It is likely to be known that one of the essences of building a business is problem-solving! Started in 2015, a man with extensive sales experience in the healthcare sector turned the accommodation needs of travel nurses and other clinicians into a profitable opportunity. Providing reasonable and comfortable accommodation, he learned and studied to do things differently in his real estate game.
Our very own “The FI Guy” Craig Curelop, and “Z-Money” Zeona McIntyre, are accompanied by Jesse Vasquez, a game-changer in the real estate industry. In this episode, Jesse, who specializes in medium-term rentals, works with placement agencies such as medical placement agencies (travel nurses) and has renters who are paying as much or even more than short-term rentals in the same area.
Medium-Term Rental, or MTR, is an emerging market in the real estate scene. Its thriving future is an asset to look forward to. Want to know more? Stay tuned until the end, as there is no better episode to get first-hand tricks from the expert than this episode of Invest2FI!
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Out of the Box Ways to Grow Your Mid-Term Rental Business with Jesse Vasquez
Jesse’s episode is super inspiring. It is really reassuring in the medium-term rental space. I’m sharing that to anybody listening to this. You know that you’re on the forefront of it. And so, test it out on your first house hack or your second house hack, or whatever it is. When you’re in the beginning, like many of you guys may be right now, you’re just testing the strategies. I did a long-term rental. I’ve done medium-term rentals. In short, I’ve done all of those. So, I’m like, okay, how do I figure out which one actually works the best and which ones I like the most? Actually, the medium-term rental that I did was an accidental medium-term rental. I had a horrible guest. So, I’ve been scared of that ever since. I’m just now getting into like, okay, let me see. Let me go back to medium-term rental, because there are so many people that are doing it, and it’s working.
So, Jesse offers some crazy, good advice. Honestly, the best piece of advice he offers is at the very end, even after we do the final four. So, definitely listen through to the end. Let’s get to the show.
Jesse Vasquez, welcome to the show, my dude. How are you doing today?
What’s up, man? I like your mustache, Craig. I wish I can grow something like that. You see this here? This is a Speedy Gonzalez stash. It’s the only Hispanic style I can get.
I see that you’re trying. Is that—
This has been growing, by the way, Zeona.
Is that full grown?
It’s not. Yes, about two years. So, for those of you that are watching, this is two years’ worth of a mustache.
Wow. I think that Zeona might have some more mustache.
Yeah, I might have a better mustache than you, Jesse. I’m also Latin, so we are blessed with mustaches sometimes.
Oh, yeah. Well, I grow no hair. If I could take my shirt off, you guys could see my armpits. I have no armpit hair at all. I don’t shave it. I swear to God. It’s so weird.
That’s actually not a bad thing. Anyway, how do we get here? Let’s go. Let’s talk about—
Yeah, armpit hair and investing is so mixed.
Yeah, before we know it, Jesse’s going to have his shirt off and show it off, his back hair. No armpit hair. Before we start talking about that, let’s hear a little bit about your real estate story, and how you first heard about financial independence.
Yeah, so Zeona and I — I’ve actually been following Zeona for quite some time now. Craig, you were on my podcast like months ago. You totally forgot about me, which I understand. I’m cute but forgettable. But yes, I heard of Zeona for quite some time. She’s awesome. Just the midterm stays, all that stuff has been something I’ve been into. So, that’s how I heard of the show. Then Craig, you forgot about me. It’s all right, man.
If you had a better stash or something more back hair, I think I’d remember you.
I know, man.
Maybe next time.
Well, hey, I have no armpit hair. So, there you go.
Armpit hair, yeah. So, how did you get started in real estate? Where did that all come from? Where were you before that?
I got started in real estate in 2015. I worked in the healthcare sector as a business development manager. Basically, it’s just a fancy way of saying sales rep, for those of you listening. I worked for the hospital system. My job was to have clinicians or doctors to come get privileges at hospitals. I also worked in the Home Health Division, where we’d have patients who would be discharged and go home. Say, Craig, if you fell and broke your hip, my job was to go to the hospital and get you as a referral to come home, so a nurse or a therapist can visit you at your property.
As I was doing this, I started realizing that there were clinicians that were traveling. All the hospitals I would go to, there would be these really heavy, beautiful Midwestern Fargo accents. These folks would say things like, “Don’t you know—” Really cool things. We don’t hear like that in California. Nobody talks like that in California, which is dude, and bro, and man just like I do. I would ask these clinicians like, “What are you doing here?” They would say, “We’re travel nurses. We’re here on assignment. We’re here for three months.” I asked where they were staying. They said Motel 6 on 9th Street, which was a heavily prostituted area back in 2015. I was trying to figure out why the heck they were staying there. They told me they were paying 3k a month.
Back in 2015, Craig and Zeona, 2015 was a great time to buy real estate. In the Central Valley, you could buy a property for 250k, and your mortgage payment would be about $1,200. So, my brain started spinning as I was hearing more and more clinicians that were coming into this market. I bought my first property 2015 to house travel medical professionals directly, because I saw the need.
Great. So, it sounds like — You’re trying to go there, Craig. You’re trying to go to the—
You go ahead. You’re trying to go the same place as me. Are we on the same page?
Yeah, we’re on the same page.
Are you guys telepathic right now? What’s going on here?
We are. So, it sounds like this is your—
The real deal. Not only that, but Jesse is an OG travel nurse, mid-term rental, doing it before. Zeona thought it was cool, right?
That’s true. So, your Friel deal is the first deal that you do as an investor, whether or not you were intentional about it. So, tell us about your first deal in deep dive — how much you paid for it? What do you rent it for? How do you find it? All that good stuff.
So, there is a really beautiful area in central California. Well, in Modesto, there’s a place called the college area. It’s where everybody wants to go. When I was going to school, I would walk these neighborhoods. There are these beautiful trees lining the streets. I’m like, “I’m going to buy a house here one day.” This was back in 2002 before you guys were probably born. That’s an area I always wanted to buy a property.
It’s my first space. I found this home for 300k. Beautiful home. The great thing about these neighborhoods, you guys, is that you can have a $300,000 property right in one spot. Then right next door is a $1 million property, even back then. So, the appreciation of neighborhoods has always been fantastic. It’s like A class neighborhood. So, I picked that place up for 300k. My mortgage payment was $1,350 with principal interest, all that stuff in there. I got a contract with Doctors Medical Center. Back in 2015, they were paying $4,000 at that time for a travel nurse or travel nurses for that particular property. So, I was all in for about — I’m going to say about $1,800. That’s including water, sewer, garbage, electrical, all that other fun stuff that comes along. So, the $1,800. What is 18 minus 4? 2,200. Am I right in my math skills here?
