EP 20 | HOW TO BUY A PHARMACY, BANK OR FAST FOOD RESTAURANT WITH BARRY WOLFE

On this episode of The Passive Income Attorney, Seth sits down with Barry Wolfe to discuss net lease real estate. Barry explains what it’s like leasing real estate to massive fast-food chains and drug stores, along with some tips for anyone looking to get started in real estate investing.

 

“If somebody came to me and said, I got $15 million in the stock market, I want to sell it all and you’re going to go buy me all this real estate. I’d probably tell them, look let’s take a cautious approach, let’s go slowly, let’s be very deliberate and try not to make any mistakes.”

 

HIGHLIGHTS:

0:00 – Intro
1:47 – Barry talks about his background
2:17 – Seth asks Barry about how his business has been
3:19 – Barry explains what he loved and hated about his previous occupation in law
6:54 – Barry’s law degree actually made it more difficult to make the transition, as he explains that his first mentor told him he’d never make it in the business
10:07 – Barry explains what net lease real estate investing is and he compares it to multifamily
14:38 – Seth asks what Barry’s typical client looks like and asks what the process with a client looks like
18:27 – Seth asks about what trends Barry is seeing in the market right now
20:23 – Barry talks about looking at entire sectors and evaluating how each of them look
21:50 – Barry explains how he works with shopping centers and talks about where he sees shopping centers going in the future
24:26 – Seth asks how to value a property as a buyer
27:21 – Barry suggests that when you are getting into real estate you should do it slowly and deliberately
29:26 – It’s time for the Freedom 4 – Wat’s the best thing you do to keep your mind and body healthy?
30:18 – In an alternative world where you weren’t involved in real estate, what would you be doing?
31:33 – Where were you 5 years ago and where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?
32:34 – How has passive income made your life better?

 

FIND | BARRY WOLFE:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/barrywolfecre
Phone: (954)-245-3493

 

 

FULL TRANSCRIPTION:

Seth: Hello, hello, hello. What’s up law nation. As always, I hope you’re having a fantastic day of a fantastic week. Have you ever driven by a Chick-fil-A or a Walgreens or maybe a 7-Eleven and wondered who in the world owns those things? Well, I think that you’d be surprised to know that many of them are owned by people just like you and me, not huge REITs or conglomerates or monopoly moguls, but instead they’re just owned by attorneys, entrepreneurs, doctors, and dentists. On today’s episode, you’ll discover the ins and outs of investing in net lease retail real estate and how these types of investments are much more passive than you might think. Our guest of honor is Barry Wolfe, a University of Georgia Law grad and former commercial real estate attorney. He’s one of the nation’s top retail real estate brokers and is the senior managing director at powerhouse commercial brokerage, Marcus and Millichap. All right on with the show.

Seth: Hey, Barry, welcome to the show, man.

Barry: No, Seth, thanks for having me. Excited. It’s going to be fun.

.Seth: Yeah, absolutely. Man, I really appreciate you coming on today.

Barry: No, I’m looking forward to it. It’s been awesome. It’s going to be fun.

Seth: Yeah. Yeah. So, let’s just jump right in man. What’s your story, man? Feel free to brag a little bit.

Barry: So, I’ve been in the brokerage side for like 20 years, sell a lot of commercial properties, retail properties, all across the country. Back home, I’ve been married for 25 years. Just had 25th year wedding anniversary a couple of months ago and got two kids in college. So yeah, in spite of COVID I guess I’d say life is good. Everything’s kind of been doing good.

Seth: Yeah, man. I heard businesses rolling along for you during COVID tell us a little bit about that.

Barry: We’ve been staying really busy. I mean, as far as what we do, I mean, April, March and April certainly had a dip. I think like everybody particularly its kind of at first half, first two, last couple of weeks of March, then most of April, we were all trying to figure out what the heck is going on here. So, market certainly slowed down then. The debt market kind of froze up, but since it has been pretty darn steady, I mean we’ve closed like 36 deals during the COVID period. So, stayed really busy. We got a bunch more scheduled to close by the end of the year. I mean, in fact, you know, we do, the market is right now as strong as it’s ever been. So, we’re doing well. It’s been a good year in reality. I hate to almost hate to say that.

