Last year, VoyagePhoenix reached out to Emmanuel and Bekah Guarino, two members of our RAL Academy team, to interview them about the incredible work they are doing in the Residential Assisted Living space. VoyagePhoenix is an organization that showcases business and artistic trailblazers in the Phoenix metropolitan area. They sat down with Emmanuel and Bekah to discuss their journey in this exciting industry, their passion for assisted living and the success they have found as entrepreneurs in RAL investment real estate.
Emmanuel and Bekah detail their formative years pursuing traditional college education and finding the cursory path from collegiate studies into career was not for them. Emmanuel notes his dissatisfaction and the feeling of “going through the motions at university,” realizing that “it was more of a business transaction than a quality education I was receiving.”
After graduating from Arizona State University, he realized that he wanted to do something more and that his college degree was more symbolic than actually being the impetus to launch him into his professional career. He recounts the moment he recognized his appreciation for homes and real estate, noting, “I had always had a passion for homes. I would always get excited when I would get to go to a new friend’s home and see the layout and the designs.”
This passion would blossom into an expansive real estate business that later turned into specializing in residential assisted living real estate. More than five years later and these two entrepreneurs are making waves in the assisted living space. Coming on board with the RAL Academy, they have turned their passion for real estate into a thriving business that has double in sales over the past year and they are looking at the potential of expanding into other states.
Some of the primary strategies they have embraced are increasing automation, creating a road map for where they are going and being specific about what qualifications must be met for them to take on a listing, which has been instrumental in their success and extremely helpful in getting them to where they are today.
Emmanuel has also dived head first into the assisted living side of the real estate, going through extensive training on the ownership and operation of residential assisted living home and has become a growing voice in the industry. Initially drawn by the motivation of helping seniors and learning how to set up an assisted living home that provides quality accommodations and superior care, Emmanuel has shown his passion for training others to succeed in the world of assisted living.
“We are very passionate about this industry and the freedom that it can provide those who choose to get involved.”
Concerning the real estate side of their business, Emmanuel and Bekah specialize in selling luxury assisted living homes that are licensed for 10 residents with majority private rooms and above average rates. What sets them apart is their intimate knowledge of business. “Our family runs three of these homes here in Arizona, and we personally help teach real estate investors how to get started in this industry. We know the inner workings of the industry and how to effectively evaluate these very niche businesses, which has quickly helped us grow to be the top sellers of care homes.”
“It is such a rewarding industry to work in, as we get to see just how many lives are touched when we help our clients buy and sell their assisted living homes and provide an amazing service to seniors who need a comfortable home to stay in with loving caregivers.”
The Sales Process for Residential Assisted Living
As an elite real estate duo focusing on Residential Assisted Living Homes, Emmanuel and Bekah have established a system for guiding clients through the sales process. It all starts by developing the relationship, getting to know the customer and determining how their services and unique RAL brand will fit best with what the client is looking to accomplish.
Unlike other real estate classes, residential assisted living sales involves more than the basics of location, square footage, appraisal value, etc. It is necessary to carefully examine all of the factors that will lead to a more accurate assessment of the RAL home value. Things like, how long the RAL business has been running at the location, number and size of bedrooms for single or shared occupancy, average rate per resident, the surrounding community and proximity to freeways and emergency medical services, as well as many other critical factors. Another consideration is whether the RAL business will be sold with the real estate, and, based on the longevity of the business and profit margins, how much equity has already been developed.
The next major step in their process is to tour the client’s home and make sure that the assisted living home meets their criteria. Having established a preeminent standard of excellence in the industry, they have made a name for themselves dealing in higher end and even luxury residential assisted living homes. There are so many people involved in residential assisted living nowadays, so in order to continue their reputation for exemplary standards, they might pass on representing some residential assisted living homes that do not align with their brand.
During the tour Emmanuel and Bekah will compile a thorough evaluation of the business, focusing on the property condition, day to day operations, level of care for the residents, and any other factors that might contribute to the valuation of the business and property. Discussing the details with the owner and gaining a better understanding of their future goals within and outside of the assisted living industry.
