There are so many factors, so many nuances, so many lessons learned from this whole endeavor it’s hard to pick, choose, and summarize the past year and a half.  I’ll do my best without boring you too much.

My first thought after reflecting on the process is the lesson of money being a tool.  You can buy money in the form of loans, meeting certain income requirements, credit requirements, and business requirements.  It has changed my mindset in terms of what is possible in the future for of my growing business empire.  Any project that we’d want to do (business acquisition, real estate, expansion, new location, etc.) can be done by looking at how much money we’d need to get it started, how much real tangible money we would need to raise, and how much money would we would then be making moving forward.  The size, scale, and scope of those projects has dramatically expanded because money or the idea of needing money, saving money, raising money isn’t as intimidating as it was year and a half ago.

My second thought relates to the business of real estate.  With no formal education in the industry, I have now gone through a lease negotiation, a lease renegotiation, and a commercial real estate purchase.  While there may be standards in terms of processes, terms, and forms, it’s most interesting to understand that EVERYTHING is negotiable in the world of real estate.  Not to say there are no laws but lease contracts, purchase agreements, loan terms can all be negotiated and renegotiated and changed, extended, and even cancelled.  Generally in life, you walk into a grocery store, pick your products, and pay on your way out.  Not so in real estate – anything is fair game.

My last thought is what this project realistically does for myself and my brother as businessmen, as financial entities.  In no small way, this project legitimizes us.  For the past 3 years, we’ve had to battle realities and preconceptions of bad credit, large outstanding student loans, lack of experience as new entrepreneurs, young business owners, etc.  Everything we’ve needed to do has required a cosigner, a donation, some kind of help or extra step.  It would be naive to assume that all goes away. However, we are much more able – now – to stand on our own two feet, both through literal financial records but also by our growing reputation of success.

I speak a lot about the game of business and the game of life.  I believe that anything can be accomplished with enough work and creativity.  My hope is that this particular acquisition makes it that much easier to take the next steps.

Stay tuned for more.