It’s just tried and true, very well tested. There’s a lot of clarity with the mechanisms there. The downside is that it does keep out non-accredited investors. Even if you utilize what came out of the job, Zack, the reg D <inaudible>, which allows you to do general solicitation where it not accredited investors can see it, but they still can’t. They still can’t by it. But the one, the, the, the best thing that came out for non-accredited investors was the regulation. A plus M, which was kind of a term. It was technically a rag is a, a tier two exemption, which expanded the original reggae exemption, which allowed more Capital to be raised by an issuer of a, of a security to non-accredited investors is almost like a mini IPO in a way.
Justin (11m 22s):
So a little, a little bit more regulatory, overhead, a little more cost structure for The for the deal maker here, but it allowed greater expansion. And, and those are really just kinda the, the, the that’s the that’s the tug of war that you always kind of see in this space is the regulatory costs, but then the openness and availability to the, to the end consumer and trying to balance those out as best as you can. So us at Real to Mogul we did, we did both raggedy and reggae plus we products that, that we launched to try and meet the needs of, of everybody.
Jesse (12m 1s):
Yeah. So that’s interesting. Cause I had a, I’d always heard kind of a D and B I had never heard of a plus. So in terms of, in terms of kind of the nuts and bolts of actually soliciting or, you know, if you were soliciting people to invest, I’m assuming, I’m assuming you did it on a fund basis or was it done on a property by property basis?
Justin (12m 21s):
So both for, because reggae did carry a larger regulatory burden there for a cost more doing it. Yeah. We had to do it. It is pooled vehicles because individual assets, I mean, unless it was just like some crazy huge asset, you know, it, it just, it wouldn’t be able to support that cost. I mean, unless people are interested in negative yielding investments, which a for sure, but yeah, exactly. Everybody loves that. But reg D because it’s a very, kind of like the, given the take again with the regulators, you know, you’re dealing with only accredited investors.
Justin (13m 3s):
So your, your oversight and, and expense around that is, is lessened. So for us, we could do single asset offerings, but we would do those remedies. So we had our single purpose vehicles doing a single assets using reg D and we had our pooled vehicles with multiple assets via reggae class.
Jesse (13m 20s):
That’s cool. So, and like, I’m always fascinated, like I said before, in terms of the technology kind of bridging real estate and technology, because like you said, a pretty vanilla version of this is what we always used to call syndication. And often times that was one or two individuals sponsors tying up a deal and saying, alright, now we need to, or we need our money I’m in terms of the actual company and how you started it, did the technology come first? Did you, did you build the platform itself or did you have the vision with real estate and raising capital and then the technology followed?
Justin (13m 59s):
So, I mean, I guess, I guess it all kind of happened at the same time. I mean, the The, the guiding vision was, you know, democratizing access to the best commercial real estate investments that the average person just doesn’t have access to. I mean, unless, you know, a guy or you’re really tied into a certain network or you’re exorbitantly wealthy, and people are counting you anyway, the first, the first step is just getting access to deal flow to people. And so, ah, so that was kinda one of the guiding lights. And then, and then reducing the barriers to participating in that deal flow.
Justin (14m 42s):
So accumulating people for that buying power. So, you know, if you were to buy into a syndication that might have a a hundred thousand dollar minimum check size, you know, we could together a bunch of investors throwing in $5,000 each and then our SPV we’d wrap them into would be able to meet that a hundred thousand dollars a minimum check size. But the technology was critical from the very beginning, because in order to do all of these things and keeping our costs down, because introducing that additional layer, we didn’t want to make it so that like, Oh, well great. Now we’re getting access to deal flow, but it’s now getting beat up to a point where it’s no better than what I would have had access to anyway, or, or whatever.
Justin (15m 21s):
But, so, so I guess they went hand in hand, the overall vision was set from the outset. It, it was guided by a few basic principles around providing access, reducing barriers and, and, and giving people a better opportunity and leveraging some of the evolving regulatory landscape to that effect as well. Yeah.
