Q 1. Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.
Ans: Ct Cash Homes is a Real estate investment company. We provide solutions to homeowners who need to sell their homes quickly by offering to buy the property for cash and close within a few days. Our office is in South Windsor Ct and we service the entire State of Ct and have recently expanded into Rhode Island and Western Massachusetts. Most of the properties we purchase are in need of repair , pending foreclosure, or the owner has had bad tenant experience and doesn’t have the time or money to get the property back into shape. This makes it very difficult for them to sell it through the normal channels and we offer a hassle free alternative . Once we purchase the property we have 3 different exit strategies – we fix it up and sell it to a new homeowner, or at times we fix it up and keep it as a rental property,and recently have included a strategy of selling it directly to an investor who would either fix it and flip it or fix it and keep it in their rental property portfolio. We have developed quite a large investor following and we know exactly what the preferences are for each of our Investor Clients.
Q 2. Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).
Ans: I grew up in South Windsor Ct and attended the local schools , played both soccer and lacrosse and was I guess what you would call an average student. I attended Southern New Hampshire University where I played Division 2 Lacrosse on an athletic scholarship and graduated in 2007 with a degree in Business Administration and a Minor in History. After college I worked with my sister and we were able to invest in commercial real estate, mostly small retail plazas and ran our own Boutique lending business , lending private money to Real Estate Investors for Re-Hab projects. We also started doing our own Flip deals and completed over 150 of them. Eventually I purchased a HomeVestors Franchise, the “ we buy ugly houses” company as a means to scale up the Re-Hab portion of the business . It was an interesting experience , met some great people , but wanted to try more of my own ideas and systems and eventually sold it and started Ct Cash Homes. I am a licensed realtor and My wife is a collegiate field hockey coach, we have one child and we live in Central Connecticut.
Q 3. What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?if
Ans: I became interested in real estate when I was still in high school. My father had built and developed a condo project in Hartford and he had ended up renting one of them , it got trashed by a tenant and when I went with him to take a look ,I talked him into letting me get it fixed up and off I went. He was really busy and he agreed to pay me some minimum amount by the hour , fund all the costs ,but told me that when it was resold ,he would split the profits with me. I really needed a summer job so off I went. I hired my buddy’s to demo , found and supervised all the contractors and by the end of the summer ,we sold it and he handed me a check for $6700 for my share of the profits. Obviously the money was fantastic but what I really liked about the whole thing was that I could see the immediate tangible results from my own efforts and the freedom to work my own schedules and make the decisions. Some were good , some bad but more were good than bad . I learned a lot that summer.
Q 4. What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Ans: Do your research but dont get bogged down in trying to create the perfect new idea. Most business successs are derived from improving an existing idea. I would also advise to absorb and learn as much as you can about your craft from as many different perspectives as possible. The third thing would be to not judge your success or failure to quickly. Most entrepreneurs have failed in a business before they succeed in the next one. The next one might be a similar business but maybe with a different market focus or or some other angle to it.
Q 5. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Ans: Organization and procedures in place so that you can delegate the routine repetive tasks which then gives you the time to work on growing your business externally and not get bogged down with the internal tasks. I think it is also really important to be able to identify with your customer so that you can make adjustments within your business as the customers needs shift. In my business that might mean things like the local economy in a certain area or new regulations in the probate court system, as well as rising or falling property values.
Q 6. How many hours do you work a day on average?
Ans: My hours vary a lot. I would say maybe 8-12 hours per day ,sometimes more if I am trying to keep my schedule open for the weekend. But the best part is that I do get to set my own schedule so that I can block out time for family activities that are really important to me. The other thought on my time is that I do spend a considerable amount of it in the car ,going to appointments but my drive home time I have started to use a good part of it to decompress ,switch gears ,clear my head maybe listen to an audio tutorial on some new business tool or idea.
Q 7. To what do you most attribute your success?
Ans: Never giving up , and continuously trying to improve and get better. Always asking that question , How can this work better , what can I do better ? I believe some of this was what I learned in my athletic career,the hard work that was necessary to win, all the practice and most of all the teamwork that is necessary for success.
Q 8. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Ans: We do all the conventional types , mail, social, but by far the best is networking and forming personal relationships . No matter how many new tech tools get invented to help our productivity,you still have to be able to communicate effectively face to face to gain the trust of your potential new client.
Q 9. Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
Ans: In the beginning it was family friends and some my own money that I had earned from selling real estate and completing some successful real estate flips. Not that I have a proven track record, I am able to borrow from a variety of sources, conventional banks and private lenders. A major advantage is that my new business model Creates a faster turnaround time on the housing inventory so I am able to usually my own funds for the purchases which is less costly, faster and I have total flexibility . I also have a line of credit that I use from time to time .
Q 10. What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
Ans: Be consistent in your process and trust it. It’s there so that when it seems that everything is going haywire you can rely on the process to see you through the craziness that some days bring. Treat people fairly and honestly with the respect that they deserve.
Q 11. Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
Ans: I see myself expanding into the neighboring states ,possibly with an additional office although it is really easy these days to work remotely. My vision would be to continue to grow my business in an orderly fashion to a point that it is sustainable ,provides my family with a good standard of living and gives me the time to enjoy life.
Q 12. Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
Ans: I really admire the APPLE Corporation .This is a company that persevered through some really tough times but adjusted , believed in their own technology and now has had some huge winners in the marketplace.
Q 13. How important have good employees been to your success?
