Darryl Parmenter has a history of service, personal dedication, and a drive to excel at everything he did. After a career in the United States Marine Corps, he left the military as a decorated captain in San Diego, California. Seeing the value of this exceptional man, the largest commercial real estate investment bank in the United States recruited him. Over the next several years he earned positions that moved him from California to Atlanta and onto Miami, Florida, where he still calls home.
When he was 33 years old, Darryl Parmenter was recruited as a managing partner at Lincoln Property Company, which continues to be one of the largest commercial real estate developers in the country. He wasn’t content to be in that position and after building the company he knew, he wanted to strike out on his own. In 1989, during one of the worst real estate downturns since the Great Depression, Parmenter was created. He began acquiring undervalued properties, adding value through whatever means fit the property and resold them for a significant profit. This has been the business model of a company that continues to grow and expand despite any shift in the real estate market. Since the company’s inception, Parmenter has invested in several billion dollars’ worth of commercial real estate throughout the U.S.
Darryl Parmenter has created a dynamic business dedicated to improving results for investors and producing positive community results. He remains focused on the core goals that he launched the company with: purchase undervalued real estate and reposition it for profit with a focus in the southern part of the United States.
His active hobbies have been focused on the water all of his life. This proud father of three has been a collegiate swimmer and shared his love for all things water with his children. Darryl is an avid boater, fisherman, and enjoys diving as well. He has traveled the world numerous times and continues to enjoy that endeavor, making sure to spend some time at his hotel in the Bahamas.
How did you get started in real estate? What inspired you to start Parmenter?
When the downturn of 1989 hit the market, it created an opportunity to build real estate investments at a record low level. Starting below expected investment cost has enabled us to evolve into the multi-billion-dollar company we have become.
How do you make money?
Most simply, we buy low and sell high. This works regardless of the marketplace. We work to purchase at advantage pricing, then we add value. This could be in the way of increased rental occupancy or through other developmental means. Once we have increased the value of the property, we are able to resell it for a much better price than we purchased it at.
How long did it take for Parmenter to become profitable?
It easily took us between three and five years. This is a long game business, which means profit isn’t evident at the time of purchase. It comes over time, and we always see results.
Was there a time you ever doubted this was the right move for you? How did you handle it?
Many sleepless nights accompanied my doubts. Those doubts come with business growth. For every company who wants to grow, you must take a calculated risk. That leads to developing some doubts. Parmenter has been and continues to be successful despite the many sleepless nights that came early on.
How did you find your first investor?
From the very beginning, we have always been able to work with high net worth individuals as well as investors. Early on, when Lehman Brothers was still viable, they partnered with us as the primary source of capital for many of our projects.
What is one marketing strategy, besides referrals, that you use to generate new business?
We have been able to forge relationships with major companies in the real estate investment industry. These relationships include institutions and principle investors. This has enabled us to move forward on all projects we venture into. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, we make an effort to expand our circle of investors and institutional supporters. These relationships also enable us to learn about advantage pricing far in advance of most competitors.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
Our goal remains to realize the best return on investment for our real estate purchases. Right now, corporate revenue is reduced by selling more than we buy. Because of the recent real estate market, I had to restructure Parmenter to be more reflective of the current economic environment. Right now is an excellent time to sell, but not as good of a time to buy.
Recently, we have been able to do more than $300 million in real estate transactions.
What do you think makes you successful?
I am a consummate entrepreneur. I have kept my eye for real estate from the very beginning. This has been advantageous when combined with our team. Our team knows how to effectively execute what we have selected to develop together.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
I find it very satisfying when we reposition older buildings into class A properties through creative, professional means that generate high returns for our investors. This is not just for my investors and me but the community the building is located in as well.
What business books have inspired you?
I am an avid reader. Very early in my career, I read Think and Grow Rich, which is a good foundational book for anyone who wants to be an entrepreneur.
As an active part of the Urban Land Institute, the industry’s society for worldwide real estate, I have had a multitude of professional books available to me. That has really helped me to continue to learn and develop my business through the years.
What is one recent purchase that has helped grow your business?
There is an 800 thousand square foot high-end office park we purchased with one of our institutional partners, in Orlando. We have already been able to increase value through a rental increase. In addition to that, we have been able to add significant value by redeveloping a land parcel nearby the office park.
What are the biggest challenges you are experiencing today?
Right now, the large global capital moving into the real estate industry has made it challenging to locate the gems within a generally overpriced marketplace. We have been able to locate some beautiful investments. As the marketplace continues in this current direction the effort to locate them will be ever challenging, but every gem is worth a little digging.
What does the future hold for Parmenter and what are you most excited about?
With real estate selling at all-time highs, amidst investments being made worldwide, there is more capital in the market than ever before. There are also climbing interest rates to consider. Thriving in the real estate investments will require a higher level of ingenuity. That makes all of this both exciting and challenging. It’s a good time to be in real estate.
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