A Life Worth Living as a Real Estate Social Entrepreneur: Eric Raydon Entrepreneurship / Stories

I sat down not once, but two times at Dreamer’s Coffee House to first interview Eric Raydon, then later collect the story of the company he co-owns, Marmot Properties.

Eric seeks a life worth living through faith, family, friends and the greater good. His advice is to find your passion and follow it. Network relentlessly but not blindly because people that you know and trust are your base. He says to get involved and most importantly earn an education, especially a masters level professional degree because it always gives you something to fall back on, but even Eric knows that’s not enough. The only real security is through building wealth and taking an equity stake in business.

Job security is an illusion. Unless you have equity you are just a number. You are a cost center and those can be cut.

He called it a stream of consciousness as I madly typed every single detail of his story that started out with earning an undergraduate degree from USC in business and real estate development. Then his career officially kicked off in 1991 when he worked in development for a company that moved him back and forth to Vegas and later assigned him to projects in Los Angeles and Phoenix. After a few years, his parents reached out and asked him to help run the family business.

This was no easy task. Eric helped build the family’s independent energy company up to the point that it went public through a reverse merger in a public shell. The company stock rose from one to eight dollars per share in the years just before the Asian financial crisis. It was a wild ride, and the family sold the company in a merger. Shortly after Eric packed up his pathfinder and moved to Vail.

Eric’s life consisted of nine hours a week of work at Beaver Creek paired with some energy and real estate consulting on the side. He skied 60 days in one season and applied for jobs all over the resort. The story gets better to find out he met his wife during this time in Vail and spent his other hours applying to business school.

I did independent consulting, applied for business school and skied 60 days in one season.

With a scholarship to Purdue, Eric accepted the offer and completed an MBA between 1999-2001. He studied finance and e-business during the internet boom. A summer internship at Intel in Albuquerque, New Mexico turned into his job out of business school. He married his wife and became a Senior Business Analyst heavily involved in supply and demand of site selection development for facilities worth half a billion dollars.

After four years, Eric moved to Oregon to work at Intel’s main research and development campus. Incredible intiatives like self healing internet technology were part of the projects on which he found himself involved. He was a top performer and was regularly recognized for it, yet something was missing.

With the opportunity to manage a 120 million dollar project, Eric moved his family to Washington State. He joined a project that developed a four diamond condo-hotel, spa and conference center in Seattle. Although exciting and his passion came back to his work, this unfortunately was the wrong time in the market for job security.

In 2008 the yield curve inverted. I called the recession but my brother Bryan said it would be bad and we would lose our jobs.

_53A1516It was 2008 when Eric recognized that the yield curve inverted. Even with an MBA, he’d lose his job in this recession. With refusal to ever give up, Eric joined his brothers in brainstorming what would finally emerge as their true professional passion. The Raydon brothers shared a vision for urban re-development and studied all the cities in the interior western United States to determine that Reno had the most improvement potential.

Their passion is what drives them to excellence. They completely trust their team and rely on relationships where each person is held accountable. One of the most important pieces of their work is sharing the credit. Midtown, where they primarily focus their attention, changed because people like Jessica Schneider and Hillary Schieve paved the way to make a huge impact. Since 2010, the Raydon brothers rehabbed nearly 200 dilapidated residences with the belief that citizens of this City are entitled to clean, safe neighborhoods with quality housing.

Midtown was Jessica and Hillary’s brain child and we just happened to buy a bunch of property there. We are part of the story; we are not ‘the’ story!

Connect with Eric via LinkedIn | Learn more about Marmot Properties

PC: Marmot Properties

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