Guys? Anybody? Can you help me here?
Yeah, I’m terrible at math. So, Craig’s the one. He’s like Rain Man over here just crunching numbers.
I’ve been counting cards the whole time.
Your counting cards in your boxer shorts. Kmart. 400 Oak Street. I have that whole movie memorized, you guys. So, if you want to take your part, I’ll just go through it. That was my first deal, you guys. At that point, cash flowing $2,000. Everybody was like, “You are not even telling the truth. This is fake.” I’m like, “No, this is freaking real. Here’s my bank account. I’m going to show you, guys.” Back in those days, you had to have 50 doors to make 2k. I was able to do it with just one beautiful, somewhat decent door.
I love that, man. My question for you. This is like before, right? This is like OG, before Furnished Finder. So, you’re like an early an early mover to this mid-term rental space. Maybe Furnished Finder was around, but it certainly isn’t as popular as it was as it is now.
Can somebody today that wants to do medium-term rental go to these doctor associations, and create relationships with them and do it the same way if they wanted to maybe circumnavigate Furnished Finder and have less competition?
Yes, and that’s why we brought Jesse on.
There’s a reason.
There’s a reason.
There’s always an agenda, Craig. There’s always an agenda.
That’s right. I always have a plan to help somebody else. Come on, spill the beans.
You can totally create relationships with these facilities. I think that this is a great way to build a sustainable long-term business and not rely on Furnished Finder — which I love, by the way — or Airbnb and all these other OTAs. It is by far the best and smartest way to get cashflow, and to actually build a sustainable business. That’s going to give you a long runway. Not rely on these OTAs. Because, a lot of times, OTAs can change at any moment. On Furnished Finder, I don’t know what’s going to change or anything that could potentially happen. But you just pick up a phone, Craig and Zeona, and literally just start calling these agencies and connecting.
Okay. I’m going to give a couple of questions for you. One, what’s an OTA? Two, I want to talk about calling these agencies. But first, tell us what an OTA is.
OTA is an online travel agency like Vrbo, or Airbnb, or Booking.com. Those are online travel agencies. Even Furnished Finder, it could be considered an online travel agency, I think. Right? Maybe, possibly, kind of, sort of, -ish.
I think they’re more like a lead gen. I think what makes an OTA is that you can book online. You can’t do that with Furnished Finder.
They will do that. They’re going to do that soon.
So, you circumnavigate the OTAs by getting these phone numbers. How do you get these phone numbers? What is the script that you use? How do you pitch this to other doctors? What if they already got a bunch of people on the list?
Perfect. So, can we do a little experiment while we’re on this call right now?
Zeona, do you want to do me a favor?
All right. Cool. Head over to indeed.com and just type in travel RN, Boulder, Colorado. Tell me how many leads pop up right there. I’m giving you guys all a little insider tip into the world of cold calling, specifically the agencies.
So, there are 550 jobs in Boulder, Colorado — which is crazy, because I have two medium-term rentals in Boulder. Most of the time, we don’t even rent to nurses. So, I was like, “Oh, there must not be any here.” I just get digital nomads and other people. Wow. 550 jobs.
What that actually is telling you right there, Zeona — this is just Indeed. This is not even Monster Jobs or other. This is what I start to do when I analyze markets. I’ll look at what the demand is, how many schools there are in that specific market that folks can go to RN school. I’ll actually call those schools and find out how many of those folks are staying in those markets. Because they have data that tells us what that looks like. The jobs alone, that’s 540 leads that you can pick up the phone and start dialing over the next month and start connecting with these agencies, and find out if they even do corporate contracts, if they handle specific doctors.
So, there’s a ton of legwork that you have to do on the back end. It is not for the faint of heart. It is extremely difficult to do this. So, I’m going to caution everybody now. You can’t just call and expect to get a booking. I talked to folks on a regular basis. We’re like, “Hey, Jess, I tried calling. I followed all your Instagram things. Nobody’s answering.” I’m like, “How many people did you call?” They’re like, “Five.” I’m like, “Dude, you need a 10x of what you’re doing. You have to have a scale.” This is just like business to business. You got to put in the time, the energy, the effort, at least an hour or two a day to actually data mine and grab information from these folks. I love that you guys raise your hands.
Yeah, we’re raising our hands because there are three of us, and it gets confusing. I just want to clarify for some people. You can fully have your place booked with Airbnb and Furnished Finder. What people don’t know is that Furnished Finder is actually like the discount place for people to go direct. So, if someone gets a stipend, they just want to go direct to Furnished Finder.
But if you’re going to put in this legwork, instead of having one and a half times market rent, you can have two times. You can basically get the same amount that a short-term rental can bring in, but doing it on a medium-term basis, or more. So, that’s why this is worth the legwork. Once you build those relationships, I imagine you can use them again and again. You don’t necessarily have to start from scratch.
Yeah, the relationships that I build, back from the business development world that I was in, everything around healthcare, you guys, is based on contract. Whether you’re a clinician, whether you’re a traveling nurse, whether you’re an RN that works on the floor, or whether you’re a maintenance keeper in the hospital, everything is based around contracts. That’s one of the things that I learned in the hospital atmosphere. It’s that everything is based around contracts. So, why shouldn’t housing be? It is. That’s something that I learned early in 2015, that it is potentially possible to create contracts with agencies and hospitals for direct placement of these travel medical professionals.
Let’s talk tactics a little bit here. I typed in travel RN, and insert my city. I did it in mine. I got 40 travel nurses. So, it was not as great as Boulder, maybe. But I still have 40. So, I would go ahead and call. I’m looking at medical solutions and favorite healthcare staffing. I would just call these people and say, “Hey, do you guys do contracts with furnished rentals? Can I be on your list?” How does that work?
Let’s do a sample. Ring, ring, Jesse. Tell us what you tell them.
