Name: Jason Phillips
Occupation: Developer and founder of Toy Barn
Name/address/location of business: Toy Barn. There are three locations. Two in Phoenix and one in Scottsdale. The fourth and fifth locations are under construction. One in Chandler and another in north phoenix.
How long have you been in business? 10 years
Briefly describe your business/services offered: Toy Barn is a set of luxury garage suites available for individual ownership, just like a condominium.
Private and convenient, the Toy Barn provides the ideal space solution for every performance enthusiasts’ favorite toys, from cars, trucks and motorcycles to boats, jet skis and RVs. Each ‘condo’ is a titled unit and ownership includes access to common areas plus a members-only clubhouse.
All units feature a minimum 18-foot ceiling height with floorplans ranging from 960 to 3,000 square feet. Units feature both heavy-duty garage doors and standard entry/exit doors. The community, offering year-round, 24/7 access, also boasts large driving aisles.
What made you choose this line of work and why is it important or interesting to you? The Toy Barn concept sort of “found us.” My dad and I are developers and we were looking for an opportunity to develop a piece of land we owned in north Phoenix. We stumbled onto this idea/concept and it took off.
It’s interesting because of the different people we meet along the way. The different owners who buy a Toy Barn unit have similar interests but very different stories and of course, the “toys” they want to store are varied and interesting. It’s also great helping owners “realize” their man cave dreams.
At the end of the day, what brings you the most joy or is the most rewarding aspect of your job? There are several things --- being able to fulfill a small niche in the market. A luxury storage facility for vehicles is not a common thing but has turned out to be in high demand.
Also, partnering with other organizations to see a project through to the finish is rewarding. Walking through the doors when the project is finally finished is one of the most exciting parts for me and reveling in the fact that we made it happen.
Finally, working in the real estate development industry can be challenging and being able to solve complex development issues is satisfying and rewarding.
What separates you from your competition? Toy Barn’s focus on creating a community and bringing together like-minded individuals sets us apart. The clubhouse and monthly events give owners an opportunity to meet, socialize and enjoy the car culture here in Scottsdale. Additionally, our building and outfitting are top of the line and owners have the option to customize their units with our support however they would like. Whatever they can dream up, they can build.
Why did you choose to locate your business in the area? The first location was a “happy accident” but Phoenix has a very strong car culture! So we are meeting the need of the demand.
Where are you from? Dublin, Ohio, my family moved to Phoenix in 2005. We had previously vacationed and spent our winters out here.
Who was the biggest influence in your life? My family. My dad is my business partner and supports Toy Barn’s growth. He’s set a great example for me. And my wife helps drive and challenge me to set goals and also motivates me to reach those goals.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to be in the industry? Real estate development is a very challenging yet rewarding career. My main piece of advice would be to find a good, solid mentor so you can learn the business from the ground up. It is not for the faint of heart!