He’s the biggest name in Australian property development and the country’s most successful property investor, but even “High-Rise Harry” Triguboff had to start somewhere.

Over a career that has spanned more than 50 years, the billionaire founder of Meriton has seen a lot of ups and downs, but what’s kept him afloat is a smart, common-sense approach to creating wealth – diversification.

He first built townhouses, then dove into property development, focusing on apartments. With this model, Harry has cash flowing in consistently from various sources and as a result, he is protected against market downturns – even through the recent national slump that hit top cities like Sydney, Harry’s home turf, and Melbourne hard.

Harry also placed money into Australian real estate investment trusts (A-REITs) as a financial strategy. Such trusts are designed to help investors diversify their portfolio while steadily earning passive income, as investors have access to the value, capital growth and rental profit off the assets owned by the trust. Moreover, instead of laying the responsibility of property management on a single investor’s shoulder, a fund manager takes on these burdens.

It was this model that Steve Lewison introduced to his sons Allister and Matthew Lewison, today the directors of OpenCorp.

“We realised that it was a model that could be replicated to help others to grow their wealth through residential property, without them needing to take considerable risks doing it on their own,” Matthew says.

“The question was: how do we help to bring this to Australians in a way that works for them?”

The answer was the development of ResiFund. With an investment as low as $1,000, investors can buy into a share of the fund’s property portfolio, which has been carefully curated by the firm’s acquisition team based on strict investment criteria.

“We focus on high-yielding assets that are going to generate positive cash flow. We know exactly the type of property and what we need to include in those properties to get maximum cash flow and maximum capital growth for the Fund in the future,” Matthew explains.

He notes that ResiFund investors have included millennials wanting to enter the market, SMSF operators who seek access to residential property without requiring a mortgage, and property owners who are investing for their children.

The fund is aiming to deliver “an average return of 10% per annum, which will be made up of 5% income return and 5% capital growth of the portfolio.”

“As the income base grows over time, we will also be able to acquire properties counter-cyclically – similar to Harry Triguboff, who grew his wealth by more than 10% during the recent property downturn, by using his steady rental income to help fund new acquisitions when others were selling distressed properties.”