A Podcast | Trish Ferrier
Pete Neubig: [00:00:05] All right. Well, welcome back, everybody. And as promised, I have Trish and Amber, the Women of First Class Realty here in Houston. So, guys, thanks so much for being here today. Appreciate y'all.
Trish Ferrier: [00:00:19] I'm happy to be here.
Pete Neubig: [00:00:20] All right. So, Trish, let's start with you. How long have you got? Well, tell us a little bit about First Class Realty. Like, why why did you start it? How did you start it? You know, And then if you want to tell us, if you want to tell us how many properties you manage, maybe the structure a little bit like of that nature.
Trish Ferrier: [00:00:37] Yeah. Rob and I started First Class Realty a little over 20 years ago. I've actually been in the property management business for over 30 years. I started when I was 12, but when I met him he had a different business and I was struggling to get mine going and he just joined forces with me and that's when we created First Class Realty.
Pete Neubig: [00:01:01] And First Class Realty is operates in Houston, Texas now. Correct. And how many you guys will only do single family?
Trish Ferrier: [00:01:09] Yeah, we have a few small like duplexes and fourplexes, but it's mostly single family. And right now we're at about 500 doors.
Pete Neubig: [00:01:21] Okay. All right. And so. When you were building the business with Rob? We know unfortunately, if you guys do not know Rob Ferrier, he's actually one of my mentors and he was a great friend of mine here in Houston, suddenly passed away. Is it four years now, Trish?
Trish Ferrier: [00:01:39] Actually, six years. He passed away two days before Hurricane Harvey flooded our city. Exactly two days before it flooded our city.
Pete Neubig: [00:01:48] I do remember that. So six years is gone. So when when you guys were building the business, you had three kids. Were you guys anticipating that the kids would one day come into the business? And if so, how? How were you preparing them and the business for it?
Trish Ferrier: [00:02:04] Well, I honestly can tell you that was our dream. But we both agreed that we were not going to force it. It would be their choice. And at the time we have three kids and the only one that always says she wanted to be a part of it was Amber. She said that from the time she was four. Um, but then we were really surprised when our oldest daughter was in college and she decided she wanted to join our business. And Amber just went right into it smoothly after she graduated high school. But we basically let it be their choice. And because we know that so many second and third generation businesses don't succeed because and we studied the factors and why they don't succeed. And most of the time it's things like, you know, they don't they don't know the struggle that happens in the beginning. You know, when you don't know if you can make ends meet and you're and you're doing every single job and you and you can't reproduce that part. But we were very adamant that the kids would have to start at the bottom and work their way up so that they could at least experience having to do every part of the business, even a college.
Pete Neubig: [00:03:12] Degree. Even a college degree.
Trish Ferrier: [00:03:14] Absolutely. Absolutely. She did. She was filing. She was we didn't make her answer phones. You know, Ashley's very in shy Amber. She's she's still on the phones because she she could talk to a wrong.
Pete Neubig: [00:03:25] Number reason Amber is on this call and not Ashley.
Trish Ferrier: [00:03:27] Right? That's right. Ashley says I'll pass. But no, we we made them both start at the bottom. And in fact, Rob actually made her finish her degree. She was I think she was like a year and a half from graduating. And he said, You have a job here, but you must finish what you started. That's a very important lesson. And she did. She finished.
Pete Neubig: [00:03:50] So if you have a small business, you know, like you have 500 units, which is, you know, pretty decent size, but if you only have like 100 units, can you is it even possible? Like, do you have the work and and the revenue to bring in your kids? Like you have to like grow the business, right. So that you can prepare for for more more revenue for for the for the kids to be able to get paid. Yeah.
Trish Ferrier: [00:04:15] I think so. I know that in that situation, if you were still growing, you could probably have them on a where they're getting a piece of the profits until it gets to a point where you can give them a salary. But I know it would be difficult, I would think, because right now I have a staff of six seven actually. But I can't imagine when we were a hundred doors if I would have been able to bring them in and put them on a salary as well. I mean, good grief, Rob and I were not always getting salaries back then.
Pete Neubig: [00:04:53] I know the feeling. I'm waiting for them to pay me a salary. So, Amber, let's talk about you. So, um, you took a different path than your sister. Your sister wasn't sure she wanted to join. You. Wanted to join right away. Why do you think most kids don't want to join their. Their their parents business? And why did you want to join? Like, what did you see either in the business or in the industry that that just attracted you?
