Street Smart Success

Roger Becker

Street Smart Success interviews successful Real Estate entrepreneurs in Multi-family, Self-Storage and Mobile Home Parks. Guests share their experience, strategies, and valuable lessons learned.

Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

All Episodes

Over 25 years ago, you had to send your loved one to a nursing home if they could no longer care for themselves. Today, you can send them to an Assisted Living facility with a much more current approach to lower-level care. This area of housing area has continued to face increased demand. The population is aging and more seniors need assistance with day-to-day functions they can no longer perform at home.  Today’s guest, Justin Burke, is building a portfolio of Assisted Living facilities in the upper Midwest. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Dec 2

43 min 4 sec

Knowing when to buy can make all the difference between average and incredible returns. In today’s world there’s distress in office, retail and hotels.  Today’s guest, Nate Barger, started out flipping homes and apartments but has slowed down adding multifamily to his portfolio and is pivoting instead to value-add hotels with great upside potential as the market for hospitality rebounds. His website is https://www.natebarger.com/ Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 30

45 min 15 sec

Not all retail is the same. Many mid-market, grocery-anchored centers are doing very well and other tenants are benefitting from the traffic. Among other e-commerce resistant tenants, Health Care providers are starting to lease space in neighborhood centers.  Today’s guest, Scott Tiano, Founder of JS Western, and more recently, Portal Investment Management, is implementing highly successful value-add strategies in mid-market retail centers in the Western U.S. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 25

43 min 25 sec

With C class properties selling for cap rates equivalent to B and A class properties, a number of operators are exchanging into A class. These properties are easier to hold for the long-term because they don’t have the same looming cap-ex to deal with over the next several years.  Today’s guest, Keith Wasserman, Co-Founder of Gelt Inc. in Southern California, started out with heavier value-add projects in Bakersfield, then Phoenix, plus other Western markets. More recently, he’s been trading up to newer vintage properties for longer-term holds. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 23

36 min 46 sec

10,000 people are turning 75 every day in this country. There are currently more people in their 70’s 80’ and 90’s than ever before. The demand for Assisted Living is just at the tip of the iceberg and operators are poised to do well if they can serve this population responsibly.  Today’s guest, Joe Pohlen, Principal of Cardinal Senior Management, is having great success buying underperforming assets and repositioning them by treating residents and employees the way they should be treated. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 18

45 min 12 sec

Few asset classes have both increased consumer demand and not only limited, but reduced supply. That’s what makes Mobile Home Parks such a great investment. Mobile Home Parks are also the ultimate in affordable housing and a great hedge against economic downturns.  The category also remains highly fractured so the opportunities for acquisition continue to abound. Today’s guest, Jefferson Lilly, Founder of Park Avenue Partners, has been buying Mobile Home Parks since 2007 and has generated great returns for his investors. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 16

42 min 20 sec

Out of favor asset classes can yield great investor returns, especially when they’re growing in occupancy and are in limited supply. Flex industrial used to be underneath the radar until a decade ago.  Avistone LLC has specialized in this asset class since 2012 but is now pivoting to hospitality. Today’s guest, Richard Kent, President of Avistone, talks about why flex industrial made so much sense ten years ago and why hospitality makes so much sense right now. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 11

38 min 31 sec

Even in this super hot market, you can still generate strong cash flow. Whether it’s from utility bill backs to tenants that make a huge impact on cash flow or buying from long-time ma and pa owners with units that are way under market rent, the opportunities are there to get 10% cash-on-cash returns.  Today’s guest, Steven Pesavento, President of VonFinch Capital, is finding these opportunities and making them available to his investors. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 9

31 min 25 sec

It’s never too late to get started in Real Estate Syndication. It just takes the right mentoring and the right team. It’s amazing what just a proven process can yield.  Today’s guest, Brain Noel, CEO of Ascot Equity Partners, has gotten started over the past couple years and is already a GP on a couple of excellent B and C class value-add deals in Houston that have already appraised well above the purchase price. Learn more at https://www.streetsmartsuccess.com

Nov 4

40 min

From converting distressed hotels into Assisted Living facilities to Value-Add apartments, there are many ways to generate great investor returns. It just requires rigor and creativity to see what others don’t. Today’s guest, Prashant Kumar, CEO of Myrealtygains, quickly learned that the single family game was an uphill battle and that bigger projects was the only way to go. He’s since done several multifamily and Assisted Living deals and targets 20% IRRs for his investors.

