Pop Quiz, Monday with Ian Ippolito, Founder and editor of The Real Estate Crowdfunding Review


The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business people. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you cannot learn in a classroom. We want to thank our interviewee for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?

Ian Ippolito

What is your job role?

Founder and editor of The Real Estate Crowdfunding Review.

Tell us about your company?

I wanted to invest in the new field of real estate crowdfunding, but couldn’t find any useful sources. So I spent a few months gathering the information and posted it on the Internet to share. That eventually grew into a private investor club for investing all sorts of alternative investments. There are now over 1300 members with over $500 million in investable assets. The club is able to source deals at reduced minimums and discounts that aren’t available to individual investors.

What do you love most about your job?

I really enjoy the whole idea of a passive investment: having my money work for me, instead of the other way around. So being completely immersed in the world of passive investing is just completely fascinating and interesting to me.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?

Well, after I sold my last company in 2013, I no longer was getting a paycheck. So my investments had to pay for my wife and five-year-old son. So they are a very strong motivation to make sure that the investments are doing the best they possibly can.

How do your co-workers inspire you?

I work virtually with many people over the Internet, and they continually inspire me with their amazing backgrounds (many who have overcome incredible obstacles to get to where they are in life). I also love the incredible diversity of the club and how there are people from so many different professions and circumstances.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?

I work from my home office, so for me, a fun thing is taking a break to play a game of “pretend mazes” with my five-year-old son. We break out the pillows all over the office and have all sorts of adventures.

What are some of the challenges of your job?

It can be very challenging to work from home, for a person who is not focused. My challenge is actually opposite: I will just tend to work and work because I don’t have the cues that I had when working in a traditional office of “okay, now it’s time to go home.” So I am trying to learn to do it in moderation.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?

When I was the CEO of RentACoder (which was an online marketplace connecting 150,000 employers to 350,000 virtual workers), I had 15 employees working in my office. However, to get to that point, I earlier had to grow from having just three employees and moving out of my home office, which had gotten very comfortable and was very financially easy to support. It was a big leap of faith to sign a big office lease for five years (which I would be personally on the hook for if something happened, and I couldn’t pay it). However, it ended up being crucial to the growth, and the best decision I ever made. So I learned that sometimes an entrepreneur has to stretch to grow.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?

I would say look for where genuine pain points are, and then try to solve them. I think if a person can do that they will be successful.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:

The real estate crowdfunding review: https://www.therealestatecrowdfundingreview.com
Private investor club: https://forum.therealestatecrowdfundingreview.com

Author: Ricky Singh, MBA

Editor of The Startup Growth.

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