A 16-Point Checklist of Actions to Take AFTER Deciding to Invest in a Syndication

Most of the time spent on a passive investment decision occurs before you make the investment; however, there are many important actions to take after you have decided to invest in a deal as a limited partner. It is easy to get excited about doing the next deal, but before you do the next deal, let’s think about how you should organize and keep track of all of the critical information that is involved with passive investing.

Actions to consider…

1) Create your deal folders

  •  Email folder
  • Computer folder
  • Physical folder (yes, I still do this with a manilla folder)

2) Decide on “who” the investor will be

  • You, personally
  • LLC
  • Trust
  • Self-Directed IRA

3) Where will the cash come from?

  • which checking account
  • do you need to transfer funds
  • policy loan from life insurance
  • move funds from a Line of Credit
  • distribution from one LLC entity into another LLC entity

4) Gather the final subscription documents you need to sign

  • Operating agreement
  • Subscription agreement
  • ACH agreement for distributions
  • Other documents

5) Sign/Scan/Email

  • This can be more complicated / time consuming if investing via an “entity” that  you can’t directly sign for (Trust, SDIRA, LLC, etc.). Keep this time factor in mind…

6) Create a list of “deal to-do’s” in your calendar

  • Many items from this list, discussed here, could be on the “deal to-do” action list
  • It’s easy to get distracted, so this to-do list will be very helpful

7) Save the documents to your deal folders

  • Documents you have signed, but the sponsor has not signed yet. You want to know what you have signed.
  • Email folder
  • Computer folder
  • Print for Physical folder

8) Confirm receipt of deal documents

  • Save this email from the sponsor

9) Wire the investment funds

  • Send email to sponsor documenting you have taken this action

10) Confirm sponsor has received the funds

  • Be sure to get an email from the sponsor confirming this

11) Receive fully executed documents from the sponsor

  • Sometimes you have to chase the sponsor
  • You want executed documents with your signature and the investment sponsor’s signature

12) If the sponsor has an online portal:

  • Save your login information
  • Bookmark the website name (URL) of the online portal
  • Verify your investment shows up in the portal

13) Add the investment to your tracking spreadsheet (or software). Fill in all the data fields that you will refer to one day for portfolio analysis, sorting, data management, distribution tracking, K1 tracking, etc. For example:

  • Date
  • Amount invested
  • Sponsor
  • Investment Entity
  • Investment type
  • Hold-term
  • Class type/Category (i.e. multifamily, self storage, private loan, etc.)
  • Expected financial performance
  • IRR
  • Equity multiple
  • CoC (Cash-on-cash)
  • Refinance potential?
  • Tax treatment
  • One-time or commitment

I encourage you to do this as soon as possible after you decide to invest. It really will become fuzzy down the road and you are going to want to come back and look at “what you expected” from the investment…

  • Consider joining the Infield to get a copy of the Left Field Investors “Portfolio Tracker” 

14) Add the investment to your balance sheet and/or accounting software

  • And/or send information to your bookkeeper/CPA

15) Set up calendar reminders

  • Updates from the sponsor (Quarterly / Annually)
  • Distributions
  • You want the sponsor to know you are paying attention

16) Wait for the cash to roll in…hopefully!

Naturally, you are going to want to move on to analyzing the next deal, but, believe me, months or years down the line, you will be very glad you took the time to organize each deal because there will be times you will want to look back and analyze various aspects of the deal(s).

Good luck!

David Shirkey is a full-time investor. He leads the Michigan Investor Group (MIG) in order to share and learn investment knowledge and experience with others.  He has a special focus on operating companies in the manufacturing space, mobile home parks and high cash value life insurance and the Infinite Banking Concept (IBC).  You can connect with David at dshirkey@orbitform.com. 

Nothing on this website should be considered financial advice. Investing involves risks which you assume. It is your duty to do your own due diligence. Read all documents and agreements before signing or investing in anything. It is your duty to consult with your own legal, financial and tax advisors regarding any investment.