Amber Ferrier: [00:05:20] Well, although I did want to start as young as four, mainly because of the phones. I really enjoyed talking to people and I love the phones and I always went with my mom to inspect homes and she took all these pictures, which I love taking pictures too. So I thought, this is great. But actually, when I was a freshman in high school, I thought I wanted to be a lawyer because I was so good at debate. And I thought, okay, this is great. And then my father, you know, was very honest with me. He said, six years of college. And I said, No, it's okay. I'll just go back to real estate because I was not the best at school at all. But I really was also attracted to the like that you actually need to network to do well in this business. And although I don't feel like I provide like a lot of number knowledge, I'm not really the best at math, but I'm very good at talking to people. And so when my mom said that that was actually something that this company could really use, especially after losing my dad, I thought, there's just no, it's a no brainer. I'm meant to talk to people and I love the real estate industry, property management. So it was a no deal once I graduated high school to just go straight in.
Pete Neubig: [00:06:29] And so what is your what is your role today at the company?
Amber Ferrier: [00:06:33] Currently, I'm the maintenance manager, so I do communicate between the owner and the vendor and the tenant and kind of mellowing out, you know, customer problems, things like that. But I also have been dabbling into the marketing side of things. I recently got my license, so I'm very much in La La land trying to figure out the social media game and all the new technology and all that good stuff. So I'm kind of juggling both.
Pete Neubig: [00:07:03] Now, Trish, when when when you own the when you own the management company. When the kids joined, did you give them ownership? Like, how did how did the structure, the legal structure work on that? Not at.
Trish Ferrier: [00:07:16] First. Just like with them having to work their way up. They're also working into owning a piece of the company because I do think it's important to not just give things over. You have to to earn what you have. And so that's basically we are a sub corporation and as they put their time in, then they get a little piece of the company until someday when they'll have the whole enchilada. But at this point, you know, when I'm 90 and I decide to retire, then I will let them have everything.
Pete Neubig: [00:07:52] So so the way this works, and I'm not an attorney here, but do they do they just get a percent, a smaller percentage or they get more shares? Is that is that the way it works?
Trish Ferrier: [00:08:00] Yeah, This is, you know, some small shares and and and we just started that, too, because I really wanted to make sure on the tax ramifications but also, you know, for them to be really sure this is the direction that they want to go to. I'm very, very lucky that Amber and Ashley are opposites in personality. They're very different people. But it works out great because why? Amber loves to talk. She's so soothing and talking to people when they're, you know, they're irate. Ashley, on the other hand, is a very quiet person, but she's very detail oriented. She keeps up with numbers, she does bookkeeping and stuff like that, and they do compliment each other. So I was very lucky in that area because I know that always is not the case when siblings work together, but they work very well together because when, you know, Amber doesn't want to keep up with the details, she hands out to Ashley. Ashley doesn't want to talk to people. She hands that over to Amber, so it works out really well.
Pete Neubig: [00:09:02] And Amber, were you worried that you would not be able to work with your sister? Did you guys get along when you were growing up? And because typically teenage girls, they typically, you know, hate each other, they hate their mom, they hate the world. They hate everybody. From what I understand, from what I can see from the outside in, when I when I have my friends with teenage girls, I don't have any.
Amber Ferrier: [00:09:19] But I was definitely worried about it because we are we do bunk a lot and that is normal when you work with family. Even my mom and I, my mom and I's personalities can be very similar in that we rub things off really easily. But even my mom and I will bunk heads. So it was only natural that I was going to happen between Ashley and I. But I will say over time, we. I guess learn how to coexist. If we don't, we're not wanting to talk to each other. I know when we're mad, when we're emailing, communicating, instead of going into each other's office. So I know that, okay, I shouldn't go back there and make a joke. I should probably just stay in my seat and put a bubble in my mouth. So we'll email correspond then. But it was trickier in the beginning because I was very immature. But I think as you grow up and you realize like, okay, you're kind of an adult now, act like it, then unfortunately you learn how to just deal with staying off of people's toes.
Trish Ferrier: [00:10:22] I will tell you, once she has grown so much, it's amazing. But one thing that Rob and I even had to learn when we worked together was when we walked through the front door of the office. We're business partners, not husband and wife. And I mean, we could have a fight at the breakfast table, but no one would know it when we were working in the office because we would just put that aside. And that is the one lesson that I have had to train the girls, that you're not sisters in this office. You are co-workers. And I'm not mom. I'm your boss. And so having to take that emotion out, no matter what's going on.
