JF2154: Understanding Your 401k and LLC Management With Jennifer Gligoric

Jennifer is the Co-Founder and COO of Leafy Legal Services, she has a great backstory, going from homeless to owning her own company. Her goal is to protect investors who are growing their business and to prevent them from getting sued and losing it all. She gives tips on what you should do to protect your assets and how to utilize your, LLC, to invest in future deals and she also shares how you can utilize your 401k to your benefit.

Jennifer Gligoric Real Estate Background:

  • Co-Founder & COO of Leafy Legal Services and co-host on Leafy Podcast
  • 20 years experience in real estate
  • From Galveston, TX
  • Say hi to them at: https://www.leafyassets.com/

Click here for more info on PropStream

Best Ever Tweet:

“Treat your real estate investing like a business” – Jennifer Gligoric


Theo Hicks: Hello, Best Ever listeners. Welcome to the best real estate investing advice ever show. I’m Theo Hicks, today’s host, and today we’ll be speaking with Jennifer Gligoric. Jennifer, how are you doing today?

Jennifer Gligoric: I’m doing great. It’s really wonderful to be on the show.

Theo Hicks: Absolutely, and thank you for joining us. I’m looking forward to our conversation focused around the legal aspects of real estate. So Jennifer is the Founder and COO of Leafy Legal Services, based in Galveston, Texas, and she has been helping entrepreneurs and real estate investors get started for over the last 20 years. She has a very harrowing back-story; she found herself homeless as a teenager and managed to put herself through college and become a successful business owner despite the odds against her, and she attributes her success to a mindset of abundance and paying it forward as the means to happiness. If you want to learn more about Jennifer and her company, you can go to leafylegalservices.com. So Jennifer, before we get started, do you mind telling us a little bit more about your background and what you’re focused on today?

Jennifer Gligoric: Yeah. Well, I actually have a pretty long background. My background started in crisis intervention for businesses. Well, I say that… I worked as a young kid. My mom had the longest-running employment agency ever type here in Houston, Galveston Metroplex. So I was the kid that would set up the secretaries that had cigarettes hanging out of their mouths, because that’s how they did it back then, instead of my [unintelligible [00:04:10].17] typing tests and things like that. So I already knew how to interview for a job, how to do the paperwork to get a job, which, if you’re a parent, teach that to your kids. They’re not teaching it in school, and I gotta say that that’s pretty critical. So I already knew how to do basic secretarial stuff and that, but the money was in sales. The money’s always going to be in sales. So I was very driven by the money. So I went into telemarketing and sales, and long story short, I ended up into crisis intervention for businesses.

With a heavy background in HR, I would get in and they would hire me to fix their widgets or, “Oh, we need more brochures. Our pitch is crap, redo it,” and then I’d get in there and it was never that; it was always HR that was tanking the company. They were hiring people at the wrong rates, putting them in the wrong positions, having them do the wrong things. So that was my career, is going in and fixing companies, but really I was fixing small business owners, teaching them how to be better managers, teaching them how to have better systems, how to hire people they can trust and let run to take a break every now and then.

Many small business owners, you ask them, “When was the last time you took a vacation?” or real estate investors, and they just give you this blank look, because they really are always working. Well, that’s not good. Some of your biggest breakthroughs in life are when you take a little bit of a break. You’re just going to run yourself into the ground and you’re going to drive everybody around you nuts when you do that.

About a decade ago, my specialty turned into helping companies scale using entirely remote workforces, but top talent; not $3 an hour VAs, people that had left the corporate world, and for whatever reason, they needed to be at home. Sometimes they wanted to raise children at home, sometimes they survived an accident that they were never meant to survive, or an illness that would’ve kill them five years ago, and they can’t be in commute. And I thought what’s better for the environment than helping people not clog up our roadways, adding to carbon emissions, to not having to build and do this sprawl. People can stay in their own houses. And it’s better for the local communities, it’s better for local businesses, and it’s better for the economy as a whole.

So I did some big scale-ups. I actually met the person I brought on to be my CEO because he hired me to scale up a very large digital marketing firm, and during that time, he was a real estate investor; I was getting into real estate investing because we were dealing with the likes of Than Merrill, Kevin Harrington; we were working with people that were putting them on stage, we were working these huge events, and scaling up very large, well-known marketers. Our first company, we took from three people to 221 people in 21 countries within 18 months, and that’s the power of virtual workforce when you don’t have the ridiculous overhead that you have with offices and everything else, and when you’re hiring the right talent; that’s also key.

Then about three or four years ago – I lose track of time – I was tasked to scale an asset protection law firm. Having already been in the real estate space, and working with some of the top names, it was a natural fit, and as I did that, I realized, “Wow, there is just a lot better way to do it. It can be a lot more cost-effective,” and I have a love of real estate investors and entrepreneurs that are just starting out, but also, there are people that grow and they start getting 10, 12, 13 houses, and they’re getting them all in their own name, and then they lose everything because of one lawsuit. So we have a mission to help unburden the nation’s court system from these vexatious lawsuits, which really piss me off. The idea that someone’s making money by suing other hard-working people really grinds my gears. So if I can stop that and make it very difficult for those people to operate, I want to do that.

