May 11, 2022
Joe Fairless

JF2808: Financing and Investor Acquisitions Insights from a CRE Attorney ft. Ronald Rohde

Ronald “Ron” Rohde is the founder of a commercial real estate law firm where he primarily focuses on investor acquisitions and helping other investors buy commercial real estate. In this episode, Ron tells us about the importance of getting the right financing, when to consider using an open-ended fund, and the biggest lesson he’s learned as an investor himself.

The Importance of Financing

One major skill set Ron brings to the table in his CRE deals is his financing knowledge, which includes understanding different lender relationships and staying up to date on the state of the market. “I love the saying that you can have a great deal, but bad financing can kill even the strongest deal,” he says. 

Too much debt, high interest rates, and bad terms can all suck the life out of a great deal. “But great financing can make even a marginal deal good … you could have great financing make even a marginal deal cash flow and really just hit it out of the park. So that’s I think a critical component of overall deal acquisition,” Ron says.

When to Use an Open-Ended Fund

Ron and Best Ever Show host Slocomb Reed discuss a scenario where open-ended funds serve as a viable solution during the episode. Say an investor wants to raise capital to buy a significant number of smaller assets — in this example, 5- to 40-unit apartment buildings. They can do so through an open-ended fund, which allows them to raise the capital in advance, and then purchase multiple properties through that same fund. 

The open-ended fund isn’t required to identify the properties beforehand. When people invest in an open-ended fund, they are essentially investing in the GPs or the operator, rather than a specific property. They are also investing in the asset parameters set up by the fund. The GP or operator then executes and delivers. 

A Lesson in Blind Spots

Ron says he lost a fair amount of money on an out-of-state deal in which he invested $30K on a medical office building project in Las Vegas. He trusted the GP, but says the combination of distance and lack of understanding of the business led to his loss. “That’s the biggest lesson,” Ron says, “and I don’t regret it, but I realized what my blind spots were, and I didn’t take any steps to mitigate those.” Now he prioritizes accurately estimating cash flow and ensuring proper marketing is part of the business plan before jumping into a deal.

Ronald “Ron” Rohde | Real Estate Background

  • Founder of Ronald Rohde Law, a commercial real estate law firm that handles commercial real estate transactions from entity formation, PSA negotiation, and due diligence review through closing.
  • Portfolio: GP of three industrial NNN properties in DFW, over 100,000 sq ft.
  • Based in: Dallas, TX
  • Say hi to him at:
  • Best Ever Book: Traction by Gino Wickman

Greatest lesson: Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.

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