Joint Venture Real Estate Guide (For Airbnb)

Joint venture real estate

Investing in real estate can be difficult if you’re, well, let’s say low on funds.

But it is possible to invest in real estate with no money.

The solution: joint ventures (sometimes called a JV).

In this guide, I’m going to outline exactly:

  • What is a joint venture?
  • How can you use a JV to invest in real estate?
  • What are the risks of a joint venture?
  • Why anyone would want to give you money

If you’re ready to hop into real estate but funds are low, this guide will get you started AND leave you with some real, actionable tasks you can do today to get started.

In this guide:

Chapter 1: What is a real estate joint venture?
Chapter 2: Different types of joint ventures
Chapter 3: The real estate joint venture agreement
Chapter 4: Find real estate JV partners
Chapter 5: Building a relationship with investors
Chapter 6: How to structure a joint venture for real estate
Chapter 7: Being the “active” investor

Chapter 1: What is a real estate joint venture?

Real estate is an exciting industry with a bazillion ways to invest. But what happens when you really want to invest but you don’t have any money?

One popular way to get into real estate is by partnering with someone in a joint venture. You get to own property without spending any money, leveraging the resources and expertise of others.

In fact, that’s how Riley came to control over $10M in real estate in two years.

A real estate joint venture is a collaboration between two or more parties, pooling their resources and knowledge for a development project or investment. 

Many people partner to all kinds of reasons. Maybe one has valuable connections. Maybe one has a certain expertise. 

In a typical scenario to invest in Airbnbs for example, one party provides the capital required to purchase and renovate a property, while the other party contributes their time and effort to manage the project. 

We’ll discuss more about how exactly to structure the joint venture later on.

By partnering with someone who has the necessary capital, you can gain access to a valuable property. 

Think about it: you become co-owner of an entire property with $0 out of your own pocket.

You get to build equity while enjoying a return on your time investment.

Most things boil down to time or money (or both). And in this case, if you don’t have the money, you’d better have the time.

Chapter 2: Different types of joint ventures

Real estate joint ventures are collaborations between investors, each bringing unique skills, resources, and expertise to the table. 

And, as you can imagine, there are many ways to work together. 

There are five main ways:

Equity-based Joint Ventures:

In an equity-based joint venture, both parties contribute capital to finance the project. 

The partners share ownership in the property and divide costs and profits according to their respective equity shares. 

Or one person provides the money and the other provides the knowledge and expertise. This is common when one person has money but no time, and the other has time and knowledge but wishes to scale more quickly.

You might’ve heard this described as “sweat equity” – you’re getting a piece, but you earn it through your work.

Development Joint Ventures:

This type of joint venture involves investors where each owns some piece of the puzzle. For example, a landowner and a developer. 

The landowner contributes the land for development, while the developer brings expertise in construction, marketing, and project management. 

Profits are generally split with some ratio where everyone agrees.

Co-investment Joint Ventures:

This type of joint venture involves multiple investors pooling their resources (usually money) to invest in a real estate project. 

Co-investment joint ventures allow smaller investors to participate in larger-scale projects that they may not have been able to undertake individually. 

For example, it’s very rare that one person ever owns a large apartment complex. That’s actually many investors putting their money in, and getting a proportional amount of the profits. 

You might’ve also heard these called syndications.

Strategic Joint Ventures:

Not as common with real estate, but I wanted to mention it so this guide felt complete. 

Strategic joint ventures are when two or more parties collaborate on a real estate project. 

This is similar to the Development joint venture, but what each person provides could be anything.

Like let’s say a construction company and a marketing firm join forces to develop and sell a residential complex. 

Each of those partners brings unique expertise to the project. That’s going to increase the chances of success.

jv agreement handshake

Chapter 3: The real estate joint venture agreement

I’m not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV. 

So this following chapter is for basic information only. Please consult with a real lawyer for help regarding your specific situation and risk tolerance.

In the US, there are three basic structures. Let’s go into them just a bit.

LLC (Limited Liability Company):

Owning a property through an LLC provides the owners (known as members) with limited liability protection, which means their personal assets are separate from the assets of the LLC. 

This can be particularly beneficial if the property is a rental property or if the owners are not actively involved in managing the property. 

Additionally, an LLC can offer tax advantages and can make it easier to raise capital, as well as providing a clear and organized way of managing the property. 

Just know an LLC may be subject to more regulations and formalities than other structures. 

Most real estate in the United States, if it’s in an entity, is in an LLC. 


A partnership can be a good option if there are multiple owners who want to share in the profits and losses of the property.

Problem is that partners in a partnership are personally liable for the business’s debts and liabilities. So their personal assets are at risk. 

This structure is generally not ideal if there is only one owner or if the property is particularly risky.

Joint Venture:

The name can be used loosely to describe anything where two people work together, but the name actually refers to a specific type of deal between people or entities.

A joint venture can be an option for a specific project or a short-term investment, but it may not be suitable for long-term ownership of a property. 

In a joint venture, the parties involved share the profits, risks, and costs of the project, but they are not considered separate legal entities, which means that personal assets are not protected.

This is also the method we suggest the most to our members. Relationships will last (usually) five years. By that point, we can refinance the capital partners out of the deal and gain full ownership.

Throughout this blog, this is what I’m referring to when I say a joint venture (JV).

Looking for JV partners

Chapter 4: Find real estate JV partners

If you’re left with $0 to start, we must find the money partner. We’ll dive into how we structure that deal in a minute, but first let’s touch on finding those people. 

Of course we dive deep into this process in BNB Inner Circle, but here I’ve broken down the process into ten steps.