Nov 2

38 min 14 sec

When it comes to multifamily, it seems like no good deals are to be had. Even in smaller markets, cap rates have compressed so much and the competition keeps getting fiercer. But today’s guest, Joshua Ferarra of Ferrara Capital, has been buying 7 and 8 cap deals in Mobile, Alabama where he currently lives. These have been C and B class deals with recent renovations completed by previous owners and therefore did not require heavy-lift rehabs or unusually high cap-ex.

Oct 28

1 hr 2 min

Ecommerce is changing the playing field in unprecedented ways. As companies need to get their goods into customer hands within hours, the demand for warehouses will continue to expand dramatically all over the country for the foreseeable future. Today’s guest, Peter Lewis, Chairman and Founder of Wharton Equity Partners, sold $500,000,000 in multifamily assets back in 2017 and redeployed the capital into industrial property to catch the huge wave in industrial expansion.

Oct 26

49 min 16 sec

When it comes to choosing what to invest in, 80% of the decision comes down to the team. There’s no substitute for experience and roles within the team should be clearly defined, otherwise teams can implode and investor capital is at great risk. Today’s guest, Spencer Hilligoss, Founder of Madison Investing, fully vets sponsors and deals for his investors and invests as an LP himself prior to bringing a sponsor into his portfolio.

Oct 21

56 min 47 sec

When it comes to multifamily, it seems like no good deals are to be had. Even in smaller markets, cap rates have compressed so much and the competition keeps getting fiercer. But today’s guest, Joshua Ferarra of Ferrara Capital, has been buying 7 and 8 cap deals in Mobile, Alabama where he currently lives. These have been C and B class deals with recent renovations completed by previous owners and therefore did not require heavy-lift rehabs or unusually high cap-ex.

Oct 19

44 min 5 sec

Is the Texas market going to stall, or is it just beginning a longer-term growth trajectory? According to today’s guest, the chronic housing shortage will not abate as people and jobs keep pouring into the Lone Star State. Jack Langenberg, a seasoned CFO and COO of several large companies, and previous head of mergers and acquisitions of a Fortune 500 company, is syndicating multifamily deals out of the Dallas-Ft Worth market and has a recipe for success.

Oct 14

46 min 16 sec

Although the multifamily market is on fire, there’s still a chronic housing shortage that will persist for several years. In many markets, job and population growth is far outpacing existing inventory and new construction. As a result, opportunities still abound in many submarkets in the country. Today’s guest, Matt Picheny, has successfully found opportunities in great markets with B and C value-add properties.

Oct 12

45 min 54 sec

In this exuberant environment for Multifamily, the returns for ground up construction can be more compelling than usual. Although the risk profile is steeper, the rewards can more than justify the risk with an experienced operator. Today’s guest, Sam Bates, Founder of Bates Capital Group, has recently done both ground up construction and acquisitions of existing properties, the deals just have to make sense.

Oct 7

33 min 17 sec

Traditional financial investments versus alternative investments…. which is better? The answer may be more nuanced when looking at both over a long period of time. Today’s guest, Denis Shapiro, Managing Partner of SIH Capital Group and author of The Alternative Almanac, believes there are pros and cons to both although he’s leaned more towards Multifamily investing over the past few years.

Oct 5

42 min 30 sec

Is there a downturn coming? Either way, you have to plan on it, according to today’s guest, Whitney Sewell. Whitney is the founder of Lifebridge Capital. Lifebridge is acquiring properties in the Mountain West states of Idaho and Colorado. Everyone is talking about the South and Southeast, but the Mountain West is also growing rapidly with great job growth and strong demographic trends.

