Self-storage can be a lucrative investment opportunity for those who do their due diligence and invest wisely. Take it from our guest Kris Benson as he talks about his path to real estate and how he ended up in self-storage and stabilized his assets. He also discusses the potential risks that investors should consider and the competition from new operators.
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Kris also notes the importance of standing out to make a lasting impression on potential investors and finding the great people you know will act on your behalf when there’s a downhill. Listen in as he gives a bonus tip on why expansion is the biggest lever to grow net operating income and maximize return on investment for investors.
Key Points From This Episode:
- Kris talks about his path in real estate and his investments before getting into self-storage.
- Kris’ overview of where the industry stands today and the benefits and potential risks of investors considering self-storage.
- Why is America just a culture built on consumerism?
- Why is market dynamics considered the biggest risk for investors investing in storage?
- How Kris goes about learning the occupancy of their competitors in their market.
- The ways, as an operator, to maximize return on investment.
- Expansion as the biggest lever that Kris and his company is pulling off right now.
- Are there many mom-and-pops owning 100 to 200 units?
- What are the exit strategies operators should consider in the long term?
- Kris’ best source for meeting new investors right now.
- What makes Kris’ business stand out and what also worked out for Whitney and Life Bridge Capital?
- The challenging part about investing passively.
- The importance of finding great people and building a relationship with operators.
- The locations where Kris is going to do deals and partnerships.
“The more storage there is, the more people use it.” – Kris Benson
“The thing I would say from an investor standpoint is, the people who trust you, as an operator, they’re going to be the people who write your check.” – Kris Benson
“I was interested in self-storage as an asset class, I was convinced that cap rates and apartments couldn’t possibly compress any further than they were at that moment.” – Kris Benson
“As an investor, you’re trusting the operator to find good opportunities for an exit. For us, it’s mostly been institutional capital and the REITs that have provided those exits for us.” – Kris Benson
“I’ve done a fair amount of passive investing in my career. And what I bet on is team and track record..” – Kris Benson
“I want to know the people first because, generally, if you have great people, that’s a good place to start. When things go downhill, you know those people are going to act on your behalf.” – Kris Benson
Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:
About Kris Benson
Kris Benson oversees the equity-raising arm of the business, sits on the investment committee, and manages investor relations. In the past 24 months, the Reliant team has been responsible for over $200 million in self-storage acquisitions across the southeastern U.S.
Kris, an executive sales professional brings a wealth of knowledge from his own experience in the commercial multi-family arena. Prior to joining Reliant, he worked for Intuitive Surgical, the developer of the da Vinci surgical robot. Mr. Benson graduated from the State University of Binghamton. Kris currently lives with his wife and children in Roswell, Georgia.
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