You're listening to the R E I Marketing Nerds podcast, the leading resource for real estate investors who want to dominate their market online. Dan Barrett is the founder of AdWords Nerds, a high high-tech digital agency focusing exclusively on helping real estate investors like you get more leads and deals online, outsmart your competition and live a freer more awesome life. And now your host, Dan Barrett.
(00:41): Alright, hello, and welcome to this week's episode of the R E I Marketing Nerds podcast. As always, this is Daniel Barrett here from AdWords nerds.com. And look, if you need more leads and deals online for your real estate investing business, you know where to go. It's AdWords nerds.com. You can jump on a call with our team and we will put together an online marketing strategy for your business completely free. Now, this week I have a really fun interview with Tyler Bennett. He's from Bennett Realty, l l c. That's two Ns, two ts Bennett realty llc.com. Now, he formed that company in 2016 to create a vertically integrated commercial real estate firm down in New Jersey. Now, what is interesting about Tyler to me is not only this idea of vertically integrating his company and really touching so many different parts of that commercial real estate world, he's also an incredibly driven, incredibly optimistic, and a very thoughtful guy. He really has thought through why he has done the things he's done with his business and it shows in his success. So I'm really excited for you to get to know Tyler. Tyler, if you haven't met him before, he's a fantastic guy. We touched so many different things in this interview. So without any further ado, let's get into my conversation with Tyler Bennett from Bennett Realty. Hey, what's up everybody? This is Daniel Barrett from Edwards Nerds, and I am here with Tyler Bennett from Bennett Realty llc.com. Tyler, welcome to the show, man. Thank you so much for
(02:19): Being here. Thanks for having me, Dan. Excited to be here. Yeah, I am super excited. We were talking a little bit about, there's a bunch of stuff I want to dig in with you. I've got a bunch of questions, but for people who don't know you, let's back up. Let's talk a little bit about who you are and what Bennett Realty does. You have your fingers in a lot of different parts of reality, so give people kind of the high level overview of you and what your company's doing.
(02:45): Yeah, thank you, Dan. So first of all, I am a proud husband, father of two. I am the c e of Bennett Companies, which includes Bennett Realty and Development, which is our advisory platform. We also have a development arm. So our company is vertically integrated in the commercial real estate space, solely on the advisory side and the development side. On the advisory side, we represent landlords and tenants and buyers and sellers of all different asset classes across about 20 different states, mainly on the east coast. And on the development side, we buy and develop multi-family mixed use buildings as well as freestanding hospitality and retail buildings. So we're based in Homedale, New Jersey, and that's the background of the
(03:40): Company. Yeah, and we'll back up. I want to talk about your background a little bit, but I'm curious, you specifically mentioned the vertical integration in the company, which is one of the things that I had kind of written down when we spoke the first time. Was it always the plan to do that, right? Because I think a lot of people will say, you no, what you got to do is you got to really focus, you got to have a narrow kind of thing. You're going to do only this one type of thing. You've taken this approach where you've got all these different parts of the process under one roof. So was that always the plan? Was that something you landed on while building the company? What was that decision like?
(04:18): That was the approach prior to starting the company. I've been in the commercial real estate space about 18 years now. My background initially began as a broker, as a broker that always wanted to be an active developer as many brokers in our industry are or desire to be, I began investing in some real estate and partaking in some development deals. And so I would say about 10 years ago, the wheels started spinning about this platform and thinking, why isn't other people doing this? Why is every broker want to be developer and no developer seemingly wants to be a broker? So fast forward to about seven years ago when I started this company, I had owned a company prior to this that was focused on the advisory side, and I was doing development but not under one roof. And I just felt that there was a better way, a more transparent way, a more efficient way.
(05:18): And I think that the benefits of both platforms are mutually exclusive. I mean, there's absolutely no doubt in my mind that part of our value proposition on the advisory side is an understanding of the development space and on the development space, which is constantly troubleshooting and solving puzzles. A lot of our experience on the advisory side helps in that. So it was thought out, it was a desire and it was a plan, and it was not one that's really out there. So it wasn't the type of platform I could point to three or four other companies nationally and say, oh, we're going to emulate those guys. It was really kind of an organic ground up start.