I would just say one of the first things that I talked about is I talked about being a housing solutions provider, specifically for travel medical professionals. I’ll start naming local hospitals in the market. So, these folks are familiar. I will set up a Zoom call. This is why I’m different than everybody else, Zeona and Craig. I will create a Zoom call today with these folks. Say, Craig, you’re a recruiter. I’m like, “Hey, Craig, I want to connect with you. Let’s have a call tomorrow. Can you tell me what office you’re working in, and what your address is?”
So, I will get every single person that’s in that office. I’ll get their email address. I’ll find out what their favorite Starbucks drink is. I’ll make sure that we order Panera. Then as I’m sitting down, having a conversation with you and your entire team, you guys are eating lunch. I talk about what we do, how we operate. I will show slides of our properties. I will have previous tenants to say — our nurses, we do like little clips — they’ll say this place was great. Here’s a quick walkthrough. Here’s something that I loved. There’s a great little market right around the corner. So, they’ll have actually true, real, full experience of what actually happened in that property. They’re not going to forget about me. I’m the only person sending them Starbucks, creating drinks. I see Zeona there write, taking notes.
I’m taking those. I don’t know if I’m that nice, but we could be halfway. I’ll send a box of cookies. I don’t know.
Well, here’s the thing.
It’s not about making money. It’s about these clinicians. The more problems you can solve — a lot of these agencies have holes in them that they don’t know how to necessarily solve. You have to discover those. You got to ask a ton of questions, how they’re finding clinicians. You could potentially even match them with clinicians and recruiters.
Just so you guys know, recruiters are basically sales reps. For everybody listening right now or watching this, they get paid on a percentage of the travel medical professional. So, if they make 60 grand in those three months, those recruiters make a percentage of it. If you have housing, you’re automatically — you’re going to help them in a way. The more problems you can solve, the more you’re able to help people, the better that your potential outcome is going to be.
So, that’s just a word of thumb with anybody in any space. Look at Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos. They solved a million problems, which is why they’re billionaires. If you think about it on a small scale, you solve these small problems with these agencies, you’re able to create something that is going to be sustainable. You’re going to be easy to deal with, which is, by far, the most important thing. It makes their jobs easier to connect with you.
Great. So, let’s continue on your journey. Because I think this is really interesting for people. Once you saw what was possible, actually, you made it work for yourself. What did you want to do? Did you want to go out and get 10 more places? Were you like, let me just get one more? What happened next?
I started buying a property every year. So, I would just save the $2,200. I didn’t touch it. I didn’t do anything with it, unless there were some unforeseen circumstances like I did have an AC unit go out, and that was eight grand to fix in my second year. I would just save all the cash. It was like $24,000 and some change every year. Now I’ll just go buy another property every single year. Today I have 10 properties — 6 are in the Central Valley, and then I have some spread out all over the place. I do the same thing now. So, now we’re actually buying more multi-units as opposed to single family, which is all we’re vying for.
When you were first starting out, is it weird to go into and sit down into a meeting room with a bunch of doctors or whatever, and pitch your one property? Now you’ve got 10 and 11, you can show it off. You look a lot more professional when you’ve got a portfolio. But how is it if someone’s just getting their first one or their second one? Is that strategy still works at checkout?
Yeah, 100%. You can have no properties and still create lead generation, just like you guys did right now. You start calling, create a landing page that talks about what you do, how you operate, the markets you’re into. I think the more transparent you are about starting, especially if you only have your first property, people tend to really resonate with that. Especially if you’re like, “Hey, look, this is a business I’ve started. I spend a lot of time educating myself in the space. I picked up 30-Day Stay. I’m reading these things. I’m learning about how to work with this specific market,” people really resonate with that. Folks want to help people that are just starting in a lot of these spaces.
One of my first property, I just knocked on the HR department door and just said, “Hey, I want to pick up a property. I’ve been in this place for many years now. I want to house these professionals. They’re staying at Motel freaking 6. How do I do that?” They just were like, “Hey, we’re totally open to this. There’s nobody doing this in this space right now. If you’re able to create more properties, then we can use you on a regular basis.” So, that’s how that conversation originally started.
All right. I’m going to jump in here. We’re going to take a little pause, and put in an ad. So, it’s perfect timing. He just mentioned our book 30-Day Stay: A Real Estate Investor’s Guide to Mastering the Medium-Term Rental. What a lot of you don’t know is that Jesse right now is working on a bonus chapter. So, I’m lighting you up, Jesse. Hopefully, you are working on that bonus chapter.
Good. So, he’s working on a bonus chapter. Because I didn’t find Jesse until after the book was done. I was like, “Oh, no, we need to have this in the book.” So, there is new information happening all the time. This is cutting edge. I’m really excited to share it with you guys. Go to biggerpockets.com/30daystay. Use code ZEONA for a 10% off. That is Z-E-O-N-A. Thanks. Back to the show. Oh, man, invisalign — it makes me have a lisp. Not a huge fan of it, I guess.
Yeah, I got a lisp. Invisalign.
Alright. Jesse, let’s just go into a deep dive on the second property. Because I think it’s just important for people. A lot of our listeners are either buying property one or looking for number two, and they’re just early on. When you saw like, “Okay. I can buy in this beautiful area, the college area. I love that,” did you just go buy down the street in the same little market, or did you find something new with the next one?
Yeah, that’s a good question, Zeona. Your name is cool, by the way. Did you have like super hippie parents that just decided they were going to name Zeona? Because I’ve never heard that name before. Super cool.
Yeah, I was born in Jamaica.
It’s after Zion, yeah.
Freaking cool, man.
It was going to be Zeona, and then it changed to Zeona.
There you go. I like your name. My second property, that’s what we were talking about, right? Or just the area?
Never mind. So, I bought right down the street, because I’m sandwiched between Doctors Medical Center and Memorial Medical Center. These are both trauma, level-one hospitals. They have more higher acuity patients that come in there, which means they need to have more travel medical professionals. That’s something you definitely want to look into. Level 1 and level 2 hospitals tend to have way higher amount of folks that are coming in, because the ICUs are typically bigger.
There’s a ratio. In California, you have to have one ICU patient — there has to be two nurses for one ICU patient. Just keep that in mind when you’re checking hospitals, and you see how big these hospitals are. The more ICU beds are, the more clinicians you need to have. So, that’s just a quick little tidbit. Yeah, about the same neighborhood.
Just tell us the numbers on this property. Was it still that cheaper by than it started going up in value?