Sep 30

36 min 16 sec

Cap rates on most real estate asset classes have dropped 40% over the past five years. This has made cash flow very hard to achieve. Ground up construction, on the other hand, has much higher cap rates. The key is mitigating risk by being in the right markets with the right assets. Today’s guest, Neal Bawa, the Mad Scientist of Multifamily, has been doing ground up construction in smaller markets in several different asset classes in order to generate attractive returns for investors.

Sep 28

48 min 51 sec

Great Multifamily deals are a needle in a haystack these days, but great deals are still to be had if you’re willing to be patient and methodical. Today’s guest, Sam Wilson, founder of Bricken Investment Group, has found great Value-Add deals in the Southeast with rental upsides over $300 per unit. Sam also has a Self-Storage fund and has invested in parking garages.

Sep 23

46 min 31 sec

In today’s multifamily market, you need to buy deals with as much rental and operational upside as possible to make sense for investors. Today’s guest, Nathan Cloud, Founder and CEO of Cloud Capital, has built out systems with stringent buying criteria to meet these goals. Nathan’s bought C class deals in Houston below market and has had great success. He’s in the right submarkets with the right properties to maximize returns.

Sep 21

48 min 28 sec

Even though Austin is the hottest multifamily market in the country, lifelong relationships and a great reputation yields great deals, even when they’re fewer and further between. Today’s guest, Andrew Campbell, Managing Partner of Wildhorn Capital, has built an impressive 3000 unit portfolio in Austin and San Antonio that’s produced consistently strong returns for investors through cash flow and appreciation.

Sep 16

46 min 16 sec

Even in historically low appreciation markets, single family homes are appreciating at unprecedented rates. New household formation and historically low interest rates has spurred renters to leave apartments and buy their first homes. Today’s guest, Eric Martel, Founder of MartelTurnkey, has been buying, rehabbing, and selling homes to investors who are getting 10% returns on their money.

Sep 14

41 min 37 sec

Market cycles ultimately determine the potential of an investment. Markets and asset classes are always in different phases of development. Today’s guest, Serge Shukhat, Principal of Zonal Capital, started out buying houses for $50,000 in a suburb in Phoenix during the Great Recession and has leveraged these early successes into a multi-asset class empire including multi-family, hotels, and other assets.

Sep 9

55 min 20 sec

Starting out from scratch can be really hard. In this case, two partners in Northern New Jersey have leveraged their unique experience and skill sets to found a Real Estate Investment company. Zack Shulruff and Chris Rizzo founded Clear Mountain Properties and are buying smaller properties in Greensville, South Carolina with great value-add strategies that are working very well in one of the fasted growing markets in the country.

Sep 7

57 min 40 sec

In the world of multifamily, first-hand knowledge of a market, property management and construction can make or break a deal. This is where the money is made or lost. Today’s guest, Terrance Doyle, Founding and Managing Partner of Vareco, specializes in multifamily in Des Moines and Denver. He grew up in Des Moines and lives in Denver. Extensive knowledge of these markets is what gives him a competitive edge.

Sep 2

1 hr

For investors who want to invest passively in Real Estate, it can be hard knowing who to invest with and in what deals. The process can be daunting when there’s a lot of money on the line. Lance Peterson, Founder and Managing Partner at Verivest, has made it easier for investors to find trustworthy syndicators and he’s helped syndicators maintain best practices in how they conduct their business and investor relations.

Aug 31

34 min 34 sec

Believe it or not, there are still markets where you can get great cash-on-cash returns on single family houses and small multi-families. Whether at auctions or sometimes even on on-market deals, Wichita has fit this bill. Mike Heldstab, founder of Michael Morgan Investments, has amassed a significant portfolio of single families, duplexes, triplexes and four plexes that are all cash flowing very well.

Aug 26

44 min 16 sec

There’s no two ways about it. Getting into the Real Estate business is hard. Finding people to mentor you, getting brokers to take you seriously, and raising capital are just some of the challenges to starting out. Today’s guest, Craig Berger, CEO and Founder of Avid Real Estate Partners, started full-time in Real Estate in 2014 and has learned a lot of valuable lessons.