So then we started Leafy Legal, and now we have this amazing team. We have attorney relationships across the country and we have the best paralegals with 98% of our clients are real estate investors; the other 2% are entrepreneurs, and we help them hide their assets, protect their assets, have the right structure in place so that they’re operating compliantly and legally, and they’re able to scale in structures that are meant for real estate investors, and then we help them tie that into some incredible estate plans. Plans that are made for people who are young and working, not something you slap together for 50 years from now or if you ever pass away. And then we help them become their own bank and think about money differently by having solo 401ks or SDIRAs. So that’s what I’m doing and I love it.

Theo Hicks: Okay. So let’s focus on the first part first, which is the asset protection and you mentioned how it really grinds your gears about the fact that people make a living off of suing other people. So what are some of the top tips, top strategies that people can start implementing or should start implementing, that maybe most people don’t necessarily know about? What are some of the hidden gems?

Jennifer Gligoric: Well, I think that most people know they’re supposed to have an LLC, at least, but yet they’re still doing things in their own name, and their name is on the LLC. Well, if your name is on an LLC, I can look it up. It’s public record, I can see that you’re a member of that. You want to operate using anonymous structures, and then you want to hold your assets in structures that are not tied to you. You want to have an asset holding company that has arm’s length agreements away from you; that you’re holding in another structure, and the way you operate and you do business and where you hold your assets are two separate places that someone can’t get to.

Theo Hicks: Okay, because I know when I was making an LLC for a property, I was like, “Well, I can just google the LLC, and then my name comes up,” and I don’t understand how that protects me. So can you explain that process for us from A to B? So I create an LLC, and then what am I supposed to do?

Jennifer Gligoric: Well, you’re supposed to go to a company that helps you create an agent trust that is listed on the LLC so your name is not a part of it. You are a beneficiary of that trust, which is a private document, so that’s not filed with the state. So [unintelligible [00:10:41].24] the name that you can find on the state is the name of your anonymous LLC, and you can do it in almost any state. Real estate investors, what you’re going to hear of most, you’re going to hear of Delaware, Wyoming, Nevada and Texas; those are the top four. Most real estate investors, if they’re any bit savvy, you’re going to live events and you’re talking to asset protection people, it’s going to be one or if not all those states. So we create entities in any of those states.

The way you scale your business depends on a couple of things. You need to write down “This is where I live, this is where my homestead is, my house, and this is which state or states I have property in, and this is where I want to grow my business, and this is what type of real estate investing I want to do.” Depending on your answers to all five of those depends on what structure is best for you and it’s different for everyone. Because there’s a million different ways to skin a cat for someone, depending on of course, your budget and where you’re looking to scale and what you’re looking to do.

Theo Hicks: Okay. So I have my agent trust, and then I have the LLC that I buy a single-family home with. Do I use that same LLC to buy all my properties, or do I always create a new LLC for each property?

Jennifer Gligoric: No, you want to use your fundable entity, which I’m assuming is that LLC that you’re trying to create a professional borrow profile with that’s not tied to your social security number, as your professional entity. If you’re still buying in an LLC, but everything’s tied to your personal social security number, you’re defeating the purpose of why you’re using an LLC for that, and a lot of people do that.

So a fundable entity is an entity that you create with the idea that you’re going to have your own credit and you can walk into a bank and you can get a fundable business line of credit up to $500,000, a million dollars, and it’s not tied to your personal credit, and that’s something you need to work on. So we help people create fundable entities, and then your operating company is your anonymous LLC. And then when you get that property, you immediately want to transfer it out of your name and into a trust.

Theo Hicks: Okay, perfect. And then the other thing you worked on was about, you said, being your own bank, and you talked about the 401k. So do you want to walk us through that process as well, if I want to get started being my own bank today?

Jennifer Gligoric: So if you have a solo 401k, you cannot have any employees. So that’s very important; you don’t qualify for this. So this is a specific financial instrument that is available to self-employed individuals who do not have employees, but you are allowed to cover a spouse. And in 2020, you can make a contribution up to $57,000 into your solo 401k, which is five to ten times the normal contribution limit that is for a normal traditional 401k.

For the solo 401k products that we use, you can roll everything but an IRA into a solo 401k. The reason that you want to use a solo 401k if you’re in real estate investing is that you can be your own bank, you can loan money to yourself on your own favorable terms. Because you’re your own bank, you have to pay yourself back; you have to pay it. You have to make the payments, you have to make the payments back on time, but you’re keeping all the interest. You’re also the one that has checkbook control on this. So unlike being pigeonholed by someone else controlling the 401k, say, the reserve, the mutual funds you’re allowed to invest in, these are the stocks you’re allowed to invest in, and here are these limited amount of products you’re allowed to look at, with a solo 401k, you can invest in real estate, you can hold a property in the name of the solo 401k, you can give yourself up to $50,000 or half the total value of your solo 401k, whichever is less (because the cap is 50) and then you can take that money however you need it. So let’s say someone comes to you and says, “I want to start a marinate business, and I just need $10,000, but they want to charge me 13% interest.” Let’s say your rate’s 3%, you charge them 6%, you’re keeping all the extra interest, and now you’re investing in the business.

Theo Hicks: Okay. So I get the 401k to not only buy my own properties, but I can use it to invest in someone else’s properties.