  1. Identify your circles of influence. Break down your potential partners into three groups: first connections (friends, family, and colleagues), second connections (friends of friends, friends of family, friends of colleagues), and third connections (everybody else; the vast majority of people who don’t know you personally).
  1. Start with first connections. Since these people already know, like, and trust you, they are the most likely candidates for your first joint venture partnership.
  1. Move on to second connections. When you’ve exhausted your first connections, consider the referrals from them. These second connections will have some trust transferred to you. It’s a bit like taking a restaurant recommendation from someone you trust. Hearing it from them instantly makes you consider something that much more.
  1. Expand to third connections. Once you’ve gone through your first and second connections, you may need to reach out to the broader population. This will involve more effort to establish that trust and credibility.
  1. Develop a list and steps. These criteria and steps to follow when evaluating potential partners will help you maintain consistency and make the process more efficient.
  1. Go through your phone. Contact your connections and ask if they know someone who might be interested in a joint venture partnership. This is a simple way to start exploring your network for potential partners.
  1. Attend networking events and join online forums and groups. These are places where potential money partners might hang out. By engaging with others in the real estate community, you increase the chances of finding a suitable joint venture partner.
  1. Build trust with potential partners. Share your expertise, success stories, and goals to establish credibility and build relationships with potential partners.
  1. Be clear about your expectations. When approaching potential partners, clearly explain what you expect from the partnership and what you can offer in return.
  1. Vet your potential partners. Check their backgrounds, financial stability, and experience in real estate investing before entering into a partnership. One thing my business partner Riley requires is a screenshot of their bank account. You’d hate to spend months with someone only to find out they don’t actually have the money you need.
joint venture relationships

Chapter 5: Building a relationship with investors

A bit part of joint ventures is building trust. 

I mentioned it a bit in Chapter 4 above, but this part is critical for any business. So I want to dive in more. 

Real estate is no different; there are often hundreds of thousands of dollars at play here.  

If you lack experience, this process is especially crucial. So what can you do?

Think about how other businesses get you to trust them. In a word: marketing.

If you’re new, there are many options, from billboards to TV spots to handing out flyers.

But if you’re on this page, my assumption is you’d prefer options that didn’t cost anything at first. Which is a great idea, because if you’re new to marketing, those methods of lead generation can be hard to track. 

Plus, you don’t know if you’ll even get any results from them.

The best option to build trust is social media. Instagram is free. TikTok is free. Whatever comes next will be free.

You don’t have to be the expert, you only have to document your learning journey. 

Create an education plan for yourself. Then, as you come across new information, document and share on your social media. Don’t stress over optimizing anything yet, just share.

Over time, people can see that you’re serious. That you know what you’re talking about. And that they trust you.

Another option to build trust with potential investors, especially if you lack experience, is leaning on the expertise of others in the industry. Join forces with seasoned real estate investors who can guide you through the process and help you avoid costly mistakes.

Chapter 6: How to structure a joint venture for real estate 

Generally speaking, most real estate joint ventures like this start at 50/50.

One partner brings the money, the other brings the knowledge and work. 

How exactly you split things up is entirely up to you. For example, you could split 62/38 and every Friday you must deliver a pizza to them, and every third Tuesday they owe you an entertaining magic show of exactly 23 minutes. 

A deal is whatever you want it to be.

Luckily for you, we’ve got a blueprint we call The Four M’s. 





Basically, each M is a starting point of 25% of a deal.

Money is the cash that’s required to start the property. Things like down payment, furniture, amenities, closing costs, and renovations are some examples.

Mortgage is simply putting your name on the loan. Ultimately being responsible for the debt is definitely worth something. 

If you’re using a traditional mortgage, this is the valuable piece. Because these mortgages go off your debt-to-income ratio (how much auto/home/credit card debt do you have versus how much money you make), you can only get so many loans.

So partnering with others lets you use their ability to take on more debt. 

Market means bringing the deal. Nothing happens without someone who understands the market and analysis to bring in a property that will perform.

Management is of course the management of the property into perpetuity, and all that comes with it. 

Using the passive/active framework, that gives the passive partner the Money & Mortgage Ms, while the active partner is in charge of the Market & Management Ms. 

Again, a deal is what you make it. This is just a really great starting point!

joint venture active investor split

Chapter 7: Being the “active” investor

I see eight key areas of responsibility of an active investor:

  1. Build your team. Broker, agent, accountant, bookkeeping, insurance agent, lawyers, contractors, possibly property management, etc.
  2. Finding the property. This process can be time consuming, and you need to understand how to analyze properties for short term rental. 
  3. Making offers. This process involves negotiations and knowing how to create the right offer to get yours chosen. The highest price isn’t always the one that’s chosen.
  4. Securing financing. Find the right loan program for you. Sometimes that’s dealing with certain banks – for example, knowing when to approach A, B, or C lenders. And sometimes that means using a commercial loan, like you can get in the US. The mortgage partner will still use their name for this.
  5. Handle property management and day-to-day. For short term rentals, this doesn’t have to take up all of your time like most people think.
  6. Keep the books and report. Understanding the numbers and having an eye on the finances is crucial. It’s something you should review at least once per month. The passive partner should get an easy-to-understand statements on an agreed upon timeline.
  7. Execute the plan. In addition to day-to-day, an active partner must also look at the big picture, ensure the project is on track, and course correct if necessary.
  8. Maximize exits. When the time is up, the passive investor can be refinanced back out, or stay in the deal until its sold. Either way, execute the plan in a way that leaves everyone with solid ROI.

I’ll admit some of these tasks are bigger or take longer than others. Like everything else in real estate, you can also outsource some of these things. 

For example, if you aren’t a bookkeeper, don’t hesitate to hire a pro.


If you’re in real estate long enough and your dreams are big enough, you’ll run out of personal money or mortgage capability at some point.

A joint venture is the best choice to quickly grow your wealth. 

If you’re ready to grow your wealth, start your journey by watching our free training here.

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