Yeah, I actually picked this place up for 275. My mortgage payment was — I think it was $1,250. I think $1,255. That was all-in. Back then, I think the interest rate was 3%, three and a quarter. Same deal. Actually, I got a contract with a company called AMN Healthcare. I’m not sure if you guys are familiar with them. They are a national travel agency. AMN Healthcare, at that time, was paying me $5,000 for a three-bed with a nook, which is basically a studio that we converted into a bedroom. So, it’s a four-bedroom, two-bath.
Just so you guys know, I typically like to buy 3:2 single family homes because it gives me multiple different avenues that I can house insurance companies, which is a huge play for me in my game right now. I can house travel medical professionals. You don’t want to just put all your eggs in the healthcare industry. You want to spread around and make sure that you have multiple, different clients you’re going to have in your property. Because if not, sometimes healthcare professionals come in waves.
I love hearing this. Because I’ve been telling people, “Hey, what I see in just the properties I have had been one and two bedrooms. So, I’m scared of bigger properties. Even though I come from the world of short-term rentals, and that’s like bigger, the better, but it’s nice to hear that actually 3:2 has worked well. I’m going to let Craig ask his question. But then after, I got more. I’m excited.
Jesse, you just made my day by saying the 3:2s are okay, and I’m going to tell you why. We are under contract right now. By the time this airs, we’ll likely have closed, hopefully. It’s a five-bed, three-bath in Coeur d’Alene. Now, the one-bed, one-bath part of that is just a studio. So, that’s going to be an Airbnb. But four-bed, two-bath is going to be travel nurses.
I’ve asked pretty much everybody I know that knows anything about medium-term rental this question. So, what do you think about our idea — this was my wife’s wonderful idea — of having two travel nurses in a four-bed, two bath? Each person has their own bedroom and an extra room for storage or anything else that they may need. So, it’s still enough space and all that stuff. Would you say yay or nay on that?
I would say no, and I would say that I would go after the travelers who are coming in groups. Sorry to your wife. I don’t know her name.
Yeah, it’s literally what I told him yesterday.
Maybe not a great idea. Good thing my wife does not listen to this show. We won’t tell her that. Okay. So, what is your recommendation?
Here’s the beautiful thing about having more bedrooms. There’s a whole lot of clinicians right now that are traveling in groups. You’ll see this all the time. You probably see this. There’s a lot of millennials that will hang out or Gen-Z’ers that will go in, bust ass, for three months as a travel medical professional. They’re coming in three or four nurses. Then they’re jamming out to Ibiza for a month. They’re coming back, busting ass again for three, six months, then going to Europe for another month. This is a trend I’ve been seeing now for probably — what year are we in? 2022. Well, the pandemic screwed that up. Probably since 2019, I’ve been seeing a lot of these groups and travelers coming together.
It’s even happening before that. There’s a lot of families that show up for this. There are doctors that come on assignment, residents that come in groups. So, if you niche down — I hate the word niche, by the way. If you niche down into more of this category, you’re able to get those select type of people and I think those niche markets, which is travel medical professionals is one. But you’re able to niche it down even more to get groups together. You have way more of an opportunity. Especially, that’s something you bring up to recruiters as you’re talking to them saying, “Hey, who’s your next travel nurse who is coming with their family, or friends, or they’re coming in groups?”
Because these recruiters know everything that’s happening. That’s if you start building the relationships. “Hey, I got this property that can house three different individuals. It’s 2,000 square feet. They get their own space. Two of the rooms have their own bathrooms, yada, yada, yada.” You give your unique selling point. It’s two minutes from the hospital. We got bikes in the backyard. I’m talking too fast, but you guys get what I’m saying, right? You get all that information.
Yeah, maybe I should be afraid of two people in the same place that don’t know each other. But there’s still a market for some that may want a 4:2 instead of 2:1.
You don’t want to do the deal if you don’t know each other. That’s a huge liability. I could tell you that now. I’ve had students that have had literally crazy issues. I’m not going to go into detail about it, unless you want to. You don’t want to mix folks in a place. I personally don’t. There are successful people that do that. I just don’t want that liability. Neither do you, Craig. Neither, does your mustache.
Okay. This is my big question, because it’s really about me. I want to know how you go into analyzing a new area. I don’t know if you’d have to do this that much. Because you seem to just buy in your area, which is smart. I tell people that I have investor ADD, and I just own in a lot of different markets.
So, we have this long-term rental that is coming available at the end of the month. We’re like, “Should we fly out and furnish it?” What are the couple of things that you look at? Obviously, we went to Furnished Finder. We looked at what we think we can make as just a baseline. But how do you know if there’s enough demand?
The first thing that I would say is go deep, not wide. What I mean by that is, grow in your specific market.
It will last — 2015, this is how many years now that I’ve been able to grow here on this market. If you go, why do you have to always be reaching out unless you want to rely on Furnished Finder or Airbnb and all this other stuff?
My first suggestion would go, deep in your specific market and not jump all over the place. But I start looking at how many hospitals there are in the market. You’re going to want to look at that. You’re going to look how many people. You want to do just the traditional stuff you normally would do. What’s the growth looking like for the next five years? How many people are expected to be there? Just the basic principles that you would typically use when you’re investing in a market. You want to look at what colleges that you have in that market that have RNs, that can graduate as RNs. You want to see how many folks are in that space. You want to find out what the ratio for clinicians that are full-time versus clinicians that are travel. You need to find that out. There’s usually a ratio. It can be 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%. In my market, it’s 40%, which is crazy high. This is also similar to New York, and Florida, and some other markets that have this similar type of situation.
That’s what I do first. I’ll really scout what the market is, how many clinicians are there. I’ll look up furnishedfinder.com/stats. That will give me a demand market, how many folks are actually traveling there. But then, I do the Indeed thing. I see who’s hiring in that specific market. I go into Monster Jobs. It’s like a whole — we don’t have enough time to dive into exactly what I do, because it’s quite a bit of work to find new markets. But again, my suggestion is, go deep, not wide.
Okay. So, then, let me ask a more specific question. If you’re looking at a hospital — I get that it has to be like trauma level one or two ideally. But then, is there a certain number of beds that make you feel like okay, after 150 beds, this is a sizable hospital and it might be okay? Is there really nothing like that?