(06:04): Why do you think that more people don't do it right? Because I think that the idea of vertical integration, it's not new. You're talking like Andrew Carnegie type stuff, you're like get the coal and then you have the railroad and all that stuff. I mean that the efficiency has always been there. So why do you think so many people don't pursue it? Or why do you think that you guys are one of the few that do that approach Mean loaded? Question . All I ask here loaded questions.
(06:35): I like it on a high level. I think quite candidly it, I think that's why a lot of companies don't launch or succeed the way they can in a space that maybe is at the time unheard of. When Nike went all in with the Jordans, it was unheard of it. They were selling t-shirts, right? And we saw how that worked out. But I think that going against the norm has just been an attribute and an approach I've taken in almost all things in my life. So that's the, okay, I think I'm onto something if it's abnormal or uncommon. I can't speak specific as to why individuals don't. I know a lot of people in the business, and I know a lot of people that and I'm humbled and thankful for it, that have cheered us on and been intrigued by the platform, and I've encouraged others to do the same. I think the silos we're in and the business world oftentimes dictate the business plans and approaches we take. And I think that probably has a lot to do with it, quite honestly, as a developer, if you're a developer and you're doing big, medium, or even small projects, it's probably more economically driven. You know, don't want to be a fee driven individual or professional. So I can't speak to the individual's whys. I think it starts with self-doubt and doing something abnormal, but I'm really, really excited by everything we have going on here. I'm really glad and proud of the platform we have and looking forward to the future. Yeah.
(08:15): You mentioned in passing, right, you were talking about your business model and you sort of mentioned it as primarily about problem-solving. And I know we kind of talked about this briefly before, where New Jersey is an environment with a fair amount of regulation, red tape, whatever you want to call it. Can you talk a little bit about the difficulties that you have in sort of dealing with that thing? Is that a huge part of the business? And start just understanding how to navigate the system itself?
(08:44): I mean, a little bit of red tape maybe is an understatement, but Yeah, I mean, look, a lot of that comes from being a good broker when you're transaction driven as a broker, but you quickly realize that while a lot of things are out of your control, the more educated and experienced you are, whether it's in the building permit process or the land entitlement process or planning boards and zoning boards and councils, and the better broker you become and the potential to at least attempt to solve some of those puzzles on the service side. As a developer, it just comes with the territory. I mean, the reality of it is every developer, I don't know if they'll say this publicly, but we'll probably complain about the red tape of New Jersey, but because of the density of populations, the income levels, the diversity, it is a phenomenal place to develop commercial real estate. It's just really, really hard. And so I think that the foundation of solving those puzzles or the red tape you mentioned starts with experience and understanding it.
(09:56): But that'll only take you so far. I think the unwavering, relentless pursuit of the ultimate goal is what gets you across the finish line. And that's when there's situations that you feel I'm stuck. Oh shoot, we're at a bad spot. You just really can't accept that reality. I like to say I'm an eternal optimist, so no matter what problem is thrown my way, we're going to solve the problem. And I think that's the approach you really need and that's the foundation of what's been successful for us along with the experience in navigating that red tape you mentioned. Well,
(10:34): Let's talk about that for a second. One of the things that I wrote down when we, before we do these podcast interviews, we do sort of a short pre-interview just to, so I could get to know you and everything. One of the notes that I wrote down after talking to you was like, it says relentless optimism. Relentless optimism. It's not just optimism, it's like optimism that doesn't die. And one of the things that I know about you is that you also do a lot of, we were talking about this before the call, the endurance athletic events, marathons, and stuff like that. Can you talk a little bit about, I'm really curious, do you think that you are interested in endurance athletics because you are naturally optimistic and you just have this kind of relentless side of your personality and that's one way to express it? Or do you think that doing that kind of event experience, having those experiences helps to strengthen your optimism? Right. Does that make sense? Is it that the work that you do makes you an optimist or is it because you're an optimist that you're good at the work that you do good at that kind of endurance event, that kind Of thing? Well, now we're getting into it here. Yeah.
