Cesar Garcia: 5 Things You Need to Create a Highly Successful Career in the Commercial Real Estate Industry Today
Drive and determination: The commercial real estate industry is competitive, so you need to have drive and determination to succeed. You also need to be willing to work hard and put in the long hours.
The commercial real estate industry is a dynamic and challenging landscape that offers enormous potential for success. However, it requires a unique blend of skills, knowledge, and aptitude to truly excel. How does one establish themselves in such a competitive field? What does it take to consistently rise to the top in commercial real estate? How does one rise above the headwinds that are challenging the commercial real estate industry today?
In this interview series, we’re seeking to learn from the experiences of those who’ve successfully navigated these challenges. We’re interested in interviewing commercial real estate professionals, brokers, investors, leaders of Real Estate Firms and Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), as well as anyone who’s found significant success in this industry.
As part of this series, we had the pleasure of interviewing Cesar Garcia
Cesar Garcia is a native of Huntsville, Alabama, and a well-respected leader in the real estate industry. He developed a knack for entrepreneurship during his formative years, demonstrating an exceptional ability to create, innovate, and curate unique business strategies. His life-long commitment has been centered around his passion for real estate and a deep-seated desire to assist people in making informed property investment decisions.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would like to learn a bit about your origin story. Can you share with us a bit about your childhood and how you grew up?
Can you share with us the ‘backstory” of how you decided to pursue a career in commercial real estate?
My calling to the real estate industry came at an early age. My fascinating journey began in my hometown, witnessing the fast-paced property market dynamics, trends, and investment opportunities. This exposure sparked a deep-seated interest in real estate, which later developed into a lifelong passion and career choice. Armed with an entrepreneurial spirit and a formidable work ethic, I took over Veritas Buyers.
Can you tell our readers about the most interesting projects you are working on now?
As a real estate investor, I have an appreciation for both modern and traditional architecture and love to fuse the best of both worlds to create something spectacular and unique. And my current venture is nothing short of this!
I recently purchased an older property in a stunning location that many would have overlooked due to its dated aesthetic. But I saw nothing but potential, envisioning a charming farmhouse where modern comfort meets rustic charm. The concept is to strategically integrate the classic elements of an old ranch house with modern amenities and design ideas.
We are currently in the demolition phase, which is always a challenging but fun part of any project as we carefully remove certain elements while preserving the original structures that will become key features in the final design. One of the key elements we’re planning to incorporate in this project is reclaimed wood. By utilizing this in prominent areas such as exposed ceiling beams or focal walls, we aim to enhance the rustic, authentic feel of the property.
For the exterior, we’re thinking of a soft, neutral color palette inspired by nature, and a signature warm, welcoming farmhouse-style front porch to make the perfect first impression.
Inside, expect open floor plans for easy flow between spaces, with a cozy, inviting atmosphere. The kitchen will, of course, be the heart of the home, with modern appliances cleverly disguised with vintage styling to maintain that farmhouse aesthetic.
I am incredibly excited about this project. As much as I enjoy the process, I can’t wait to see this beautiful farmhouse vision come to life. I believe the end result will be a perfect blend of old world charm and contemporary comfort — a ranch-style retreat that feels just like home. Stay tuned!
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful for who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Absolutely, a great deal of my success rests on the shoulders of those who guided me and gave me both support and inspiration when I needed them most. For me, that person is without question my dear grandmother.
You’ll often hear me speak of her, as my grandma played an instrumental role in my life. She was an incredibly strong woman who migrated to America with very little means and managed to carve out a substantial life for herself and her family through pure grit and determination.
As a youngster, my curiosity was insatiable and she noticed it at a young age. When I would help her with small tasks around her old farmhouse, she would often share stories about the house, and how her hard work enabled her to buy it and transform it into a home. She taught me that real estate was not just about buildings and land, but about creating a place that you could return to at the end of the day, a place that provided a sense of comfort and security.
One day, as we were refurbishing an old corner of the house, she told me, “Cesar, always remember, we are not just hammering nails into the wood, we are breathing life into our home.” Those words stuck with me, and it was perhaps at that moment that I fell in love with the process of transforming houses into homes.
