It was 2008, I was in my late twenties and, to be blunt, I was an arrogant and egotistical kid that had multi million dollars worth of real estate equity I had cultivated over the years.
Suddenly, almost overnight, our country was in the midst of a nation-wide economic crisis. Families were losing their homes, college students were facing an uncertain future, and the investment accounts of countless people were simply gone.
I was one of those people and was incredibly despondent since I thought I had it all figured out but ended up being millions of dollars in the red. It was a very humbling moment for me and when I finally got off the couch and stopped sucking my thumb, I decided that all I could do was hustle to go out and close deals.
I saw the hardship and suffering around me and knew there was a drastic need for education on how to regain financial stability. We started Tax Auction Investors because we wanted to help people rebuild their lives and investment accounts, but didn’t see any other company that combined real estate investing education with hands-on, real world training and experience. It’s not enough to teach the concepts of investing, anybody could do that, we wanted to provide folks with a blueprint for success that wasn’t a “get rich quick scheme”.
Our mission is to help our students understand the real estate market and teach them the skills they need to have financial success and a secure place to invest their hard earned money. Our team, Randle, Amy, and myself, decided to create a guaranteed path, if they choose to follow it, where we could invest side by side with students since we only put our money where we see potential.
Randle, and his wonderful mother, were actually students at one of my seminars back in 2008 and he saw my vision and was one of the first to buy our real estate mentoring package. A little while after he gave me a call, asked to meet up, and asked about becoming a business partner. Within 60 days we had closed their first deal together and in 2009 we added in the education side of the business and became full fledged partners.
Amy, on the other hand, had been doing real estate for years and had lots of success. We began working together in 2010 and by 2011, I recognized that the acquisition of assets (AKA great people) is one of the most important factors for long-term business success. After six short months we asked her to join our team and the rest is history.
Of course we’ve had our ups and down over the past 9 years. The worst moment in my entire business career was in 2014 where we had a joint venture with another company who hired a new CEO who, days later, decided to end our work relationship. That wasn’t the end of the world.
What was truly heartbreaking was that I had to personally layoff 20 people on our team which was, without a doubt, one of the most painful things I’ve ever had to do. My staff, my people, are my business. We’re a family and that was a major lesson learned where we now have set up our business structure so we never have to do a mass layoff again.
At Tax Auction Investors we strongly believe in and practice our core values. We’re not just a team, we’re a family and our company culture reflects that; for example, at 2:30pm our California office is empty since our team members go pick up their kids from school. We strive to stand out in an industry polluted with those making promising to make you rich with little or no investment.
We believe in transparency and, with that said, I’d like to walk you through our top company values:
- We honor all agreements
If we say something, we’ll do it. There’s no grey, only black and white since we keep our promises.
- We keep it real
Our students and our team appreciate that we’re a no nonsense company that doesn’t tout sexy short term ways to make money, we are always honest. We are real.
- We take ownership of our mistakes
Nobody is perfect and we all make mistakes sometimes. It’s important to us that our team owns up to errors and that all of our students are well taken care of should any issues arise.
- We prioritize customer success
Every single decision we make is based on whether it benefits our students. This keeps us accountable since every choice we make must align with how we can help our people grow as investors.
- Competitive excellence
We stay abreast to the current trends and cutting edge technology so we can pass that knowledge along to our loyal students.
Speaking of students, you may be wondering now, who does TAI work with? We collaborate and coach two primary markets, professionals who want to invest their money as safely and securely as possible and make great returns, and those who want to make passive income for their retirement. We typically work with baby boomers who are approaching retirement and realize they don’t have enough money to live off of, especially at their current lifestyle.
Students have told us they appreciate how “real” we are with them, we will never be those get rich quick guys snapping up your grandma’s money so we can make a quick return. Our students tell us how much they appreciate that we’re there to hold their hand through the oftentimes complex, real estate investing market. They enjoy our transparency and the knowledge that we always have their back, no matter what.
People ask me, “What the biggest move you made for your business?” and I always tell them about RAD Diversified. RAD stands for, wait for it, Randle, Amy, and Dutch, and it’s an investment fund we created to offer investment security to our students. It was the greatest breakthrough in the history of our company since it gave our students a clear path, without the fears of the unknown, to make massive returns on their investments since we diversified the risk.
Another question I get a lot is, “What are you most proud of?” and first off I say that the testimonials give me the energy to wake up excited and ready to change lives every day. I get that “proud papa” moment whenever we get a new review since it’s truly the student’s success stories that inspire and drive us forward.
On a personal note, I’m really thrilled and relieved that I got my brother out of corporate America. Since he was 17 he worked 60-70 hours a week in the restaurant management industry and he literally never had a Thanksgiving at home with his wife and kids. Dory is the most important person to me in my life (I love you too, Vanessa!) and his health had been on the decline from the long hours, constant stress, and inability to be present with his family.
Guess what? I finally convinced him to try on the entrepreneurship hat and, after extensive training, I’m happy to say that he now runs our Philadelphia market and finally has the time to spend with his wife Molly and their children.
It may already be clear by now, but family is extremely important to us and we don’t limit to just blood relatives. The Tax Auction Investors company is truly a big family, we have kids in our office everyday and, even though we’re spread across the United States, we’re really tight. For example Erika, our CFO, works for the company and is also Randle’s sister! We’re basically a family business and we believe that the word “family” isn’t limited to the one you’re born into, it’s the one you make and the people you choose to be close to.
If you take away anything from reading our story, know that our goal is to be a major change agent in the real estate investing world with a goal to have more students who have partnered and made deals with us than any other company in the country.
We’re proud to say, with data to back it up, that 80% of our Live Auction students make a profit with us and over 90% of our Inner Circle members close their first deal in 45 days. There is no other real estate investment education company in the U.S. that can make those claims.
We don’t offer trainings on how to make you a millionaire. Instead, we provide a tested roadmap to get there. I’ve never planned or wanted to be a thought leader or guru, destiny drew me onto this path and I’d like to take you along for the ride.
– Dutch Mendenhall