(11:43): A great question. I started in my professional career before I was an ultra endurance athlete. So that was just, I played college sports and then a lot of division three or division one college athletes, reality hits you on the side of the face. I applied a lot of those learning curves and management of time through playing collegiate sports in my business. But then it faded. It faded in terms of you become an adult, you're not playing professional or collegiate sports, and you sort of pour it all in on the business. For me, there was a point in my life where that was missing, that competitive, physical and mental growth was missing. And while I was gaining it in business, it wasn't experience driven, it was monetarily driven. And for me, my fulfillment wasn't solely based on the monetary success. So I began exploring the ultra endurance space, and about seven years ago started competing in a lot of ultras. For
(12:51): People that don't know what's the definition of an ultra endurance event versus any other kind of Endurance event. I mean, an ultra endurance by definition is anything over 26.2 miles, which is the distance of a marathon. Okay. Yeah. Quite honestly, I skipped the marathon, marathon step. I I've never actually even run a marathon competitively run that. Oh Really? That's Wild. Yeah. I signed up for my first ultra invent, which was climbing the vertical equivalent of Mount Everest. And I'm going to spin this into your question, which is 29,029 feet. You have 36 hours to do it, and you climb up and down a mountain as many times as possible. And if you do it 17 times on this mountain, it's 29,000, 29 feet. And when I signed up for the event, I was not in great endurance shape. I didn't really know what to expect. I was navigating this endurance world, and it was a very personal goal of mine to do. And during that event, which really changed everything for me it exposed me to the optimism that you mentioned and that you see through other people and other humans. Some by the way that were disadvantaged, disabled, obese. It was all walks of life competing to this event that was really you versus you 36 hours, go climb the mountain as many times as you can.
(14:21): So my takeaway from that, and this event was called 29 0, 29 it spot, it was founded by this guy, Jesse Itzler, become a good friend of mine and a mentor after the event. I was talking to him and he said to me, now you raised the bar. And it really stuck with me because the bar was raised in all aspects of life, being a father, being a husband, being a c e O, and then obviously in the ultra endurance world. So I would answer your question by saying I've always had that optimism and that relentless pursuit, but I really tapped more into it by seeing that not everything is achieved by grit. And this business approach of you're in the shark tank and you know can't run a hundred miles by just that. You run it by optimism and gratitude and other things that really take you to the next level. So the answer to your question is it was always there, but the ultras really exposed to me the power of optimism and how far the mind could go with practicing gratitude and having the optimism and it's transformed my life and it grew my businesses. There's no question that without participating in ultras, I think things would be okay, but there was that missing piece it felt, and as I look back at all the things I've done in the ultra space, I absolutely see a connection between the success and business and the success in ultra endurance Space. Yeah, I love that. I think that's so cool.
