Gene Guarino is the founder and president of the Residential Assisted Living (RAL) Academy. Today, he focuses his time, effort, and investment capital on investing in senior-assisted living and helping other investors to do the same, but before founding RAL Academy he spent 30 years in more diversified areas of real estate and education . Guarino has been a featured presenter at the Har- vard Business School of Entrepreneurship, featured on television, radio, and podcasts talking about assisted-living investing, and is the author of the book Do’s & Don’ts of Assisted Living. “The fact of the matter is that 10,000 people a day are turning 65 and, perhaps more importantly, another 4,000 turning 85 each day. That means 120,000 new 85-year-olds each month, which amounts to more beds (occupied and not) than are available in all of the assisted living facilities in the United States,” Guarino said. This dearth of attractive senior housing makes the sector an ideal entry point for real estate investors at any stage in their investing because the results can be staggering and fast. Monthly rents range from $3,000 to $10,000 per person a month with six to 16 people Ross Hamilton honestly admits he founded his real estate in- vesting network, Connected Investors, in 2005 for a self-serv- ing purpose. “I was investing in real estate at 19, and I really couldn’t find anyone my own age,” he said bluntly. “I decided to start a social networking site for real estate investors and sort them by age, then take over the world. It started as a whim, but the core benefit remains being able to connect with other like-minded real estate investors.” 12 years later, Hamilton is well on his way to taking over the world of real estate. Connected Investors has evolved with digi- tal and financial technology. “Not only does every city essen- tially have its own mini-social-networking site, but the second you sign up you become part of a group of people who share your stated investing interests,” he said. On the fintech side, Connected Investors offers software solutions to help investors locate private money to fund their deals. Hamilton worked closely with Lending Tree CEO Doug Lebda to create Con- nected Investors Exchange (CiX), which features “push-button ROSS HAMILTON CONNECTED INVESTORS

in a home, which, if the initial investment is han- dled correctly, can clearly revolutionize a portfolio’s performance in short order. “That is why I have dedicated myself to helping others take advantage of this opportunity,” Guarino said.

Kimberly Smith believes the key to financial success is sim- plicity, and that suits her real estate investing model per- fectly. “When you think about creativity, it is often defined by complex solutions that are new and innovative,” she said. “That’s great in a lot of sectors, but for us, we believe that our investors and franchisees create better solutions and get bet- ter results by merely blending simple ideas instead of making things too complicated.” AvenueWest provides managed corporate housing and the associated property management services via a franchise model. “Historically, real estate has been just connecting consumers to consumers. By connecting residential real estate to corporate lodging demands, we create consistently high returns in a traditionally somewhat unpredictable (although always high-end) sector,” Smith explained. AvenueWest currently offers turnkey investment opportuni- ties in nine major U.S. markets, and works closely with investors to help them manage their properties in a way that keeps them in accord with IRS regulations that may govern their direct

interaction with self-direct- ed retirement accounts, when relevant. By offering franchise opportunities to qualified owners, Smith has created a new, sustainable venue for real estate profes- sionals that has carried many of her franchisees through the swings of multiple real estate cycles.

Books & Media: • Do’s and Don’ts of Assisted Living • Founder & President of RAL National Association & Host of Annual RAL National Convention (RALNATCON) • Featured presenter at the Harvard Business School of En- trepreneurship • A Second-Wind Success: Helping Baby Boomers Discover Their Second Wind in Business and in Life • RAL Academy Blog:

Books, Programs & Media: • The Idiot’s Guide to Making Money with Rental Properties • 3-Time Member of Inc 5000’s “Fastest Growing Businesses” list • Multi-year board member for the Corporate Housing Pro- viders Association (CHPA) • PIPS (Peer Innovation & Problem Solving) Mentor •


questions” that investors answer to be connected with verified, local, private and hard-money lenders. “Right now, the econ- omy needs real estate

When Kevin Ortner thinks about real estate, he thinks about gratitude. The president and CEO of Renters Warehouse cannot overstate the impact owning real estate investments has had on his own peace of mind. “Every day, I feel the financial peace of mind it has brought me and my family,” he wrote in his book, Rent Estate Revolution. Ortner penned the book to make the case to the gen- eral public that buying and renting out single-family homes (Rent Estate) offers everyday Americans “their best path to retirement security, financial freedom, and the New American Dream.” Ortner believes it is vitally important to make real estate in- vesting accessible – and, furthermore, make it feel accessible – to everyday Americans working jobs outside of the industry and pursuing passions that have nothing to do with property investing. “We wanted to make it clear that you can find investments using other people’s knowledge, buy and hold them using other people’s

money, and manage them using other people’s time,” he said. Ortner himself acquired his first proper- ty while he was a college freshman, then used his own Rent Estate to build retirement savings and build educational investments for his family.

investors to succeed more than ever before,” Hamilton concluded. “When we succeed, the world becomes a better place.”

Books & Media: • The Inside Guide to Funding Real Estate Investments • Real Estate Investing in Your 20’s: Your Rise to Real Estate Royalty • Contributor to MarketWatch, Yahoo Finance, and Entre- preneur Magazine •

Books, Recognitions & Media: • Rent Estate Revolution • American and International Stevie® Business Award •

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