How Ari Rastegar Built His Real Estate Empire

Ari Rastegar

It has been said that the road to success is paved with failures. Even Thomas Edison, a noted genius and verifiable success story, chalked up 10,000 failures in his search for a workable storage battery.

While real estate mogul Ari Rastegar may not have 10,000 failures to his name, he's well aware of the value of failure when building a legacy. It's a topic he's explored extensively in his book "The Gift of Failure: Turn My Missteps Into Your Epic Success," and it's a concept he credits his wild success to.

Astegar, who has been called the "King of Austin Real Estate," has risen from delivering pizzas to building an incredible real estate empire. But it hasn't happened without missteps, mistakes, and a healthy dose of humor and humility.

The road to real estate riches

Many of the world's richest people have made their fortunes through real estate; it's one of the most well-worn paths toward billionaire status. Rastegar started his journey with a $3,000 loan and the knowledge that real estate could be leveraged to create wealth. He knew through experience that there was room in the private equity world for a real estate company different from any other one that put investors first.

Beginning his property investing journey in 2012 with a handful of properties in Austin, Texas, Rastegar launched his company in 2015, focusing on recession-resilient commercial properties and multifamily apartment complexes. He drew the attention of national media with the purchase of a Dallas highrise (1899 McKinney). He quickly grew a reputation for refurbishing vintage properties and creating must-visit locations, such as Hyde Park Square by UT, earning the moniker "Oracle of Austin" after investing in 11 commercial properties amid the precariousness of the pandemic.

"It's a little embarrassing," Rastegar humbly admitted to Austin Monthly. "When I think of the Oracle, I think of the Oracle of Omaha (Warren Buffett). I wouldn't put myself in that category. I'm certainly no magician like him."

Magician or not, Rastegar has certainly captivated the real estate industry and paved a way for himself over more than a decade of institutional real estate investing.

Success before 40

A child of the excessive '80s, parts of the ethos of the era of power suits and power business moves have definitely rubbed off on Rastegar. He was raised in big-city Texas but left Texas for the Big Apple after earning a law degree in 2008.

Rastegar did not initially pursue success through real estate ventures. Beginning as a practicing attorney in New York City, he took a hard turn away from the law and opened his own events company, Capital A Entertainment. Rastegar's enthusiasm and creativity were a perfect match for the events industry, where he regularly rubbed elbows with and planned events for Hollywood glitterati.

If anything could ultimately define Rastegar, it would be his multidisciplinary nature his eye and interest were drawn toward investments and real estate. Eventually, Rastegar was drawn home to Texas, where Google had just announced the unveiling of a gigabit fiber internet network in Austin. He had the foresight to see significant changes in the capital city and knew there was a place for his ideas and drive.

Building Rastegar Property Company

With Google's move into Austin, Rastegar threw himself into learning everything he could about the quality of life in the capital. "I started checking all these things and had this 'a-ha' moment. I shaped my life and my business on it. Austin was just like a glaring neon sign," he told Austin Monthly.

While the real estate iron was hot, Rastegar began buying up multifamily buildings. With deal after big deal negotiated, Rastegar built a reputation for himself as a force to be reckoned with within the real estate sphere. In early 2021, Rastegar Property Company launched multi-million dollar institutional fund to buy and renovate properties built before 1990 in Austin and 11 other states. Today, he built Rastegar Property Company to include hundreds of millions in commercial real estate assets spread across 34 major US cities.

Staying competitive

Rastegar may have built his empire out of bricks fashioned from hard-won experience, but his attitude today is focused on competitiveness. He maintains an intense routine of biohacks, early wake-up times, exercise, meditation, and self-reflection. Rastegar views his body as part of the entire orchestra of his life, from his real estate prospects to his personal relationships. "I try to calibrate all the instruments within my body," he explains.

It's all designed to keep him on the road to winning. Rastegar has solidified his reputation as someone who is laser-focused on his lofty goals and is relentless in his pursuit of achievement.

Despite the zen-like focus that he has found as he enters his forties, Rastegar is still high-intensity in his business. The weeks often find him flying coast-to-coast for business dealings and still finding time to spend with his family in Texas. He has several multi-million dollar deals in the works, and he intends to have a front-row seat to continue to turn Austin into the next Silicon Valley.

Not ready to rest just yet, Rastegar is enthusiastic about his future. "I've never worked harder in my life than I'm working right now," he explained to Austin Monthly, "but it's my dream. I dreamt this. I wished for it."