Jesse (15m 42s):
Yeah. And, you know, one, a one final question just on Realty Mogul and, you know, want to talk about what you’re doing right now, but I’m always interested because usually, you know, any team has their strengths and weaknesses with syndicators. A lot of there’s a lot of guys and gals that can sell deals and administering deal’s and be with them over the life span and the deal, oftentimes it takes a different skill set. So I’m always curious from a Crowdfunding perspective, did you find that those were challenges that, that you had to kind of higher up for a and w once you actually had all these investors and now, you know, it’s not just about finding the deal it’s about distributing the profits, actually, you know, having a investor relations a personality, what was that experience like?
Justin (16m 24s):
Yeah, no, actually it’s something I’m very proud of, of what we accomplished at Realty Mogul. I think we did a phenomenal job there. The CEO Gillian, she was very focused on a credit quality as well. And I think that that is, has been to the benefit of everybody involved, but you’re right. I mean, you can’t just say, Oh, here’s some deals, you know, have added there’s a lot of different moving parts. So as, as you mentioned, investor relations is, you know, is critical because you want to have a good, good customer service and support. So your investors that are coming in and being able to answer their questions, helping them navigate the process, then there’s your operations team, which is responsible for making sure that the T’s are crossed and the I’s are dotted.
Justin (17m 8s):
And furthermore that, you know, were not letting people get into deals that they shouldn’t be getting into, or a just, you know, facilitating that flow and making sure that we’re meeting our regulatory duties as well. And then asset management and in an ongoing basis, holding the sponsors accountable and making sure that they’re delivering on their promises with a, what they were pitching with their investment opportunity to begin with stepping in if needs be, or, or acting as a resource to help whatever we can do to, to influence the best possible outcome for those investors. And so those were three major moving parts that were all kind of user facing. And then of course, on the accounting and the tax side of things, making sure that we’re processing things a accurate accurately and timely in a timely fashion for our investors as well.
Justin (17m 58s):
So yeah, it, it did require having a specialized departments staffed up with experts in their field to make sure that everybody was rowing a, in the right direction too, the best outcome possible for our investor base.
Jesse (18m 10s):
Yeah. And I promised that was the last question, but it just got me to think about The sometimes we talked to crowdfunding companies and they actually sponsored some of the deals. Does it, does it Realty Mogul act as that conduit or do they actually go and sponsor somebody that deals or, or I guess a pooled funds?
Justin (18m 29s):
Yeah, actually Realty Mogul in, in, that’s actually a, a, a more recent development that it has been acting as a sponsor and having an acquisitions arm that has been identifying good assets, according to a, the strategy that they’re pursuing to offer that deal flow to a, to B investor pool as well. So, yeah, so Real to Mogul has been, has been doing that as well.
Jesse (18m 57s):
That’s very cool. Okay. So turning to a bit of what you’re working on right now for, for the listeners benefit, maybe you could talk a little bit about a, you know, where you’re at right now, M you know, it, a, not everybody will be starting companies as large as a Realty Mogul and then moving on a, you know, to start another company, which, you know, hopefully is as big if not bigger, but Joyhub why don’t you talk a little bit about that and, you know, what, what is Joyhub
Justin (19m 25s):
Yeah, sure thing. So anybody who’s interested in learning more, you can check us firstname.lastname@example.org or not.com a, you know, little, a little tip of the cap to the, to the technology. Okay.
Jesse (19m 37s):
Is going to say, you know, your, a tech company one.
Justin (19m 39s):
Yeah, exactly, exactly. Oh, it will probably pick up the.com itself. I was going to say for sure,
Jesse (19m 44s):
If only we work at follow that advice, they might be in a different place, but
Justin (19m 49s):
You know, it, it is kind of funny the impact that we worked did have on the prop tech space, it was a whole, but man, that could be a whole nother podcast, for sure. For sure. So forgive me if I know if I, if you don’t pick up on that thread, but yeah. So M you know, again, back to my My love of technology and, you know, similar to how one of the big moving a big for us, for technology around a realtor Mogul was on the operation side. Being able to be more efficient, doing more with less keeping costs down because that, that ultimately, you know, benefits people on whatever side of the equation you’re looking at.
