T.J. Lefler starts asset management firm in Fayetteville

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 3,751 views 

T.J. Lefler

Longtime Northwest Arkansas real estate executive T.J. Lefler, former principal and executive vice president at Cushman & Wakefield/Sage Partners in Rogers, has started Lefler Capital in Fayetteville.

Lefler launched the firm this summer and moved into 1,800 square feet on the second floor of a downtown Fayetteville office building overlooking the square in September.

Lefler Capital acquires and asset manages various commercial property types for investors, including industrial, retail and multifamily. “We are deal specific and do not have a fund,” Lefler said. “We look at each real estate deal on its own when it comes available.”

Lefler, 37, said he’s been assembling properties “in the background” for several years but decided to make it his day-to-day job this year officially. He said the firm’s portfolio includes more than 25 properties, mainly in central and Northwest Arkansas, with a value of approximately $200 million. He hopes to grow the portfolio to 30 by the end of the year and has loftier goals after that.

“I’m not going to buy something unless I see value in the deal, so I don’t like to put numbers on anything,” he said. “But in my head, I want to own 100 properties. Then I want to double that and keep going. I like what I do and am pretty active in this, so I hope to see the portfolio grow.”

Lefler worked for Sage Partners for 15 years and has leased or sold more than 6 million commercial square feet in his career.

He said that he still owns company shares despite leaving the firm and will remain on the Sage Partners board of directors.

“We are all still great friends and own property together,” he said. “They’ve been very supportive of this. I’ve wanted to branch out and felt this was the right time. I get excited about creating partnerships to own real estate. [Working] in commercial real estate is a long game, and I plan to do this for the rest of my life.”

Lefler has an assistant, Jennifer Hennelly. He’s hoping to soon hire an in-house CFO and asset manager.