Pete Neubig: [00:10:58] You say hard to do, though. Yeah, it's very hard.
Trish Ferrier: [00:11:00] And that's why I'm saying she's this is a process and she's gotten so good at it lately. I mean, she's really grown.
Amber Ferrier: [00:11:06] I still go back in her office and cry if I need to, but like, you can't do that with a regular boss. But, I mean, if I'm upset with her because, you know, she hurt my feelings because of a business decision, you do have to just kind of be like, okay.
Pete Neubig: [00:11:20] It's what's best for the business, right? At empire, what's best for the business, not what's best for Pete or what's best for Steve. It's what's right. Yeah. And so now that's hard to do because, you know, obviously, you know, you guys see each other outside of work all the time and and of course, you know, business talk starts happening. Do you guys talk a lot of business in your social environments?
Amber Ferrier: [00:11:46] Yes, we do. Yeah. But that just comes with you know, when you're your mom owns the company and you are just as passionate about it as your mom is. And for my sister and I, we're trying to understand all the ropes, everything that comes into it. And that does mean the after hour emails, the discussing what happened during the workday. And ultimately, like my sister, my mom are a little bit more higher up. So they have to talk about the financials. And sometimes you don't want the other people hearing about it. And so, yeah, we do have a lot of out of office conversation, but. I think it's like not it's sometimes it's not a healthy amount. My mom has a really bad email checking addiction and she is constantly checking her emails.
Pete Neubig: [00:12:32] But for him to you while you're sitting there, take care of this.
Amber Ferrier: [00:12:36] Yeah, exactly. She'll be there and it's like 8:00 at night. So did you see that email? I'm like, Actually, no, it's been two seconds. I haven't seen it. My bad.
Pete Neubig: [00:12:45] So now, Trish, you have a third child that's not in the business. Let's just say let's just say he doesn't join the business. Would you still give him percent ownership of the business or is that just for the kids that like, let's say when you are 90 and you retire, right. You're going to have assets that are going to divvy up? Are you going to eventually retire and give the full business out and not have a part of that business to the kids? Like, how how do you think that that's going to work?
Trish Ferrier: [00:13:11] If he does not want to join, then I can't say that I'm going to do that because I feel like the kids who are putting in the work are the ones that should get the business. Now, I do have investment properties, which I would certainly split among all my children because their own separate from the business, but the business itself. I do feel like those who put in the elbow grease are the ones that that should deserve that part of the business.
Pete Neubig: [00:13:38] Now, how do you how do you end up like obviously at some point in time you'll you'll be not the CEO of the business and you'll be maybe just a kind of a figurehead, so to speak, Right. And letting the kids run it. How do you determine if the girls can become one of the girls can become CEO or or hire from outside? Or which one has that that skill set like? Is there have you guys talked about that at all, about future? No, that's kind of a ways down the road, but it goes fast, right?
Trish Ferrier: [00:14:12] It does go fast. And I'll be frank with you, we've only had very small conversations about it. I think that Amber would understand that Ashley should handle the money part because she's very good at. But there's parts that Amber is far better at handling as well. Um, but I do think that what I do right now is I'm trying to let them make decisions where, I mean, May, I'm still making the final decision, but I want to know how would you handle this? And hopes that they're learning how to think for themselves to make the best choice. So we haven't, though, made any kind of firm thing of of how the company will run in the future. But I do believe the more they grow together, the more they'll be able to do it without any problem. Now, if Robbie gets stuck in there, that might be another issue. But girls may gang up on him.
Pete Neubig: [00:15:10] He becomes the savior and CEO and.
Trish Ferrier: [00:15:18] He's got a lot of growing up to do for that.
Pete Neubig: [00:15:20] All right. So, Amber, if somebody's listening to this and they're second generation and they're you know, I think one of the challenges could be that the second generation is not patient and they want to, like, run the business right away. So what would you tell like if somebody is in their second generation, like how long should they be patient? And then what? What are the steps that they should take so that they can position themselves to run the business?