Seth: That’s phenomenal, man. Congratulations.

Barry: All right. Thanks.

Seth: Yeah, man. So, like a lot of our guests and like many of our listeners would like to be, you are a fully recovered attorney. So, tell us about your previous practice and what you loved about it, what you hated about it.

Barry: Yes. I was an attorney. I went to, I went to law school, obviously graduated in 93 and for about six years I was in private practice with a small firm in Atlanta. Actually, my dad and a couple of his partners founded the firm. For a small firm, we actually had a really great national practice. We represented several Walmart and Kmart developers. We ran outside council for Ruby Tuesday restaurants, which back then was a very viable thriving restaurant, brand, Longhorn steakhouse as well. So, worked with some great national retailer restaurant brands back then, and then made the hard decision to leave the private practice, hard because it was, again, it was my dad’s firms. That was always difficult. Certainly, leaving him and you know, ran the in-house legal real estate department for Errands, Inc, which is a nationally publicly traded retailer. So, did that for a couple of years and then, you know, made the decision to get out of the legal practice back in 2001 and had been doing what I’m doing on the broker, you know, since then. So, for almost pushing 20 years here in a few months.

Seth: Nice man. So, did you have kind of an aha moment during your practice where you started looking at different options? Or how did that come about?

Barry: It’s interesting. I mean, I just never really enjoyed it that much. Which I guess is, you know, same with a lot of people and you know, almost any business or in the legal practice certainly, I think. It’s funny, I guess the aha moment I was, I really was an avid reader of money magazine back then and I remember, the thing, like in the very back section, they like profile with a one page. It is somebody in business and, you know, kind of how they made a weird career change or how they made a big pivot. And there was a guy I think it was in woodworking, he is running some sort of woodworking business. And he had been an attorney for like 20 years before that. And they had a quote in there. I said, you know, I think it was like a question and answer kind we’re doing now. You know, what was your biggest fear, or you know, what was your concern as far as your biggest regret? And his biggest fear he said was practicing law for the next 25 years. And all of a sudden hit me. It’s like, that’s do I want to do this for the next 25 years? This is the guy; I’m not loving what I’m doing. He didn’t love what he was doing. We only get to go around here once. I think I was like early thirties, had young, really young kids at that point, or I think one young kid, one not born yet. And it was kind of like it realized, it’s kind of now or never. I didn’t want to be one of these guys at 50 something trying to figure out what they wanted to do when I grow up or changing careers, you know, later stages in life and you’re getting in early thirties, I felt like it’s not too late. So, it was kind of, again now or never in decided to kind of make the same change that, you know, the guy read about in money magazine did. And it’s like, okay, let’s do this. And gave up the bi-weekly paychecks and you know, pretty decent salary and the benefits and all that come with the legal practice and moved into something I thought I would never do, which is a hundred percent commission sales.

Seth: Yeah, I would definitely call that an aha moment, man.

Barry: I’ve been doing that since. It’s worked out.

Seth: Well, That’s cool, man. Glad you made the right decision.

Barry: Thanks.

Seth: Yeah. Do you think that with your law degree, you were able to leverage your law degree to kind of make it an easier transition into, you know, what you’re into now?

