RG 327 – How This Investor Built a Billion Dollar Business in Under 10 Years with Zamir KaziRG 327 - Built a Billion Dollar Business in Under 10 Years

How did this young entrepreneur raise over $1.5 BILLION in just ten years?

Zamir Kazi is the CEO of ZMR Capital, a real estate investment firm that acquires, develops, and operates in multifamily, single-family, industrial, and hospitality asset classes. Zamir started his real estate career in 2013 after dropping out of his senior year of med school. Over nine years, Zamir and his team have acquired over 1.5 billion dollars in assets.

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In this week’s episode, Zamir gives us a run-down of his relatively short yet highly successful career in real estate. We also talk about everything an investor needs to know to set yourself up for success, including managing growth, buying in a volatile market, making good impressions on brokers, and so much more.

And we know what you’re thinking, “What does it take to raise over 1.5 billion dollars in ten years?” Zamir gives us a peek into the mindset, strategies, and business goals that help him obtain high-value deals across healthy markets.

Key Takeaways

  • Moving too quickly is not always a good thing; staying ahead of the growth is more important.

  • For some people, friends and family are their first viable clients.

  • With homeownership becoming more and more unaffordable, the industry is an excellent hedge against inflation.

  • Making a good impression on brokers is an investment for better opportunities in the future.


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Podcast Transcript

Reed Goossens (00:00):

Good day Good day guys. Now, before we dive into today’s show, I want you to let you know that some of you maybe aware that over the past eight years, I have built a substantial multi-family real estate portfolio here in the US worth over half a billion dollars. And in that time, my passive investors have received fantastic double-digit returns. And now you too can invest directly into my deals for as little as $50,000. So if you’re an interested investor, head over to reedgoossens.com to find out more. That’s reedgoossens.com. Now, back into the show,

Zamir Kazi (00:41):

It’ll settle at four and a half to five, depending on the markets and, and what not. I, I think you’ve already seen Phoenix, Vegas, right? That you’re, there are four and a half already. Florida’s been a little slow to follow. You’re kind of low fours right now, but I, I wanna say everyone wants a four and a half right now or better. And, you know, given, given where interest rates, where we see the curve going, I think that’s, that should be kind of where pricing ends up, shake out. Obviously, unless they decided to keep raising rates more, then that, that changes. But I, I feel good about that. Four and a half to five range.

Speaker 3 (01:20):


Speaker 4 (01:26):

Welcome to investing in the us, a podcast for real estate investors, business owners, and aspiring entrepreneurs looking to break into the US market. Join Reed as he interviews, go getters, risk takers, and the best in the business about their journey towards financial freedom and the sheer joy of creating something from nothing.

Reed Goossens (01:46):

Good day good day, a ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to another cracking edition of investing in the US Podcast from Los Angeles. I’m your host, reed goossens. Good as always, every with us on the show. Now, I’m glad that you’ve all tuned into learn from my incredible guests, and each and every one of them are the cream of the crop here in the United States when it comes to real estate investing, business investing, and entrepreneurship. Each show I try and tease out their incredible stories of how they have successfully created their businesses here in the us, How they’ve created financial freedom, massive amounts of cash flow, and ultimately created extraordinary lives for themselves and their families. Life by design, as I like to say. Hopefully these guests will inspire all of my cracking listeners, which are you guys to get off the couch and go and take massive amounts of action.

Reed Goossens (02:33):

If these guys can do it, so can you. Now, as you know, I’m all about sharing the knowledge with my loyal listeners, which is you guys, and there’s absolutely no BS on this show, just straight into the nuts and bots. Now, if you do like this show, the easiest way to give back is to give us a review on iTunes, and you can follow me on Facebook and Twitter by searching at Reed Goossens. You can find the show wherever you podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and Google Play. But you can also find these episodes up on my YouTube channel. So head over to reedgoossens.com, click on the video link, and it’ll take you to the video recordings of these podcasts where you can see my ugly mug, but the beautiful faces of my guests each and every week. All right, enough outta me. Let’s get cracking. And into today’s show,

Reed Goossens (03:21):

The show I have the pleasure of chatting with Zamir Kazi. Now, Zamir started his career in real estate investing way back in 2013, after attending Florida State University. And he started buying and flipping duplexes. He formed a company originally called Berkshire Property Holdings in 2014, and then later rebranded that to ZMR. Capital to acquire and redevelop multifamily properties across the Florida State. In the past nine years, he has grown CMR Capital to acquire over 1.5 billion, that’s be with a billion . He’s also been a recipient of the Globe Street 50 under 40, and is an active investor and board member of multiple early stage startups. And he also contributes significant amount of his time and resources to several different charities. So I’m really pumped and excited to have him on the show today to share his incredible wealth of knowledge and what he’s built from scratch. But nothing, Zamir, let’s get him out here. Good. Zamir, welcome to the show. How you doing today, mate?

Zamir Kazi (04:14):

Great. Thanks for having me on Reed. It’s a pleasure.