Jennifer Gligoric: That’s right. You can do it in other properties. There are certain restrictions on it. It’s not just the gamut of what you’re spending money on, but considering what is left to a regular W-2 401k, it seems like you can do whatever you want. So there are some prohibited transactions and we have a list of those, and prohibited persons, but for the most part, you can pay off high-interest loans, and then use that same payment at favorable rate and then you keep the interest for yourself. You can bypass UBTI tax and unrelated business tax by using a solo 401k, which is a huge tax benefit. You can invest in other types of businesses, you can invest in Bitcoin. A lot of instruments are available for you that are not available. So it’s very powerful. I was on the Chris Naugle show, the Risky Builders, and he does a money show and he’s like, “Stop having your money sit on the couch,” and I’m like, “Yeah, it’s just eating Cheetos, getting fat doing nothing. You want to make your money work for you,” and that’s a mindset too. That’s the difference between that poverty mindset and then the mindset that really rich people have. They think about money differently, they use money differently. That is not a scary thing for them. They’re like, “Oh, heck, yeah, I’m gonna use that instead of this other one.” But we are given so many fear tactics on money throughout our lives that gives us limiting beliefs. “Pay everything off; you don’t want to have any credit card debt, you don’t want to have any debt at all; you just want to buy everything and pay it off.” And then you go to get a loan and you have this credit score of 820 or 840, and you can’t get anything over $3,500, and you’re like, “How come?” Well because you’re a professional consumer who they’re not going to make a penny out of. So the 80 algorithms that they track you with have said, “You’re not someone that they’ll give money to.” And then you’ll see 680 walk in, and that person walks out with a $200,000 line of credit. Because your credit score is meaningless; it’s your borrower behavior. So when you start to change that and you start using a fundable entity and you start thinking about things different, you have a better structure. With your real estate business, you’re protecting your assets. Those are borrower profiles that are tracked, that are very attractive for banks and lenders; tier one banks and lenders, which is the ones you want.

Theo Hicks: Okay, so we’re gonna cite everything you’ve said so far because I’m sure a lot of that stuff is definitely best ever advice and I’m gonna have to listen to this again because this is a lot of new information and I don’t know how much I can grasp, but I’m sure it’s normal in a 15-minute fitting… But besides what you’ve said so far, what is your best ever real estate investing advice?

Jennifer Gligoric: Treat your real estate investing business like a business. Don’t shirk in the very beginning by getting your entity and everything set up and protecting yourself. So it is a business that you plan on being successful. Because of that, you need to protect yourself because you’re a successful business person. The people who do that ahead of time and get things set up, and they don’t skip step A and go all the way to step F, those are the people that are less likely to lose later on, and they’re more than likely to get respect with different institutions and the people that you work with, and you’ll be more successful.

Theo Hicks: Alright, Jennifer, are you ready for the Best Ever lightning round?

Jennifer Gligoric: Okay.

Break [00:18:31]:03] to [00:19:27]:09]

Theo Hicks: Okay, Jennifer, what is the best ever book — well, I usually we say recently read, but what’s the best ever book to learn more about what we’ve talked about today? We’re changing that up a little bit.

Jennifer Gligoric: Okay. To learn about what we talked about today, go to my website, leafylegalservices.com; you get a free ebook and it tells you all about it.

Theo Hicks: Leafy Legal Services free ebook.

Jennifer Gligoric: Yeah, that’s right.

Theo Hicks: Okay, if your business were to collapse today, what would you do next?

Jennifer Gligoric: I would just keep the podcast. I have a really good podcast that I’m doing. I would probably monetize the podcast more, and I would keep my same team, because they’re amazing. I’d figure out a way to keep my same team. I don’t know; I’d just morph it.

Theo Hicks: What’s the podcast called?

Jennifer Gligoric: Leafy Podcast.

Theo Hicks: Boom, Leafy all around.

Jennifer Gligoric: Yeah.

Theo Hicks: What deal did you lose the most money on, and how much did you lose?

Jennifer Gligoric: Oh, it was a contracting deal, and the most I’ve ever lost was over $150,000. And the reason I lost it — and it was contracting with work with a client, and I lost it because I stayed working with someone that I kept thinking, “They’re not really going to screw me over. They won’t really do this to me. Look at how hard I’m working for them. Look at what I’m doing,” and I was waiting for months for them to be a different person than what they were showing me they were consistently, on a daily basis. Because they would give me these little hints of “they’re not evil”, and I think, “Oh God, you’d have to be evil to screw me over like this,” and the thing is they gave me every single red flag and I needed to go with my gut and I should have cut the cord a lot sooner. So my advice now is when you know it’s rotten, it smells rotten, it looks like rotten, cut the cord. Don’t wait for someone to automatically be a better person than they’re showing you that they are.

Theo Hicks: What is the best ever way you like to give back?

Jennifer Gligoric: Through work in jobs, like helping people with work in jobs, and then I give back– because I was homeless, so I give back to the homeless shelter that helped me so much – Covenant House. So anytime I can, I’m willing to help them.

Theo Hicks: And then lastly, what is the best ever place to reach you?

Jennifer Gligoric: leafylegalservices.com. You just go there you can set up an appointment with me. If you want to talk to me, I give a free consult to anybody. I just want to help people.

Theo Hicks: Perfect. Best Ever listeners, make sure you take advantage of that. Alright Jennifer, I really appreciate it. I don’t think I’ve ever learned as much in 15, 20 minutes as I learned today about asset protection.

Jennifer Gligoric: I get that a lot.

Theo Hicks: So first, you broke down your background and you’ve definitely done a lot. You started as a young kid working with your mother’s company and you talked about the skill sets that you learned, learning how to interview and do basic secretary work that you recommend parents teach their children because they’re not getting taught in school. You went to telemarketing sales, transitioned to crisis intervention for businesses, which is where you ended up meeting your CEO, and you talked about all the different companies that — basically, you’d go in there, you’d help them know how to run a business.