It was these early life experiences, helping my grandmother work on her farmhouse, that sparked my interest in real estate and renovations. I’m eternally grateful for those lessons, those moments. Even today, her values and teachings guide my work, my appetite for success, and my measure of accomplishments.
I owe so much of who I am to my grandmother. She not only helped mold my career and fueled my passion for real estate investment but also taught me the value of hard work, perseverance, and — most importantly, creating a home from a house. Her influence gave my career direction and purpose, and for that, I will always be grateful.
As with any career path, the commercial real estate industry comes with its own set of challenges. Could you elaborate on some of the significant challenges you faced in your career and how you managed to overcome them?
As a professional real estate investor, I have faced many challenges throughout my career. Here are a few of the most common challenges I have faced and how I have managed to overcome them:
• Market volatility: I overcame this challenge by making investment decisions based on long-term trends, rather than short-term fluctuations.
• Limited inventory: I overcame this challenge by being flexible and considering properties in different areas.
• Negative cash flow: I overcame this challenge by carefully analyzing the financials of each property before I made an investment.
• Increased liability: I overcame this challenge by being diligent in my property management practices and carrying adequate insurance.
• Cap rate compression: I overcame this challenge by focusing on properties that offer other value-add opportunities.
In addition to these challenges, I also faced challenges related to finding good deals, managing my properties, and dealing with tenants. However, I have learned from my mistakes and have developed a successful investing strategy that has allowed me to overcome these challenges.
I am still learning and growing as a real estate investor, but I am confident that I can continue to be successful in this field.
Ok, let’s now move to the main part of our interview about commercial real estate. What are the 3 things that most excite you about the industry now? Why?
The three things that excite me most about the industry now are:
• The rise of remote work: This has led to an increase in demand for homes in more affordable areas, as people are no longer tied to specific locations for their jobs.
• The growing popularity of single-family rental homes: This is due to the fact that many people are now renting instead of buying, and single-family homes are seen as a more attractive investment than apartments.
• The increasing use of technology in real estate: This is making it easier for home buyers to find and purchase homes, and it is also making it easier for real estate investors to manage their portfolios.
I believe that these trends are positive for the real estate industry. They are making it easier for people to find the homes they need and want, and they are also making it easier for real estate investors to manage their portfolios. I am excited to see how these trends develop in the years to come.
What are the 3 things that concern you about it? Why? What should be done to address and alleviate those concerns?
I am concerned about the following three things in the real estate industry as a professional home buyer:
• The rising cost of housing: Housing prices have been rising rapidly in recent years, making it difficult for many people to afford to buy a home. This is especially true in major metropolitan areas, where the cost of housing is often out of reach for many people.
• The lack of affordable housing: There is a shortage of affordable housing in many parts of the country. This is due to a number of factors, including the rising cost of housing, the decline of manufacturing jobs, and the influx of immigrants.
• The lack of diversity in the real estate industry: The real estate industry is still dominated by white men. This lack of diversity can lead to discrimination against minority home buyers and renters.
These are all important challenges that the real estate industry will need to address in the years to come. I believe that the industry is resilient and will adapt to these challenges. However, it is important to be aware of these challenges and to take steps to mitigate their impact.
If you had the power to put in place 3 changes to improve or reform the industry, what would you suggest? Please share stories or examples, if possible.
If I had the power to put in place 3 changes to improve or reform the real estate industry, I would suggest the following:
• Increased regulation of real estate agents: Real estate agents have a lot of power over home buyers and sellers. They can provide misleading information, steer buyers away from certain properties, and charge excessive fees. I would suggest increasing regulation of real estate agents to protect consumers. This could include requiring agents to be licensed and insured, and requiring them to disclose all conflicts of interest.
• More affordable housing: The rising cost of housing is a major problem for many people. I would suggest the government provide more funding for affordable housing projects. This could include public housing, Section 8 housing, and tax credits for developers who build affordable housing.
• More diversity in the real estate industry: The real estate industry is still dominated by white men. This lack of diversity can lead to discrimination against minority home buyers and renters. I would suggest the real estate industry do more to promote diversity by recruiting and hiring more minority real estate agents and brokers. The industry can also provide more training and education to its agents and brokers on how to avoid discrimination.
These are just a few of the changes that could be made to improve the real estate industry. By making these changes, we can make the industry more accessible and equitable for everyone.