Justin (20m 30s):
So, you know, those kinds of patterns exist all over a real estate where there’s inefficiencies that exist, or there’s pain points that exist, and they can be operational. It can also be inefficiencies that lead to missed opportunities. And so I see this all over the place and real estate is a little slow adopt, but it’s also because there’s a lot of moving parts. There’s a lot of complexities in the business. And, and so there’s a, there’s a certain cautiousness, which I, you know, I’m not gonna lie. I’m not going to argue against that, but it does mean that there’s, there’s always opportunities for continuous and never ending improvement. So what we’re doing with Joyhub is building out a technology that is aimed at helping around operational efficiency.
Justin (21m 15s):
So a, you know, just my partner and I, we really were kind of building it for ourselves, realized that it realizing that are property managers or making just a ton of money, Managing our Properties. And, you know, for the most part it’s things where like, okay, look, I need a property manager for in the case of my partner, she’s got a property in Washington, D C. So having boots on the ground locally, I is a big peace, but you start to realize that, you know, with the right technology in place, you can self manage to a two to great effect. And we wanted to build technology for a, for operators so that they could, and for owners, so that they could operate their buildings without a property manager and a, so you can check it email@example.com, C a R R technology.
Justin (22m 5s):
We help everything from a taking rental applications, onboarding new tenants, collecting rents, processing maintenance requests. So it, and so forth. And also a big key component too. The opportunity that we see in the space is around data. I mean, you, you look at M you look at consumer products, and in many ways I take this a tech company, ethos, and I apply it in the real estate. So a tech tech companies that are all about data driven decision making, knowing your customer and, and, and analyzing their behavior and their desires and preferences, and modifying your product to better suit those needs and a, and, and evolving as a business to get better, better market share and things like that.
Justin (22m 51s):
And so, I mean, you couldn’t imagine a company like Amazon, not having really clear data about their users and making decisions based on that. And sometimes I see a lot of real estate owners flying blind in that regard, you know, at the end of the day, you know, you can, you can set it and forget it with certain things, but I see that as an op a missed opportunity, you are, you’re leaving money on the table. You’ve got some operational inefficiencies in place that can be solved with a, with the intelligent application of, of technologies. So, so big driving force for, for me, was also on the data side, being able to, to understand in real time, what are the driving forces for, for your tenants?
Justin (23m 30s):
You know, what, what are their preferences and being able to collect that information and have that in a centralized repository so that you can, you can analyze it and figure out things a about, about, you know, what’s going on. And, and, and a, you know, for, for the sake of, you know, COVID-19, there’s a, there is an operator that were working with hu one of the big questions that he wants to be able to answer, or it would just to kind of an anecdote. It was like, Hey, look, if, if I had a better data foundation, I would have been able to resume analysis and say, okay, what are the odds that at any given tenants is going to be able to continue to make rent payments and light of, of a pandemic that is going on, then that would have been incredibly valuable information for him, but instead, you know, he’s having to react as, as things unfold is instead of being able to be proactive.
Justin (24m 21s):
And so, so you know that on the data side, there’s a lot, there’s a lot of interesting things that can be done there from a, from a collection and analysis perspective that we’re going to be tackling with Joyhub as well. So we’re not just the operational side, but also the data side.
Jesse (24m 36s):
So with something like Joyhub, or just any automated system when it comes to property management, which first of all, I completely agree with you. We just had a gentleman on the show that a, I actually sold the property management company founded pretty much trying to solve the same problem that you were talking about. They had a lot of single family houses, which is one of the hardest way to scale write when you don’t have anybody under one roof. So he had built a property management company, the very old fashioned way in terms of, you know, building a team of 20, 25 property managers, boots on the ground type of thing. So from the perspective of kind of, maybe you call it digitizing it, or basically putting systems in place so that you don’t have to constantly have a higher is of actual individual individuals working for your company.
Jesse (25m 22s):
What are the, what are the areas that you’ve found you overcame the most, or do you find that there are most easily solved by technology and which areas, you know, maybe it’s screening tenants or somebody actually going to site to deal with a, you know, a tenant issue. W what areas did you find that, you know, you foresee the most challenges with?
2 (25m 45s):
Let’s see. So a lot,
Justin (25m 47s):
The, the areas that we’ve seen the most benefit are I’d say on the communication side, many tenant issues can trace their roots back to just communication, whether it’s communications of expectations or communications of things on a timely matter, a manner, but making it easier to facilitate that, that communication between a landlord and tenant a is a, is an area that we’ve seen a lot of dividends get paid out. A one of the challenges that we see is, I guess, from an automation perspective, you know, you can’t, you can’t a hundred percent automate everything.
