25 min read

2022: a scary time for landlords?

Interview with Kevin Clark from prop tech company Cribdilla who is also Adjunct Professor of Real Estate Economics at NYU and a commercial RE broker.
2022: a scary time for landlords?

Kevin spoke to me about the coming interest rate rises, negotiating terms in deals, and the specter of rent control.

Highlights from our conversation (the audio is below as is the full transcript - I apologize for a couple of minor hiccups in the file quality):

On interest rates

  • A 50 bps raise in Fed overnight rates could translate into 75 to 100 bps raise in debt markets
  • Buying at a cyclical peak means your annual return may be limited to rent growth
  • We are unlikely to experience stagflation or hyperinflation

On negotiating deals

  • When it comes to deals "rookies focus on price, pros focus on terms"
  • Surety of closing - from the seller's perspective - has value

On NYC and rent control

  • The New York market probably peaked in 2018
  • The best argument against New York City as a landlord is "back door rent control" by government
  • We may see more rent control in other blue states
  • NYC apartment turnover in unregulated buildings is 30%, in rent-controlled it is just 3% leading to a bifurcation in the markets
  • Housing unit growth has been the slowest in the last 30 years
  • Housing is cyclical on a decade basis
  • A fall in housing prices may take the pressure off governments to rent control
  • Rent stabilization is rent control 2.0

You can follow Kevin on Twitter @Cribdilla and Laziest Landlord @laziestlandlord.

Laziest Landlord: Good morning, everyone. This is Manu. I'm the Laziest Landlord and I'm here today with Kevin from Cribdilla. Good morning, Kevin.

Kevin Clark: Hey, good morning, man. How are you?

LL: I am doing very well. Let me first ask you to introduce yourself and a little bit about what you've been doing.

Kevin: Sure. My name's Kevin Clark. I am a real estate professional in New York city. I've been doing this for about 20 years. I also teach real estate economics and market analysis at NYU and negotiation at their Schack Real Estate Institute, which is a graduate school of real estate in the business graduate program. And yeah, so I'm a broker, I've done some prop tech stuff, spent some time in university fundraising prior to getting into real estate. So I have a pretty diverse background.

LL: So you've got the academic and the real world experience as well.

Kevin: Yeah, when I transitioned from university fundraising, I was at the University of Michigan for about seven years, three and a half in Harbor and three and a half in New York City. Transitioned into commercial real estate. Got a graduate degree in real estate finance and then started teaching pretty quickly after that, about 13 years ago. And yeah, so I have a little bit of an academic professional back and then have been teaching the grad students as well, which has been very rewarding, I should say.

LL: And do you own your own properties today as well?

Kevin: A few, yeah, in and out. You know, it depends on the time and you know, obviously I'm a bit of a believer in cycles, so but I've had apartments houses and other stuff here and there, always looking, but also very selective.

LL: Nice. Well, first of all, how's dry January going. I saw on Twitter, you had got quite the following for dry January. It's now February. What happens tonight?

Kevin: Yeah. Well, we're done it's February 1st, so yeah. I was successful the first time I've ever done it and it was very rewarding. I have to say, I don't think I've ever tried it before. And you know, I was surprised it was. I had mentioned something to somebody on Twitter about a previous month. I forget what it was and October, I think sober October people do, and I kind of jokingly said it to somebody and nobody really jumped on it. And then somebody reached out to me in December was like, hey, have you thought about doing dry January? I'd do it. And we kind of set it up as a little bit of a side a little bit. And then we said we'd open it up to people on … or not open it up, but just, hey, if anybody else wants to do it, you think it could be fun. And we thought we'd get two or three people and the reality is, I think we had over a hundred people in the group chat, which was really cool.

Some people, you know, some people were doing just for, you know, just for fun and the challenge. Other people were looking to do a more, you know, sober lifestyle, which I thought was, you know, was really, you know, for a long-term commitment and I think that's fantastic. So if that helps somebody, I think that's great.

LL: Congrats. That's great. So as a teacher, when you're teaching, what … You've written about your eight life lessons. What's your one nugget of wisdom that you give people in your class around real estate? What's that one kind of like, oh, this is unconventional stuff?

Kevin: Yeah, usually … That's a great question. You know, usually on the last days of class, last days of lecture, I usually give sort of a parting speech that’s sort of evolved over time. But I think the two thing, the two takeaways that I always try to leave them with is the first is I say life is not linear, life ain't linear. And what I mean by that is if you look at, you know, sort of my career 20 years in, in real estate in a few years, doing things before that, if you were to, you know, say, you know, this is where you're going to end up, you know, when I started this journey 25 years ago, whatever it is, you would never imagine the path that I would take to get here.