For a young person who would like to eventually make a career in commercial real estate, which skills and subjects do they need to learn?
Here are some skills and subjects that a young person who would like to eventually make a career in commercial real estate should learn:
• Business and finance: Commercial real estate is a business, so it is important to have a strong understanding of business principles and finance. This includes topics such as accounting, economics, and financial analysis.
• Real estate law: Commercial real estate transactions are governed by a complex web of laws. It is important to have a good understanding of these laws in order to avoid legal problems.
• Market analysis: Commercial real estate agents need to be able to analyze the market and identify opportunities. This includes understanding factors such as supply and demand, pricing, and trends.
• Negotiation: Commercial real estate transactions involve a lot of negotiation. It is important to be able to negotiate effectively in order to get the best deal for your clients.
• Communication: Commercial real estate agents need to be able to communicate effectively with clients, vendors, and other professionals. This includes written and verbal communication.
• Technology: Technology is increasingly being used in commercial real estate. It is important to be able to use technology to your advantage, such as using online platforms to market properties and manage transactions.
• Problem-solving: Commercial real estate agents need to be able to solve problems quickly and efficiently. This is especially important when dealing with unexpected challenges.
• Teamwork: Commercial real estate transactions often involve multiple people. It is important to be able to work effectively as part of a team.
Ok, here is the main question of our interview. Can you please share the “Five Things You Need To Create A Highly Successful Career In The Commercial Real Estate Industry”? If you can, please share a story or an example for each.
1 . Education: A strong educational background is essential for success in the commercial real estate industry. There are many different programs available, but a bachelor’s degree in real estate is a good starting point.
2 . Experience: Experience is also essential. You can gain experience by working as an intern or entry-level employee at a commercial real estate firm.
3 . Networking: Networking is important for any career, but it is especially important in the commercial real estate industry. Get to know other professionals in the industry and build relationships with them.
4 . Skills: There are a number of skills that are essential for success in the commercial real estate industry. These include negotiation, communication, problem-solving, and financial analysis.
5 . Drive and determination: The commercial real estate industry is competitive, so you need to have drive and determination to succeed. You also need to be willing to work hard and put in the long hours.
What do you believe makes your commercial real estate company distinctive? Could you share an anecdote about that?
Beyond our Core Values, our Team is tight-knit and multi-skilled. Together we are able to extend higher offers because of our well-defined process and timeline. We believe in our Team and output. Due to steady demand, our Team has expanded. Because of that growth, we can offer you more than competitive house-buying companies in the area.
What is your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that had relevance to your own life?
One of my favorite life quotes is by Winston Churchill: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” This quote has been particularly significant in my real estate career.
I experienced a set-back early on in my career after purchasing a property that had plenty of unexpected issues. However, instead of seeing it as a failure, I took it as a learning opportunity, reminding myself of Churchill’s powerful words. Though I encountered obstacles, I stayed persistent and didn’t lose hope or courage. This challenging experience not only helped me become a smarter investor but continually inspires me to push forward in the face of adversity.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
If I could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, it would be a movement to make housing more affordable. Housing is a basic human need, and everyone deserves to have a safe and affordable place to live.
However, the cost of housing has been rising rapidly in recent years, making it difficult for many people to afford a home. This is especially true in major metropolitan areas, where the cost of housing is often out of reach for many people. My movement would focus on three key areas:
• Increasing the supply of affordable housing: This could be done by building more affordable housing units, providing tax breaks to developers who build affordable housing, and reforming zoning laws to make it easier to build affordable housing.
• Making it easier for people to get mortgages: This could be done by providing down payment assistance programs, making it easier for people to qualify for mortgages, and reforming lending practices to make it less likely that people will default on their mortgages.
• Protecting tenants’ rights: This could be done by passing laws that make it more difficult for landlords to evict tenants, and by providing more support for tenants who are facing eviction.
I believe that this movement would have a positive impact on the lives of millions of people. It would help to make housing more affordable, and it would help to ensure that everyone has a safe and affordable place to live.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
Check out https://veritasbuyers.com/about/
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!
Cesar Garcia: 5 Things You Need to Create a Highly Successful Career in the Commercial Real Estate… was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.