Justin (26m 32s):
There’s always gonna be some outlier use case where you’ll need to have some kind of human involvement, like exception handling as I like to call it a and so being able to streamline the process, but still kind of codify what happens under certain circumstances to make sure things are flowing efficiently, that that’s, that’s always kind of a key challenge that you just gotta keep your eyes up and forth.
Jesse (27m 3s):
Hmm. So in terms of the, you know, from Joyhub perspective with the technology, will that be utilized by a proper, a current property manager out at a lower percentage of say gross income or gross rent, because most of the work is done for him or her, or would it be completely replacing the property manager on a given property?
Justin (27m 25s):
So our technology, I do want to just mention that our JoyHub basic is free. It doesn’t cost anything. So whether a property manager sees value in using it to augment their operations, or whether an owner operator wants to use it to support themselves, as they attempt to self manage, it’s available to, to both of them. We actually offer additional services on top to the tenant, into the landlord. That’s how we monetize it. So that’s how we make my, to keep our lights on. So, you know, processing rental applications, we have a partnership with a renter’s insurance company as well.
Justin (28m 12s):
These are just a couple examples of how we’re able to generate revenue. And so, but from, from a go to market strategy were more focused on the owner operators, the people that want a self manage rather than property managers, because there’s some complexities in that equation. You know, sometimes property managers find ways to kind of monetize their own services in the same way that we’re monetizing our technology. And so it kind of becomes it’s a stepping on each other’s toes, kind of a thing, but we’ve got enough, we’ve got enough runway with owner operators themselves and empowering them to be able to recapture that that would a single largest expenses that they have it Managing, they’re their building, ah, in a way that their not going to bat an eye at how we monetize it.
Justin (29m 0s):
It’s just a more path of least resistance. So for a company at our stage and our size, you know, one of I’ll tell you just more Generically speaking from a startup entrepreneur perspective is maintaining focus is one of the hardest things you can do, but it’s also the most important thing to do. You gotta just like, you gotta plan a flag and you gotta stick to it, trying to be too many things to too many people ends up making you nothing to anybody. So, so, you know, we’ve really kind of drawn our lend in the sand there at least for now, but you know, that’s not to say that we’re ignoring property managers. We definitely want to work with them. We’re always looking for ways to add to that value proposition there as well, but it is the, the owner operator that we’re more primarily focused on.
Justin (29m 44s):
Jesse (29m 44s):
It’s, that’s really cool. So for the listeners that a for instance have, you know, apartment buildings or a couple of single family homes, are there any, are their asset classes that You, that is not conducive to, to Joyhub like, you know, you have a, somebody that owns a, maybe an industrial unit or a office commercial space. Is, is there an asset class that you guys don’t focus on or, yeah,
Justin (30m 7s):
No. Great, great question. And yes, again, back to focus, it is just rental housing. So a, you know, not necessarily just apartment buildings, you know, SFRs and in the plexes are all fine, but if it’s a, if it’s not something that you’re renting for somebody to, to sleep in a row, then that’s not that wouldn’t be appropriate for what we’re doing. We’re focusing on that.
Jesse (30m 28s):
Okay. Yeah. So that’s 90% of, I would say 90% of listeners, it’s going to be either multifamily, residential or, or a single family residential. And so that’s interesting. I mean, I feel there are a lot of a, a lot of individuals in that snack bracket that end up hiring property management, because not that they can’t manage the buildings themselves, it’s just that they think it’s overwhelming and they’ve never done it before. And don’t see tools like this that can help them with that. And what I’ve seen oftentimes is, you know, whether your getting a Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or a you’re in Canada, CMHC loans, any government loans that have strings attached to them, for instance, having to do quarterly financial reports, as well as say, having a property management required for a year, you often see times that those, those individuals who would have self-managed after that first year, they never go back to self Managing.
Jesse (31m 20s):
Cause I would venture to guess there aren’t, they don’t see that there’s tools out there that can assist with that.