And I think part of that requires being open to saying yes to things. I've, you know, as I mentioned, I've owned houses both, you know, houses and apartments outside of New York and inside New York, developed them, renovated them, started a management company, ran a building, you know, have done all kinds of things both in real estate and outside of real estate. And all of them have contributed some way to the person and that I am today. And I use those skills when I'm negotiating and when I'm talking to people. And so saying yes is really important. I think we have a tendency, especially on Twitter and you know, sort of this hustle lifestyle that everyone tries to emulate is this idea that I have this plan and I'm going to execute it and have to stay on this path because, you know, the only way to get to a hundred million dollars is, you know, is this sort of linear path.

And the reality is if you talk to people later in their careers, more often than not, the answer is not this was a plan. The answer is no, I sort of just kept moving, you know, and I said yes to some things and I was fortunate and had good opportunities that I took advantage of. And, you know, so that's the first one. I think the second one is, and this, I think I get a bit of a bad rap on Twitter that I'm cynical. I think I would say more on realist and I fight again. I tried it all my students and fight because cynicism is really, you know, sort of nefarious and it's a bad instinct in real estate, but you have to be realistic and you have to be realist and if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There's a lot of, you know, there's a lot of, you know, hucksters and you know, opportunities that are looking to take advantage of people in real estate. It's the nature of the business and has been since the beginning of time, but, you know, cynicism doesn't help either.

So having a health balance there, I think is, and I think I'm going to be … I think, give me some time, give me another year or so and I think more people are going to say that what I think you for a little while is in fact what's going to be happening, so.

LL: Well, let me ask you about that then what do you think is going to happen this year with fed timing?

Kevin: Well, I think, yeah, I mean, I think the fed is, you know, I'm a, you know, one of the, you know, teaching real estate economics and understanding, and also, you know, my career is a bit longer than certain folks on Twitter. I mean, there's a lot of really successful folks on Twitter who've been doing this less than 10 years, and we had quite a bull run where we've had nothing but low interest rates. And ironically we were heading into what, in 2019, we were heading into a period where interest rates were going to be raised and we were on that path. The fed funds rate I think, was at it was over 200 basis points think and was around 180 basis points, which is 30 times higher than what it is right now.

And then of course COVID hits, we needed the fiscal monetary policy to push things to keep us from getting into a recession or depression, I think, which was very, very useful. But I think it's fairly obvious that fed is taking inflation very, very seriously as they need to be. And you know, March, I think Powell in his last meeting made it very clear that I think the initial thinking was March would be the end of the taper. So bonds would start to raise and interest rates in the bond market would start to go up because the fed would stop buying. But I think Powell made it pretty clear that we should expect even a bump in the fed funds rate in March, which is earlier, I think, than most people anticipated.

So and addition to that he concentrated very, very, very … He focused very clearly I think in his comment to Congress eventually said, look, I'm sorry, wasn’t Congress. It was a press conference. His questions and his answers revolved around the fed funds rate, the nominal fed funds rate is the lever that they're going to utilize and it's the best lever that they have. And it's one that needs, you know, it's been far too low for far too long. And so we're going up, interest rates are going up. And I think, you know, there's a understanding think in how the fed funds rate affects interest rates. I think there's an assumption and a belief that the fed funds rate is a one to one response.

So if the nominal fed funds rate is raised 50 basis points, that means long-term interest rates and the economy go 50 basis points. And the fact is the nominal rate is just the the target overnight rate. It's not that banks lend and borrow from each other in the overnight markets, but they actually don't even follow the nominal rate. They have an effect rate, which is a negotiated rate between the banks. And then when we think about long-term interest rates in the economy, those are markets. And typically when we look historically, if you look at the charts for longer term interest rates in the economy, when the fed funds rate goes up, those longer term debt rates go up fast and they go up much more substantially than the rate hike.

So if the fed raises the nominal rate 50 basis point, we should set 75 to 100 basis points almost immediately in the debt markets. You know, I'm not a bond. I'm not saying that's going to happen, but if you look historically at the charts and it's really just, you know, tracking when the fed funds rate goes up, what happens in the broader markets and you can plot those very easily online. And it's very obvious. They go up quickly and they come down slowly.