The next step in the process involves crunching the numbers. Getting the client and sales team on the same page with regards to value and profitability is crucial moving forward.
Often times, RAL owners who have poured years of hard work into their business might not be able to see their RAL business and the real estate connected to it objectively, like a prospective buyer would.
So, coming to an accurate assessment of the value of each as well as what the sales team believe they can sell them for can be a delicate subject to discuss, but one that is fundamental to the sales process.
In order to achieve this, the clients need to provide proof of the profitability of their RAL business. The team examines the rent rolls (a list of what each resident has been paying for the past few months), at least one year of profit and losses paperwork, or tax returns if they are available. It may seem like a lot, but in order for the sales team to provide an accurate evaluation the numbers need to be correct. When selling the property and business potential buyers are looking to finance these assets and banks are going to require proof of profitability in order to lend on the home. After all the data is taken into account, Emmanuel and Bekah walk the client through the resulting assessment and detail how much they believe they can get for the sale of the business and real estate.
Then they walk the client through the listing presentation, describe what showings will look like, and detail the best strategy to market the RAL home. This is followed by signatures and paperwork determining the listing, financial expectations and the length of the marketing term that was agreed upon.
From there, Emmanuel and Bekah use their large network of assisted living home buyers to start making inquiries and schedule showings. Their substantial number of connections in the industry helps insure that they bring only the most qualified buyers through the client’s home. Once the tours have commenced, the numbers discussed and offers start coming in, Emmanuel and Bekah help guide the relationship between seller and prospective buyers. There is a great deal of work that is involved with selling and buying RAL homes and it is important that all parties involved have feel comfortable with each other, not to mention the fact that it is so much more than a business and the real estate on the line. The residents, their families, and the care staff will all be affected and it is critical to find the right connection with the right buyer who will continue to provide excellent care service.
The best offers are then presented to the seller and once the team receives an offer with the appropriate terms, the sales team moves forward to accept the offer and begins getting all necessary paperwork in order and all documents signed.
Unlike residential sales, RAL homes do not have a typical 30-day close and 10-day inspection period. Because it is a commercial sale, it will usually take 3-5 months to close while the buyer is securing their financing. Also, it is worth nothing that with RAL’s it is extremely rare for a buyer to be paying all cash, and if they are, they will still want to see proof of profitability and may expect a discount. In fact, most buyers will acquire either an SBA loan or a commercial loan and it takes time to secure lending on these loans.
Throughout the sales process, Emmanuel and Bekah do everything they can to assist the RAL owner in understanding and feeling comfortable with the terms and procedures. Specializing in this area of real estate is a unique skill and they have years of experience navigating all the intricacies of residential assisted living operations and sales.
Leaving a Legacy
With many years under their belts and many more ahead, Emmanuel and Bekah discuss their goals and the legacy that they want to leave. As they continue to expand their real estate business, Emmanuel has also developed his expertise in residential assisted living operations and has taken on a more active role training RAL Academy students to successfully take advantage of the opportunities in assisted living. He is quickly becoming one of the leading voices in the industry and explained to VoyagePhoenix his motivation for helping other become successful., stating, “When my time is up on this planet I want to know that I made a difference in this world. I don’t just want to make a bunch of money or do something that won’t last.”
There are not many industries that afford a person the chance to do well financially while doing so much good for others. Residential assisted living is a unique space with unique people who are changing the world, one assisted living home at a time. We are so proud of the work that Emmanuel and Bekah are doing and we can’t wait to see what amazing things that they will accomplish in the future.
If you would like to learn more about the exciting opportunities in residential assisted living or if you are interested in acquiring or investing in RAL real estate, Emmanuel would love to have a conversation with you.
Or if you are a RAL owner and want to continue to learn more ways that you can make an impact in this amazing industry, check out the resources at the Assisted Living Network or on our YouTube channel for more great content.