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Jim Pfeifer

President, Chief Executive Officer, Founder

Jim Pfeifer is one of the founders of Left Field Investors and the host of the Passive Investing from Left Field podcast. Left Field Investors is a group dedicated to educating and assisting like-minded investors negotiate the nuances of the passive investing landscape and world of syndications. Jim is a former financial advisor who became frustrated with the one-path-fits-all approach of the standard financial services industry. Jim now concentrates on investing in real assets that produce cash flow and is committed to sharing his knowledge with others who are interested in learning a different way to grow wealth.

Jim not only advises and helps people get started in passive real estate syndications, he also invests alongside them in small groups to allow for diversification among multiple investments and syndication sponsors. Jim believes the most important factor in a successful syndication is finding a sponsor that he knows, likes and trusts.

He has invested in over 100 passive syndications including apartments, mobile homes, self-storage, private lending and notes, ATM’s, commercial and industrial triple net leases, assisted living facilities and international coffee farms and cacao producers. Jim is constantly looking for new investment ideas that match his philosophy of real assets producing cash flow as well as looking for new sponsors with whom he can build quality, long-term relationships. Jim earned a degree in Finance & Marketing from the University of Oregon and a Master’s in Business Education from The Ohio State University. He has worked as a reinsurance underwriter, high school finance teacher, financial advisor and now works exclusively as a full-time passive investor. Jim lives in Dublin, Ohio with his wife, three kids and two dogs. In his free time, he loves to ski, play Ultimate frisbee and cheer on the Buckeyes.

Jim earned a degree in Finance & Marketing from the University of Oregon and a Master’s in Business Education from The Ohio State University. He has worked as a reinsurance underwriter, high school finance teacher, financial advisor and now works exclusively as a full-time passive investor. Jim lives in Dublin, Ohio with his wife, three kids and two dogs. In his free time, he loves to ski, play Ultimate frisbee and cheer on the Buckeyes.

Chad Ackerman

Chief Operating Officer, Founder

Chad is the Founder & Chief Operating Officer of Left Field Investors and the host of the LFI Spotlight podcast. Chad was in banking most of his career with a focus on data analytics, but in March of 2023 he left his W2 to become LFI’s second full time employee.

Chad always had a passion for real estate, so his analytics skills translated well into the deal analyzer side of the business. Through his training, education and networking Chad was able to align his passive investing to compliment his involvement with LFI while allowing him to grow his wealth and take steps towards financial freedom. He has appreciated the help he’s received from others along his journey which is why he is excited to host the LFI Spotlight podcast and share the experience of other investors and industry experts to assist those that are looking for education for their own journey.

Chad has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business with a Minor in Real Estate from the University of Cincinnati. He is working to educate his two teenagers in the passive investing world. In his spare time he likes to golf, kayak, and check out the local brewery scene.

Ryan Steig

Chief Financial Officer, Founder

Ryan Stieg started down the path of passive investing like many of us did, after he picked up a little purple book called Rich Dad, Poor Dad. The problem was that he did that in college and didn’t take action to start investing passively until many years later when that itch to invest passively crept back up.

Ryan became an accidental landlord after moving from Phoenix back to Montana in 2007, a rental he kept until 2016 when he started investing more intentionally. Since 2016, Ryan has focused (or should we say lack thereof) on all different kinds of investing, always returning to real estate and business as his mainstay. Ryan has a small portfolio of one-to-three-unit rentals across four different markets in the US. He has also invested in over fifty real estate syndication investments individually or with an investment group or tribe. Working to diversify in multiple asset classes, Ryan invests in multi-family, note funds, NNN industrial, retail, office, self-storage, online businesses, start-ups, and several other asset classes that further cement his self-diagnosis of “shiny object syndrome”.