Reed Goossens (04:16):

My pleasure. And we’re just talking a little bit in the green room before we press record. Where are you dialing in from? Cause we actually, we actually live down the street from one another, but yet you’re doing deals across the country. What’s going on?

Zamir Kazi (04:26):

Uh, so I’m actually in Tampa right now. We, we, our corporate headquarters is in Tampa. So I’m, I’m here visiting the office and the, the great month of August. Uh, you know, the, the weather’s great in, in Florida this time of year. So, uh, we’re here, Uh, I’ll be back in Manhattan Beach and, uh, hopefully we can, we can grab a drink together soon. But, uh, be, we’ll be back in, uh, in great weather soon, hopefully.

Reed Goossens (04:50):

Well, I wanna get into how you’ve set up the company. Cause then it might be an interesting, you know, thread to the conversation today. You, you know, you, you went to uni in Florida. That makes sense. When I, when I, I’ve never met you before. We only just started talking and you said that you live here in la so maybe give us a little bit of background on how that transition happened. Were you, did you grow up in LA and then just went to uni out there and then built the company out there?

Zamir Kazi (05:12):

No, so I, I grew up in Orlando. I was basically born and raised in Kissimmee. A lot of people don’t know where Kissimmee, so I say Orlando, Um, and then went to Florida State. Uh, I actually did not graduate college. I dropped out my last semester of my senior year. Um, I did pre-med, you know, as all Indian families require doctor, lawyer, engineer. Those are my three options, you know, . Um, and, uh, last semester I was like, I’m not doing this for another 10 years. And, um, ended up, uh, working in a sales floor at a call center, selling vacation packages. And, um, started my own company doing that, made some money, you know, and, and my dad’s like, Look, you gotta start investing in real estate for mailbox money, you know, And, and so ended up buying my first duplex, um, that was $20,000 out of short sale.

Zamir Kazi (06:08):

Uh, the renters were paying 301 side, 500 on the other, you know, and, and didn’t know anything about real estate. I joined bigger pockets and then went, um, went on YouTube and learned how to renovate this thing myself. It took entirely way too long, but, you know, I made cabinets from scratch and fixed corners and walls and killed cockroaches. And I was like, Man, this is fun. And, and, and fixed it up. Sold it and bought the one next door and then continued doing. So then I came to LA a few years after, um, on vacation. It was a huge Los Angeles Lakers fan. And, uh, when, and I was like, Man, the weather’s amazing here. I’m not going back, you know, And, uh, uh, so, so ended up moving and, um, you know, I haven’t, haven’t turned back. Love it. Been been in LA for about eight years now.

Reed Goossens (06:57):

Love it. And so I take, You got two mobile phones, right? 181 days a year in the state of Florida, right?

Zamir Kazi (07:02):

  1. 181. Um, so that’s why I’m doing my time right now in August. Right.

Reed Goossens (07:09):

Zamir Kazi (07:09):


Reed Goossens (07:11):

That’s awesome. But mate, rewind the clock and tell me how you made your first ever dollar as a kid. Um, here, here in the us

Zamir Kazi (07:17):

Do you know what’s funny is I used to sell, I don’t know if you know where Airheads are. Yeah, yeah. So

Reed Goossens (07:22):

Is that the sale ones?

Zamir Kazi (07:23):

Yeah. So those, those are the small, those are the warheads, but the airheads are like the long chewy candy.

Reed Goossens (07:29):


Zamir Kazi (07:29):

Yep. Um, and, uh, I was probably kindergarten, five years old. Uh, I was selling those for 25 cents at school, got in trouble, , and, uh, like you can’t sell candy at school. So then my mom, I bought, uh, for my sixth birthday. Um, I wanted a slushie machine, so I, I, my mom bought me a slushie machine, and then our apartment was right next to a pool, so I would make slushies in the apartment and then walk outside and sell these for a dollar to before the pool. So I’ve been, I’ve been hustling since I was a kid.

Reed Goossens (08:03):

Yeah. Nice, nice. And you are your parents move here from India? Your, your back, your history is, your background is from, your heritage is from India originally, right? Yeah,

Zamir Kazi (08:15):

Parents. Parents are born and raised in India. My mom was born in India, but raised in London. Mm-hmm. and then, uh, yeah, but first generation American.

Reed Goossens (08:23):

Awesome. And how was that growing up, being that kid from the immigrant family, you know, trying to make, you know, make, make a name for yourself here in the us,

Zamir Kazi (08:33):

You know? Um, it’s tough, right? Because I, I feel like Indian families, you know, a lot of Indian families wanna stay very cultural, right? And, uh, don’t really wanna adopt, you know, American culture and kind of want to, you know, you want to eat the same food and listen to the, the same music. And so, you know, I, I was probably a little bit further from further away from Indian culture than, than most other people, so I was like more American than not, you know? So it was, it was a, a very interesting upbringing, you know? Mm-hmm.