I have a level 3 hospital. It’s in Lodi, California. I have a property in Lodi. This hospital gives me a ton of travel medical professionals. So, it doesn’t have to be level one or two. Again, it goes back to the demand. Lodi Adventist Hospital has a 60% travel nurse to 40% full-time RN ratio. These numbers, they’ve changed since the pandemic. There are a lot more travelers since the pandemic. So, this isn’t just like a post-pandemic story. Just FYI, there’s always been the need for travel medical professionals since many years, which is why Furnished Finder has become so popular in a lot of ways. I don’t know where I’m going with this. I think I just lost my train of thought. What was your question again?
How many beds? Is that something that you look at — how many beds?
It does, like most hospitals I look for.
Because that’s public knowledge. You can just search it. So, I’m trying to do the things that I don’t have to directly call yet.
300 beds is like typically where I want to be at. That is not including labor and delivery beds. So, typically, there’s a portion of the hospital which will be specifically the beds count, labor and delivery. You want to find out just exactly how many beds there are, excluding labor and delivery. ICU beds are important, too. We talked about the ratio when it comes to nurses per patient. The more ICU beds, the likelihood that there’s going to be more turnaround for travel professionals.
Okay. I’m going to dig in. Because our market has 288 beds, level two. So, I just got to do a little more research. My idea is that it’s going to freaking work. But my partner is a little more careful than I am.
Jesse, what are the thresholds that you look for? Is there a minimum ICU bed? Is it a hard number, or is it like a per capita number? What are your thresholds?
I’ll just give you guys an example right now. California, Texas, Illinois, North Carolina, Florida, and New York are the top underserved states in the US that don’t have enough clinicians per capita, per patient. The national registry for travel medical professionals, the SIA — which is an organization that basically captures how much travel medical professionals are needed — they’re saying that those states are not going to be to the pre-pandemic levels until 2030. So, if you’re in one of those states, you have a good opportunity to build an actual sustainable business for the next seven to eight years.
I think that, Craig, to answer your question, the bed count is going to be important. You got to call. At the end of the day, you got to make these calls and ask these questions. A lot of times, when you call the main hospital line, it’s going to be somebody that’s super tired that answers the phone, that is just there working. You need to get to actually hold of the HR department and actually ask them questions that are pertinent to the hospital. Because they’re going to be able to give you real-time information. There are a lot of volunteers that work in hospitals, and they’re typically the ones that are picking up the phones.
Is there a count that you look for in terms of you call? Say, there’s 500 beds. Is that like, okay, great? How do I know if 500 beds is a lot or little?
Well, you got to go back. 500 beds is a lot. Like I said, 300 is where I’m looking at mostly. But you got to go back to what we talked about earlier. What’s the hospital ratio for full-time clinicians to travel medical professionals? The HR departments can hand all that information. So, you basically got to dive deep and figure out what the hospital is actually doing. You keep your ear to the ground. You realize how they’re operating. That’s going to give you a way better understanding. You can have a hospital that has 150 beds like Adventist in Lodi, which is not a lot of beds at all. That’s including labor and delivery. But they have a 60% travel medical professional ratio with half of their hospital. More than half their hospital is travel medical professionals. It’s a little tiny town in the middle of freaking Sacramento and Modesto.
So, you can do this anywhere. You just have to really dive in deep, and you have to really understand what you’re actually doing. We’re talking all this stuff right now. I came from the medical background for 17 years. So, it’s like a totally different world. I think that’s something that I need to translate, too. Because a lot of times, I talk about this stuff. But this is like many years of experience to understand the healthcare sector and how it works, and how to actually get these questions answered and things like that.
You’re much older and wiser than you look, Jesse.
He’s got a baby face.
Look at this, guys. I got a lot of gray hair going on here.
So do I.
Going to keep the hat on.
Look, my hair is even falling out. Look at this, guys. I’m balding now.
We’re talking about hair in this episode.
Yeah, you’re balding even more. Jesse, if I’m just getting this correctly, just to hear your story, recap a little bit. So, you started in 2015. You saw a need for travel nurses. You’ve met that need. Clearly, you’re super profitable for it. You basically just systematically bought one or two a year since 2015. That sounds good to portfolio. There’s no raising crazy money. There’s no anything like that. How are you making your money actively? Because we’re expecting you’re living on more than $24,000 a year.
Yes, I actually quit my W2 job in July 17 last year, you guys. So, I’m actually a living, working, breathing human that doesn’t rely on a W2 job anymore. I make really good money. You guys can make really good money just off of two or three properties with a solid foundation with travel agencies. You don’t have to rely on them. They’ll feed you clientele. The insurance industry is another totally different thing that we didn’t really dive into. Maybe I can come back on and talk about that at some point.
Now I’m actually diving into more of like a syndication type thing. I’m actually raising money right now to find specific markets where we can actually raise capital, buy in Ohio 20 units, get contracts, and then build on that. I have a whole team on the backend now that is doing data mining calls. We’re actually putting together — well, it’s already together, but we’re going to roll it out next year.
Say, Craig, you’re buying in Omaha, Nebraska. You’re like, “Hey, I’m going to buy here, but I need to get contracts.” We’re already going to get those contracts for you, so you just basically plug and play. You’d pay us. We’d give you contracts. I’ve created a science out of this, and I’m now teaching other folks how to do this. But my backend team is doing a lot of the data mining and grabbing information, pulling information, making phone calls, and creating an actual business out of this. So, I’m excited about it.
Okay. I get this question a lot. So, I’m curious what you think. It might be just different because your market might not have as many multifamily properties. But people are like, “Oh, dude, the nurses or the insurance companies prefer a single-family home over a duplex, or quad over a condo.” What would you say to that? Does it really matter?
Single family homes, you’re always going to make more money off of them. It’s just the single-family homes, the insurance portion that they have — the way the insurance companies work, they give you a percentage of whatever your house is worth to stay into a property. So, if I had a million-dollar property, I’m going to be staying in the same or similar property. It’s a million dollars. So, if it’s in an apartment complex and it has a leak or something, they’re going to put them to something very same and similar. That’s why you want to be very specific about what you’re buying.
All the midterm rentals that I buy now, I have the same sexiness that you have in short-term rentals. I’m also in the short-term rental space. I’ve been in the short term rental space since 2017. So, that sexiness that you would typically get from a short-term rental, I put those in the mid-term rentals. Keep in mind, you guys, a lot of these clinicians sometimes will want to walk to properties before they actually book them. Not always, but it does happen.
