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Real Estate Investing Lessons Learned on the Court with LeBron: Brian Grimes Turns Existing Structures into Affordable Housing — and Massive Profits

Brian Grimes went to Columbia University, but he traces his success in real estate — culminating in the founding of 24/7 Cash Flow University  and the YouTube channel Brian Loves Cash Flow — back to the time he spent on the basketball court with LeBron James.

No, he didn’t play for the NBA — but at 6’4” was nationally ranked by the age of 14, and when he was a freshman in high school he flew to Akron to play LeBron, then a junior in high school but already on the radar as the next Michael Jordan. 

“He was unbelievable,” Grimes said to Michael Duncan on The Road to Financial Freedom Podcast. “As high as he can jump even now at 38, I mean, this guy could fly at 17, 18 — chest at the rim.”

What stood out to Grimes about LeBron, though, was the work ethic. “He has definitely natural talents and gifts,” Grimes said, “but he puts in that work. He gets in the gym. And even back then he was putting in a lot of work that, you know, high school kids were out partying and not putting in.”

Starting his post-Ivy League career as a financial advisor, Grimes attacked real estate investing with the same vigor he used to attack basketball. In two years, he had enough cash flow from rental property to cover his bills, fully extracting himself from the nine-to-five in seven years.

His niche is to create affordable housing through “co-living” renovations.

“Instead of renting that single bed three bed/one bath for $1,250 a month, I can rent each co-living unit for $750, utilities included, internet included,” Grimes said. “And now I have this product where this property was spitting out $1,250 now spitting out $2,250 a month.”

This is not only good for Grimes, but good for the tenants, who have an affordable place to live. And it’s good for the communities because it allows more people to move back into neighborhoods they might otherwise have not been able to afford to live in. 

“You know, I grew up in the C class area of Philly,” Grimes said, “and I have a passion for going back into communities that need development and just rehabbing them in ways that make sense and that create affordable housing.”