Reed Goossens (09:08):

, no, I could look even for myself, I know being Australian, I love hanging out with other Aussies. I love talking the same banter, you know, talking about cricket or big pies or, you know, very, some quintessential Australian. So it is a, a human nature element to want to always gravitate back to some sort of hi heritage, to feel like you belong somewhere, right? That’s always, you know, you feel like a, a fish outta water in a new country, and it’s just, you’re trying to assimilate and, and sometimes having those relationships with other folks from your home country just makes you feel a little bit closer to home when you’re hundreds of thousands of miles away. Yeah.

Zamir Kazi (09:38):

I I couldn’t imagine leaving, you know, my mom, dad, and, you know, going across the world, right. And not knowing anyone, it’s gotta be just very challenging. Right? Right.

Reed Goossens (09:48):

Right. Yeah. But now walk me through what you’ve built to date and how that, you know, you mentioned earlier you were a sales guy, You got, you got the bug by, by buying your first property for 20,000 bucks. What then, how did you scale it to 1.5 billion?

Zamir Kazi (10:05):

Yeah, um, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s, I feel like it’s been a 10 year overnight story, right? We’ve been working on this for a long time, maybe longer, you know. And, um, so we went from doing the duplexes, you know, and that was funded just by my own money. And then we started buying kind of larger, I’d say larger deals, but it was, you know, the next deal was a, a 40 unit deal, right? Um, and, and that we, we brought in some friends and family money, but, you know, I didn’t, I didn’t really grow up with friends or family that had money. So that money tapped out pretty quickly. Then we started, you know, then we bought a 50 unit, sold it, and then bought a hundred unit, and then kind of started doing bigger, bigger deals. Then when I got to la, you know, built a better network of, of people that I knew and, and met some really good people and, um, surrounded myself with, uh, one of my friends was a private equity guy, and he’s like, Look, you know, your returns are great, right?

Zamir Kazi (11:03):

Um, you should really start looking at bigger deals cuz you can raise some institutional capital, right? Um, uh, so, and really he was like, Look, it’s easier to raise 10 million than it is, you know, a hundred grand or couple million dollars, um, if the deal’s good. So, you know, started finding some larger deals and used my cold calling background. I called, you know, a thousand people and, and one hit was a 40 million deal in Atlanta. That was in 2018. Um, you know, and the, the one of the last of the three groups that I had yet to speak with finally stroked a 15 million check. And, you know, that was kind of the beginning of it, but really I think the inflection point was after we purchased that deal, you know, it was a, it was a pretty big, it was 500 units almost, and we needed an asset manager to come in and help us out.

Zamir Kazi (11:54):

So, um, we hired Colt, who was our first hire, uh, as asset manager. And they were coming off of, uh, they were, he worked at a company that had 20,000 units and all of a sudden the ownership decided that we don’t wanna be in real estate anymore. And they started to divest all of their, their holdings. And I was able to pretty much take 20 people from that company, right? That was this right place, right time, and essentially brought in institutional experience. We had a team, we went from having no one to 20 people, and that really was when we, we started to take off. Um, and then, you know, I’d say over the last, we’ve, over the last 15 months, we’ve purchased about 1.8 billion in, in deals. And, you know, from May last year, from January to May, we didn’t buy one single deal. And then, then from May to December, we, we closed on 15 assets, right? And we probably did, yeah, we probably did 10 this year. Um,

Reed Goossens (12:56):

The natural thing as you know, I’m an entrepreneur, I’m building a company as well, is how much of a a leap of faith was that going and hiring 20 people, because I’m sure you just didn’t have 20 people’s worth of salaries for the next two years, right? Like, you gotta look at what’s the incomings and what’s the outgoings of just asset management fees, construction management fees. Like how do you support all that and knowing to take the bet that now looking back you’re like, that was a great bet, but at the time would’ve been bloody scary. Cause that’s coming outta your pocket.

Zamir Kazi (13:25):

It it was, you know, um, and, and luckily, you know, I, at the time, a lot of things kind of were go going behind the scenes. We had just raised a 30 million GP facility mm-hmm. , right? Um, before these guys even come on. And, and so there was kind of a feel, I I obviously it was a huge bet on myself and, and what I thought we were gonna be able to accomplish. But, you know, we brought on some really strong acquisitions, guys that had, uh, really great experience in relationships that, you know, I was like, Look, we’re gonna do, I had no idea we were gonna do as many deals as we did, right? Like that, that was just kind of, I couldn’t have imagined that my plan was to do a billion dollars over four years originally. And, and we did it within 12 months, you know, really like six months.

Zamir Kazi (14:11):

And, um, so it, it, it was, it was a huge leap of faith. And look, had it not worked out, it could have gone terribly wrong, right? Mm-hmm. . So it was, but you know, I always had this vision of, well, this is where I want the company to go. This is what I wanna, you know, I wanna do more than where we were at. And it just, it worked out, you know, again, a lot of it was luck and timing and, you know, uh, but very fortunate to, to, to be where we are today.