When you do contracting with agencies, they will do that. We’ll have doctors that will say, “Hey, they want to come check it out first.” So, if your place isn’t like you open the door, and they’re just like, “I want to be here,” then the likelihood of you having a specific agency that’s going to work with you might be a lot smaller than if you just had a room with four walls a room and a TV. That doesn’t work anymore. You got to be very intentional with what you’re putting together. Put the guests in mind. I think that’s going to be really important going forward in this space, too, as it gets more and more popular.
It’s funny that you say 2017. I’m just thinking, that’s when my BiggerPockets came out. Did I influence your short-term rental game over there, buddy?
No, actually, I don’t know if you guys know Richard Fertig is. Do you guys know who Richard Fertig is? You don’t? You got to go check him out. I learned a lot of stuff from him. Check him out. He’s a very smart guy. He was really early in the Airbnb space creating a ton of business. Zeona, I didn’t hear your episode. I’m going to have to go back and take a listen.
That’s okay. That stuff is outdated at this point. But that’s cool.
Well, I think things change a lot. Well, Craig, I know you had a question. So, let’s let you ask your question.
Yeah, my question is more like — clearly, you’ve built a business model that works. Now you’re scaling it into more multifamily, raising money, yada, yada. What kind of returns are you offering your investors? Because obviously, it’s little bit more risky than the traditional, and you’re also making a lot more money.
Yes, correct. Our underwriting is different. Typically, we have to underwrite based off of long-term rents. But what we’re doing right now, we’re looking at two X-ing with long-term rent. So, we’re giving percentages and dividends depending on the amount of income that’s coming into the property. We’re just starting to do this right now. I haven’t actually funded anything. We’re just putting this together now. So, we have a group right now. We’ve already raised, I think, 300,000. We’re trying to buy some units in Kansas. It’s a 20-unit complex. And so, we’re basically going through this whole fund right now.
Okay. Jesse, I’ve got another question for you. It could be total BS. This is my understanding of commercial, how it works. Let’s say, you’re buying that 20-unit complex in Kansas City. Right now, each unit is $1,000 a month. So, it’s $20,000 a month of net income times whatever. In 12 months, it’s $240,000 a year. Let’s say, the cap rate is in a million-dollar place. If you raise the rents, double the rent, are you also basically doubling or even more so the property using that cap rate? Is that like a value-add play? Is that how I would think of it? Because that would be crazy amount of wealth building.
Yes, 100%. That’s exactly what it is. But the problem with this is, Craig, we have to get the contracts ahead of time. We know that we’re going to be — those contracts are going to be solid. So, that when we get the investment funds, we already have a proforma put together. We know how much money we’re going to get per door. We know how often travelers are coming. We know what seasonality there’s to it.
Because there is seasonality to travel medical professionals, just so you guys know. A lot of times during the winter season, they’re not traveling as much because they’re staying home with family, Christmas, all that kind of stuff. So, keep that in mind if you guys are looking at housing travel medical professionals.
Essentially, what you’re saying, that is absolutely correct. You can double that. But again, the banks aren’t looking at it like that. They’re looking at the basic underwriting of what a long-term rental would be. We’re just coming in on top of that with our—
So, if you were to resell it, then it wouldn’t necessarily be like a massive increase in equity. Because the banks and the next investor might look at it that way, too.
Here’s what I love about this. I need everybody to really pay attention to this. Listen to this right now. When you create a business-to-business relationship, that is 100% sellable. We all think about our properties right now. Do you guys want to be mid-term renting for the rest of your lives? I don’t want to be mid-term renting forever. Zeona, I know you don’t either. When you have an asset like a business-to-business relationships, it’s not as much work as short-term rentals. But check this out.
It’s not too bad. No.
Smart money right now, you guys, is in Wall Street money, right? Guess what Wall Street’s doing right now? Because the stock market is shit. Can I cuss on here? I just did. Smart money is actually buying — they’re getting in the mid-term rental space. If you guys know REITs, you guys know what REITs are, right? They’re actually starting to mid-term rent. They’re listing properties on Furnished Finder now. These smart money is going in, buying these REITs specifically that are mid-term renting.
You guys can go on Google right now, and type this in there — the Dart family. The Dart family is the folks that created the Styrofoam cup. They’re actually buying short-term and mid-term rentals right now. Folks that are not even in this space are spending billions of dollars to buy this type of stuff.
Right now, you guys were so early in the game. Airbnb has been around since 2007. Since we’re on the playoff’s baseball terms — I’m a big baseball fan — we’re like in the fifth inning with Airbnb. With the mid-term rental space, we’re just chalking the floors right now. The umpires haven’t even walked the field yet. So, knowing how big Airbnb is, we’re barely getting into the space with mid-term rentals. It’s going to be that. This will be its own asset class, at some point. Mid-term rentals will be an asset class. I promise you. I don’t know when, but it’s going to happen. It’s happening with the smart money now. They’re realizing that. They’re seeing the opportunity.
To everybody listening right now, if you create an actual sustainable business — to answer your question, Craig — yeah, I can sell this as an actual legitimate business with the contracts, with the property, cash flowing. That’s my exit strategy. Everything that I’m putting together is to sell to some bigger smart money type person that’s just like, “Hey, we want this.” You got the contracts put together. Anybody in business realizes that that’s where the opportunity is at. It’s not what you’re doing now. You don’t want to do this forever. You want to have an exit strategy.
Okay. So, we’re wrapping towards the end before we switch into the final part of our show. But I am curious. You’re saying that you want to lock in the contracts ahead on these 20 units? How far in advance are people putting out the contracts? Are you hearing about it months in advance?
No, sometimes we have folks that are doing contracts — are you talking about the travel professionals coming, or are you talking about the contract instead?
Whatever contract. I think you were saying that you have to have all the contracts lined up. Because I guess you’re going to use those as part of maybe the lending portion or being able to do the proforma.
Yeah, so I have a big book of business already. I think right now we have about 23 agencies that we’re contracted with. These are small, large-scale, independent hospitals. This is just in California, Central California. I have properties in San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland. So, we’re talking about the roots here. But with the other markets, I want to make sure that we build — I’m letting them know exactly what we’re doing. I’m pitching them on the phone. “Hey, we have yada yada yada here in California. We have 27 units that we’re operating. We built a big business here based on travel medical professionals. We’re doing the same now with this 20-unit complex. We want to be the housing solutions provider for hospital A, hospital B, hospital C. This is the routes that we’re making. This is how we’re building this.”