Aug 24

51 min 9 sec

In every market, there’s always a deal. Somewhere, there’s an older landlord that’s self-managed his own property and just wants to get out. These are often buildings with under market rents and unnecessarily, high expenses. Today’s guest Robert Rixer, co-founder of EJ Investment Group and CitiPoint, has found incredible off-market deals in Chicago with cap rates in excess of 8%- 10%.

Aug 19

54 min 58 sec

Even in a competitive market, there are still great deals if you’re willing to put the time in to follow proven lead generation systems and be patient enough to build relationships with sellers. Today’s guest, Adrian Salazar, Co-founder of Two Ten Management has sourced great deals in McAllen, Tx and San Antonio and is generating outstanding investor returns and creating great places to live for tenants.

Aug 17

46 min 54 sec

In this overheated Real Estate environment, you may need to find smaller, growing markets to find the right deals. Depending on where you look, it’s still possible to find cap rates of 5% or slightly higher for Class C buildings in decent condition in gentrifying B class areas. Today‘s guest, Jonathan Barr, founder of JB2 Investments, puts a lot of his own capital in play alongside a handful of selected investors in deals that cash flow very well.

Aug 12

39 min 49 sec

From flipping single family houses all the way to building high-rises in New York, there’s countless approaches to making money in Real Estate. Today’s guest, Ken Van Liew, Founder and CEO of Global Real Estate Strategies and Chairman of Advanced Capital Funding has pretty much done it all. Ken has syndicated or developed over 1.3 billion in various Real Estate classes. Ken recently wrote The Modern Wealth Building formula, his current mission is to help others achieve their potential and find meaning in their lives.

Aug 10

41 min 58 sec

Whereas 93% of large multifamily properties are owned by larger professional investors, Mobile Home Parks and Self-Storage facilities are still mostly owned by smaller and less sophisticated operators. That’s why you can still find significant operational inefficiencies and opportunity to create incredible value in these assets. Today’s guest, Paul Moore, Managing Partner and Founder of Wellings Capital, has raised funds comprised of value-add Mobile Home Park and Self-Storage facilities that are generating outstanding returns for his investors. 

Aug 5

52 min 47 sec

These days it’s become virtually impossible to get an attractive, conservative yield on commercial Real Estate. Cap rates have gone down and prices have gone way up. There’s one asset class, however, that’s held up comparatively well. That’s Sale/Leaseback industrial properties in secondary or terciary markets. Neil Wahlgren, COO of MAG Capital, is acquiring eight to ten properties a year with cap rates in the 7 to 8 range with long-term NNN leases.

Aug 3

45 min 19 sec

Amongst other positive aspects of Real Estate, depreciation is a phenomenon that makes it like no other investment. Especially with recent changes around bonus depreciation, you can depreciate 100% of certain costs in the first year of ownership. This provides an exceptional opportunity to demonstrate big paper losses year one. Today’s guest, Yonah Weiss of Madison Specs, the largest real estate tax firm in the country, has a great way of simplifying how depreciation and cost segregation works.

Jul 29

26 min 53 sec

Everyone who’s invested in real estate knows that the success of a deal can come down to property management. Today’s guest, Peter Lohmann, co-owner of RL Property Management, has built up a portfolio of almost 500 units in the Columbus, Ohio market by charging a flat fee to manage properties and providing proactive management and communication with landlords. 

Jul 27

48 min 3 sec

Starting out in Real Estate can be the hardest part, but once you do, good things can come your way fast. Today’s guest, Lee Yoder, of Threefold Real Estate Investing, started out by scouring old deals on LoopNet and ended up making great profits. When other deals fall apart, prices can come down significantly. Lee is now buying bigger cash flowing deals in the greater Dayton area.

Jul 22

49 min 5 sec

Unlike many other asset classes, Real Estate is a hard asset with conservative, long-term predicable utility that also provides cash flow. That’s why so much money in other asset classes has moved into Real Estate in the last few years. Today’s guest, Scott Kurland, co-founder of Acuity Partners, has a successful background on Wall Street and has applied that expertise successfully into investing in the Multifamily sector over the past five years.

