Please introduce yourself.
My name is Ulise Melendez and I’m the co-owner and president of Melendez Investing LLC. My fiancé Yesenia Cabral is the Co-owner and CEO, and my little brother Anthony Feerreira is the CFO and Project Manager.
We are the Power Trio as I like to call it. We started this company with the sole purpose of giving people an affordable place to live. We have successfully purchased 5 houses. We employ a simple model where we flip 1 house and we rent 2 houses to low-income program families. We rented our first property and flipped our second property. We have recently finished renovating our third rental property, and it is currently occupied by a tenant. We are working on the fourth house now and we plan to flip the fifth house for profit and regenerate the cycle.
I entered the real estate industry 4 years ago after reading The Art of the Deal by Donald Trump. Shortly after that, I was employed by Structure Tone (the third biggest construction company in the U.S.) and became mesmerized by buildings. That’s when I was inspired to develop my own property – a building. It might take me 4 or 5 years but I am going to make it happen.
What are some hot markets for real estate that you are excited about?
Our company is not market-driven as we are driven by the profit percentage of each deal. We target 30% to 35% of the After-Repair Value (ARV) because of the lender’s criteria how that is applied to the buying process. Once we expand our portfolio, we will return to more price-driven markets like New York and New Jersey.
How do you source your real estate deals?
We source our deals from a wholesaler and we just started targeting the city to own real estate properties.
What are some checks and balances you’ve put in place to protect your real estate transactions?
We try to keep our checks in terms of numbers. If a deal doesn’t fit the numbers of the formula, we don’t buy the property unless it has the potential to become an amazing investment in 20 to 30 years later.
What is one piece of advice you would give someone starting their real estate career?
I recommended applying for a FHA loan and buying a multi-family home (that can accommodate up to 4 family members) with a commercial store under it. Refinance this property and then buy another house with 5% as downpayment.
What is one software you use for your business and recommend to others?
A mortgage calculator and loan calculator. You can’t go wrong with these tools.
What is your superpower in life?
I’m very competitive and goal-oriented. I have laser focused and always thinking about the long-term.
What is a failure you’ve had in life that set you up for eventual success?
My first real estate deal failed because I wanted the property but didn’t possess adequate knowledge about the construction business. However, I wasn’t discouraged and pushed on. Today, I own a construction business and want to buy more properties.
What is one book that has influenced your life the most? Why?
Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.