Jennifer Gligoric: Yeah, and that’s what I do now. Even what I’m doing with asset protection right now with real estate investors, many of them, I’m just helping them run their business better. All of these structures – yes, it’s money and it’s a structure, it’s boring, la-la… But once you get it set up and your accounting gets set up with it, the right structure will streamline a lot of things for the investor and protects them, and therefore it allows you to be safer to make more calculated risks, and that really can springboard you not only, but then the money things that we teach them as well. So yeah.

Theo Hicks: Yeah, we’ll definitely have to bring you back for a Skillset Sunday class. I wanted to talk about that today, but we ran out of time. So maybe we can bring you back for another episode to talk about how to scale a business more step by stepwise.

So then we talked about the asset protection, and go back and listen to what she said, but you want to make sure that you’re not creating LLC with your name on it. So you want to create that agent trust that is listed on the LLC, which is a private document that people can’t get access to and see your name. You talked about some of the top states for asset protection – Delaware, Wyoming, Nevada and Texas. You went through some questions that you need to ask yourself to determine what the best asset protection structure is for you – Where do you live? Where do you want to invest? What types of property do you want to invest in?

We talked about the fundable entity so that you can start working on building up a reputation so that you can get a line of credit that’s not tied to your personal name or personal credit. We moved on to talking about the solo 401k which helps you be your own bank. We talked about how it’s for people who are self-employed who don’t have employees, but you can cover your spouse contributions up to $57,000 a year. You can roll everything into that IRA, you can loan yourself money, and then you can pay yourself back and keep the interest, and then you have complete– well, not complete; there are some restrictions you said, but you have complete checkbook control. So you can invest in real estate, you can hold a property in the name of the 401k, you can take a loan against your 401k, and then use that to buy real estate, invest in other business, buy Bitcoin, you said, and you bypass that UBTI tax.

You briefly touched on the mindset and about limiting beliefs of thinking that “Well, I need to pay everything off and have this really amazing credit score, but then going into a bank and I can’t get a loan because I’m a professional consumer”, and the algorithms say, “This person cannot get money.” Whereas someone comes in with a credit score that’s 200 points less than yours and they get a massive loan… And I like what you said – the credit score is meaningless; it’s all about your borrower behavior.

And then you gave your best ever advice, which is to treat your real estate investing like a business and set up the asset protection from the beginning and have the mindset that I am a successful investor who needs his asset protection from beginning, and by doing so, you’re protecting yourself, but you’re also getting the benefits of getting more respect from different people you want to interact with. So that’s just brushing the surface of what we talked about.

Jennifer Gligoric: You take the best notes. That is incredible. That is amazing. You must have been so good in school.

Theo Hicks: I did okay. I appreciate it. I’m gonna do a podcast on the best ever way to take notes in an interview.

Jennifer Gligoric: Seriously, that’s great. That is like the bestest. I love that. I love that thoroughness.

Theo Hicks: Well, I appreciate it, and I appreciate you for coming on the show and giving us all this solid asset protection and being your own bank. Just really solid, just personal advice as well, with the limiting beliefs; I liked that as well. Best Ever listeners, as always, thanks for tuning in and listening. Have a best ever day and we will talk to you tomorrow.

Jennifer Gligoric: See you later.

Website disclaimer

This website, including the podcasts and other content herein, are made available by Joesta PF LLC solely for informational purposes. The information, statements, comments, views and opinions expressed in this website do not constitute and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action. Neither Joe Fairless nor Joesta PF LLC are providing or undertaking to provide any financial, economic, legal, accounting, tax or other advice in or by virtue of this website. The information, statements, comments, views and opinions provided in this website are general in nature, and such information, statements, comments, views and opinions are not intended to be and should not be construed as the provision of investment advice by Joe Fairless or Joesta PF LLC to that listener or generally, and do not result in any listener being considered a client or customer of Joe Fairless or Joesta PF LLC.

The information, statements, comments, views, and opinions expressed or provided in this website (including by speakers who are not officers, employees, or agents of Joe Fairless or Joesta PF LLC) are not necessarily those of Joe Fairless or Joesta PF LLC, and may not be current. Neither Joe Fairless nor Joesta PF LLC make any representation or warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of any of the information, statements, comments, views or opinions contained in this website, and any liability therefor (including in respect of direct, indirect or consequential loss or damage of any kind whatsoever) is expressly disclaimed. Neither Joe Fairless nor Joesta PF LLC undertake any obligation whatsoever to provide any form of update, amendment, change or correction to any of the information, statements, comments, views or opinions set forth in this podcast.

No part of this podcast may, without Joesta PF LLC’s prior written consent, be reproduced, redistributed, published, copied or duplicated in any form, by any means.

Joe Fairless serves as director of investor relations with Ashcroft Capital, a real estate investment firm. Ashcroft Capital is not affiliated with Joesta PF LLC or this website, and is not responsible for any of the content herein.

Oral Disclaimer

The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action. For more information, go to www.bestevershow.com.

Follow Me:  

Share this:  

JF2035 : Working Remote During The Coronavirus Pandemic With Jennifer Gligoric

Jennifer is the Co-Founder and COO of Leafy Legal Services and the Co-Host on Leafy Podcast. She also has experience specializing in scaling business with remote staff. She helped grow a digital marketing company from 3 to 221 people in 21 countries in under 18 months. In this episode, Jennifer shares the best ways to go about finding top talent to work remotely and how you should approach management as a remote manager.

