American President Barack Obama once said:
“Our destiny is not written for us, but by us.”
Real estate entrepreneur Manzoor Syed has truly written his own destiny.
Growing up, Manzoor was groomed for real estate. When most others were just beginning to walk, his father, who devoted his entire life to the property market, trained Manzoor to succeed him.
Manzoor’s father had a goal in mind: Let him take over the family business.
But Manzoor had other plans. He admitted that he was kind of a rebellious person. So, he didn’t agree with the path his father set for him. He set out to do anything but real estate.
“This is my life,” says Manzoor. “I wanted to figure out what I’m going to do. So, I dropped out of college and became a barber.”
Manzoor Syed ventured into the retail space and founded a store named Arkadia. The front of the establishment was a clothing store, and the back served as a barbershop. Sure, he was renting, but it surely wasn’t real estate.
While with his clients, Manzoor found himself talking nonstop about real estate. He’d go on for an hour about his thoughts on the property space, how to venture into real estate investing, and financial literacy. But that’s just talk. He’s into retail and being a barber.
After six months, his shop unfortunately closed, and he lost about $300,000.
Despite his evident love for the industry, it took Manzoor a fateful meeting with Stefan Aarnio, who would later become his mentor, to make him realize that he was meant to be in real estate.
“This guy was like a real estate rockstar,” gushes Manzoor Syed. “After I met Stefan Aarnio, I realized that I could be in real estate and still be cool.”
Manzoor did make a big comeback in the real estate sector, but it was still not what his father expected.
“I wanted to step out from my dad’s and Stefan’s shadow,” admitted Manzoor. “And I figured the best way to kind of do that is to tackle a large problem, which is affordable housing.”
And that’s precisely what he’s doing.
ATTOM Data Solutions Q1 2017 U.S. Home Affordability Index found that one in four housing markets are considered not affordable. In Canada alone, Oxford Economics says the average home is 34% more expensive than the median income household can afford.
To help solve this crisis, Manzoor founded Pebble Developments. The company aims to enable the public to take matters into their own hands, and it allows for the creation of affordable housing through crowdfunding. This means that through Pebble, ordinary people would be able to invest in large-scale real estate projects at a low risk and cost.
At the same time, Manzoor also offers coaching services to anyone who’s interested in financial independence through financial literacy, real estate, business, and personal development. His main goal as a coach is to help people achieve millionaire status within five years.
Manzoor Syed is meant to be in real estate. It took him some time to end up there, but now that he is, he’s doing it his own way.