helped open some doors. I was work - ing with Community Baptist Church of Spring Hill to organize a Thanks- giving food drive in a poor county in rural Kentucky. We delivered over 1,000 meals and brought a happy Thanksgiving to a lot of families. In the course of working on that initiative, I got to know a gentleman from Franklin Synergy Bank. Much to my surprise, he said, “Bruce, if there is ever anything I can do for you, let me know.” That sixteenth meeting turned into the financing we needed. Solo East sold out, East Nashville became a quickly rising part of town and I, my partners and Franklin Synergy Bank all did well. The lessons learned…never, ever give up on a good idea. Keep doing good things in the world, and never underestimate the power of build- ing your network. Good things will happen. That said, I don’t ever want to go 1-for-16 asking for a loan ever again. Over the last several years, I’ve

developed relationships with mul - tiple lending partners. I’ve worked hard to raise the profile of my busi - ness, so that these partners recog - nize I have a solid track record. Now, when I seek financing, I establish my own terms, shop them around to multiple lenders and let them fight for my business. I’ve also developed some go-to partners who have been instru - mental in my success. CoreVest, for example, has been a Godsend to Kinloch Partners. The company does a lot of short-term, fix-and- flip loans with reasonable rates and air-tight closing processes. They are perfect for an investor or developer with a limited number of homes to purchase. Many hard-money lenders see a small investor coming and jack up the rates. CoreVest has always shied away from this practice. Where does an aspiring real estate investor or developer begin? I always start with a bank where I’m an existing customer. If you have even a small account, they will be more

likely to give you their time and more importantly, their money. Another great source when starting out are Credit Unions. If you are a member, they are easy to deal with and gener- ally speaking, have great rates. As you grow, it’s important to treat lenders professionally and respectful - ly to grow mutually beneficial relation - ships. It’s not always easy in the early stages – my 1-for-16 performance is a great example. But, as you grow as an investor and as you strengthen your relationships with funding partners, you will very likely find that banks and credit unions can become a source of strength for your business. •

Bruce McNeilage is the managing member and a co-founder of Kinloch Partners and a partner in Harpeth Development.. He is a passionate

advocate for housing affordability and homeownership, and invests heavily in Nashville, Tennessee, as well as throughout the southeast. Learn more about his projects, including single-family built-to-rent communities and the Solo East and North condominium projects at

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