Barry: It didn’t make the transition any easier. If anything, frankly, it probably made it more challenging. And in fact, when I got into the broker’s business, it turned out to be probably a really a great gift. There was a guy, a mentor I was working with early on. He came to me early on he wasn’t my mentor for very long. And then you’ll kind of figure out why, but he came to me, it’s like, and his first words were to me, you’ll never going to make it in this business. And I was like, why? He was like, well, you’re an attorney. You’re going to kill all your own deals. And there was something to that actually. But it, again, he didn’t say my mentor very long. It’s like, I don’t need a mentor who’s convinced I’m going to fail. So, we changed that pretty quickly, but the fact he told me that it’s kind of changed my mindset and it did make me realize you can’t, in my business, you can use the, kind of the benefits of being an attorney and, you know, having read a zillion leases and contracts and understanding the deals and how they get put together and done, but you can’t act as the attorney. You can’t be, your kind of figuring out, you know, trying to kill the deals. And some of the things that, you know, some attorneys do that, you know, it’s not deal-making, it’s kind of just raising all the issues and blowing up the deals, probably the better attorneys don’t do that.  They realize you’re just there to raise the issues and let the business people make the business decisions. So that was certainly, I would say early on it probably made my job more challenging, but since then, yeah, it’s absolutely, I almost considered like a superhero-type feature where, you know, I got the secret weapon that, you know, people don’t realize I’ve got this background. So, I kind of had to understand contracts and leases better than most brokers or frankly, even better than a lot of attorneys because, I mean, I’ve closed as a broker well over 500 deals and his attorney had done hundreds. I mean, I’ve worked on thousands of deals and, you know, billions of dollars in value. So, it’s kind of helps just understanding the deals from each side of the equation, how to get them done. So, it ultimately became a big benefit, but early on, it was actually a challenge I kind of had to work through.

Seth: That’s interesting, man. That’s interesting. So, are you able to compartmentalize between the legal aspect and the business aspects now and kind of shy away from the legal stuff? You’re like, ah, that’s my past life. Like I don’t want to dive in.

Barry: I use it to where I can kind of understand the, like I just got an email from a client and he’s raising issues about estoppel and language in a contract, dealing with estoppel. And I look at it, it’s like, eh, I mean, most brokers would look at it and probably wouldn’t quite understand where he’s coming from. This is a guy who happens to be an attorney, but I can read it and I can put on my attorney hat and understand where he’s coming from. He doesn’t actually even know I was a past attorney. So again, that’s where it’s sometimes it’s like the secret weapon where the other people don’t know you’re an attorney, so you can kind of come at it. They just think like, you’re a dumb old broker. But I can kind of come at, you know, here’s why I think you’re wrong or here’s what you’re missing. And they’re like, crap! I didn’t think at it from that standpoint. And maybe you’re right. And you know, where’s this broker coming from? So, in that regard, it’s definitely a helpful background.

Seth: Yeah. That’s cool, man. Well, let’s dig into your bread-and-butter net lease real estate investing. So, what is that exactly for our listeners who have no idea?

Barry: Yeah. I guess the bread and butter would be, I sell these single-tenant deals depending on where you live, unless you live in downtown Manhattan or Chicago, you know, we all drive around where we live and you’ll see the drug stores, the banks, the fast-food restaurants, the restaurant chains that are all over, you know, where we live. And those are basically what I sell. I mean, you know, what most people don’t realize is somebody owns those and it’s probably not Walgreens that owns the Walgreens. It’s not necessarily, you know, when you see the Taco Bell, Taco Bell doesn’t probably own that. It’s some investor or it could be, you know, it’s people just like us or it might be the franchisee. So, you know, over the last 20 years have been selling those sorts of properties all over the country.

Seth: Yeah. Could you maybe compare and contrast, you know, those types of investments compared to something our listeners might be a little bit more familiar with like a, you know, a multifamily property.

Barry: Very similar in a lot of different, a lot of ways rather. I mean different also, I mean, multifamily, obviously you’ve got people living there first and foremost, so you’re, it’s much more intensive. Hands-On where, depending on how many units do you own, do you have a management company that runs the property for you? Or are you the one that fields the calls when somebody calls from my toilet’s backed up or the lights need to be replaced or my refrigerator’s broken. So, it’s kind of depends on what size operator you are. Do you do that stuff yourself or did you farm somebody out or you’ve got staff that does all of that. Whereas the single-tenant deals, we kind of call them a lot of times mailbox money, or just passive income. Because you know, again, the guy generally speaking, they are the operator, the tenant manages and runs and takes care of the building. So, if there’s a roof leak, you don’t get a phone call in the middle of the night saying the roof’s leaking or the lights are out and not saying, well, the parking lots are out. I need you to replace the parking lot lights or the pothole in the parking lot, can you get that fixed for us tomorrow? Those are things the tenant generally handles. I mean, the lease controls that, and some leases are less landlord friendly than others, but that is where we get a lot of investors. You know, some of them even came out of multifamily that is more management and more time-intensive and saying, I’m kind of at the stage of life I just want, I want ease. I just want cashflow and they’ll transition into these types of properties. And, you know, I used to say pre-COVID, you could go sit on the beach, go on a cruise and have the money show up in your account the first of every month, then eventually we’ll be back to that, the cruise part and the vacation part. But it’s still such that you kind of kick back and relax and enjoy the income coming in and not have to worry about, you know, changing light bulbs and fixing toilets.

