Episode 183: How To Invest In Real Estate with Kent Ritter
Kent Ritter is a full-time real estate investor, a former management consultant, corporate executive, and startup owner. After successfully exiting his first company, Kent turned his focus to real estate. Now, he is the CEO of Hudson Investing- a multifamily investment firm that helps professionals scale and diversify their real estate portfolio with cash-flowing wealth and building assets. He has achieved financial freedom and is dedicated to teaching others how to make good investing decisions. Whether you are new to real estate or have years of experience, this episode includes some valuable real estate lessons to help you along the way!
Increase The Value
Commercial real estate is an income-based evaluation. If you increase that income, you increase how much it’s worth; this is an important investment tool that allows you to achieve financial freedom. Kent shares that one of his favorite aspects of real estate is the ‘forced appreciation’- by infusing the property with capital, renovating units, and taking care of deferred maintenance, you will be able to increase the rents and decrease expenses, which drives up valuation.
It is similar to buying and selling businesses: the higher the quality of the property, the more profit. Not only do you make more cash flow, but if one day you exit that business or sell that property, you’re getting a multiple on that cash flow.
Stay Away From The Bigger Players
A valuable lesson learned over the years in Kent’s career is that unlike the open stock market, where everyone is trading all over, real estate is more about the broker’s network. Investing in real estate allows competitive value, as there is not as much exposure to these types of deals. A lot of opportunities in real estate are not on a national platform, so this is a benefit for minor players!
To help lessen investment competition, Kent discovers strategic moves with opportunities that others may not see. For example, Kent and his company are strategically staying under an ROI of 200 units when investing. Reason being is when you go above 200 units from a multifamily standpoint, it will attract the bigger players who usually go 200+ units and the competition becomes unfair to small entrepreneurs. ROI, or Return on Investment, is a formula to evaluate how an investment has performed compared to your initial cost.
Buy Off-Market And Sell On-Market
In his career, Kent has been buying properties directly from the seller, because there’s no broker in between, which means there is less negotiating and competition for the deal; however, the same logic does not apply when reselling. Kent rarely sells directly to a buyer since it is not the most advantageous way for the reseller. If you want to maximize the value of the property you are selling, put it on the market.
If your property is out on the market, you can create a competitive environment. For example, to resell one of his properties, Kent’s company hired a broker and went through the marketing process, which allowed negotiation from a strong position and the profit was much higher. That wouldn’t have happened if they had sold off the market without intermediaries.
CAP vs Interest Rates
The most common misconception about real estate investing is that if interest rates go up, then CAP rates must go down, but Kent warns they are actually not correlated. A CAP rate is mostly used as an evaluation metric. It is what’s expected to return to your capital. As an example, if you had no debt on the property, with a million dollars invested and made 100,000, the CAP would be 10%.
The other way to look at the CAP rate is the inverse of the multiple. If the CAP rate, for example, is 5%, that means the multiple on each dollar is 20 X 20. For every dollar that increases in income, it is also increasing value 20 times. CAP and interest relate to the amount of money that is chasing a deal. When interest rates are lower, money is cheaper. Whether interest rates go to 6%, there is still a lot of money to chase real estate. CAP rates do not move with interest rates meaningfully.
Do Not Miss Opportunities To Invest
Both commercial real estate and rents move up with inflation. The country’s current economic state is an example of this. Kent advises that when you are in an inflationary environment, invest in things that typically rise with inflation. That is a great time to invest in tangible real assets.
Many people have their money in bank accounts because they just do not know what to do with it and do not realize that they are losing 8.5% a year on that money. Avoid having your money sitting in your bank account for too long, investing is your best option. Take ownership to deploy your capital and your investments.
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Corey Kupfer is an expert strategist, negotiator, and dealmaker. He has more than 35 years of professional deal-making and negotiating experience. Corey is a successful entrepreneur, attorney, consultant, author, and professional speaker. He is deeply passionate about deal-driven growth. He is also the creator and host of the DealQuest Podcast.
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