As famous author George R. R. Martin once wrote, “Chaos is a ladder.” Where most investors see nothing but disaster in the midst of the current COVID-19 pandemic, a select few have glimpsed massive opportunities. One of these select few goes by the name of Andrew Ragusa, a Long Island real estate broker and investor whose two companies are shining through the chaos of coronavirus like a beacon of light. With a series of savvy investments and real estate know-how, Ragusa is now hauling in net returns of 15%-25% for clients, while his real estate brokerage and his investment fund are thriving.
Broker-Owner of the Real Estate Market Innovators Realty (REMI), Ragusa has powered through the pandemic to sell off his listed for sale properties even with all of the tight restrictions placed on businesses. With his real estate brokerage, his innovative and outside-of-the-box thinking helps homeowners sell over asking price across Nassau and Suffolk counties on Long Island, as well as in Brooklyn, Queens, and The Bronx.
As an investor, Ragusa is buying up homes all around Bergen, Union, and Passaic Counties in New Jersey. Despite all the uncertainty in the country right now, Andrew Ragusa continues his lucrative pursuit of rehabbing old homes in the area; reinstating once-beautiful properties to their former glory. It almost seems as if he has the King Midas golden touch; as everything Andrew put his hands on tends to work out incredibly well for everyone involved.
“I run a real estate brokerage because it’s fun to sell houses and I love to make people money when they hire me to list their homes! It’s a rush when we all win together!” Ragusa explains. “The goal of my brokerage is to bring real results to people fast. And not just clients, even the realtors who work with us too. I love teaching agents how to get into investing to create financial certainty in their lives. Its so important to get into investing in real estate, not just selling, as fast as possible because investing is what brings wealth.”
His investing model, combined with Ragusa’s own business savvy, allowed the young broker to grow his businesses incredibly fast. First Ragusa finds and purchases distressed real estate properties, then he offers the agents in his brokerage the opportunity to buy into the property, and finally shares the returns with his circle. This is how it all started and grew into the incredibly lucrative real estate fund he has today, which is open for anyone to invest in.
Yet how has Andrew Ragusa been able to weather the uncertainty of COVID-19 so well? As the broker himself puts it, “Right now in real estate, I have observed what I would describe as the perfect storm for suburban and rural housing, both for sale and rent:
- First, the COVID-19 pandemic has been a real eye-opener for those living in densely populated areas. Being in lockdown in tiny multi-unit apartments, with no access to amenities or outside space has turned people off from city-living. People are ready to drop and run to areas that are less congested.
- Mortgage rates are the lowest they have ever been. People now have access to money at the cheapest rates in history.
- Suburban inventory is LOW. During the lockdown the number of people who listed their homes for sale has dropped drastically. At the moment there is a massive amount of people moving to the suburbs while having less choices on a home to buy, and it is driving the price of houses up fast.
- Finally, many people are now able and willing to work remotely. When lockdown started everyone was crouching over there coffee tables with a laptop to work for the day. Once it became real that remote work was going to be a part of life, the need for a larger space came with that reality. Why own a tiny downtown apartment at triple the cost when you could work from home comfortably in a larger suburban house?
For Ragusa, these factors have combined to create a huge price surge in suburban housing, which means big returns on his current investments. As demand sky-rockets and supplies dwindle, Ragusa’s ability to quickly rehab and flip residential properties puts him at a distinct advantage in the real estate investing market. Out of COVID-19’s chaos, Andrew Ragusa is doubling down and turning huge profits.
When asked what advice he might offer a new real estate investor trying to get a cut of the action, Ragusa responds with confidence, “The best advice I would offer anyone, not only getting into real estate but with any major life changing decisions, is to know who you are getting your advice from. People make the mistake so often of asking advice from unqualified people and simply because they like the person or maybe its a loved one who always wants the best for you. Just because they love you, are they really the best person to get advice from? Are they making good decisions in their own life? Are they knowledgeable about the subject? You need to take a look at the whole picture when seeking out information.”
Luckily, Ragusa is more than willing to provide that advice to potential agents and investors, as they make their own forays into the competitive market of real estate buy/selling/investing. By leveraging his team at REMI, Ragusa is able to take on more clients – and capital – at a time when many other investors are holding tight and attempting to “wait out the storm” of COVID-19. With an emphasis on effective training and profitability for his partners and clients, Ragusa has been able to turn COVID-19 into one of the greatest investment opportunities of his career and a huge boon for his investors.
“You know whenever I go to Las Vegas my favorite game to play is craps because when one person wins on the table we all win together. That’s why the craps table is always the most exciting and loudest table in the casino. I believe generally people want to see each other succeed and everyone also just wants to be included in the success. That’s what drew me to real estate, whenever people hire me to either be their agent or to invest their money it gives me an incredible euphoric feeling to see them collect the check at the end of everything. There’s always going to be food at my table and seats for people to join!”