Jennifer Gligoric Real Estate Background:

  • Co-Founder & COO of Leafy Legal Services and co-host on Leafy Podcast
  • 20 years experience in real estate
  • From Galveston, TX
  • Say hi to them at https://www.leafyassets.com


Best Ever Tweet:

“If your organization is so bad at hiring, that you have people you just can’t trust, then you need to fire those people who are doing the hiring.- Jennifer Gligoric


Theo Hicks: Hello, Best Ever listeners. Welcome to the best real estate investing advice ever show. I’m your host today, Theo Hicks, and today we’ll be speaking with a repeat guest, Jennifer Gligoric. How are you doing today, Jennifer?

Jennifer Gligoric: I’m doing great. Well, as good as can be expected. [laughs]

Theo Hicks: Yeah. Jennifer’s first episode probably has not aired yet, because we interviewed her about a month ago and rescheduled three or six months out. You’re hearing this month first, because we are going to be talking about the Coronavirus. She is the co-founder and COO of Leafy Legal Services, as well as a co-host on the Leafy Podcast. She has 20 years of experience in real estate, is from Galveston, Texas, and you can say hi to her at LeafyAssets.com.

She focuses on working remotely, so what better time to go over some tips and tactics for working remotely with your employees during a crisis where everyone is essentially forced to work from home and self-quarantine in their homes.

Before we get into some of the tips and strategies that Jennifer has with us today, do you mind telling us a little bit about your background and how you got to where you are today?

Jennifer Gligoric: Sure. I actually have 25 years of experience in crisis business intervention. Before I became an asset protection specialist and owned Leafy Legal Services, I would be the person that would come into your business and if everybody is on fire and running around, I would figure it out, put out the fires and get you all back on track. That’s what I did.

Then about a decade ago I started to specialize in placing top talent American workers only remotely, and scaling businesses remotely. My biggest scale was taking a digital marketing company from three people to 221 people in 21 countries in under 18 months.

From a strategic HR standpoint, which I have a strong background in that, sales and marketing, as well as asset protection, because I’m a real estate investor and that’s important – but from a strategic HR perspective, being able to be not geographically limited with talent, especially if you can have the entire United States, is a game-changer for most businesses. But it’s a very different skillset. The managers have to manage differently… Everything is different, which everybody is figuring out very quickly right now, as we speak… So I can help you all out, hopefully, with that.

Theo Hicks: Thanks for sharing that. So let’s start general, and then I can maybe dive into more specifics. Let’s just look at it from the perspective of someone who maybe has a business, is used to working face-to-face with their employees… Because I know a lot of real estate investors do work from home, but are used to working face-to-face with their employees. Let’s talk about from a management perspective first – what are some of the things that they need to start doing differently, now that they’re not seeing their employees face-to-face every single day?

Jennifer Gligoric: You have to be a much better communicator than you ever have been before. Utilize technology. We have all the technology for you to be the best possible version of your management self. People that I’ve worked with remotely, who I’ve never met – I know more about them and their personal lives than people I’ve sat across from cubicles. People are gonna figure that out quickly, who’s a good manager and who’s not. You have to be a people person, and that is gonna be very difficult for you guys in tech who are introverted by nature, you wanna do everything by text – you can’t do that anymore. I’m sorry, you’re gonna have to change.

You’re going to need to utilize video communication software, whether it’s Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, FaceTime… There are a multitude of free and very cheap platforms you can get everyone on immediately. You need to be able to have that with them and talk to them, because body language is important, inflection is important… Please do not rely on text. You’re gonna find your organization is gonna falter very quickly.

And also, don’t burden your people. You want to set up clear times that they need to be there, when you’re gonna be looking at them, and then let them work. If you do it correctly, you’re gonna see people innovate, and don’t be afraid of that. Welcome it. They’re gonna come up with some unique solutions to whatever problem you are facing.

I was reading the news and there was a pizza joint, and they’re like “What are we gonna do?” They turned the waiters into delivery drivers, the guy was able to get three huge packs of toilet paper, and they sold one thing of toilet paper with every pizza, and they’re actually doing better now financially

Theo Hicks: That’s such a great idea.

Jennifer Gligoric: Yeah. “You get a roll with every pizza, okay? Because we have this crisis.” And then you have people shifting, you have people saying “Okay, let’s make face masks now. Let’s see what we can do.” You’re gonna have the helpful people that are gonna come up with stuff.

So no matter where you’re at, there are ways to pivot, and you need to listen to the teams. That’s why you have to be a much better people manager. But you wanna look at the in the face.

Another thing I’m going to tell you – every single bean counter right now in the corporate world is “We need time trackers. We’re gonna pay these people and they’re not gonna do anything.” Please shut those people up right now. That’s not really going to happen. And if your organization is so bad at hiring that you have people that you just can’t trust, then you need to fire the people that are hiring those people. You need to make a change when it all comes back.

There are time trackers like TimeDoctor and other software – they’re insanely invasive, and they cause obesity, stress… It is going to ruin your goodwill. You wanna use software like Toggl. Now, I don’t get any money for this… It’s Toggl.com. They have a free version, and they have a very low-cost version. It gives the power to the person, they can put it on their phone, it doesn’t run down their battery, and you can at least project-manage from that.