Reed Goossens (14:37):

And, and how quickly does it get to a point I’ve observed yourself, I’ve observed ashock, capital, tide’s, equities, some guys that sort of all started around the 2013 mark and growing quickly. Is there any advice you can have to other people about making sure you don’t grow too quickly and get too far outta your skis with, with, with just employees or overhead or just buying too many deals and, and all that sort of stuff?

Zamir Kazi (15:01):

Yeah, I, I, I think there, there definitely is such a thing as growing too quickly, right? And, and there are significant, significant growing pains that come along with just, just the amount of volume we’ve done. And the groups, you know, the groups that you’ve mentioned, I mean, tides, you know, they, they’ve grown. They had a crazy clip as well, right? Just as you know, just as fast and a short amount of time. And Ashcroft too, another great group of guys that, so, you know, look, I think what we’ve, we’ve tried to do is try to stay ahead of the growth. Cause the last thing you wanna do is play catch up. Mm-hmm. , right? So we, we’ve historically overhired, um, and it’s, it’s worked out because we are anticipating the growth. Now you look at what’s happened over the last six months and things have all of us sudden slowed down, right?

Zamir Kazi (15:47):

Um, so, but again, we, we see kind of, this is where we’re gonna go. Things will pick back up and, but I, I think you need to be prepared, right? And kind of be proactive versus reactive. And I think that’s really been our saving grace is we, we you don’t wanna play catch up when you’re growing this fast, right? You, you wanna have the systems in place, um, and then, you know, cuz things can go wrong, right? You, you’re managing a lot of money for a lot of people and you, you wanna make sure all the assets are performing well too. The portfolio performance also matters, not just acquiring deals. Right?

Reed Goossens (16:20):

A hundred percent. Is there anything in particular that just besides hiring that you would, you know, make a suggestion to people out there who looking to maybe emulate what you’ve created?

Zamir Kazi (16:30):

I would say finding good opportunities is the most important part, right? Sure. And that’s probably the hardest part of our business is, is things are hyper competitive, right? Um, I I would say the relationship part of this business is extremely critical and crucial. And, and I think just getting out there and meeting as many owners and brokers and, you know, that’s just, that’s the key part, right? Because I, I, I truly believe that if you’ve got a really great opportunity and you’re a good operator, right? It, the rest of the stuff can, will follow, right?

Reed Goossens (17:07):

No, you, you make money when you buy, but you can lose it pretty quickly through bad management. And that includes property and asset management. So, um, um, what’s, what, what’s your thoughts on where the market shifted? Obviously you bought a ton of real estate in the last six months. How have you seen, you know, the, the sort of the crystal ball and, and where do you think we’re headed right now?

Zamir Kazi (17:25):

It, it’s funny because I think the overall, the shock of interest race rising is, is I feel like it’s starting to get over, right? Mm-hmm. , um, and it’s easy to underwrite where interest rates are going, right? Um, once you have that, I, I, I think it’s, if things have slowed down and then most of the volatility has been around debt, right? So what I see is, you know, the, the days of 80% leverage, you know, the guys that are doing that, you’re not doing that anymore, right? Mm-hmm. , I think lower leverage is key. You wanna probably go agency route. I think the fundamentals of the business are extremely strong, right? And, and you’re still seeing great rent growth and, and good markets, right? The same markets that you’re investing in, right? Do we, the sound demographics. Um, so look, and, and I think in times like this, uh, where interest rates are higher, home ownership becomes a little bit more unaffordable, right? Um, mortgages are going up, people are gonna become renters, right? And, or, or state renters, right? So I I I think the industry is is point, it’s a great hedge against inflation, right? So, um, I feel good about where we’re at. I look cap rates have moved, right? I think where we were buying three caps now, years fours, right? Um, so I think you, do

Reed Goossens (18:38):

You think that’s gonna keep changing and keep going up? Do you think we, like, we’re gonna get a plateau at some point of that cap rate thing? And, and obviously that’s, that’s Todd interest rates.

Zamir Kazi (18:45):

Yeah. So, so I, I think, you know, it’s probably, it’ll settle at four and a half to five depending on the markets and, and whatnot. I I think you’ve already seen Phoenix, Vegas, right? That you’re, there are four and a half already. Florida’s been a little slow to follow. You’re kind of low fours right now, but I, I wanna say everyone wants a four and a half right now or better. And, you know, given, given where it interest rates, where we see the curve going, I think that’s, that should be kind of where pricing ends up shake out, obviously, un un unless they decided to keep raising rates more rather than that, that changes. But I, I feel good about that. Four and a half, five

Reed Goossens (19:26):

For those of you are interested in staying up to date with all the latest happenings in my business, or to learn more about passively investing directly into my multi-family value add deals, then head over to reedgoossens.com and sign up for my monthly newsletter By signing up, you’ll automatically be notified about my new up and coming investment opportunities. You’ll be able to stay up to date with all the latest real estate news here in the United States and much, much more. So head over to reedgoossens.com and sign up date now back into the show. Right, Right. Are you seeing any of the, um, a as a buyer, what you underwrote maybe six months ago is now a little bit, you know, what, what sort of delta have you seen in, in, in the, the price per pound adjustments with that cap rate now? Sort of expanding a little bit.