Justin (31m 27s):
Right. Yeah. Know, it, it is a, you know, and even you’re you’re alone. I mean, the loans of my Properties I’ve got, ya know, annual financial recording, I need to do. Umm, so it is important. That is part of your technology ecosystem. You do have a, that accounting ability for what we’re building with. JoyHub what, the way it exists today is its a, an engagement tool that exists between the landlord and the tenants. So we’re primarily focused on that user experience. So you can, again, back to how I like to apply the technology ethos to the real estate space. So I like to think of it in terms of, of a tech company, like, you know, you know, like Facebook, they, they, they think about, Oh, what’s their user experience.
Justin (32m 14s):
How do people log in? How do they interact, engage, whatever, whatever it is or any tech company hear, that’s how they approach the development of their product in real estate. You know, we’ll think, will think about, you know, landscaping and design and maybe if it, and maybe even if it’s furnished, but beyond that, the, the overall experience, like what is it like sometimes it gets overlooked and F and I think its unfortunate because umm, if we, if we put ourselves in the tenant’s shoes and we really understand what it is, we’re asking of them on a day to day because they have to hold their end of the, of, of the various workflows, whether it’s rental payment or handling maintenance or you know, filling out paperwork. That’s one of the other
Jesse (32m 54s):
That that would be helpful for you. The landlord.
Justin (32m 56s):
Yeah. It will know. I mean, yeah like sometimes a year you’re really just like, Oh my God, I need my tenants to do something and it’s yeah. And it’s like pulling, pulling teeth. But if you think about the user experience and how you can elevate that experience makes it easy and frictionless and make it a more and more engaging these or ways that you can make allies out of your tenants. These are ways that you can have a better user experience, which translates into a less turnover, which translates into being able to command a better rent Mount and, and better monetize your assets, ah, from a ongoing cashflow perspective.
Justin (33m 40s):
And then, and then it’s just less brain damage for, for everybody involved. And so, so that’s where we sit there, that there are also there there’s it’s I would say you would use Joyhub in conjunction with additional technology to satisfy that a financial reporting requirement. We would work in concert with something like that in the future they’re will be a feature sets that may move into those swimlanes. But again, you know, in our States with our focus, its about engagement and interest.
Jesse (34m 13s):
Yeah. That was actually going to be my next question, you know, with you, if you know me, for instance, and a lot of people using QuickBooks for say their accounting, it would be something that Joyhub would be something in conjunction. It wouldn’t be crossing, crossing the financial reporting side yet as I understand it.
Justin (34m 30s):
Yeah, exactly. So like if you want to get M data about your assets or your units or your tenants M you know, payment, history, things of that nature that, that exists inside our, our technology, it, it can be married into accounting technology so that a it’s that you can generate those, those report.
Jesse (34m 55s):
And I kind of, I always found it interesting too. Cause when we would hire property managers, they would always want to foist the accounting and financial reporting technology that they used on us. And we would always push back and always felt surprised, surprised that they would feel, they will feel surprised that we’d pushed back because we’d want a control that component of it where the operational side, we, you know, we would be able to, to a, you know, have that done externally Justin maybe you can take us through, if somebody says listening today, they were looking at adopting this or, you know, trying it out and say with the free software. So they would go to Joyhub and then, you know, what would be the next steps? How would, how would that work?
Justin (35m 35s):
Yeah, sure. So a you can go to.io and of course at the register button on the homepage to create your account from there, you’ll just provide us with some basic information about yourself and a, and then you can start to add in the information around the assets that you’re managing and then, and then the units within those assets. And again, if it’s an SFR that may just end up being one at the same, you can then punch in your tenants, contact information, email address, and phone number. Our system will automatically generate their user accounts and invite them to set their passwords. And then everybody involved can link their payment sources to the systems.
Justin (36m 16s):
So you, as a manager would want to link your bank accounts that you can receive ranch, or when somebody pays a rental application fee a you get your portion of that fee and, and your tenants would similarly link their bank accounts to set up their, their auto pay for rent. And it’s, it’s all very straight forward and, and I’ll even offer it. You know, if any listeners are hearing this and they’re doing this by all means, email firstname.lastname@example.org. M you can call us of a number listed on a website. As for me, I’m available. Happy to talk. I love talking to users because honestly I thrive on getting direct feedback.