Ans: Extremely important. Someone once told me to always try and hire someone who is smarter than yourself and then get out of the way and let them do their job. Besides a great work force I also have focused on assembling what I like to call my “ go to team ” . These are people who I consider my confidants – my real estate attorney, various ,contractors ,my Insurance broker, advertising specialists , all of whom know my business, understand my needs and can react quickly when something has to be addressed.
Q 14. How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
Ans: Usually about 6-9 months ,by then we generally have enough data to make a thoughtful decision and further strategize what might be going wrong or what adjustments to make .
Q 15. What motivates you?
Ans: That I have the ability and freedom to choose the best way to provide for my family at at the same time have fun doing it.
Q 16. What are your ideals?
Ans: Hardwork, Honesty, trying to be fair and upfront with people.
Q 17. How do you generate new ideas?
Ans: What I try and do is to ask questions and listen. I think that if you can examine something from a lot of different perspectives it’s easier to get creative with an alternate idea or thought. I try and keep up on the competition,the market shifts and usually test out an idea with someone who understands my business – just bounce it off ,hear what comes back and keep on refining the I am generally trying to improve upon an idea or concept or figure out how to do something better. An example would be maybe a better way to identify my potential new clients- people who need to sell their house quickly , that sort of thing.
Q 18. How do you define success?
Ans: Being able to continue to enjoy what I am doing, provide
adequately for my family and have the control of my own destiny through my business .
Q 19. How do you build a successful customer base?
Ans: While we certainly do use all the new tech tools it still ultimately comes down to being able to sit down across the table from someone and talk face to face. You need to be a good listener and gain their trust so you can help them solve their problem. Patience and empathy are also very important
Q 20. What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Ans: Having the ability to make my own schedule ,the freedom to guide the business with different strategies . The other thing I really enjoy is that although the business’s goals and focus don’t really change but it seems that everyday there is a new challenge or a new mini adventure of some kind which always keeps things interesting.
Q 21. What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Ans: Watching a plan that I have spent a lot of time on finally come together. We recently decided to also sell our properties direct to other investors,It took a lot of planning ,but it’s been quite successful.. It is very satisfying to see all the moving pieces working correctly and efficiently.Also when we purchase someone’s house ,sure we are planning on making a profit,but it is extremely gratifying to know that I have helped someone get rid of a problem and move on with their lives.
Q 22. What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
Ans: I honestly believe it is about risk. Everyone has different tolerances on what they are comfortable risking. Most entrepreneurs understand the risk factor when they are investing their own money and it is on them to make the business work. The key to it I believe is that most successful entrepreneurs can figure out the correct balance between the risk and the reward.
Q 23. What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?
Ans: We are a very straight forward in our business to communicating when it comes to how we want things done and how we expect our clients to be treated. Everyone understands how the customer comes first and when there is a problem- it’s all hands on deck . We are casual in our attire and while we all work hard ,we also try to have fun and it’s always family first.
Q 24. In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.
Q 25. How did you decide on the location for your business?
Ans: It just seemed natural at the time. South Windsor is the town I grew up in. Many people know me in the community from the schools I attended and I was very active after college in the community by coaching several youth lacrosse teams.It is centrally located and easy for my employees to travel to.
Q 26. If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why?
Ans: Wow this is a tough one since I am history buff. Probably Abraham Lincoln. The decisions that he made while president of the USA are just incredible . I think i would like to sit down have a beer with him just get to know the guy and understand more of how he thought things out and when did he realize that he was such a great leader.
Q 27. Who has been your greatest inspiration?
Ans: My parents , they both grew up in the Hartford area, large families,of working class parents . They were both very successful in their relative fields and taught us through example how to treat people correctly and a great work ethic. They both still live nearby and are really enjoying their grandchildren. It’s funny ,but when I look at it , there are really two what I would call “ family businesses “Teaching and Real Estate.. My grandmother Filomeana taught English at a grammar school in Hartford where she met my Grandfather John who was a science teacher. All three of my grandmothers sisters were teachers as were my mother who also taught in Hartford , my aunt and now my sister and at least 8 or 9 cousins. My grandfather ,the Science teacher got his Real Estate License to try and make some extra money during the summers . When he retired from teaching in 1977 he and my uncle John purchased a Century 21 franchise in Hartford . My uncle still runs it although under a different franchise organization. It one of the larger retail brokerages in the area. When I first got my real estate license I actually worked there for a couple of years , learned a lot .My dad started a Holographic Security Business that was very successful and after he sold it to a public company he got involved in Real Estate Investing and Development and was a great help to me when I was starting my own business and is always there for advice. He still likes to jump in now and then , it keeps him busy and we have fun.
Q 28. What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
Ans: I like to paint miniatures figures ,it is very relaxing . Get together with my friends with their family’s for cookouts ,just to hang out, or play video games . I Love to watch sports , am a huge New York Giants fan ! My wife and I enjoy to travel to new places and spend a lot of time at the beach during the summer. Sports have always been a huge part of my life and now I have been trying to improve my golf game.
Q 29. What makes you happy?
Ans: My family and friends. We are a very close knit family , my sister who just had her first child lives nearby as do both of my parents. I feel very fortunate that a lot of my close friends and family still in the area and get to see their grandchildren grow up .
Company : CT Cash Homes
Contact : Michael K. Zubretsky
Address : 225 Oakland Rd, Suite 202
City : South Windsor
State : CT
Zip : 06074
Phone : 866-836-8663
Email : info.CtCashHomes@gmail.com