Zamir Kazi (20:18):

Yeah, so I’d say pricing’s probably down 10 to 15% from where it was ago. Yeah.

Reed Goossens (20:24):

Yep, yep. Um, yeah,

Zamir Kazi (20:27):

Yeah, no, so, you know, we’re seeing that as a buyer but also as a seller. We’ve, we’ve so been selling throughout these last few months and, you know, I think, uh, it is probably fair to say that across the board.

Reed Goossens (20:40):

Do you think there’s any shift in, you know, a lot of people’s thoughts about just flipping stuff these days? You know, like in, in keeping it for a little bit longer term, are you guys adjusting your models to, to hold for maybe the true five or six years rather than flip it in two and a half to three?

Zamir Kazi (20:56):

Yeah, so, you know, that, that’s a, that’s a great question because we’ve historically, look, we underwrite 205, right? Mm-hmm. , um, and we never really have had to hold that long cuz the market’s been, you know, we’re, we’re cap rate compression and, uh, you’re making your money, you know, within a year. I think that’s changed. So honestly, I think p you’re gonna have to hold a little bit longer and actually execute on business plan and, and, and, uh, I think, you know, the, the, the operators are gonna not do well during this time. And, and it, it, the good operators will, you know, you’re gonna have to again, execute and, and, uh, do what you say you’re gonna do and, and probably hold, um, cause I, I, I think, look, I I think interest rates will come back down, right? Mm-hmm. . And, uh, when

Reed Goossens (21:42):

Do you think that would will happen if you, if you, you gun ahead? When do you think that’s gonna occur?

Zamir Kazi (21:46):

I’d say like Q1 of 24, probably

Reed Goossens (21:49):

  1. Okay. So you think another, another year of just, you know, staying a little higher Yeah. And then yeah. Coming down. Yep.

Zamir Kazi (21:55):

Yeah. But, and, and, and I think because of that, whatever we buy over the next 12 months is gonna be great, right? Cause caps have expanded, right? Mm-hmm. and if interest rates come back down to compress again, so, you know, um, I’m pretty bullish on, you know, the next 18, 12 to 18 months. Uh, I feel like it’s good. Great buying opportunity.

Reed Goossens (22:16):

No, I think, and also there’s a lot of capital still sitting on the sidelines, particularly institutional that just like a little bit scared as rightly so, right? We, it’s unprecedented how we’ve gone from I think what the, the, the sofa was sub 1% and now we’re, you know, up in, up in the twos probably pushing up to three, uh, in, in a period of less than six months. You know, that’s, that’s obviously it’s gonna scare a lot of people, but I think I’m seeing at least as a buyer, if you’ve hung around the hoop for long enough, you’re gonna start seeing some rebounds, right? People, I’m starting to see the, the brokers calling me now. I’m not a nowhere near as big as what you’ve got to, I’m, I’m aspiring, but like I’m still an active buyer. Yeah. Um, now I’m starting to see those calls coming back with probably the last 12 months. You’ve, you’ve, as a buyer, you’ve had to sort of really go outta your way to make an impression on the brokers, make them say, Hey, I’m, I’m here to play. You know, I’m not just being, I’m not just blowing smoke and uh, I wanna be a buyer. You know? So that obviously backs into equity. So, um, so with that being said, are you seeing equity harder to raise with, with those bigger shops? Starting to, to, to take a pause a little bit now, um, given your strategy of how you raise equity.

Zamir Kazi (23:21):

It, it is. So, um, I would say the, the sentiment is starting to change a little bit right now, and there’s more optimism. Um, but you know, for, I’d say for a good four or five months, you know, everyone was pencils down, right? Mm-hmm. , and, and you know, some people say they’re not, but it, they’re window shopping and trying, It’s more pricing discovery to kind of keep their finger on the pulse. But there’s definitely been a shift, uh, in thinking, I think, like you said, brokers are now, right? All, all of us, all buyers included, you know, you, you’re, you’re trying to woo the brokerage or the seller and it saying, Okay, hey, pick me, pick me right now. Brokers are trying to get deals just to get deals done. And I, my phone’s never, like, brokers have never called me this much right.

Zamir Kazi (24:07):

To get to do deals. And so, so I think, I think a, there’s a lot of opportunity out there. There’s more deals, like we can actually, you know, pick and choose deals and be very selective, which I like, right? Cause there’s, there’s not as much competition, but, uh, equity, capitalizing those deals is, is hard right now. I think there’s a sense of kind of like herd mentality, right? Mm-hmm. and the institutions and everyone’s sitting on the sidelines and, and no one wants to catch the following knife, right? Cuz they don’t know where, where pricing is gonna ultimately shake out. It’s almost like the, the penguin complex, right? You got the one penguin that won’t jump into the water. Cause I think a shark circling, but once one does, then they all go in after. Right? Right, right. Um, so yeah, it, it’s, it’s been difficult, right? Um, but not to say it’s impossible. I think, again, if you’re looking for good assets, good quality assets and good quality submarkets, it’s still, it’s still possible, right? Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm.