Seth: Yeah, that sounds good to me, dude. So, you could actually be on the active side, but it’s really passive as compared to being on the active side on a multi-family property. It seems, you know, you’re going to have a lot more things to do, a lot more things to manage, manage the property manager, manage the contractors, manage the tenants. But the retail single tenant properties, it’s a lot more passive even being an operator.

Barry: Correct. And I mean there’s nothing, I mean, I am a fan of multi-family. So, I’m certainly not one of these guys out there saying if you own multifamily, get out of multifamily, get all into, you know, single tenant QSR deal. So, there’s nothing wrong with the multifamily deals. And what we tend to see are folks are more involved in those, you know, more management intensive deals towards kind of their business, what they do, earlier stages in life, maybe like their thirties till their fifties, let’s say. And then eventually they get to where, you know what? I kind of want to be done with this. And just, I mean, I might make a little bit lower return. Although sometimes if you own a multi-family building for 10, 15, 20 years, a lot of times we see folks transitioning into these, they give up all the work and they realize, Holy cow, I’m actually making more cashflow than I had because I had owned those multi-family deals for so many years. I never really raised the rents to market. So, it’s not even necessarily giving up the income. But so yeah, I mean, it is, those are more management intensive.  We even see folks come out of shopping centers or office buildings, and eventually transitioned to these that are a little bit less management intensive or no management. And just, you know, go forward with those, for the, you know, for the foreseeable future.

Seth: Gotcha. Gotcha. So, what are some of your typical clients look like? I mean, are they just, you know, are they all professional, real estate investors are some of them, you know, are they attorneys, doctors, people like that?

Barry: It’s all over the place. I mean, we work with a lot of developers that develop these properties. So, they’re then you know what we called merchant builders, they are businesses building these and selling them. That’s how they make their living. There’s doctors and lawyers like you say, that it’s kind of their secondary income stream. They are primary businesses generating that income as a doctor or a lawyer or some other professional vocation. And they set aside money every year and try to start building up a portfolio of these sort properties. There’s people that just kind of do this on the side. It really is no one criteria at all. It really does vary. I mean, some have been doing this for many, many years and some, just pick up a deal here and there. So, it really, that’s one of things that’s interesting with our business. It really varies pretty significantly who our clientele is. I mean, we work with a lot of franchise operators that they run the business and then sell the real estate. So, it really, that’s one of the things that actually, when I was practicing law just seemed like every deal was the same. Every lease was the same. Every contract was very similar. Whereas here every day I’m dealing with different people, different deals, what they want to achieve is different. So, in that part, it’s actually a light up on a lot of, you know, a lot of excitement that we’re just dealing with different folks every day.

Seth: Yeah. Yeah. So, what’s that process look like if you know, somebody calls you up on the phone and just says, Hey, Barry, I want to buy a property. What’s the process look like? Where do you take them?

