In this interview, Vanessa shares about her journey to the U.S., how she learned from the ultra-high net worth individuals, and why multifamily made sense for her and her husband. You can listen to it or choose to read it.
Thank you for joining me in this conversation. We wanted to get to know you as a person, as an investor, your investment philosophy. Can you tell us more about yourself and your family and where you're from? Just share a little bit more about yourself.
Sure, sure. Well, my name is Vanessa Reichert-Kim. I was not born here. I was born in Havana, Cuba. And I left when I was about four years old. My grandfather was German. So my father and I were able to inherit German citizenship, which is how we were able to leave. So we lived in Germany for a while until I was about seven years old. And then we came to the United States, and we moved to Miami, Florida. And that's where I grew up for the most part. Went to college in Pennsylvania, small liberal arts school, called the Haverford College. And that's where I met my husband. We kept dating through college. And then after college, we moved to various states, got married somewhere around in that process. We have three children together. And about seven years ago, my husband had an opportunity with a company to move out to California. So we're living in the Bay Area in California now. My youngest is four, my middle child is six, my oldest is 13.
That's wonderful. Teenage years, how fun.
Yes, 13 going on 17 sometimes
And what was your degree on? I know you said you went to college, and that's where you met your husband, what did you study? And did you work in that profession?
I got a BS in molecular biology. And then I went into banking. So completely unrelated. My entire professional career, I was in banking. Started with Wachovia that became Wells Fargo, and then worked for JP Morgan Private Bank. And then later on, when we moved to North Carolina, I worked for a subsidiary of AIG called VALIC. They do Retirement Services. I worked there as the Registered Principal for the Mid Atlantic Region.
What is your investment philosophy? Why real estate? Why specifically multifamily? How did you get there?
Oh, interesting. So when I worked for JP Morgan Private Bank, of course we were dealing with ultra-high net worth clients, and private investments is, I would say, the main type of investments that they do. And I saw a lot of deals, you know, multimillion dollar deals happening, where you have capital calls for $150,000 a quarter and things like that. And they were always interesting to me, and it kind of gave me a glimpse into Hey, this is, you know, another avenue that's not open to just anyone. It's an exclusive club that gets access to these private investments. But it got me familiar with the process and how they work. And then I always thought, Well, I'm not at that level. I'm not, you know, giving $5 million dollars per investment yet. But it gave me a glimpse, and they got me interested.
And my husband and I have always been sort of partners in investing. We have a long term philosophy when it comes to investing. So we don't do any short term investing as in, you know, turning around and selling an asset pretty quickly. We look at long range, basically looking towards our retirement. And we have our 401 K's, we have retirement accounts, we have our stocks and our bonds, but we were looking to see what else can we do. And especially during the pandemic, it felt like it was important to have some cash on hand, but at the same time, it's eroding, right, because inflation is eroding those assets, any cash assets or just you're losing value by just keeping them in the bank. So we kept looking, well, what do we do? We don't really need it in the short term, but I don't want to put additional funds in just stocks and bonds and things like that. So we felt like commercial real estate and specifically multifamily was a good avenue for us because it's pretty straightforward to understand. And it's one of those aspects of life that you need, right? You need food, you need housing. So investing in things that people need, no matter what happens out in the world is important. So that got us interested in that.
And were you both on the same page? Or did one have to bring the other one along, as far as the asset class?
As far as the asset class, you know, we kind of dipped our toe in this before with larger companies, like Fundrise, for example. But that felt very impersonal. Right? It's kind of just like you invest in something, and give you a nice little synopsis of here's your portfolio is investing in these properties. That's nice. But it didn't feel very personal or anything that we were controlling ourselves. I don't necessarily think one of us had to pull the other along. But we do have our roles to play. My husband sometimes plays the devil's advocate, so to speak, in that he will say, Okay, well, this is this problem presents itself, this is something and that's good, because you want to troubleshoot and the more you can understand the worst case scenario, the more comfortable you can be in making an investment decision. I think, on the whole, he's probably a little more conservative. But I think we work well off each other, in coming to a happy middle.
That's great. Thank you for sharing that. I think it's important for other women to understand the different dynamics in different relationships, and understand also, you know, what brought you to real estate and multifamily so that others can also learn from your own experience. And then lastly, why did you invest with Bluefox?
Well, we have known you and Randy for quite some time now, over 10 years. And we know how you think. And we know that you come into your decisions having basically exhausted all all the different points that need to be reviewed. So we were comfortable with that. We felt like you guys are also, you know, putting your money where your mouth is, so to speak, which is important. So you're comfortable in investing your own assets, which made us more comfortable investing ours. But mainly, it's because you guys have that same philosophy, you're not out there trying to find that unicorn investment or that one hit wonder. You're going instead of trying to swing for the fences, so to speak, you are trying to get those base hits, and trying to find assets that are somewhat conservative, but that will slowly build up the kind of cash flows that we'd like to see. And that's another reason why we wanted to get into multifamily. So we felt like as we get older and we decide to retire, we'd like to have a nice cash flow in the future. So I feel like with multifamily that's pretty easy to do. Right? You have one investment that will give you a certain amount of returns and that's pretty consistent. And then you can just kind of add on to that until you have a good amount of income that can give you a sizable retirement.
That's wonderful. Thank you so much Vanessa for joining me today. I really appreciate you sharing your own story and your journey. I hope other women find this as helpful and as useful as I have. Thank you so much.