Reed Goossens (25:01):

, That’s a bit pivot now a little bit to talking about your strategy of equity raising. You know, I’ve come through the friends and family bootstrapping, you, you sound like you’ve pivoted really quickly to, to, to institutional. I’ve never, I’ve done a handful of ins, you know, not, I don’t wanna say institutional, more private equity shops where there’s stroke in one check. Um, how have you, how do you navigate that for those people out there? There’s, you know, you’re either on one side of the coin or the other. Like you, you, you’re pro institution and, and you just wanna get it done. But you, you know, you might be dragged over the coals from a, from a, you know, fees point of view and splits, and then you’ve got the, the, you know, the capital raising the sort of the, the crowd funding where you’ve gotta herd 150 cats into the boat and, um, but you maybe get a little bit better, you know, metrics on the back end. What, what, how have you balanced that too? And, and are you, are you doing a mix of both or do you know, you sort of sticking to the one side right now,

Zamir Kazi (25:51):

You know, there’s just grass is greener, right? Uh, I feel like from both sides, everyone thinks one side is better than the, is more than what they’re doing. And, and honestly, I I, you’re, you’re doing an amazing job with, with the capital raising side, I wish I could do it right. Cause if I could, I would. Um, but, you know, look, I think I think the institutional side, like, like you said, there’s pros and cons, right? I think the pros for us have been, we’ve been able to scale right? Tremendously, right? Yeah. And, and, and there’s, there’s infinite amounts of amounts of money out there, right? They, especially even today, the all the big shops are raising their biggest funds ever, right? The, the funds get bigger and bigger and bigger. And now the, all the money’s going away from hotel, hospitality, retail, all going into multi and industrial.

Zamir Kazi (26:37):

So, you know, again, it’s gonna start flowing back and, and, you know, it’s great for, again, our industry, but, so really what I’m starting to do is bring in a few friends alongside the institutional. So instead of doing a 90 10 deal or 95 5, we’ll say, okay, give us another 5% allotment to as we can go raise and start to build out that platform. Mm-hmm. . Um, I do, I would like to have both buckets to raise on this indication as well. Um, again, you better fees, right? Probably better splits, but I, we definitely wanna keep doing institutional deals as well. Um, and hopefully have both, both, both sides.

Reed Goossens (27:14):

Yeah. No, I think that there is a chicken in the egg scenario, particularly, at least in my my career, it’s been you don’t attract the PE firms until you’ve done a few reps. Yeah. Right? So you have to go build out the syndication side. And some, some folks like yourself, you know, have just got right time, right place, probably with, connected with the right group. And it’s just like, it’s an easy synergy and, and an easy yes. But I know, um, you know, again, dew points, grass is always greener. Like I look at the other side and think, hey, what’s over there? You know? But I think in general, as you any operator, if you’re building the syndication business, and I’m saying syndication in general multifamily business, you have to always look at the North Stanley, in my opinion, to raise, to keep growing your own book of investors outside of the PE firms, right?

Reed Goossens (28:00):

Yeah. It’s gotta be, it’s gotta be a, um, you can’t ever lose sight of that, but having a, a fine balance, because I couldn’t go to a hundred million deal with a syndication, right? Like you’re only backing into certain size deals. Like I’m doing deals in a 25 to 40 million range because I know I can raise that much money. Yeah. Now you’re gonna go to a hundred million deal, you probably only, again, go to a, a pe shop that can stroke a 20 or 25 million check. You can’t, you know, raising 25 million of equity from $50,000 investors at a time. It’s a lot of bloody work. Um, but, but that’s, that’s where I think, you know, it’s horses for courses understanding, you know, right now I’m not even sniffing those bigger deals. You probably are. And that, that’s where you said before, is it scale is such a importance and, and where does that fit in your business goals of, of where you wanna go. So, um, so yeah, tell me a little bit, pivoting as we come towards the end of the show, you, you, a bunch of charities, you, you’re doing a bunch of work, you’re giving back. What’s first question is, you know, what’s the goal for the biz over the next sort of 10 years? And then what are you wanting to do as you’re giving back to, to the community and, and what, what, uh, what projects are you’re involved in?

Zamir Kazi (29:03):

Yeah, so, um, you know, 10 years is a, it’s a long time out, but, uh, it’s, we, my short term goal is to get to 20,000 units here pretty quickly. Um, the plan was, you know, end the next year. We’ll see if that happens. And, uh, we want to get into development, um mm-hmm. . So, uh, you know, hopefully over the next 10 years, 50% is acquisitions, 50% is development. Uh, and we’re, we’re starting to do some built to rent projects too. So, you know, just, just venturing out a little bit from the, from the acquisition side, uh, we’ve thought about bringing management in house. It’s something that I still struggle with and, and is a dilemma that probably won’t solve anytime soon, . Um, but, uh, yeah, you know, just look, uh, we’re just focused on building the best shop possible for us and, and continuing to provide outsize returns to our investors and find good opportunities.

