Centered around the values of trust, communication, and transparency, Jessica Lemon has devoted her entire professional life to helping others. After a career in the fire service, Jessica’s entrepreneurial spirit led her to combine her business degree and her lifelong passions for real estate and for helping others to launch J. Lemon Investments, LLC, in Sacramento, California. With the same commitment and energy that drove her as an EMT and a firefighter, Jessica wasted no time in solidifying her career as a real estate investor, building an impressive portfolio with multiple investments across the Eastern Seaboard in just her first two months in the field—including a triplex in Pennsylvania and a single-family fix-and-flip in Texas projected to bring a profit of nearly 40%.
In April of 2020, Jessica founded J. Lemon Investments to help other people achieve their own financial goals through real estate investment opportunities. The company focuses on acquiring a variety of properties nationwide–including fix-and-flips, buy-and-holds, single-family, and multifamily—and equips clients with the knowledge and resources to fulfill their objectives, whether they’re looking to buy, sell, or invest in real estate. We met with Jessica to learn more about her firm, her astounding early success, as what’s on the horizon.
First, tell us a bit more about your company.
Our mission is to organically build genuine relationships and to create win-win situations for everyone involved. That’s why our motto affirms to our clients: We are “investing in real estate, so we can invest in you.” We truly care about our clients and we’re dedicated to helping them increase their income or build generational wealth through real estate investments.
As soon as people saw that I’d launched my own company, they began reaching out to me and asking for help with their investments. We received a lot of interest right out of the gate, and I make it a top priority to communicate with our clients quickly and often throughout every step of the process. Transparency is incredibly important in all relationships, especially with my clients, and I take pride in being someone they can trust.
What is your primary role as president of J. Lemon Investment?
Clients often come to me with money to invest, but they have limited time and knowledge, so I begin by finding out what type of investment they’re looking for, passive or active ventures, and then explain their options. Clients investing significant capital generally want passive investments, such as engaging as a limited partner on a multifamily property to produce monthly cash flow. My goal is to at least double their investment so that they can reap the financial rewards without having to worry about the property management side.
We also work with seasoned investors who want to partner with us on a deal or want us to help them find a property that meets their criteria and objectives. I help these clients with networking as well as determining whether a property is worth acquiring for their portfolio. First, I find out what market they’re looking for, how many units, and any other preferences. Then I go through the DTLS and present them with options of properties that will not only fit their needs, but will also get them the highest return on their investment.
You clearly have a passion for helping people. Was this the inspiration behind starting your own real estate investment company?
I’ve always had an entrepreneurial soul, but my main objective was to find a job where I could help people and still have time with my family. In fact, that was why I left fire service. While it was so fulfilling to be helping people, I’d be gone two or three days each week. After meeting several people who worked in the real estate industry, I realized that’s what I really wanted to do. Now I’m still fulfilling my sincere desire to help others, but I’m doing so through real estate.
You’re also engaged in industry podcasts. Will you tell us about this?
My eyes light up whenever I talk about real estate, so podcasts have been a great way to share my knowledge and experience with a broader audience beyond my own clients. I also love picking the brains of other members of the real estate community so that we can gain insight from one another. Some of the podcasts I’ve had the pleasure to participate in include The Real Estate Syndication, Cash Flow Generation, and My First Investment Property.
You’ve accomplished a great deal as a real estate investor in a short amount of time. What’s in store for the future?
I want to continue to grow my company to include a team of amazing staff that shares my passion for the field and for our clients. With respect to our portfolio, we have several exciting potential new acquisitions on the horizon—a 66-unit apartment in Sacramento, CA, and some larger apartment properties, including a 124-unit in Texas and a 200-unit in the southeast region. I’m also in the process of building a huge network of likeminded individuals—people who value giving back to their communities more than focusing on dollar signs. To me, it’s all about being a light in the world.
You also have the noble goal to start a handful of nonprofits. Will you share some of these?
My long-term goal is to start four or five nonprofits. Since I have children, I want the world to be a better place when they get older, and because the youth is our future, I believe it’s important to help them and to assist the lower-income communities as well. I also love animals, so I want to start a nonprofit that would train shelter dogs. As a volunteer, I used to help train the dogs at local shelters to increase their chances of finding forever homes, and I learned that 60% of those adopted are returned due to behavioral issues, and many of them are euthanized. By starting a nonprofit, I could help lower that statistic.
What do you find most fulfilling about your work?
It’s incredibly fulfilling to have a job that allows me to help people improve their lives. For example, for many single moms, real estate investing could give them financial freedom as well as more time with their kids. For me, it’s never about the money. I find it empowering to guide clients toward generational wealth and to show them that they can do anything.
J. Lemon Investments, LLC