Barry: I mean, I guess when we have that happen, a lot of times it’s sitting down with them and help them understand bringing the pros and the cons. I mean the good and the bad. I mean, it looks everything we’re talking about and it sounds great. I got this passive income. I’m sitting on the beach going on a cruise and I got great income coming in. But there are risks. So, I mean, it’s making sure they understand, look, you could lose your tenant. Are you prepared to carry forward? If you’re, you know, the beauty of the single tenant deals is, if they’re occupied, they’re occupied, there’s no, you know, like a multi-family it could be, you know, all of a sudden, they challenge the market. You go from 100% occupied to 95% to 85% to 80% occupancy if the market takes a turn. If you are on single tenant, you’re either a 100% occupied or the downside 100% vacant. So, it’s making sure they understand that when the times are good, It’s great. But do you have the wherewithal, let’s say you’ve got a QSR or fast-food tenant in there. If all of a sudden, they go out of business, can you, are you in a position to ride that out for a while or are you positioned to re-tenant the property, potentially redevelop the property? So just making sure they understand the pros and the cons of it you know, what kind of debt might be available? Well, okay. If your tenant vacates and you’ve got leverage on the property, are you going to be able to cover the debt service out of your own pockets, so you don’t lose the property to foreclosure. So, it’s really, and then walking them through the different types of deals that are out there. You know, there are all sorts of sectors, banks or drug stores or fast food. There are other restaurants, there’s discounts, there’s dollar stores, just help them to understand the options. And what does that all look like and kind of walking them through what other clients have done. And again, the positives and the negatives to all of that.

Seth: Yeah. That sounds interesting, man. Like all those different things you think that, you know, these big corporations own, but really there’s somebody that owns these dollar stores individually. Somebody owns these Walgreens, you know.

Barry: Exactly. And that’s where I think most people as we drive around, just think, well, when you see the Walgreens, some big, massive company owns that. Or the Taco Bell, you know, Taco Bell owns that or the bank. So, what you don’t realize is a lot of these are own, yeah again, like we said earlier by people just like, like you and I, in reality.

Seth: Yeah. Yeah. Well, let’s switch gears a little bit. What are some of the current trends you’re seeing in the marketplace right now? You know, there’s a lot of disturbances with the pandemic and the election and, you know, just what are some of the trends you’re seeing?

Barry: I guess, an evolution. So, I focus on the retail side. So, I sell these single tenant properties and shopping centers in some markets, but you know all over the country, but it’s largely on the retail side. So, there’s a whole other sector like single tenant net lease office Single tenant and industrial. But my niche is really on the retail. So retail is evolving. You know, you’ve got obviously Amazon out there, e-commerce, Walmart, target other brands that are pushing more and more towards online retail. So that’s certainly something we’re following closely. And we work with clients that are looking at buying these properties, one of the first things we look at are what brands and what sectors are not at significant risk to being just cannibalized by Amazon and by e-commerce. So those are things we look at. I think, retail is continuing evolve. I don’t think it is going to go away. A lot of the mainstream media talks about the death of retail, how we’re not going to be going to retail stores anymore in the near future, which I don’t, I really don’t believe at all. If anything, Amazon is adding more and more stores and Walmart and target continue to leverage their stores to their benefit. You know, the restaurant sector, we’re seeing a lot of evolution to more drive-thru, those are the restaurant brands that are doing well through COVID or the QSRs, the quick service restaurants, fast food they have through, mobile ordering, takeout. So, we’re just saying, you know, I think from a COVID standpoint, we’re seeing an evolution of retail evolution of the restaurant sector at just an accelerating pace in reality, which, you know, creates a lot of interesting trends and a lot of excitement looking forward for the next couple of years, I do believe.

Seth: Yeah. So, a lot of it does it come down to evaluating the individual brands and just kind of take in an honest outlook at, you know, where those brands are heading and you know, just an honest outlook at their future.

