You Should Know … Jacob Ansbacher


Some people don’t let grass grow under their feet. That certainly describes Jacob Ansbacher, 33, who grew up in Chevy Chase, Md., and now lives in Baltimore.


Not just lives, but rents two of the apartments in his Federal Hill townhouse. Ansbacher describes himself as “a bit of a house hacker,” working as a commercial loan officer for PSG Lending, lending nationwide on industrial and multifamily assets; a small-time investor; and a landlord. He moved to the city about eight years ago for a job and laid a foundation in Baltimore.

A 2012 graduate of Tulane University with a degree in finance, he grappled with an economy still coming out of a nationwide recession. He has fond memories of New Orleans, working for BP and selling beer at the Superdome for Saints’ football games.

He has since put down roots in Baltimore and focused on real estate, both as a career and as a side hustle, land-lording to cover his own mortgage and not going out on a financial limb, using what he explains is his “highest expense and turning it into an asset.”

It frees him up to travel, hike and ski, some of his pastimes.

It also allows him time to attend real estate and other events. “I just go all the time; I never stop,” he says.

Along the way, he has rediscovered his Judaism, particularly after meeting Rabbi Yaakov Kaplan, who directs Chabad of South Baltimore and the University of Maryland Baltimore with his wife, Chana. They run Young Jewish Professionals in South Baltimore (YJB), working with both students and young adults in the earlier part of their careers (

Ansbacher says he grew up in a Jewish home with his younger brother, Drew, 30, where they attended the Conservative Congregation Beth El of Montgomery County and had their bar mitzvahs there. But in the shuffle after college and during his early working years, he lost that connection.

“When I moved here, I knew no one and had no Jewish friends,” he says. “I wasn’t exactly looking for Judaism. It didn’t seem like it was something I was even missing in my life until I was reintroduced to it.”

These days, he is active with Chabad, saying he “finds passion at work and outside of it.”

You mentioned the shifting of the Jewish community in Baltimore. Can you explain that?
Unlike some other U.S. cities, Baltimore has a very large Jewish community in the county, and it is great to have YJB an accepting congregation that calls Baltimore City home, and is active with young professionals and students.

What is it about Judaism that you take with you into everyday activities?
Judaism gives me appreciation, and waking up with appreciation gives me happiness and the ability to interact with co-workers and to work best with my clients. Tzedakah, tikkun olam, “giving back” — this is the best way to achieve appreciation, and I appreciate YJB for opening its new location in my neighborhood.

How do you see your Jewish future?
To continue striving to be a leader in YJB community.

Do you have a favorite Jewish holiday? Which one and why?
Purim. I like a good party, going all the way back to my New Orleans days.

Do you have a favorite secular holiday? Which one and why?
Thanksgiving: Best food, and football is on all day.

Home ownership is tough in 2023. What is your advice to young people in terms of buying in the current housing market?
Defer happiness and use real estate as a tool to cut your expenses, increase cash flow, save for the future, and take advantage of leverage opportunities and tax strategy.

What is Baltimore’s best-kept secret (knowing that now, it’s not a secret anymore)?
David and Dad’s delicatessen, as seen in HBO’s “We Own This City.” They serve a great Reuben with great presentation. The space is very cool; the dining room was once a bank and was converted to keep its historic look.

Never miss a story.
Sign up for our newsletter.
Email Address


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here