Amber Ferrier: [00:15:48] Well, I'm patient is nowhere near my middle name at all. So I can tell you that I'm definitely a part of the not having a long enough fuse. I'm very much like, I just want to get after it. But I will say that aligning yourself with like. I hate admitting it, but sometimes your family is right when they try to advise you that, you know, you can't just, like, fall in the ditch right away. Sometimes you have to trust that you don't need to use the ditch as an example, like just trust me. And so I think it goes with just trusting your family's decisions sometimes or advice like my sister, she's been working here full time, like, what, six, seven years full time and she's been licensed. Yeah. So she's been doing this for a long time and she's not even, you know, anywhere ready to to run the company 100%. And I'm half that time, if not even less. So I'm nowhere near it. But I just hope that anyone listening to it, to this, that second generation, is that you just become really realistic with what your decisions entail. And if you think you're so ballsy and you're ready to go, then like, I hope that your family loves you enough to come up behind you and pick up that that failure for you. Not failure. That was the wrong word to use. That was a really aggressive pick up any Yeah, pick it back up because you just it's you're not going to be ready to go in after two years of being in the industry basically.
Pete Neubig: [00:17:17] So, Trish, if let's say Ashley's been there six, seven years, let's say she says, Hey, Ma, this is great, but I kind of want out. I'm going to go become a CPA run. I'm going to go run, run with the big six firm or something. Um.
Trish Ferrier: [00:17:31] Lord, I'm about to change my will now.
Trish Ferrier: [00:17:34] So I better be in that will only you know.
Trish Ferrier: [00:17:39] What if she really said that I would do my best to support her in whatever she wants to do? And that would be the truth with Amber. It would kill my soul, break my heart. I love working with the girls. I really, really do love working with them. But I will. I want my kids to be happy with what they're doing. I want them to be fulfilling their dreams.
Pete Neubig: [00:18:00] Yeah, let's be honest, right? Running a business is not easy, right? It's easier over time because you get better, right? It doesn't get easier. And in property management, I mean, it is soul crushing, right? I mean, how many people get chewed up and spit out in property management? So it's not it's not for everybody. No. So what I what I'm hearing is you have to have lots of conversation about where you are and where you want to go and how you get there. Is that is that kind of.
Trish Ferrier: [00:18:30] It's very true. And not just that, you know, what Amber was talking about earlier, the patience you wisdom takes time. And that's very valuable to have. But I will tell you, even one of the things I struggled with when the girls started was I'm got thicker skin. I'm used to tenants and owners yelling at me the minute they did it with one of the girls, I was, you know, you you try to be not mom, but your mama bear instinct goes in. And I will tell you that we had a very funny time when Amber was getting chewed to pieces by this tenant. And I'm ready. I'm trying to grab that phone out of her hand because I'm ready to let them know all about.
Amber Ferrier: [00:19:11] It during was during the freeze. I think. I think it was during.
Trish Ferrier: [00:19:14] This and she said, Let me handle it, Mom. And that was the hardest thing for me to do, was to back off and just let her deal with him, because your instincts are to protect them. And so and this is a hard business. You deal with difficult people and you just have to let them do it. You have to let them learn.
Pete Neubig: [00:19:32] Yeah. So if if somebody listening to this and they're, you know, they're wanting getting their kids into business, what are some advice that you would that you would give them?
Trish Ferrier: [00:19:45] I would tell them. I will tell you this. I would tell them to take that disk test because that is how I knew that Ashley would be more a numbers person. And of course, I always knew Amber was very social and so forth. But I would tell them they need to know their child's weaknesses and strengths and then put them in that area. But I would have them start at the bottom. You if you have other employees, you really can cause some animosity. If you bring someone if you put your child too high and other people have been loyal to you and so forth. So I would say make them start at the bottom, let them learn, act like it's an education, you know, or they get to move up. But but also know what their strengths and weaknesses are and don't try to put them. If I try to put Ashley on the front phones, that would have been a disaster. So.
Pete Neubig: [00:20:37] So maybe put them there for a week to train or to learn, but not to.
Trish Ferrier: [00:20:41] Learn to listen or something, you know?
Pete Neubig: [00:20:43] Okay, so, um, have you had any, any like, you brought the girls in, but you brought them on the bottom. But have you had any issues with, with team or challenges with team when you brought the girls in like, oh, they're going to steal my job or they're they're going to get hired above me. I'm going to I'm not going to have any growth here, anything like that.
Trish Ferrier: [00:21:01] Yeah, I have Not with the people that I have now. Um, I think the people I have now know I take care of my employees like they're my family. But I have had situations where, um, someone didn't like the girls getting moved up. But the girls have always earned anything that they've been moved up to. But sometimes insecurities kick in and some people can think differently. I do try very hard to be as fair as I can. I want to always be transparent and fair, but you know, you can't please everybody.