For project management software you wanna use Trello. That’s a real low-cost, easy one to get into if you don’t already have an enterprise software solution. And the majority of the people really suffering right now, let’s face it, are small businesses. The corporations – they’ll figure it out; they have big, universal Salesforce, they have these amazing hundred-grand enterprise software solutions that they’ve embedded, and they can work with remote. For everybody else who’s doing everything in an office, you’re gonna need to find these. Your accounting software should already be online. If it’s not, look at WaveApps.com. That’s completely free, unless you use payroll.

We’re a fan of Zoho. I love Zoho CRM, Zoho Books… Look into it. You’re gonna find that there are ways you’re probably gonna save money during this time, and you’re not gonna have to cut staff. You’re gonna wanna be creative on that.

Slack – I cannot overstate having Skype or Slack for your communications. Slack has free channels. I have run entire businesses with hundreds and hundreds of people worldwide on Slack and Skype. It can be done, you can be insanely profitable. So don’t worry about this; this is a challenge to innovate.

And many of you might actually come back to the drawing board when this is done and say “Hey, we did it. What are we paying this rent for? Why are we paying for this air conditioning in this office? Maybe we could spend that money and take a company trip, and help the environment, and not clog the roadways with Carbon emissions and traffic.” There’s gonna be a lot of companies that are gonna come out of this pivot and they’re gonna be different and much better. So be looking at it from that standpoint, rather than panic. I suggest that highly.

Theo Hicks: I would imagine that we’re definitely gonna be transitioning more to a remote environment, since all the large corporations are forced to work from home, and realizing that maybe we can do this without having to go to the office every single day and meet face to face, by using all of these different technologies that we have at our fingertips… So I appreciate you providing advice on that.

You also mentioned that you have experience going into businesses that are facing a crisis, and I’m sure that — because we talked about a lot of tactical things that people should start doing, but what about the mindset aspect of it? When you go into a business that’s entirely collapsing, I’m sure a lot of people are discouraged; there’s a lot of negativity floating around. Assuming that the same thing is potentially happening with a lot of investors right now – there’s a lot of uncertainty, people don’t know what’s going to happen come April 1st, May 1st when rent is due… So besides these tactical things that we’ve talked about, what is some advice  you have from a mindset perspective?

Jennifer Gligoric: For mindset — I’m gonna tell you, I’m talking to investors every single day right now, because we’re in the protecting assets, and everybody’s like “Oh my god, I should have done this before”, right? But there are two camps – there are the people that are just getting into it, they don’t know what’s gonna happen, they’re over-leveraged or whatever, and they’re experiencing a lot of fear. Then you have the people that see this for really what it is.

So please get out of the fear mindset. I’m gonna tell you, ten years from now you’re gonna be sitting with your investing buddies and someone’s gonna say “Yeah,  I was able to snap up two multifamilies because the person just didn’t know really how to do it, and I was able to get a decent deal on it, and keep the renters that were in there, because I was able to keep them in while things settled down, and that  just springboarded me.”

You’re gonna hear stories ten years from now of people going “God, why did I do it? Why did I get out of the game now? I should have invested, I should have looked at other opportunities, I should have looked at notes.” Because there are people right now that are positioning with all of this, and it’s gonna be the time that people go “Man, if only I could have gotten in at 2020.” That’s the mindset you need to have. You need to protect  yourself, you need to leverage what you can as a small business owner, and hopefully you have been treating this as a business. If you haven’t, then at least the one thing you need to take from this is that this is a business, and treat it like a business. Protect yourself like a business and have the mindset that this business is going to be successful, so what do successful businesses do?

Because I talk to people who are running with sometimes 30-40 properties that they don’t really have a structure; some of them are in their name, they’ve got 10 properties under one LLC, and I’m like, “Oh, my goodness…” And that’s a lot more expensive to fix that than if they would have had the right structure in the beginning and just built from there.

Theo Hicks: You kind of briefly mentioned this when you went through what you’ve just said – you said “People in that second camp, that see what’s going on for what it is, are gonna be ten years from now thriving based off of the decisions they made during this time period…”

Jennifer Gligoric: Oh, more than ten years from now. In ten years this is going to be the people we’ve been listening to that held on to their multifamilies during 2008, and now they are at the top of their game. So they were successful way before ten years.

I’m telling you that now is the time not to panic. There are very specific things you can do. You need to write all your congressmen, your senator, your governor, your legislator; you need to push, since we don’t have a lobbyist for real estate investors really, that I know that you can write, that’s up there… And you need to just write them. You need to utilize any of the moneys that are coming through, treat it like a business, fill out the forms, go to the bank, and use this as a time to not be risky, but to push forward. Instead of turtle, pull back, sell, be scared… Don’t do that now. That’s not what successful businesses do. They stop, they pivot, they reassess and then they see where that can go forward. It might in a different type of investing.

Maybe you’ve just done single-family and you want to do multifamily. Maybe you need to negotiate and say “Okay, now’s the time if I need cash, I’m gonna go to the people that have been renting from me for the longest and see if anybody has any down payment money and see if we can transition them into owning that house. Get me some cash, and then they can get out of the rental game.”

And there are experts like Mitch Stephen, that do incredible podcasts and incredible information that can help you do that, that have mortgage servicing companies. That company can service that note. You’re gonna have to think outside the box, but this is the time to do it. This is an incredible time to think of things different and capitalize on a situation.

And don’t lose your humanity in it. I’m not saying that. Because people hear “capitalize” and automatically it’s a negative connotation now… But I don’t mean it to be negative. I meant take these lemons and try to turn them into lemonade, because you tanking yourself and your company isn’t helping anyone. It’s not helping your family, it’s not helping your community, and it’s not helping this country. You managing to do well is much more helpful in the long run, so focus on that.