(16:10): What's find motivated seller leads online but don't know where to start? Download our free motivated seller keyword report today. Edwards nerds have spent over 5 million this year researching the most profitable keywords for finding motivated seller leads. And you can grab these exact keywords when you download our report at www.adwordsnerds.com/keywords. I think the whole idea of teaching yourself what you're capable of and then having that carry over into the other parts of your life is such a cool, neat idea. So
(16:48): Yeah, I want to say one thing on that too. Yeah, please. Yeah. Somebody said, I don't know who it was, but how you do anything is how you do everything or how you do everything is how you do anything. But you know, could be this astounding CEO O with this phenomenal success, but for me what was missing is, but you're, you go home and you're maybe somebody else. And so I wanted to be this better human and this better individual in all walks of life. And you can't really get there. You don't have to run marathons. You could do five Ks, we just talked about that. You don't have to do a hundred mile races. It could be anything. It could be a walk by yourself in the woods for 30 minutes, whatever challenges you that bleeds over that, that's going to impact how you deal with problems at home and your wife or husband and how you process challenges at work and building that bar up. It just as I look back almost, and I encourage a lot of people to get in this space, not ultras necessarily, because I don't believe in work life balance. It's all life. So if you look at your body of art and you're this successful c e o and you're working 70 hours a week, but you're worn out on the weekends to even throw baseball with your kids, I don't know if that's really my definition of success. It's not. So,
(18:14): And I love that you mentioned that because I highlighted that when we talked the first time. I don't believe in work-life balance. I think that's really interesting. So let's stay there for a second. I am very curious if you say, okay, it's not necessarily like, oh, you got to balance everything, but then how do you think about apportioning your time throughout the day, right? Obviously you are someone who, and I don't know this about you, but I'm going to assume just based off your demeanor and kind of what I know about you so far, that if you had to could sit down and work 23 hours a day, you know what I mean? It just get everything done. You could do that if you wanted, but you clearly make a very deliberate effort, like you said, to be a good human or a better human in all walks of your life. So part of your family as you're in relationships. So how do you think about dividing up your time? Do you block it off on your calendar? How do you literally get that done so that you don't end up going too far down any particular path?
(19:17): Yeah, that's a great question. I'm very purpose driven. I'm very self-aware and I look at my life as four buckets or four boxes. There's fitness, there's family, there's business, and there's experiences. The never ending sort of goal for me is to have all of those as filled as possible. The reality of it is that there's going to be times where one's overflowing and one is almost tapping out. That's life and it's like a pendulum. But I do spend a lot of time, a considerable amount of time in planning and preparation annually, quarterly, biannually, monthly, weekly, and daily on checking those boxes. And I think something that more recently has come into my life is that the practice of grace, and there are times during this endeavor a lot of times that when you attempt to become balanced, you're going to feel this guilt or this pull or this, I shouldn't be here or shouldn't be doing this, or I'm doing too much of this and not enough that if you're someone like me, or even if you're someone not like me, maybe on day four of a seven day family vacation, you're like, ah, I got to check my emails.
(20:34): And that's where grace comes in to say, I'm filling this bucket up. I'm going to be present and where my feet are in this space, and I'm going to maximize this time with whatever I'm doing, and I know I'm going to get to these other buckets. But for me, it's a constant self check-in of that. And one of the things I do on the business side is every Friday on my way home from work or my way home from my last meeting or the end of the week, I ask myself a simple question, is what I attained this week worth the cost? Is what I attained this week worth the cost? Everything has a cost, everything. And most of it's usually time. And that sort of balances me to go into the weekend and think more about the following week. And look, there's times where I was heavy this week on business and missed a couple training runs, or I didn't get to see my wife as much or my kids. And that's okay, that's life. But it's the never ending self-reflection and attempt to keep those buckets balanced. By the way, it's almost impossible to have it always balanced, but that's kind of the journey. So that's a practice that's worked well for me, but that's really the the pillar of my life. Four buckets, how do I fill 'em up? And every year that goes on, there may be a year where I'm more consciously focused on another bucket than one of the previous year.
(22:07): Yeah, I mean, I love that. First of all, it, it's like I really like the buckets you divide things into. I think those are really cool sort of categories to analyze your life in. And I love the question of is what I attain this week worth the cost? I actually collect questions. I have a blog that's called Better Questions. I just love this kind of prompt that drives your thinking a certain way. And I think that's a really powerful one because it's like you were saying, right? You are always making trade-offs, right? There is no such thing as a decision without a trade-off, right? There's always something. And so really thinking about, well, I made these trade-offs worth it, I think is really, really impactful. I would be remiss if I did not ask you as we've established a relentless optimist. Okay. I am so curious what you see as the current state of the market and the market that we are heading into.