However, with all of those reaches over the years, Ryan still believes in the long-term success and tenets of passive, cash-flow-focused investing with proven syndicators and shared knowledge in investing.

When he’s not working with LFI or on his personal passive investments, he recently opened a new Club Pilates franchise studio after an insurance career. Outside of that, he can be found with his wife watching whatever sport one of their two boys is involved in during that particular season.

Steve Suh

Chief Content Officer, Founder

Steve Suh, one of the founders of Left Field Investors and its Chief Content Officer, has been involved with real estate and alternative assets since 2005. Like many, he saw his net worth plummet during the two major stock market crashes in the early 2000s. Since then, he vowed to find other ways to invest his money. Reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad gave Steve the impetus to learn about real estate investing. He first became a landlord after purchasing his office condo. He then invested passively as a limited partner in oil and gas drilling syndications but quickly learned the importance of scrutinizing sponsors when he stopped getting returns after only a few months. Steve came back to real estate by buying a few small residential rentals. Seeing that this was not easily scalable, he searched for alternative ideas. After listening to hundreds of podcasts and attending numerous real estate investing meetings, he determined that passively investing in real estate syndications was the best avenue to get great, risk-adjusted returns. He has invested in dozens of syndications involving apartment buildings, self-storage facilities, resort properties, ATMs, Bitcoin mining funds, car washes, a coffee farm, and even a Broadway show.

When Steve is not vetting commercial real estate syndications in the evenings, he is stomping out eye diseases and improving vision during the day as an ophthalmologist. He enjoys playing in his tennis and pickleball leagues and rooting for his Buckeyes and Steelers football teams. In the past several years, he took up running and has completed three full marathons, including the New York City Marathon. He is always on a quest to find great pizza, BBQ brisket, and bourbon. He enjoys traveling with his wife and their three adult kids. They usually go on a medical mission trip once a year to southern Mexico to provide eye surgeries and glasses to the residents. Steve has enjoyed being a part of Left Field Investors to help others learn about the merits of passive, real asset investments.

Sean Donnelly

Chief Culture Officer, Founder

Sean holds a W2 job in the finance sector and began his real estate investing journey shortly after earning his MBA. Unfortunately, it could not have begun at a worse time … anyone remember 2007 … but even the recession provided worthy lessons. Sean stayed in the game continuing to find his place, progressing from flipping to owning single and multi-family rentals to now funding opportunities through syndications. While Sean is still heavily invested in the equities market and holds a small portfolio of rentals, he strongly believes passive investing is the best way to offset the cyclical nature of traditional investment vehicles as well as avoid the headaches of direct property ownership. Through consistent cash flow, long term yield and available tax benefits, the diversification offered with passive investing brings a welcomed balance to an otherwise turbulent investing scheme. What Sean likes most about the syndication space is that the investment opportunities are not “one size fits all” and the community of investors genuinely want to help.

He earned a B.S. in Finance from Iowa State University in 1995 and a MBA from Otterbein University in 2007. Sean has lived in eight states but has called Ohio home for the last 20+.  When not attending his children’s various school/sporting events, Sean can be found running, golfing, shooting or fly-fishing.

Patrick Wills

Chief Information Officer, Advisory Partner

An active real estate investor since 2017, Patrick Wills’ investing journey began like many others – after reading the “purple book” by Robert Kiyosaki. Patrick started with single family rentals, and while they performed well, he quickly realized their inability to scale efficiently while remaining passive. He discovered syndications via podcasts and local meetups and never looked back. He joined Left Field Investors in 2022 as a member and has quickly become an integral part of the team as Vice President of Technology.

An I.T. Systems Engineer by trade, he experienced the limitations of traditional Wall Street investing firsthand in his career and knew there had to be a better way to truly have financial freedom.

Unfortunately, that better way is inaccessible to those who need it most. His mission is to make alternative investments accessible to everyone who seeks to take control of their financial future and to pursue their passions in life.

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