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Meri Weingarten Reference Call

David Engel called Meri Weingarten about her experience investing with Sherman & Associates. Below is a transcript of the call.

David: When did you & Jay do business together?

Meri: We owned a property together for a little over a year. Prior to that, I had a phone relationship with Jay. He was my advisor/mentor. That was about 6-8 months or a year before we bought the property. So, I've known Jay for a couple years now.

David: What would you consider to be Jay's strengths, assets, or things you like about him?

Meri: Well, Jay is very smart. Very methodical. He really doesn't make hasty decisions. And he considers all aspects when he's evaluating a real estate property. He acknowledges what he knows and doesn't know.

Jay's really honest; that's what drew me to him in the first place.

David: Would you please clarify what Jay was responsible for specifically?

Meri: In our business relationship? I knew him for a while before we became partners.

David: Yes, your business relationship.

Meri: He found the investment property that I bought. Basically, he was presenting to a group. It was the second or third property he presented that I looked at. In the process of getting it, he answered many questions as I tried to figure out if it was right for me.

Then, he decided he wanted to partner on it with me. I jumped at the chance because it was an opportunity for me to get learn from him better and get to know him. I felt very secure becoming partners with Jay.

We basically worked together on getting the mortgage. He did a lot of the work dealing with the Realtor and owners of the community. He dealt with them completely. He helped me sort through all the issues with the mortgage and finding the best deal. The mortgage was in my name, so I had to do certain things. But, really, Jay did everything.

David: On a scale of excellent, good, fair, or poor, how would you rate Jay's overall performance?

Meri: Oh. He's excellent. He's terrific.

David: Why?

Meri: I think I've said a lot of it. He's honest. He's very detail oriented. He's very objective. I think that's what I like about him.

He doesn't get emotional. There's so many decisions in real estate. His research is expansive. He's thorough; he's not just talking off the cuff. When Jay says something, he's given it a lot of thought.

He's not afraid to admit when he's made mistakes either. He's, overall, a very trustworthy guy.

David: Tell me a little bit about Jay's communication skills. Did he answer your voicemails on time? Did you feel like he listened to you?

Meri: Yes. I mean when I was first talking to Jay--before we were partners--he and I would have these really long conversations. We had never met each other. He saw me as someone who was really trying to learn how to become a real estate investor. He would call me back. He would stay on the phone with me for great lengths. Nobody had ever done that. It was really quite unusual. Once we became partners, that has never changed. He's reliable and totally accountable.

David: Let's think back to that transaction you did together. Did any obstacles get in the way during your transaction? How did Jay handle that?

Meri: We had a lot of obstacles--like when you buy any piece of real estate. I remember getting the mortgage. It was before the real mortgage meltdown, but the market was starting to change. It was a little dicey if I was going to be able to get a loan. What rate would I get? He worked with me on navigating all those challenges.

We really had to think through a lot of different scenarios. We were dealing with a company that didn't really return on phone calls. The house was ready much later than we were promised. But he took on all of that. He made the hard phone calls. He answered the emails. Even though the mortgage was in my name, and I was the one who had to sign all the papers, I really felt he was there as a true partner.

David: Thank you, Meri. Do you have any final comments or suggestions about Jay?

Meri: Well. I would just say that, as a human being and a business partner, Jay is top notch. I trust him, and I would do business with him again in a heart beat. I'm always in touch with him trying to find out what he's doing. Not only seeing if I could learn from what he's doing but also be a part of it.

I think he has sound judgment. There's so much due diligence to do when you're buying something. It's so nice to have somebody that you can talk about it with that you can trust.

I want to add that it's no small thing to go into a partnership like this. My name is in the mortgage. It's on my credit report. I am really on the line. I would say I am comfortable being in that relationship with Jay. And I would not be with all other people.

David: Thank you so much, Meri, for your insights about Jay Sherman. I appreciate your time.
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