So in March, so long answer to your question is I think in March, we start to see this, you know, we start to see the fed funds rate raised. We start to see debt costs going up and, you know, many economists and, you know, there's competing, you know, they're competing thoughts on this and there's this thought that, you know, we're heading towards the recession and the yield curve is inverted. And but you know, many, many people are thinking the feds fund rate will go as high as 400 or 500 basis points. If that happens, that means that fixed print rates would be higher than fives, or sixes. And typically you're looking at, you know, 150 to 200 basis points higher than debt cost. So if you're transacting today to recap it's when about a year we'd be paying pretty debt cost six or sevens. And that should be, I mean, it's half of your box. If your owner, it's a devastating consequence to the value of your property. And the only thing that gets you out is waiting for that compression to happen again. And with that we’re going to establish more compression, what you saw last, you know, 20 months, unusually low, we just sort of never seen rates in the markets that we're seeing them in.

So that’s a long answer to your question. In Allentown, Pennsylvania that's not a five cap market historically. Now it might be a four cap market. If you're evaluating it at an eight cap you've essentially lost 50% of your value, and you've got to raise rent or more than that, quite frankly. And you've got to raise your rents substantially over a period of time to just catch up to eat. We've never seen a period of rent growth sustained that will catch that up very quickly.

LL: And Kevin, do you think that that's going to hit secondary markets, you know, the Allentowns of the world more than the New York cities of the world, is that your thesis?

Kevin: I don't think that's necessarily the way to say it. I think what we like to talk about is in terms of risk adjusted returns. So in New York price or cap rates tend to be lower. New York and LA, not just New York, but New York, LA to a certain extent, Chicago, San Francisco, maybe Seattle markets, so you have a tremendous amount of demand and a tremendous amount of density. Cap rates are lower because the risk is lower. You're going to fill your vacancy at some rent and rents tend to go up over time because we have a constrained, you know, there's not a lot of land to develop. That's a constrained scarcity kind of market. Allentown, Pennsylvania and again, I have nothing against Allentown. Beautiful part of the country, enough people, but Allentown doesn't have the demand drivers that New York City does.

So when we think about it in terms of risk, Allentown is a riskier investment proposition. So the cap rates ought to be higher. So, you know, traditionally if New York City is at a five cap, Allentown shouldn't be trading at a five cap. Allentown is riskier than New York City, all things being equal. So that doesn't mean every investment, it doesn't mean what we're talking about when we talk about cap rate is presumably rents are at market. You know, if the average rent in Allentown's a thousand dollars a month and you buy a building that is a thousand dollars in average rent, your rents are at market. So your return is going to be driven by two things; the annual return that you get based on the cap rate that you're paying, and then the rent growth in the market. And if the rent growth in the market is normal two or 3% a year, you know, one and a half, two, 3% a year, then returns basically are going to be driven by your annual income and growing over time and then hopefully some cap rate compression. So if you're buying at a cyclical peak where Allentown might be an eight or nine, simply because in the cycle, that's where we are and that may be where we're heading, then over time, it might compress down to that seven or six. So you're getting your long-term appreciation happens both from rent growth and from some cap rate compression. If the way you're buying now is you're buying Allentown at a cyclical peak versus a cyclical trough, then you want to, you know, your annual return is going to be limited to rent growth. And cap rate compression, in fact, cap rate expansion is very likely over the hold. And then maybe you'll see some cap rate compression at some point in the future, but remember that just gets you to even, it doesn't get you to, you know, if you buy the four cap and you sell it a four cap, the only thing that increases in that period of time is your rent roll.

So whatever Allentown experienced in rent growth is really where, you know, you're sort of stuck at a market return and from a real estate standpoint, that generally is not where you want to be. You want to, historically you buy when prices are low and you sell when prices are high and in assets that means that's essentially cap rate compression ‘cause if you have $60,000 a rent roll, you know, a six cap is going to be less expensive than a four cap, an eight cap is going to be less expensive than a six cap. So it's really a cap rate driven thesis and you know, there's a lot of theories and a lot of people saying we're in the historical, you know, debt is going to be cheap forever. And you know, they've been right. You know, they've been right for a while, but I think now that we've finally seen some inflation and some, you know, the inflation numbers are scary.

I mean, they're not, you know, I don't think it's hyperinflation. It's definitely not hyperinflation. I definitely don't think it's sort of stagflation type of stuff from the 70s and 80s. I do think we're heading into a period where I think this is what the fifth highest inflation number we've had in the last 50 years or 60 years. And that's a lot, you know, our, economy is not built on, you know, this idea that prices are going to go up 7 to 8% a year. We're not China, we're not growing our economy, isn't growing as quickly as that on an annual basis or incomes and that kind of stuff.

LL: That's very helpful.

Kevin: Does that answer?

