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Three Key Rules for Selecting Exceptional Partners

Most people are familiar with the three rules for investing in real estate:

  1. Location

  2. Location

  3. Location

Fewer people have an idea on how partners are selected.

Three Keys Investments takes partnership seriously and while track record and past experience are critical, they're also superficial indicators of what will come from a specific partnership. Yes, this is business, and we believe that understanding human nature is foundational to the best business.


We have an unstated rule that our partnerships are formed with people we've known for at least one year. Initially this held Three Keys Investments back, but we'd go back and do it this way all over again.

It's easy to see the best in others on social media or at an event but we don't marry every person we fall in love with, right? Partnerships cannot be based on a fling.

Consider this that a typical hold period for an investment is 3-5 years.

It's critical to have full confidence that everyone within a partnership is committed and capable of being fully present for the duration of the hold period (because who enjoys doing all the work for the group project). Especially with partnerships that involve limited partner capital a high level of confidence within a partnership is imperative.


Understanding how partners manage projects and what their communication process through speed bumps is important. The Conscious Investor Podcast creates a fantastic initial window into what collaboration practically looks like.

Does the person stick to the arranged time?

Do they show up on time?

Are they easy to talk with?

What level of trust do they approach others with?

How do they speak about people and situations off-air?

In addition to the podcast, we've partnered with others to create important pieces of digital content (this is where one of our favorite partnerships stemmed from), learning opportunities, and events.

You'll notice a select group of people who have graced the podcast more than once or are consistent can be assured that we are keen on deepening that relationship for a future partnership.

  1. Break Bread.

We go out of our way to meet potential partners in person. This means attending events, being willing to travel out of our way (for those at TKI's far north Idaho location this is taxing), being hospitable when potential partners are passing through our town, and when tired from traveling, still making that extra effort to grab breakfast, coffee or the like with potential partners.

We value face-to-face meetings because there are no filters and this creates a critical foundation for communication. Understanding the nuances of one's communication style prevents misunderstanding that can lead to unnecessary friction. This is critical because in every investment, just as there will be large and small successes, there will be setbacks and obstacles that must be managed with humble grace and precision.

Unconventional rules for partnership formation? Yes, we're aware. But margins for mistakes are narrow and an underlying trust and confidence in fellow partners prevents larger complications that put investor capital at risk.

Serving passive investors is the heartbeat of Three Keys Investments and we believe this unconventional process best protects our passive investors capital.

From forming strong partnerships to finding the best opportunities and delivering strong returns we have your best interest at heart.

Join Three Keys Investments by signing up for our Investor Club.


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