Zamir Kazi (29:59):

You know, we’re all deal junkies. We just love doing deals, you know mm-hmm. and just continue finding the, the next good one, you know? And, um, in terms of, uh, community outreach and kind of charities and stuff, we, every deal, we close, we, we donate to a charity of either our choosing or the sellers choosing, um, you know, and, and, and we personally kinda do stuff with homeless charities and, and children’s, you know, um, orphan charities and whatnot. Um, we run a, uh, a basketball training facility, uh, where I’m from, um, uh, and Kissimmee and, um, that’s another thing that we like to provide and give back to the kids, you know, growing up it’s expensive, you know, and, and to kind of give back to the less fortunate and, and, and kind of, you know, provide them with, uh, five star facilities and, and stuff for free. And, you know, so, uh, I played basketball growing up, so it was, uh, just something I love to do. And, um, it’s a fun, fun pet project.

Reed Goossens (31:07):

Are you building that or just going, renting the space and letting guys come along?

Zamir Kazi (31:11):

Industry? Oh, we, we build it. Oh

Reed Goossens (31:12):

Wow. That’s

Zamir Kazi (31:12):

Awesome. Yeah. Yeah. That’s great. So we we’re gonna, we’re gonna build out a couple more. Um, now, so we, we have, we have, uh, a paid program where people pay us, and then we have the, the charity, uh, side of it too, where we, we offer free services. So, uh, but it’s, it’s caught on. It’s caught on, and, and people love it. The cities love it, you know, so that’s great. We would like to, to do more of that.

Reed Goossens (31:33):

Awesome, awesome stuff, man. Well look at the end of every show. We’ll love to dive into the top five investing tips. You ready to get into it? Yeah, mate, question number one is what’s the daily habit you practice to keep on track tool, do goals?

Zamir Kazi (31:46):

Um, so I keep, I, I keep a written list of my goals, um, and, uh, I’m kind of OCD about sketch, just scratching things off. So if it’s on a list for me, uh, I’d make it appointed to, to scratch get it off that list. Um, but I, I, so I used to, I used to keep, and I still do the, my phone screensaver is my kind of my big, hairy, audacious goal. Mm-hmm. , and, you know, we look at our phones a hundred times a day probably, right? Mm-hmm. . So I’m seeing this a hundred times a day, and, you know, more often than not, I’ve achieved those goals. Uh, it may take five years, may take 10 years, but it’s, it’s top of mind. That’s

Reed Goossens (32:20):

Awesome. That’s awesome. Question number two is, uh, who’s the most influential person in your career to date?

Zamir Kazi (32:25):

That’s a good question. So, honestly, um, it was a, a friend of mine who actually just passed away in, um, October, uh, heart attack, young guy. Mm-hmm. . Um, but one of my best friends was like my brother, and he was the, he was actually the guy that was in the private equity world, and he kind of, he helped me think bigger, right? Um, and, and start, you know, kind of reaching out to those institutional groups and making connections and, you know, help helped me kind of build the business and this is what I had to have in place and, you know, was a, uh, best friend, brother, and mentor.

Reed Goossens (33:00):

That’s, I’m so sorry to hear that, mate. It’s, uh, life loss like that can really, uh, put things into perspective about what your, what’s your, what you’re trying to achieve. Um, question number three is, what’s the most influential tool in your business? When I say tool, it could be, you know, a journal or a phone that you can’t run the business out, or it could be piece of software that just, you know, the business won’t exist without, without that tool

Zamir Kazi (33:22):

Email, right? I guess , uh,

Reed Goossens (33:25):

I hear a slack going off in the background earlier. Do think

Zamir Kazi (33:29):

Slack. Slack actually slack’s. Um, so we were mostly working remote and most of our team was like, What is Slack? I don’t want to get on this. And now we use it, you know, it’s like, it is the Bible for us where all, all communication goes on Slack. Obviously your phone, you probably can’t do anything these days without your phone, right? That probably might be the, the most important tool. If I didn’t have it, I wouldn’t know what to do. Um, but yeah, I think Slack, email, phone.

Reed Goossens (33:55):

Cool. Awesome stuff, man. Uh, question number four is, in one sentence, what’s been the biggest failure in your career and what’d you learn from that failure?

Zamir Kazi (34:01):

That is a good one. Uh, so, you know, I, I, I guess it’s not a failure, um, but this, this might be, this might be kinda to your point, growing quickly and, and, um, we, you know, the, the world kind of changed overnight, uh, a few months ago, and we had, I mean, 5 million hard money on deposits, right? We actually ended up having to walk away. We, we closed most of those deals, but some of the sellers weren’t willing to adjust to get a price to where we needed, and we had to end up walking probably from about two and a half million of deposits. Wow.