Barry: Yeah, I think looking at the brands and looking at the sectors too like we talked about, you know, drug stores as an example, I mean, the Amazon came out with some news today. They’re getting deeper and deeper into the drug store sector. I mean, they had bought a company a couple of years ago, so I mean, some folks have been feeling like, well, drug stores are Amazon proof and we’ve been telling folks, no they’re really not. So, I think it’s looking at, yes, the brands within the drugstore sector, you’ve got, your kind of the three primaries, Rite aid, Walgreens, CBS. So, it’s kind of distinguishing between those, but also what’s the entire sector look like. What happens if the tenant goes out of business, you are looking at what’s the size of the building, what’s the shape of the building, what’s the positioning. So, your ability to re tenant to reposition that if they ever go out of business and then, you know, the fast-food sector, obviously there’s many, many brands, so it’s not, you know, again, it’s about your yes, you know, how’s Taco Bell look, but also what size is the franchisee, if it’s franchise operator, what are their financials look like? So, it’s really, that’s where it’s really helpful to work with somebody who knows what they’re doing, because it’s not as simple as saying, well, I’m going to buy a Taco Bell, or I want to buy a drug store. There’s just a lot of technicalities, a lot of attributes that most people probably aren’t even aware of that every Taco Bell is not the same or every Dunkin donuts Deal’s not the same. You could buy one Taco Bell, that’s fantastic. It’s a great operator and a phenomenal location. And another, that’s a really weak franchisee. That’s maybe at risk of going back bankrupt.

Seth: Yeah. Yeah. Now do you do shopping centers as well.

Barry: I do we sell shopping centers. Primarily, I’m located in South Florida. So, we kind of keep those much more regionalized. We saw a lot of shopping centers kind of central and South Florida. And then a big part of our practice is selling these single tenant deals. Just literally all over the country.

Seth: Yeah. Where do you see the shopping centers going? Do you think it’s just kind of a, let’s get the right tenants in their type of thing?

Barry: I think so, again, I think it’s at who are the retailers that are, you know, not at risk from an e-commerce standpoint. I mean, a lot of those, pre COVID we were looking at, you know, who are the service-oriented tenants, the restaurants you know, salons or nail salons, beauty, gems, anything that was experiential and service oriented. Those were the hot tenants before COVID unfortunately, those are also the tenant sectors that have just been hammered during COVID. So, I think it’s still looking at those sorts of operators that can survive and are still Amazon proof. I do think we’ll see the resurgence again of the restaurants, of the service sector, even of the fitness sector, the gyms. But those are going through tough times right now. I mean, movie theaters were kind of booming and they were having a Renaissance of sorts pre COVID and now most of them are closed and a lot will probably never reopen in reality.

Seth: Yeah. Yeah. Are shopping centers at a discount right now, or are they still kind of holding strong?

Barry: I’d say holding pretty strong. I think not too many sellers are looking to sell at a discount. We’ve sold a number of them and I say pricing has held up quite well. I think those that are kind of struggling or maybe have some real serious vacancy issues for the most part, those sellers have been holding on and let’s kind of ride through this and try to get it repositioned and sell, you know, if we decide to sell when things get stabilized again, there’s always some outliers where there are some distress deals, but not that many rights now. So, I would say pricing has largely held up quite well. And on the single tenant deals, we were talking about the pricing for the most part it’s held up extremely well. And if anything is at record, low returns, which is positive from a seller challenging for a buyer, unless you’re talking know going buying a single, large single tenant fitness center or something like that, those are probably, you know, certainly more challenging at the moment compared to pre-COVID-19.

Seth: Yeah. That makes sense. And then from a buyer side, you know, how do you evaluate an asset right now? Just because, you know, times are uncertain and then the pricing isn’t necessarily, you know, you’re not getting a lot of distressed properties. So how do you kind of go into that as a buyer?

Barry: I think first and foremost and sometimes I see a lot of buyers overlook more than they should. Looking at the real estate, What’s the location. Like, I mean, if I’m buying a great location at a rental rate that I can replace, I’m not really all that concerned about who my tenant is and how viable they even are. And maybe I’ve been one of them to go out of business. If I’ve got, you know, we call it upside in the rent. So, I think that’s first and foremost is looking at the quality of the real estate and then looking, you know, secondarily looking at your tenant. And again, it’s not just a sign on the, you know, the name on the sign that says Taco Bell or says Dunkin Donuts, cause it’s probably a franchise operator there. So, looking at the, looking at who’s your tenant, ultimately, and the lease guarantee, how strong did their financials look like? How much debt are they carrying? How much cash do they have on their balance sheet? So really digging into those financials, look at the store sales, how they’ve been performing this year during COVID compared to the last couple of years. So, it’s just taken a really deep dive into the tenant in addition to the real estate and trying to determine how viable is it long-term. And if I’m not sure the tenants going to make it, what’s my plan, my business plan, if they don’t. And is that a really bad thing if they go out of business or is it maybe even a really good thing if they go out of business?