Pete Neubig: [00:21:34] But at the end of the day, the girls are going to hold CFO CEO type roles because it is there. It is their their company.
Trish Ferrier: [00:21:42] Absolutely.
Pete Neubig: [00:21:42] In theory. You know, my uncle, he owns a food distributor company in New York, and both my cousins now literally run the business right ones, the CEO ones, the sales vice president. You know, I mean, that's just that's just the way family businesses work. But I do have to ask, has the girls ever underperformed? Did you have to, like, set them straight? Um, you know, because, you know and have you ever thought about firing them? Like, what happens if you have a kid that you.
Amber Ferrier: [00:22:10] Know, Hey, mother you can be honest. It's okay.
Trish Ferrier: [00:22:13] I will be honest because my girl is. She understands. Yes. I've had to reprimand them when they're not doing their job.
Pete Neubig: [00:22:21] Or spank them. You get the wooden spoon out.
Trish Ferrier: [00:22:23] No, I don't.
Amber Ferrier: [00:22:24] Can't reach. What are you talking about? I'm so much bigger than her.
Trish Ferrier: [00:22:29] I. I sit down and discuss with them. I really do. And which is more painful.
Amber Ferrier: [00:22:34] I'd rather be slapped. Honestly, I hate it.
Trish Ferrier: [00:22:37] Because I'm going to have a little come to Jesus meeting with her. And. And I have told her one time I said else I'm not mad.
Pete Neubig: [00:22:44] I'm just disappointed.
Amber Ferrier: [00:22:46] Oh, my gosh. I've just been reflecting and I just think that. Yeah, it's the whole thing.
Pete Neubig: [00:22:51] I'm sorry. I don't mean to. So tell me what happened. So. So they were on. So Amber was underperforming. Let's. Let's see. You know, Ashley's name drop?
Amber Ferrier: [00:23:00] Yeah. No, definitely mean.
Trish Ferrier: [00:23:02] I basically, we had a repetitive problem and I'll just go ahead and let you know Amber has sometimes doesn't hit that a lot. She hits a snooze a few too many times. And I said to her, If you were working somewhere else, you wouldn't have a job. You have got to get yourself to work on time. And she did. All I had to do is sit down and have that discussion with her. And, you know, sometimes there's other things. Usually it's when emotions kick in and they don't understand why I'm making a decision. That's usually when we have issues where we have to talk about it. But we have learned that we may not be able to talk about it at the time. The whole things going on, they may have to wait until lunch time or after work when I can sit and explain to them, you know, why a decision was made. But we've come a long way where we all communicate better and talk.
Pete Neubig: [00:23:51] And do you purposely have those those conversations in the office, like in the conference room or in your office versus like having it at the house or in a social setting because you want to make sure like office is office and social and social?
Trish Ferrier: [00:24:06] Not necessarily. It depends. If it's something where I'm having to correct something they're doing, I do it privately. I don't let and I do that with all my employees. I don't, um, I don't reprimand in front of other people. I will discuss it, you know, one on one. Um, but if we have a group problem, like if we're not as a group not doing something, then we will go to the conference room and we'll discuss it as a group. But it depends on the subject matter and the situation, whether I'm going to go private or whether it's going to be out in the open and.
Pete Neubig: [00:24:39] Amber, How old are you now, if you don't mind me asking?
Amber Ferrier: [00:24:42] I just turned 22.
Pete Neubig: [00:24:43] You just had a birthday, right? 22. And so you've been working with your mom for the last two years, or is it longer now?
Amber Ferrier: [00:24:50] Since I was 18. Right after high school.
Pete Neubig: [00:24:53] After high school. And. And that's when your that's when your dad passed. It was about.
Amber Ferrier: [00:24:59] My dad passed away when I was 16. So he passed away just when I was about to go into sophomore year of high school.
Pete Neubig: [00:25:05] Did did that have any impact on you wanting to join the business and and help you and help your mom grow the business?