Jul 20

53 min 30 sec

This is episode two of a great conversation with super star investor, Nathan Petrowsky. If you’re based in an incredibly expensive coastal market, looking inland may be your best option to get great returns. This thesis has made all the difference in the world for several operators with the vision to look beyond their backyard for more immediate, lucrative returns. Today’s guest, Nathan Petrowsky, ventured out of the SF Bay Area and acquired office buildings in Dallas right after the deep recession. This was the beginning of a quantum expansion into offices and warehouses that continues to this day.

Jul 15

42 min 40 sec

A key to safe investing is finding the absolute best-in-class operators. Don’t just take someone’s word directly, but find others who’ve done business with them and can report success over a significant period of time. Today’s guest, Dave Zook, founder of The Real Asset Investors, is a successful business owner and savvy investor who’s created lucrative partnerships with proven, vetted, experienced operators.

Jul 13

43 min 39 sec

Taking down 15 large multifamily deals in less than two years is no easy task, especially when you’ve just started out. But tirelessly doing all the right things like contacting brokers, sellers, lenders and lawyers and building the right teams can pay off if you’re relentless enough and willing to put in the hours. Zack Haptonstall, founder of Rise48Equity, started his multifamily trajectory in Phoenix in 2018 and has had major wins.

Jul 8

59 min 23 sec

Having a niche is always an advantage. Having a niche within a niche is even better. Today’s guest, John McNellis, built his fortune with 100,000 sft neighborhood shopping centers. Founder of McNellis Partners, John is a Bay Area developer who believes in staying within a two-hour radius of where you live and has been incredibly successful with a repeatable, predicable formula that he’s perfected over three decades.

Jul 6

43 min 40 sec

In order to get the best deals, the-old fashioned way still works the best, mailing and calling owners directly. There are no shortcuts. Today’s guest, Zach Quick, an Owner-Operator of 2300 Self-Storage units, buys his properties at the right prices and continues to fine-tune a disciplined, focused system of acquiring and operating Self-Storage facilities with great profits.

Jul 1

47 min 16 sec

The discipline required to pass up deals in an overheated market can be rare. Everyone says they have conservative underwriting and that they’ve found a unique deal, but today’s guest has really walked the walk and done it the old-fashioned way. Hadar Orkibi, Principal of MHI Holding and Co-facilitator and founder of Make it Happen Mastermind Group, has generated huge returns in multifamily units he’s acquired in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Jun 29

41 min 19 sec

There can still be great deals in sub-100-unit buildings with C class Value Add in the right markets. Like any other deals, it helps to have boots on the ground and the ability to create the right teams to manage the rehab and ongoing operations. Today’ guest, Ismael “Rey” Reyes, best-selling author, and founder of MI Real Estate, has been part of several Class C deals in the Southeast and is doing extremely well.

Jun 24

42 min 32 sec

This is episode one of a great conversation with super star investor, Nathan Petrowsky. If you’re based in an incredibly expensive coastal market, looking inland may be your best option to get great returns. This thesis has made all the difference in the world for several operators with the vision to look beyond their backyard for more immediate, lucrative returns. Today’s guest, Nathan Petrowsky, ventured out of the SF Bay Area and acquired office buildings in Dallas right after the deep recession. This was the beginning of a quantum expansion into offices and warehouses that continues to this day.

Jun 22

46 min 30 sec

It’s never too late to get started in Multifamily. You just need to get in the game with that first deal. Today’s guest, Jeff Greenberg, CEO and Managing Member of Synergetic Investment Group, did his first deal when he was in his mid-50’s and learned quickly what and what not to do. He has had amazing success with C class value add deals in Texas and he’s now moving on to help other investors vet sponsors and deals to leverage the attributes of real estate for their own financial stability.

Jun 17

48 min 54 sec

When it comes to someone else’s underwriting, there’s often a lot more than meets the eye, so buyer beware. There’s often any number of items that get left out in a broker or sellers P & L’s. That’s where years of experience comes into play. Today’s guest, Mark Hamilton, founder of Bay Area-based Hamilton Zanze, shares invaluable lessons from a 30+ year operator of over 20,000 units.

Jun 15

45 min 23 sec