Reed Goossens (34:39):


Zamir Kazi (34:39):

A lot of money, you know? Um, and, uh, you know, that, that, again, it was at one point we had nine deals under contract at any time. So, you know, this was bound to happen, you know, but it was one of those things where you run so fast and something like this changes, you know, you can kind of get stuck out there. So that was, that was, that was a big, you know, this, this mentally getting over the fact of, you know, we’ve been doing so well, we had to, you know, and then having to walk away from that amount of money, it was, it was, it was hard, right? Right. Um, but look, we’re we, we are where we are at this point and we’ve moved on and we’re back to the end deals then again. So what,

Reed Goossens (35:16):

What are you doing differently now? Like, just as a, as a segue from that? Um,

Zamir Kazi (35:20):

I think, I think, you know, times are a little bit different now, so whereas before, like we were talking about it, it was, you weren’t getting a deal unless you had hard money. It was just kind of, it was normal practice, right? Mm-hmm. , that was just the way of the world Now, I think because of the volatility, you don’t need to put up hard money anymore. We’re not doing it right? Mm-hmm. , um, and, and I think everyone’s okay with that, given, given where we are with financing and, and all that. And, uh, you know, just, I, I think going into deals, knowing if we have partners ready to go, right? Um, versus, you know, just kind of again, the, the, it’s been on fire and you know, usually know if you know you got a good deal, it’s easy to, it’s not easy, but you, you should be able to find a capital partner. Right now we’re probably a little bit more proactive on the front end, um, before even doing that

Reed Goossens (36:09):

Shopping around, making sure you’ve got those soft commits. Yeah, exactly. I think that’s even, even on the, this syndication side, like, I’m not taking down a deal until I’m really confident on that equity piece. Yeah. And, and, uh, you know, this current deal we’re raising for right now, it’s like we are going in parallel, like your raising equity as your DD is going, as you’re negotiating the psa, and then usually by the end of DD you are fricking 99% company, you’re gonna get it raised. And that helps you for success because, you know, it get, it’s a little different from a private equity shop, but it’s, I’ve been there in the past where you get 10 to dd, you only 50% raise and you’re like, geez, where the rest is this coming from ? You know, it’s just, it become a little bit, uh, gray hairs

Zamir Kazi (36:47):

For sure, right? It’s like, you know, um, the same, you know, uh, it’s almost like every deal we did, uh, over the last 18 months, it comes down to one partner, right? Mm-hmm. , you know, and you’re like, Man, if that one partner didn’t show up, what would we have done? You know? Right. That’s definitely, definitely it’s scary and stressful, but you know,

Reed Goossens (37:09):

You’re flying close to the, you’re flying flying close to the sun at that point, and, uh,

Zamir Kazi (37:12):


Reed Goossens (37:13):

. Well, mate, last question is, where can be Richard to continue the conversation that would be in your sphere? Where do they go?

Zamir Kazi (37:20):

Um, so by LinkedIn, um, or Instagram. I’m on, uh, Zamir Kazi, uh, and LinkedIn is Zamir Kazi as well. Awesome. Our website, uh, zmrcapital.com,

Reed Goossens (37:31):

zmrcapital.com. Awesome stuff, mate. Well, I wanna thank you so much for jumping on today. Show reflect some of the things that I took away from today. I think your, your ability to scale really quickly, but also keeping, uh, humble in what you’re trying to do and what you’re trying to achieve. And, and, and it sounds like you’ve had some great opportunities that have come your way, like the employment of those 20 people, that really was a pivotal change in your business. And I think that, uh, from my perspective at least, it’s, it’s understanding and taking the guts to go off and say yes to that opportunity. Cause so many entrepreneurs with limited capital or just, you know, too afraid to grow quickly would’ve said no. You know, they would say, Oh, you know, I dunno if I can take on 20 people. I don’t the HR problems. You know, like there’s all these things that go through as, as a leader. And you, you sort of kept very defiant on, on your, on that goal and it’s obviously worked out really well for you. But, but it sounds like there’s been some, some growing pains along the way and, and it’s, it’s obviously shaped you as a better entrepreneur, better multifamily buyer, and a better leader at the end of the day. So, um, did leave anything out there?

Zamir Kazi (38:30):

No, you did great. Thanks so much for having me on, man. This is a lot of fun.

Reed Goossens (38:33):

Awesome, brother. Well, we’ll, uh, we’ll chat soon. Enjoy the rest of your week and, uh, have a great weekend. Hi man, you too. Well, there you have another cracking episode gem Pack with some incredible advice from Zamir. Remember, check out Zamir Kazi on LinkedIn and Instagram and at zmrcapital.com or just set press ZMR capital in the Google search and we’ll easy come up. I wanna thank you all again for taking some time outta your day to tune in, to continue to grow your financial iq cause that’s what we’re all about here on this show. If you do like this show, the easiest way to give back is to give it a five star review on iTunes. And we’re gonna do this all again next week. Remember, be bold, be brave, and go give life a crack.