(23:06): So I will say we're recording this. People are going to listen to this all different times. So we don't have to get super, super specific about this is going to happen in January versus March or whatever, and we don't need to talk about that. But I'm curious how you view the current market that we're in and what you see as the story of the next year or maybe two years. Do you view it as, Hey, things are going to get better. It's not that big a deal. Do you view it as we're headed into a downturn? What's your view on that right Now? Yeah, I mean, look, I think from a high level the job losses there, there's lagging data. So everything from C P I at an employment rate to G D P, it's all lagging. By the time it's reported, it's, it's already happened and I like data. But I would tell you that today, I mean the job losses are and job cuts are pretty public. I think you're going to continue to see the trimming of big companies. And unfortunately the employment rate tick up while the fed's mandate is maximum employment and 2% inflation. I think that the cost we just talked about, the cost of their efforts to stem inflation will be higher unemployment. There's just no way around it. So I do think as we head into 2023 in the first and second quarter, I think there's going to be some challenges. I think there's going to be on main street challenges, on corporate America challenges, I think there's going to be challenges all over.
(24:39): There's never ending question of are reenter reception? Are we not? I think we probably are but I also think that the rules are almost being rewritten in real time. Is 2% inflation, which was established by the way in the late eighties, early nineties, and worked for 30 years. Is that a real number? Mean is that we used to care about our debt. We don't seem to care about our debt anymore. So I think we're modernizing. So I take data with a grain of salt, but I do think that unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, there's going to be the rise of interest rates in the commercial real estate space is going to put downward pressure on business owners, space occupiers, brokers, professionals, architects, engineers, everybody that touches this space. And I think it's going to be challenging next year in 2023.
(25:33): I also think probably not to your surprise, but there's going to be unbelievable opportunity not just buying low, but on the advisory side, I think we're really making a conscious effort to lean into our clients, our foundational clients, our long-term clients to be there for them. I think that we have to normalize as a society, 10 years of artificially low rates and millions and billions and trillions of dollars printed and earned during that time. The reality of it is we need to be in a six to 8% interest rate environment. So I think we're going through the spiral, what feels like a downward spiral, the psychological effect, I suppose. There seems to be a lot of people that just thought things were going to be like that forever. And so I'm not surprised that the Fed is doing what they're doing. They're moving at a pace that's significant.
(26:31): I think that slows down maybe three quarter point interest rates become quarter Hals, but we're really keeping an eye on the employment data anecdotally from Main Street and obviously data, because that to us is a big driver for people renting apartments, renting space, buying buildings, selling. So yeah, I think it's going to be a tough 23 early on, I think mid to late next year, I guess we'll look back at this and see if I was right, but we're going to level off and have some pricing and value stability, and that's really what we need in our space. People really just don't know what things are worth. The good stuff will continue to be good and maybe get better. And the lower tier assets or spaces or buildings or buyers or sellers we will have a harder time. So we're optimistic though. I mean, I really caution friends of mine in this space and clients that I talk to every day, you know, could follow C M B C and be a manically depressed, or you could follow Bloomberg or whatever, or local geography driven. We're space driven, the space we're in, we're aware of these external factors, but how is it really impacting us as a company, having a good year, a really good year. But I think we're all feeling like, let me get what I can and whatever's going to come next year, be prepared for that.
(28:04): Yeah. Well, let me ask you a little bit about that because we're coming up on time, and I don't want to go too far over because I know you're a busy guy, but I also know that your team is growing. I think you guys just built a brand new office, which is pretty awesome. So let's talk about hiring just a second. People listen to this podcast know I recently went through a big hiring process myself and have been getting better as a business owner at hiring. So can you talk a little bit about how you guys approach hiring, how you approach growing your team? I do know that you're sort of expanding over time, so how do you think about getting the right people in the right seats? That's a very challenging thing for a lot of investors. I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on That. Yeah, that's a good question, Dan. I think that to your point, yes, we did just complete construction and we moved into our beautiful new offices, which we're very proud of for the first time in 16 years. We're no longer leasing office space. Bought the land, we developed it, we self-performed. Very proud of that.