Theo Hicks: You mentioned a few opportunities. One of them was note investing, the other one was obviously not panicking and holding on to your properties, the other one was go to your long-term residents to see if they are interested in buying the property… What are some other opportunities you think are things people should be considering right now besides those three that I’ve just mentioned?

Jennifer Gligoric: Well, every single person needs to know the law. I’ve been on Bigger Pockets, so I’m very big on there as far as a contributor, and I listen… And there are a lot of people coming out saying “We’re just gonna evict people. It doesn’t matter what orders are in place”, because there are some areas of the country that have a no-eviction or a stay on evictions. “We’re just gonna tell them to go.” And I’m thinking “Well, you’re just gonna get sued so hard for that.” Don’t be like that. Think about the law that you have, look back on the property that you have, go to the banks or go to the SBA and say “This is what I have right now and this is what I’d like to be able to do, because I need to be able to keep the renters there, if at all possible.” Because trying to turn over an apartment right now is really not what you wanna be focusing on. Not if they were a good paying renter.

You wanna try to keep them in that property until they get back on their feet, and help them. And not overburden them to where they’re angry at you and they’re gonna leave, the moment that things get back on track. This is America. We’re Americans. Things are gonna get back on track much quicker than anybody realizes, because we are who we are. It’s in our DNA.

So you don’t wanna upset an entire complex full of people… Think about what you’re gonna write them, write something reassuring, try to get some money in place to help who you can and be reasonable about it… Those are things that you can do right now. And if you already have cashflow coming in and you already have that, a bank’s going to know that they’re gonna be able to get some money, too. Because everybody is going to be looking for the stimulus money, and eventually they’re going to pass it.

Theo Hicks: What about buying? Should people be buying right now?

Jennifer Gligoric: Yes. I just was speaking to Net Worth Realty, which is the largest realty agency. They’re all over the country, [unintelligible [00:16:24].08] and they only deal with real estate investors. So they buy distressed properties, they sell them at wholesale, and then they have agreements with Home Depot, and contractors, and hard money lenders… So they help real estate investors get in the game, and either flip or rent these properties after they rehab them.

Every single one of the realtors I talked to — a huge office, one of the most profitable offices in the entire Houston area, and every single realtor I spoke to were real estate investors. Some had 20+ properties they were all scanning their own deals. So if they’re doing it and they see the thing, I know everybody else should. They were all very positive about it, because they were investors themselves.

So the person who invited me – her name is Amber Lynn – she had two properties that they were flipping right then. So they weren’t stopping. So they are putting their money where their mouth is. I would look at people like that, that see the trend… And there was an uptick in interest in investors. There was an uptick in people that said “We’re gonna have to buy foreclose notes.” I talked to one guy who had already been trying to negotiate to get foreclose notes, to try to get into that game…

And his thing was “I’m gonna try to work with these people to keep them in the house”, because there are going to be companies that hold notes that won’t be able to float it because their management isn’t good. Well, that doesn’t mean that they don’t have actually good renters, it just means that they’re unable to do what they’re supposed to do at this time, because they just don’t have good management. You’re gonna see that happen, too.

People who don’t listen to podcasts, who are not taking the right advice – that’s the time for investors to come and get those notes, keep the people in the house, and now you have a performing property within 2-3 months. So that’s gonna be another opportunity to look for. There is a lot of opportunity right now, I’m telling you.

Theo Hicks: What about from an asset management perspective? Because you specialize in asset management now. You already mentioned this in the beginning, that people are reaching out to tell you that there’s things they wanna do now, that they should have done already… Maybe just tell us what those things are.

Jennifer Gligoric: Well, if you’re not operating anonymously, then that’s something that you really need to do. That is the first layer of protection. If you have an LLC but your name is tied to it, that LLC is a very flimsy protection. What you want is to have your operating company, anonymous, to where your name is not tied to it, and then you want to operate from one anonymous structure, and then put your properties in another anonymous structure that is not tied to it. When you have that set up, it’s scalable, you’re protected, and in the long run it’s a lot cheaper to do that.

All the  people who are LLC stacking right now – you’re gonna really need to think about that structure… Because even just now, you have all these EINs, all these bank accounts you’ve gotta worry about, all these different properties. Many of you who have many properties, what you’ve done is you’ve put 3-4 properties under one LLC. Well, that’s not very protective; they can all get attached in a lawsuit. And when there is economic instability, unfortunately, that brings out the people who are lawsuit-friendly. You’re gonna get a rash of attorneys, and renters, and all sorts of things that are gonna come out of this. And if you’re protected, you’re gonna make it very difficult for then, because those are the types of people who are looking for low-hanging fruit.

“I know that they own this property, their name is on the lease, their name is on this LLC. That is something I can attach a lien to and I can get recovery.” Because a lawyer needs three things to file a lawsuit – they need the law, they need the facts, they need a recovery. Law and facts can be massaged, but recovery…? If they look you up and there’s nothing to find – well, is that lawyer really gonna spend all that time and money just for a needle in the haystack? Probably not.

Now, on the converse end, if you have a  legitimate grievance and you want to sue someone, and they have actually wronged you, the attorney will take the case; you’ll be able to move forward. So if you’re doing something  wrong, then you’re probably gonna get sued, and they’ll probably win. So don’t do wrong things. These structures are to protect people who are doing the right things against people who are doing the wrong things, not vice-versa.