Justin (36m 57s):
I like to, again, speaking about data driven decision making, I I’m pushing this on real estate because as any good tech company, entrepreneur knows, it’s gotta be data driven decision making. And a, and I like to get that feedback from our customers to heavily influence our product roadmap so that we know if you want, if you want to see something built, ask me, I’ll build it simple as that. But, but yeah, that’s it, you set up your, your, your assets, you set up your unit’s, you can set up any existing tenants. If you got vacancies, it slightly different. Instead you indicate that it’s a vacant unit. You define your security, what the asking rent and a security deposit are going to be. And in some additional variables, it’s maybe like five or six, a different questions you have to fill out.
Justin (37m 43s):
And then we generate you a unique link that you can drop on your rental listings, or you can text to people when you do site tours and then they can click through and fill out the rental application, attach whatever documents he, maybe we want out of them. A and then they pay their rental application fee. We deduct our fee for that. And then it passes the balance on to you. So if you’ve, if you set the rental application fee greater than, than what your cost is with us, and then you can take in some cash to cover the overhead of processing your rental application or whatever your, your cost structure might be. That is, you know, not a hero there for us, but that’s it.
Justin (38m 27s):
And, and then at that point, and your tenants are able to pay their rent. They can submit maintenance requests and communicate with you a as a landlord and a, and we’re constantly pushing out new features are a product roadmap involves a lot of quality of life features that make things better for the tenant and make things better for you as the operator. Ah, there’s a lot of integrations that we’re building out. So whether you’re using it. So even if you are a larger operator and you are using an existing backend property management system, we’ll be integrating with that a so that, you know, the onboarding system, the onboarding process can be even easier, just a one-click automated onboarding, where we can a scrape the data from whatever a system that may already have the information we’d be needing to you to manually input.
Justin (39m 8s):
I’d like it to just be as easy as that. You just say, Hey, look, here’s what we’re using. Here’s how you can access that data. And then we do the rest makes it real simple. And I dunno why it shouldn’t be, I mean, at the end of the day, it’s 2020 a technology is incredible. The things that we can do, the sky’s the limit. I mean, it’s really just limited by our imaginations. So that’s, that’s really my vision for the future that this can plugin to your technology ecosystem. And, and we’re off to the races. You start to see the efficiencies, the experience of yourself, as well as your tenants and everybody involved. It is better.
Jesse (39m 44s):
Nice. Well, frictionless is the word I I took out of that. And that sounds like a great, a great goal to have when it comes to relationships with your tenants, tenants, and landlords, especially given kind of what we’re going through right now, where I think if there were any pain points they’ve been illustrated during this time for a lot of landlords and for a lot of tenants. Well, that’s great. A in terms of, you know, Justin, you mentioned how people can get a hold of you. Is there any other areas online that you would point people in terms of whether it’s social media or directly to the website, just let us know, and we can put a couple of Links on the, the show notes.
Justin (40m 20s):
Yeah. Yeah. I mean, we, we’ve got are a YouTube channel. My partner lives to some great, you know, a quick bite property management tips that I’ve been enjoying myself. We have our Instagram feed, which we like to pepper it. And just some, some jokes here and there too. So I try to keep it and try to keep it fun a little bit while we’re at it. And, and then, yeah, you know, in LinkedIn, Facebook, you know, all of the above, we we’ve got presences there and definitely would appreciate any, any follows and likes for engagement. There is a, if people are wanting to connect with us, we’re out there and, and then of course, we’ve got our general inbox, just email@example.com.
Justin (41m 3s):
Any, any question that anybody has, will we be happy to answer and a, and work with anybody on a, on getting them onboarded?
Jesse (41m 13s):
My guest today has been Justin Hughes Justin thanks for joining us today.
Justin (41m 17s):
Thank you. Jesse is a pleasure and an honor to be here. Thank you so much.
Jesse (41m 24s):
Thank you for listening to the Working Capital Podcast. My goal is to help individuals break into real estate investing as well as educate experienced investors. If you enjoyed the show, please share with a friend subscribe
3 (41m 34s):
And give us a rating on iTunes. It really helps us. If you have any questions, one to learn more or lead me to cover a specific topic on the show, please reach out to me via firstname.lastname@example.org. My name is Jesse Fragale and I’ll see you back here for the next episode or the working capital real estate podcast.