(29:08): And The purpose behind that was, yeah, it's brand building. Yeah, it's part of our story. But ultimately, to grow the company, like I said to you, I don't need this office. I need a home office. No one needs a whole office. But I mean, answer your question, our approach on hiring is really culture first. We're not a platform and a company that wants to just hire warm bodies. We want the right people. There's the army over here, and the Navy seals over here and the seals do more with less. And the army has its appropriate presence. And we sort of look at ourselves as the seals. The culture side though matters. I like to approach good humans first on the hiring side. And I don't really believe in resumes, so I believe in life resumes, but resumes and what you've done, yeah, that's important. We're a for-profit business, but if you're a good person first and you adopt the culture we have here, which we're very proud of, and it's something that an individual's interested in, we'll get you there.
(30:11): Wherever there is, our opportunities will afford in entrepreneurial, independent contractors to really spread their wings. And I think that's missing in a lot of our competitors. They say it, but then they tell you what to wear and where to be and what to do and how to do it. And I don't like to manage that way. So we are looking to grow. We're looking to hire more and more advisors and brokers throughout the East coast than the northeast region. We see a tremendous opportunity with our platform, our infrastructure from our marketing and our graphics and our drone operators and illustrations and is all done in-house second to none. We haven't spared a penny on that. So we like to start with obviously people we maybe know that's the best way to start. And those are just, I guess I should say this a hit list where I'm just calling the people that I know that I think would be a good fit and I'd like to talk to about them joining our team.
(31:09): And then there's the other people out there that I don't know, which hopefully maybe some of them listen to this podcast and reach out because they want to understand what it is that we're doing that's different and what it is that separates us from others. Because ultimately the company you work for has to give to you. There shouldn't be a one-way street. And that's what I'm proud of that I think we have here. But to answer your original question, Dan, it's really about good people first. I don't really want to grow an organization of high earners, but maybe disruptors, if you're a good person, the money will come. So that's the approach we take. And look, that takes longer. I mean, I know I could scale this company much faster. I've been there and done that with other companies I've owned, and I really want to grow. We're like a family here. We eat lunch together, we enjoy each other. Been at other places, people say that, but we really are. So we spend more time together than with our own families. So why should we not have a intimate organization that enjoys one another? And that's really what I look for is, and I know there's more out there. I mean, I know there's a lot of people looking for this, so we're trying to connect those that are looking and with us and bring 'em together.
(32:30): Yeah, I think based on what I've learned about you and your work ethic, but also the company, I think you guys are a really good example. I have a friend who always says that his job as the owner is to make sure that every employee is better off when they leave than when they got there. And I think that you guys are a really good example of that. Really great at sort of building a culture that builds up the people within it. So if anyways, listening to this and you are curious about this as a reminder, it's bennett realty llc.com. So there's two Ns, two ts, Bennett realty llc.com. Tyler Bennett, thank you so much, man. This has been a really fascinating conversation for people that want to kind of get to know you a little bit better. Obviously we've talked about Bennett Realty llc.com. Do you do social media or anything? Is there anywhere where you want people to look you up?
(33:24): Yeah, you could follow me on Instagram at Tyler o. The O is for Owen. If anyone is Curious , Tyler O. Bennett, Tyler at Tyler O. Bennett. That's my Instagram handle on LinkedIn. Tyler Bennett on Facebook. Soon we'll be on TikTok, Twitter. The company's on, but mostly Instagram and LinkedIn is where I'm most active. Awesome. So we will have all the links to bennett real tlc.com, all the social media profiles firstname.lastname@example.org slash podcast as well. Tyler Bennett, man, thank you so much. This has been real pleasure. I really appreciate you coming On. Thank you, Dan. I appreciate you, brother. That is it. That's it for this week's episode of the R E I Marketing Nerds podcast. As always, you can get this week's episode and all our past episodes email@example.com slash podcast. And if you've listened to this podcast for a while, what would really help me if you could just leave us a review. I read every single one. I really appreciate them. When they get left, wherever you download this podcast, just go over, click us a review, like subscribe, whatever you got to do to tell the algorithm that you like me because I like you back . Okay. All right. It's been a long day, folks. I'm going to leave it here. I will talk to you next week. Thank you as always, and cheers.
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