Theo Hicks: Alright, thanks for sharing that. Is there anything else that we haven’t talked about already that has to do with mindset, opportunities, asset management, managing employees remotely during this pandemic, that we haven’t talked about already?

Jennifer Gligoric: Just be kind. Be kind to your staff. Any kindness that you give right now to the people that you’re dealing with… And I know that if you’re an investor or a business owner, and a project — everybody’s having delays and all sorts of things happen… But just chill for a little bit and give some kindness, and then do what you can on your own end.

Remember – think outside the box, go look for extra loans… I know some people are leveraged to the hilt, but there are gonna be things coming down the pipeline that you can utilize. Don’t close your mind to help and don’t close your mind to an expansion in a time of crisis.

The people who looked at crises historically and said “You know what – I’m bankrupt right now, but I’m gonna move forward”, those are the people that you find that are wildly successful. They managed to get out of it and they managed to do good. So be that type of person.

Theo Hicks: Alright, Jennifer, I really appreciate you coming on and sharing your advice. This is a very powerful episode and I think it’s gonna get a lot of traction, especially during this time, because you gave a lot of practical advice on how to manage employees remotely… You basically said that it’s gonna come down to you needing to be a much better communicator, and utilizing technology to do that. So using VA communication software like Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, FaceTime… I think you also mentioned Slack, that you really like…

At the same time, you don’t want to overburden your employees and have 8-hour Skype calls every single day, where they’re working and you’re watching them. So you wanna set clear times for when you’re gonna have your face-to-face meetings, and then let your team members work on their own without using some sort of time-tracking software, because that’s when they’re gonna be able to innovate. You gave a great example of — for some reason, everyone loves toilet paper right now… So – selling one piece of toilet paper with every pizza box. I thought that was pretty hilarious.

You also talked about Trello and Zoho property management software, and then for accounting software  you said the Wave app.

Jennifer Gligoric: No Wave app is accounting, Zoho does accounting… Zoho has a whole suite; they have a lot of things at Zoho. And then you’re gonna have to track some people’s time, you just will, especially if they’re per-project or hourly… But I would suggest Toggl.com. That software is not invasive, it doesn’t bog down their computer… All the other ones I’ve ever tested – and I’ve probably tested every one out there at one point or another in my career; you don’t want graphic designers and then your whole thing freezes because you’ve got Photoshop, and InDesign, and Illustrator, and the stupid time tracker is eating up your resources. So that one doesn’t do it…

And they can use it on their phone while being on their computer. So their phone can be tracking them, and then they write in what they’ve been working on. If you’re a good manager and they do take your directions, don’t have them write paragraphs… But  you’ll be able to see if what they write, what you see in Toggl matches their output. You’re going to have to step up your management game,  you really are. And you’re gonna have to care about people, too. And let them know that you care about them. That shouldn’t be hard, but for some people it is… So work on it.

Theo Hicks: Yeah, perfect. So that’s the managing employees part. We also talked about mindset… Basically, people fall into one of two camps – it’s people that are either just getting into it, or are very over-leveraged, and are kind of terrified and panicking, versus people who see it for what it is, and realize that there are opportunities out there. People in that second camp, ten years from now, are gonna be sitting around, talking about “I’m really glad I held onto those properties, I’m really glad I bought those properties”, whereas people in camp one are gonna be full or regrets, and wishing that they had invested.

From another mindset perspective we said that hopefully you’ve been treating this as a business; that’ll be very helpful, and help you not to panic and realize that, just like a business, you’re gonna push forward. If you have to pivot, you have to pivot, but there are opportunities out there. You gave some examples, like going to some of your long-term residents who’ve rented the longest, to see if they’ve got down payment money to buy the property.

Making sure that everyone knows about the law of evictions, and that even if you’re allowed to evict people, it’s probably not the best time to do that, because you don’t want to upset everyone at your apartment. Instead, figure out ways to keep them there, figure out ways to help them financially and write something reassuring to them to let them know that you’re looking out for them. I know Joe’s company sent a lot of letters with some medical advice from the CDC and WHO.

You also talked about how people should be buying real estate. You’ve got realtors and other people you’re talking to that are putting their money where their mouths are and buying real estate.

Another opportunity will be foreclosed note investing, but making sure that you are working with the people to keep them in the house, as opposed to bringing on a bunch of properties that you might not be able to manage.

Then we talked about the asset management side of things. One thing that people really need to start doing is to operate anonymously. Because when economic instability hits, it brings up all the people who wanna sue, and they’ll go for the people that are low-hanging fruits. They look up your name and see they have 25 LLCs, with 45 different properties attached to their name… They’re gonna be able to go after you a lot easier than someone who owns the same  45 properties, but is operating under an anonymous operating company that’s not tied to them, and then another anonymous structure that the properties are in. They’re not gonna see anything under your name. Sure, they could find it if they dug a little bit deeper, but it’s not low-hanging fruit. So as long as you’re not doing anything shady, operating anonymously is the way to go.

And then lastly, you said just to be kind to the people that you’re dealing with. Think outside the box, figure out ways to find more money, like go after extra loans, and make sure you’re not being close-minded to help, and expanding.

I think I’ve hit on everything we talked about. Jennifer, I really appreciate again you coming on and giving us your expertise on what people should be doing during this Coronavirus pandemic.

Best Ever listeners, as always, thanks for listening. Everyone, please be safe. Have a best ever day, and we’ll talk to you tomorrow.

Follow Me:  

Share this:  
Joe Fairless