Amber Ferrier: [00:25:14] Absolutely. I feel like I even to this day when I go to Napa, especially like the national conventions, where you get to see like your friends in Austin and San Antonio, which I know my dad has a lot of dear friends out there. They'll tell me all the time that like when I enter a room and how I speak that like my dad has to be so proud. And it's because I literally watched him take leadership, take a role. I knew that was my personality as well. Did not do well being told what to do. And I was always like, You can ask my mom. And yeah, I was not. I didn't like it, but I liked that he just kind of. Took control over everything and he just kind of went after it. And even if he didn't know a lot about it, he just faked it. Half the time he saw him, he probably didn't know what he was actually talking about. And that's I thrive off of that. I don't know what I'm talking about actually right now. And I'm just kind of making it up and it sounds great because I know how to talk. So absolutely. He's been a huge role model in what I wanted to do here, and he still is. And my mom and I talk about it all the time about how, like she said, I have to still work my way to the top. I'm not doing anywhere near what my dad was doing, but eventually she's going to allow me to do more and more and hopefully help run first class like my dad did.
Pete Neubig: [00:26:30] Yeah, it's, you know, there's a lot to learn and then there's a lot of education, which you're doing a great job of. You take advantage of all the education. You know, you're learning about personality profiling and, you know, keep reading the books. And I know you guys do you guys do in at first class do you guys use traction system. You do? Yeah. So yeah I know Rob was a he was a man of action. He got done one my one thing.
Trish Ferrier: [00:27:00] Level is Amber has for sure in fact Amber was sharing a memory of it was when you were president of North Houston chapter and she I remember her even asking me this, Why is Dad laugh so hard when he's talking to Pete on the phone? And he always says, Pete, what did you do? And then laugh. And I said, Yeah, they had regular conversations during that time.
Pete Neubig: [00:27:23] Oh, man, we had some good times. We sure did. He's a man, just a man that I admired so much and helped me out so much. Like I used to call him all the time, him and Mike Mengden. Mike, shout out to you if you if you want to for people that download our our podcast. So the mike. All right are there is there any other nuggets that you would give anybody who's listening that's talking, you know, thinking about second generation or any other nuggets before we go to break that that either one of you could could think through. We talked we talked a lot about a lot of stuff here. So it seems like it's mainly are you ready? Don't force your kid into it. You know, make sure that they perform, start them at the bottom and have lots of conversation. Try to break out, um, business versus versus, you know, personal.
Amber Ferrier: [00:28:13] So one thing I would add that I did was that I would advise people to not let your ego take control of the decisions you make or how you treat people. Um, there were times where I was extremely hostile towards my mom when she wouldn't let me do something because I just knew I could do it because I watched it. Since dinosaur years, I've been watching my parents do it forever now, but I would get a big ego about it and then I fail. So I just talked all this talk and then I couldn't do it. So I would just advise anyone who's going to join the family company, regardless of what it is, to let yourself be trained. You don't know everything. You're not going to know everything in two years either.
Pete Neubig: [00:28:52] You don't have to know everything. You don't have to.
Amber Ferrier: [00:28:55] Exactly. There's you don't have to either. You do not have to know everything. You do not have to just jump from 0 to 100. Yeah. My mom doesn't know everything, so it's. It's. I would not let your ego destroy what you could. Your potential.
Pete Neubig: [00:29:08] Is I would say there's. There's a lot more positives on taking over second generation business than negatives. Right. The negatives are it's you have to be very patient. Sometimes you have the what do they call it, a powdered blood syndrome, where you your your your parents won't give you the big deal because they, you know, they they they raised you. Right. So you have to kind of get over that. But the positive is you take over a company that's been in business, you know, first class, been in business, what, now, 20 years?
Trish Ferrier: [00:29:37] Yeah, about 22 years now.
Pete Neubig: [00:29:39] 20. So you're getting name, brand recognition, you're getting processes already. You have team you and you have mentors that are taking that are bringing you. Right? So Trish, you're probably going to take this to six, seven, 800 doors, right? And that's probably like, that's probably your vision. Amber, You you might take this across the state of Texas like because you have such a, such a beginner. You have like, you know, when I started Empire Zero Doors. Trish When you started first class, would you have zero doors? Absolutely. It takes a long time to, to, to mature that company. I know it took me over seven years just to start getting where we were like getting our, our, our marketing and our sales and our processes all in order and learning how to like, you know, hire the right team. You you're, you get you're going to get all of that and then some. And then when when Trish when you decide to step down or take a lesser role, you still have that confidant and that person to, to mentor you. So I think there's lots of positives, but there are some negatives that that if you're not patient and you have a big ego, um, can, can you can abruptly leave the business right unfortunately.