Just as I talked about earlier, when we have only one property, you have the same concept that goes when you have multiple properties put together, and you’re buying a specific market. What I’ve already done has been there’s already a proforma behind it. So, I’m able to go to these companies and say, “Hey, here’s how I operate. This is what I’ve been doing. Here’s the margins that we’re working on. Here’s how I’ve been connecting with these recruiters. We built a really big business on this space. Now we want to do it in Kansas. How can we work together?” That’s essentially what we’re doing. Even though we’re not there yet, we’re still building based off of what we did in the past with other agencies.
Nice. All right. So, let’s transition to the final part of our show. But before we do, do you have any final words of wisdom for people that are maybe on the fence about getting into this space?
Yeah, just do it like Nike says.
The more that you overcomplicate stuff, the more difficult it's going to be. I think in this space, you have to just literally jump in. You might not know it all at the beginning, but you'll figure it out. Click To Tweet
I think that that’s the most important part. It’s just educating yourself. I know there’s not a lot of education in this space right now. The mid-term rent market is emerging.
Just learn as much as you can. Read books. Read 30-Day Stay. Go on YouTube. Watch as much mid-term rental stuff as you can, and really educate yourself in this market. Because it is growing. It’s still new. It’s still emerging, and it will become an asset class. So, just jump into it. That’s all I could say.
I love it. Yeah, you still have the opportunity to be an early adapter. We are giving to you, just handing it on a platter. So, think about it. Great. Well, Craig, it’s time for —
The final four.
So, question number one for you. What are you reading right now? I’m not sure if you’re a reader, but what are you reading?
Right now, I’ve just read The E-Myth again. I’m not sure if you guys are familiar with The E-Myth. Have you read that book?
So, I’m going through that again. Because I’m spending way too much time in my — I have a management company, and I’m spending way too much time there. I’m trying to figure out how the heck to exit that, because we do daily calls. I’m going back to that book. It’s always been something that has taught me how to exit where I’m currently at.
Here’s the reality, the truth, you guys, everybody listening to this.
Do everything that you're uniquely qualified to do, you are specifically uniquely qualified to do. Everything else needs to be passed off to other folks that can do things that you aren't necessarily uniquely qualified to do. Click To Tweet
Now I’m in that mindset that everything that only I can do, I’m going to do. Everything else, I’m passing off. It’s essentially what that book is about. I’m going back through it again.
Love it. Also, I love that. I’m going to do that. I’m going to start doing that, too. It’s actually go through books that I’ve already read and dive deep, and actually take notes and take action on each book. Because what’s the point of a book if you can’t take action on it?
Yeah, I agree. I do that, too. I’ll read a book or listen to a book, which I’m not really good at listening to books. It’s hard for me to do that. I don’t know about you, guys. But I like to actually read before bed like an old man. It’s because it’s kind of what I am. We read books, but then we’d be like — we’ll just read them and be like, okay, cool. I took one thing out of there. Read each chapter. Now I’m highlighting stuff, and I’m really paying attention to it. I have a little journal. I write that stuff in there. I’m really referencing back the book that I’m reading. It will take me time to dive deep.
Oh my god. You guys are like little boyfriends. You’re exactly the same. I love it.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
The best piece of advice I’ve ever received would probably be my dad, who anytime anything negative happened or bad happens, he always says something good will come of this. That is 100% true. I feel like anytime anything negative happens to our lives, we’re just like, “Shit, why did this happen? I lost my job,” a lot of those times, it’s like that’s where you get to ladder up. You get to be that next person, the next job, the next career. Anytime anything potentially negative happens to us, we tend to dwell on that stuff. For me, I think that advice was just, there’s always something better around the bend. I 100% agree with that.
I love that.
Alright. Question number three, what is your why? What keeps you going?
I love building stuff from the ground up, you guys. I think I should probably be a venture capitalist. I like watching things that are nothing becomes something. So, I think my why basis is based around — I have kids. I love my kids. Usually, that’s everybody’s whys — my kids. I do love my kids. But I love watching things come to fruition, like the thoughts that I have will become projects, that will become things.
For me, my why is basically creating something out of nothing, that eventually is running its own wheels in business and whatever, whatnot, that I can eventually hand over to my kids to be able to take over at some point. You guys watch the show Succession? Hopefully, my kids aren’t like that at all.
You guys haven’t watched HBO’s Succession? Are you serious?
Sorry, I don’t watch TV.
You’re two business guys.
We don’t watch TV.
Oh my god. What do you guys do? Just listen to music all day, podcast, reading books all the time? No TV?
Dude, I know. I’ve been just studying Jesse. Jesse has been my TV lately. I’ve just been listening to all your podcasts.
We don’t have a TV in the house.
You don’t have a TV, Craig?
Dude, are you serious? How do you get out of your head? Okay. You guys, real quick. Before I know this show, it’s like I’m nerding out on this. TV is how I get out of my head. I’m in my head 24/7. We all are. I think so much, you guys. It drives me nuts. I can watch a TV show for an hour. I watch TV only at night, by the way. I get out of my head, because I’m like always consistently thinking about stuff.
That’s the only way that I — yeah, maybe it’s just my decompression.
We’ll think about it.
Come on, guys. Watch Succession.
I exercise. I do crossword puzzles. That’s my nighttime thing.
Old soul, old man.
Yeah, I love my crossword puzzles and my tea.
Oh my god. Do you have like a monocle, too, or what? What’s going on over here, man?
Yeah, that’s what I’m trying to — yes, it’s part of the feather that I write with.
Yeah, my ink pen. All right. Jesse, last question we’re going to ask you. If you were immortal for a day, what would you do?
Man, are you guys serious? This question? Can you just ask me if I like pineapple on my pizza? Come on.
No, pineapple would just be great.
I love pineapple pizza.
Oh my god. Me, too.
Immortal for a day? Are you serious, Craig?
All right. I’m going to give you a little thinking time. Because what I would do is just jump off high shit, because I’m super afraid of heights. Because I just think of death. I’m like, oh, death. But if I knew I wouldn’t die, that’d be cool. I’m curious what that’s like.