Seth: Yeah, I like that man. Look at the underlying real estate. Even if the tenant might not be strong right now or might not make it that underlying real estate might be even more valuable if you can get a different tenant in there.

Barry: Absolutely. And that’s what I see a lot of people miss that. I mean, it’s the old adage. I mean, you always, even if you’re not in the business, you hear about, you know, what’s the rules of real estate or buying real estate or, you know, it’s location, location, location. And if you buy great real estate, like I think you’re in San Diego, is that right? So, if you buy a, you know, if somebody bought a great location in San Diego, orange County California, twenty-five years ago, even if they overpaid, even if it was a little bit overpaid, but you know, the location caught up to them they probably ended up just fine. I mean, I’ve got some clients that, and some folks we work with and know of that on just trophy real estate generational type real estate that people look at now and say, Holy cow, how’d they accumulate that real estate. And I’ve heard a few of them say, well, I overpaid 20 years ago. And a lot of times, if it’s just really, really good real estate, you may have to overpay today, but it’s, you’re better doing that than underpaying for crappy real estate that only goes down in value, perhaps. So, it’s still location, location, location. I think that still is really, really important and always will be, I believe.

Seth: Yeah, definitely, a 100% agree man. So, what’s an actionable step or, you know, golden nugget for our listeners who might be trying to diversify out of their traditional investments, their 401ks and get into, you know, an alternative investment such as single tenant retail?

Barry: Yeah. And I mean, when I get somebody comes to me, I wouldn’t be one of these people that says, go do it all at once, or you’ve got to do it. I mean, if you’re doing, if you’ve been in the stock market and you’ve done really well, and you’ve had a good plan, that might be what you keep doing. If you decide, you know what, I do want to take some chips off the table, the markets at an all-time high or whatever the reason is, you know, I decided I wanted to get into real estate. I say, do it slowly. You know, I’m a big believer in patience and taking a long-term approach. I mean, if somebody came to me and said, I got $15 million in the stock market, I want to sell it all and you know, you’re going to go buy me all this real estate. I’d probably tell them, look, let’s take a cautious approach. Let’s go slowly. Let’s be very, just deliberate. And try not to make any mistakes. I think it’s just, it’s like anything in life. I think it’s just patience and kind of a slow process and, you know, unbearably, the tortoise generally wins the race and it’s just being consistent and doing the right things over and over time. And it’s not, you know, go doing anything all at once.

Seth: Yeah. I love that, man. And it just comes down to everybody’s situation is different. I mean, somebody might have $15 million to invest and they’ve gone to the stock market and maybe just want to place it a little piece in there. Or maybe somebody is, you know, in their twenties and they have a chunk of change they want to place somewhere, and it can be a little bit more aggressive.

Barry: Exactly. I mean, that’s a great point. I mean, you’re early, you know, if you’re in your twenties or thirties, you can probably afford to make a mistake more than somebody in their sixties and seventies. You know, somebody in that position, if they lose a tenant, if they’re living off this income, that could be absolutely devastating to them. So that’s a big part of it is really understanding what they’re looking to accomplish. What is the cash flow needed for? Is it just appreciation? And they’ve got a 20, 30, 40-year time horizon, or I’m going to live off this income. So that’s going to be a big factor in kind of what sort of properties they should be looking at and what their approach should be.

Seth: Yep. All right, Barry, let’s jump into the freedom four. So, what’s the best thing you do to keep your mind and body healthy?

Barry: I mean, I read a lot, spending time with family you know, take some walks here and there. I’m probably not the best person on this because I work a lot of hours and kind of have a pretty tunnel vision focus to a degree.

Seth: You look like you’re in good shape though, man.

Barry: I mean, I keep trying to do what I can, but also just, I mean times I’ll just sit and even if I’m working sometimes just sitting outside getting some fresh air, doing that and just kind take, try to take the foot off the pedal a little bit. And again, I’m not a big workout guy. I should be, I wish I did more, but you know, just taking some walks and getting some fresh air, things like that.