Amber Ferrier: [00:30:52] Also another negative is if you don't join them and you don't have the extended family because I can tell you right now that we especially after losing my dad, there were tons of people who my mom could call that were there for her. You were there for her. Mike was there for her. Paula Elias, like all of our local members. But even like Austin members, San Antonio members like all came together to help. And so I think that another positive is, especially with the property management industry is joining and joining it on whatever level you're comfortable with, because now I know that whoever's going to join from now until I'm done with this. I now have those contacts. I now have those friendships. And I watched my mom do it. Don't be scared to ask for help. Gosh. And so, yeah, it's, um. It sucks if you don't be. If you're not in Arkham.
Pete Neubig: [00:31:44] Did you know I heard a stat? I don't know how true it is. They said the stat is that the average property manager is 52 years old.
Amber Ferrier: [00:31:54] Oh.
Pete Neubig: [00:31:56] Yeah, that's a stat. And if you ever go to a Norman broker owner, you would think that that's. That's young. I'm just kidding. All right. All right. We're going to be right back, everybody. We'll be right back for the The Lightning Round. We'll have a double lightning round or it's going to be awesome. Epic. Stay tuned. We'll be right back. All right. Welcome back, everybody. All right. Are you guys ready for the lightning round? Did you like my sound effects? Um, that's. That's the lightning.
Amber Ferrier: [00:32:25] God.
Pete Neubig: [00:32:27] All right. All right. We're going to put you Amber. We're going to put you on the on the clock. Are you ready.
Amber Ferrier: [00:32:35] To go first?
Pete Neubig: [00:32:36] Because you're the one who says you're outgoing, right? You're the one who's outgoing. So what software do you use?
Amber Ferrier: [00:32:44] Right here. Okay.
Pete Neubig: [00:32:47] Maybe I should have started with Trish. Maybe this wasn't me. Just kidding.
Trish Ferrier: [00:32:51] Well, we use other software, too, but our main one is rent manager. She's probably thinking about manager.
Amber Ferrier: [00:32:55] And property manager and property email.
Pete Neubig: [00:32:58] Nice. What is your current organizational structure? Trish, I'll let you answer this one, I guess.
Amber Ferrier: [00:33:04] Yeah. Oh, okay.
Pete Neubig: [00:33:07] Do you use virtual assistants? Yes. Right. Do you have bdms or salespeople?
Trish Ferrier: [00:33:15] Dedicated right now? No, I'm the BDM. Okay.
Pete Neubig: [00:33:20] That was one piece that robbed him really well, wasn't it?
Trish Ferrier: [00:33:22] He did. He was amazing.
Pete Neubig: [00:33:25] All right, Trish, what is one piece of advice you'd give someone just starting out in the business?
Trish Ferrier: [00:33:31] Screen your owners is well as you screen tenants. And that's the hardest lesson that I've I still struggle with sometimes but a bad owner is will suck the life out of you. So screen your owners as well as you do your tenants.
Pete Neubig: [00:33:46] Amber same question. What is one piece of advice you'd give someone just starting out in the business since you're just in business?
Amber Ferrier: [00:33:54] Guess what I said before break. Just don't get a big ego in it and learn absolutely everything you can.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:03] Does pineapple belong on pizza?
Amber Ferrier: [00:34:05] Absolutely not.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:08] You guys. Trish, what was your first job?
Trish Ferrier: [00:34:13] I worked at Wendy's.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:15] You really did. Jesus was born.
Trish Ferrier: [00:34:18] Oh, damn.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:22] Uh, Amber, what is your ideal vacation?
Amber Ferrier: [00:34:26] Um. I'm not a big vacation person, so I guess just anywhere that's not your local.
Trish Ferrier: [00:34:36] Um, I like anything on a beach. I used to do a lot of cruising. I haven't done that in a long time, but I love. I love a beach Like Cayman Islands is one of my favorite places to go.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:48] Uh, Amber, what is something most people don't know about you?
Amber Ferrier: [00:34:53] Gosh may come as a shock, but I'm not really scared of the camera.
Pete Neubig: [00:34:59] Said again.
Amber Ferrier: [00:35:00] I'm not really scared of the camera.
Trish Ferrier: [00:35:03] He said that people wouldn't know about.
Pete Neubig: [00:35:04] You something that people don't know about you.
Amber Ferrier: [00:35:07] I know. I am scared of the dark.
Trish Ferrier: [00:35:11] That's true.