I feel like I would jump high, like go to outer space. Do all that shit. Then I’d go down into the ocean, go to the bottom of the ocean and see what the hell’s down there.
So, you, guys, just gave literally gave me my answer. Because that question—
That’s what you get for waiting. Now you got to think. See, it’s harder to wait. Hey, Jesse, something good would come off this.
I’d figure that out. You know what I do, Craig? I would strap a seat to a 747 on the very top, and I’d just take off. That’s what I would do, literally.
So, you’d literally fly.
Is that good?
I love that.
I’ll put some big giant goggles on. Come on guys. I do like pineapple pizza, by the way. I know you guys didn’t ask me that. But hey, you know what? I’m giving it out there. I like burgers. What else do you guys?
Let’s eat together sometime and get some pineapple on pizza. All right. Jesse, where can people find out more about you? Do you get an Instagram? Anything you’re selling, if they want to learn more about the medium-term rental? Clearly, you built something that works here.
Yeah, you guys can find me @TheRealJesseVasquez on Instagram. You can also find me on YouTube, Jesse Vasquez on YouTube. I talk about a lot of this stuff on there. I have a master class that I teach folks, specifically how to do what I’ve done and how to create an actual business out of the business-to-business relationships. Not only just for the healthcare sector, but at multiple, different, construction companies — literally, any type of mid-term rental. You know what? Can I leave the audience with one quick thing before I get out of here?
An actionable step that somebody can take. If you guys have an extended stay in your market, like an extended stay hotel, they’re typically the agencies that have these huge corporate contracts with Dave and Buster’s, all these construction companies.
Everybody listening to this right now, if you want to grow your mid-term rental portfolio, drive by there at 7pm at night. Get your camera out, your iPhone, and take a picture of every truck that’s out there parked. Call in the morning those agencies of those trucks and say, “Hey, I am a corporate housing provider. I see that you have these agencies that are parked at this extended stay. I want a corporate contract with you guys. I have a five-bedroom house. What are you guys paying right now for your agencies?” I’ve got contracts specifically like that just by doing that. Easy way to do it, and you can make 4x of what you typically would make long-term.
I love it. Jesse’s just creeping by the extended stay at seven o’clock taking video. That’s what I’m seeing right now.
Oh, hey, do you have a white van that’s blacked out? It’s like rusted on the side.
Actually, it’s a 1974 Winnebago. Yeah, I do. I drive by at night. It’s exactly what I do. But you know what, you guys? That’s a good way to get corporate contracts. You can make literally 3x to 4x what your long-term route. Because these construction companies, they’re housing 5, 6, 7 dudes. They’re all staying in their own hotels, and they’re paying $700 a day for 30 days. Do the math on that, you, guys. So, if you have a property that you’re renting for a quarter of that, I mean —
That’s a win-win.
Yeah, exactly. Construction dudes can be a little harsh sometimes. But I mean, the capital as well and your housing folks.
If something breaks, they can fix it, hopefully.
Exactly. I’ve had that happened before, by the way. It’s funny about that.
Awesome. Jesse, well, thanks for dropping so many bombs on the show, man. It’s so good to get to know you. See you again. We’ll have to find some time for some pizza soon.
Yeah, now you’re going to remember me, Craig. You’re not going to forget me now, man.
I will never forget you now.
You’ve left a mark now. Probably, engraved it right here.
Awesome, dude. Well, thanks, man.
We’ll catch you later. See you.
That was Jesse Vasquez. Z Money, what do you think of Jesse?
I love this. We had a cancellation for today’s show. I was like, “Oh, we’re going to get Jesse on.” He was gracious enough to be super last minute, and come on. But I felt like this was almost just purely for you and me, Craig, where we’re asking all these questions. Because real-time, we’re both on the verge of going, do we do medium-term rental with something that you’re under contract for, something that we already own, and we think we could do twice as good with?
I was just really excited to get those questions answered. I feel like I could have talked to him for a whole couple more hours. There’s just a lot of info.
Yeah, I feel like Jesse has a wealth of information. We only scratched the little tip of the surface here. But he’s still left us with a lot of good nuggets that I know I’m going to take away. Now I have to go have a harder conversation with my wife about how she may have been wrong. It’s always a hard conversation to have. But I’ll pick it up nicely, of course.
I think he offers some great stuff. It just really shows that the medium-term space, it really is a space that I think is going to be up and coming. Especially as people become more and more nomadic, we had Sarah Weaver on the show a few weeks ago. Zeona, you’re a customer of extended-stay type places as well. I think it’s not just travel nurses, right? It’s contractors. He was talking about insurance, people getting displaced from their homes if there is a fire, or they’re doing big work to their house. There are so many reasons where people just need a place to stay. There’s no options for them except for crappy, extended stay hotels. So, I think it’s definitely a space that is going to really come up here in the next 5 to 10 years. We’re in the forefront of it, so that’s really exciting.
Yeah, and there’s an extended stay place like literally walking distance. So, you know I’m going to go over there with my freaking camera.
You should totally put that on your Instagram.
I’ll put that on my stories, yeah.
Definitely do that. We should do that. Next time we’re together, Z, we should go do that.
We’ll dress all in black, and be like hiding in the bushes.
Yeah, we’ll put our ski masks on and snap pictures. People will be like—
What are you doing?
Then they’ll realize that we’re just harmless real estate investors.
All right. Z, anything else you want to leave everybody with before we head out for this week?
Guys, if you need a real estate agent in any market, we know a lot of great ones. We vet a lot of agents. We send a lot of referrals all over the country. So, get in touch with either Craig or I, and we can help you save just a lot of headaches by going in with a vetted, great team.
If you loved our show, please share it with somebody. I think even better, we love ratings and reviews. But actually, saying, “Hey, you really need to hear this show,” that means so much. It means that people will probably actually take your advice. So, share it with your friends, and we’ll see you next week.
See you next week.
- Furnished Finder
- 30-Day Stay: A Real Estate Investor’s Guide to Mastering the Medium-Term Rental
- biggerpockets.com/30daystay – Use code ZEONA for a 10% off
- Richard Fertig
- The E-Myth
- HBO’s Succession
- Jesse Vasquez on Instagram
- Jesse Vasquez on YouTube
- Zeona on Instagram
- Craig on Instagram