Seth: Gotcha. Gotcha. So, in an alternative universe where you weren’t involved in real estate, what would you be doing?

Barry: That’s interesting. I mean, one thing I went to University of Georgia and I grew up you know, a big fan of the University of Georgia and it’s a something that’s really important to me. It’s not just the sports side of it. It’s not just, I’m a big dog fan and follow football and other sports. I probably, again, this where COVID is kind of interesting. If I had an alternate universe, maybe I spent my career working there in some capacity with the university giving back to them. Unfortunately, one of the things we’re seeing with COVID is not just University of Georgia, but a lot of universities across the country are having to lay people off and cutbacks and budgetary. I mean, that’s one of the really, really sad parts of all this, you see all these cutbacks across various businesses and education sector. So, I don’t know how that would have worked out necessarily, but that might, I think that’d be something I’d look at really closely just living in a college town, working, you know, with a university that means a lot to me.

Seth: Yeah, that is cool, man. Do you stay involved with the alumni association?

Barry: I do. Yeah, I do.

Seth: So where were we at five years ago. And where do you see yourself and your business five years from now?

Barry: Five years ago, I was kind of doing the same thing. I was at the same company because I’ve been here for 19 years and kind of was doing the same, I mean, honestly doing the same thing. I mean, we’ve had a nice, really good run these past five years. So, we were really busy then and have been these past five years, five years from now, I’d probably say slowing it down a little bit. Like I said, I’ve got a couple of kids in college, so they’ll be out of college at that point. So, I’ll be kind of moving into that phase of life. So probably doing the same thing, just maybe a little bit fewer hour each week and maybe a few more sitting, you know, sitting outside and enjoying that a little bit more, but yeah, probably the same thing. Just maybe a slightly slower pace.

Seth: Yeah. Well, when things are going as well as they are, man, you don’t need to change too much.

Barry: Exactly. So now keep doing, you know, ride the wave while you can. Exactly.

Seth: Yeah. Well, I know you’re an investor yourself, so, you know, how’s passive income made your life better?

Barry: Honestly, that’s something I got to work on myself. To be honest with you. I kind of keep the brokerage hat on. So, when I come across good opportunities, they tend to be let’s work on those with clients. So that’s actually something I’m working on myself and kind of taking the advice I had mentioned, you know, taken an approach slowly to looking for opportunities to invest in different deals with clients are looking for opportunities. So, I’ve got some things that, you know, kind of a couple buckets of passive cashflow I’ve set up for myself and my family. But otherwise, that’s an area I’m looking to grow and improve on myself personally, also.

Seth: That’s cool. Well, you got time, man. That’s what you got to work on those five years. So, you can take a step back.

Barry: That that’s actually part of my plan. Absolutely. Look back five years from now and have done a good job of that and have more passive income. That’s absolutely a big part of my focus.

Seth: There you go. All right, Barry, I really appreciate you coming on today, man. Where can our listeners find out more about you?

Barry: Probably good places on LinkedIn, I guess where you and I connected I’m really active on there. So just drop me a line, a DM direct message on LinkedIn and do a lot of phone calls with folks on there. If you’re not on LinkedIn, you can give me a shout directly, I’m at (954) 245-3493 is my direct phone line and welcome the opportunity to connect with anybody and everybody.

Seth: Brave, man, giving your phone number.

Barry: I don’t give my cell number.

Seth: There we go. Nice. All right, Barry. I really appreciate coming on today, man

Barry: Thanks for having me. It’s a lot of fun.

Seth: Thank you.

Barry: Be well.

Seth: Whoa, great industry-specific perspective from Barry Wolfe. He really knows his stuff.  If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about buying a retail asset, Barry is your man for sure. I also always love to hear about how people have leveraged their law degrees to jumpstart another highly lucrative and successful venture. To take your next step to build passive income, go to www.passiveincomeattorney.com and download our free passive investing guide. Until next time guys enjoy the journey.

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