Pete Neubig: [00:35:13] All right, Trish, what book are you currently reading, or what is one that is impacted your business or life?
Trish Ferrier: [00:35:18] I just finished the five dysfunctional of a team. Yeah, I loved it. I thought it was really good. I wouldn't say that's the most influential. Believe it or not. When Rob and I were courting way back in the boonies, his most influential book was How To. Was it? Oh, God. Think and grow rich. Think and grow rich. And I tried to read it back then and I was like, This is the most boring book. I did not get it. And then a few years ago, I found his book and I reread it and the light bulb went off and I went, Oh my gosh, I get it now. It's about controlling how you think not. You know what I took it as when I read it the first time. So I think I understand now what an amazing book that is. But I have to tell you, I had to read it twice.
Pete Neubig: [00:36:09] I think I need to reread that one. It's been it's been a minute since I read that one.
Trish Ferrier: [00:36:12] It's been a minute.
Pete Neubig: [00:36:14] Amber, what Disney character do you most associate with?
Amber Ferrier: [00:36:19] Um goodness, I don't know. Probably whoever didn't listen? I don't know. Uh.
Trish Ferrier: [00:36:26] Well, I would say Mulan.
Amber Ferrier: [00:36:28] Mulan Probably the red haired girl that went against her family. What was that one? The Princess and Brave. Yeah. Meredith. Oh, thank you.
Pete Neubig: [00:36:37] Gosh, I'm like, you're like, two years away from Disney. Like, you just. You just graduated from Disney, You know, all of the characters by now. Trish.
Amber Ferrier: [00:36:45] I Was wondering why you didn't ask me about a book. I was like... I read sometimes and.
Pete Neubig: [00:36:50] I don't want to hear about a comic book. Trish One Challenger. What what is one challenge you're facing in your business?
Trish Ferrier: [00:36:58] I confess, it's training. I'm lousy at training, and I need to learn how to train better.
Amber Ferrier: [00:37:06] All right. Amber, do you prefer dogs or cats?
Amber Ferrier: [00:37:12] We have both can't favorite a child.
Pete Neubig: [00:37:16] I know your answer. What is it? Dogs or cats? Dogs?
Trish Ferrier: [00:37:19] Yeah. My three little shepherds. I'm a dog person. Right.
Pete Neubig: [00:37:22] Well, guys, appreciate the time here. If if somebody wanted, you know, download this and they want to talk to you guys about, you know, hey, how do I how do I get my kids involved or how do I do this? How can they reach you guys? Trish. How can we reach you?
Trish Ferrier: [00:37:38] They can call us at 281807 4700. Or they can go to first class.com and email us. But yeah, we're we're available to help any way we can for any members.
Pete Neubig: [00:37:53] Yeah I know you guys give back to Northam all the time and we appreciate you in the Houston chapter for sure. And of course you guys do stuff nationally as well. Um, if you want to join Northam, if you are downloading this and you're not an Arpa member and you're on the fence, please go to Northam NRP. Org Or call them at (800) 782-3452. And if you want to grow up and be like Trish one day and have virtual assistants, please give us a shout. Please give us a try. At VPM Solutions.com we have over 25,000 profiles built on the site now and we have I think we just added some more training as of this recording and we're training. Um, coming out this week and we're recording this in July. All right, everybody, thank you guys so much for being here today.
Amber Ferrier: [00:38:45] Thank you.
A Podcast | Building a Family Legacy: Insights from Trish and Amber Ferrier in Property Management
In this episode we call "Building a Family Legacy: Insights from Trish and Amber Ferrier in Property Management," join NARPM®️ Radio host Pete Neubig as you step into the world of property management innovation with Trish Ferrier, MPM®️ RMP®️, and Amber Ferrier, RMP®️, with First Class Realty & Management, CRMC®️. As a family with a passion for real estate, they share their experiences and wisdom on making a family-run property management business thrive. Discover the secrets to fostering leadership from within the family and when to seek external talent. If you're a property manager looking to balance family and business, this episode is a goldmine of inspiration.
Trish Ferrier is the President/Broker of First Class Realty. Trish is the first woman to earn a MPM (Master Property Manager) designation in Houston. Her firm also holds the prestigious CRMC (Certified Residential Management Company) designation. Trish served as Houston Chapter President in 2017 and again in 2023. She also served as Ambassador for the NARPM central Regions in 2018. Trish has owned and managed investment properties for over 30 years.