LL: I think that gives the listeners a lot to think about in this environment where you're right, it has been traditionally easy money. Let me zoom in actually quickly on something that you said right in the beginning. So I'm going to take us back and then bring us back again. But you talked about in your academic career around talking about negotiation and things like that. Obviously, you know, if we're going into this environment, there's going to be some deals to be had. Tell me, what is your number one negotiating tip that you think is not explained in all those negotiating books that you go through during your MBA and all the rest of it?

Kevin: Oh, that's a good question. I mean, I think I mean, one of the things that I tweeted and I think is certainly in real estate negotiation is people tend to think that the most important point or variable in a negotiation is price. And I like to say rookies focus on price, pros focus on terms because at the end of the day, the market determines the price. So a professional is going to end up paying a market price, but they can differentiate themselves very, very well with the terms of a real estate transaction, because this isn't a pair of shoes. We can't put down a credit card and transact in five minutes. It takes time and there are a lot of things over the course of a contract negotiation and a closing period that are going to come up. And so the cleaner, more aggressive you are with your terms, the more you're going to differentiate yourself, especially in an environment where there's a lot of bidders and the market determines the price pretty actively.

So what I mean by that is if you have 20 offers, usually there's a bell curve of offers. And at the higher end, the sellers are going to focus on the two or three or four bidders who have the pricing, but then it really comes down to terms. I had a sales manager who used to joke around that I'll offer you three million for the property you want that we all agree might be worth two and a half million dollars, but it's contingent upon me being the short stop for the Yankees. Well, that's a great price, right? But that term is not really going to be reasonable to expect because I don't even play baseball.

So in a real estate transaction, there are a tremendous amount of terms. It could be the closing period. It could be the due diligence period. You could waive due diligence. You could have due diligence during the contract phase. So in New York City, as an example it typically takes about a week or two to negotiate a purchase and sale agreement. Attorneys are always involved and that just takes time. The seller's attorney drafts the contract, sends it to the buyer's attorney. They make comments, they go back and forth. That usually takes, you know, 10 days, two weeks. You could have your terms where you’re going to say my due diligence period ends when I sign the purchase and sale agreement. So assuming the seller provides the documents that you need to review. Could be a stop agreement, it could be the delete the rent roll. It could be delinquencies, it could be environmental reports, whatever is in the due diligence package that's necessary to the extent that it's available, you could review that and not need a 30 day or 45 day due diligence period.

Why would that be helpful to the seller? Well, if I take a 45 day due diligence period, and on the 44th day, tell you, I don't want to buy, the market may have changed substantially. In the market we're entering, that could mean that my price is down a lot, right? If I'm selling today, there's a fear that tomorrow things are going to be cheaper than today. We're used to this environment where I'll just sell in 45 days to somebody else, and it's worth more. We've had a nice long, extended period of that, but I've been in lots of markets where tomorrow, you know, we may not have buyers, right? You may enter with a buyer, you have three offers. You go, you know, you agree to go to contract with somebody with a due diligence period, 45 days later, that buyer drops away and all of a sudden the two other buyers that we're interested say, oh, yeah, I'm still interested, but not at the price I offered you a month and a half ago. The world is different today than it was then.

So there's a lot of uncertainty. The other is experience, right? I can send you the terms are, I can send you my a commitment letter from my lender. And in housing transactions that's actually kind of common. In commercial, it's uncommon. You could get your mortgage broker to send you a letter that says, we've closed a hundred million dollars with this person in the last five years, you know so terms become really, really important. And that's how you differentiate yourself in negotiation because that the end of the day, all the seller cares about is closing or that's all they should care about. Assuming price all things being equal and in most of the time, somebody is not dramatically out-paying somebody else. Pricing usually tends to sort of pool around the same sort of number at the top, and surety of closing has value.

LL: Very helpful again. Let me ask you a slightly different question and move on to a different piece. So we've talked about negotiation, we've talked about some of the pricing and terms piece as well. As you think about New York City, you are obviously a bull on that. Otherwise you wouldn't be there today. What do you think the greatest case against New York is today from a real estate investment perspective?

Kevin: That's a good one. I mean I am a bull on New York. I think New York is going to, you know, I think New York is certainly been hit pretty hard in COVID. I think it's important to note that in New York we were well on our way to a correction in 2019. Our market probably peaked in 2018. We saw rents flatten out in 17, 18 and we were already starting to see the market slow down substantially in 2019, not only in New York, but Los Angeles I think was in a similar boat. LA has a similar issue. We have some pretty strong rent control and rent stabilization laws, which essentially control. If your apartment falls under rent stabilization, it, limits how much you can raise rent on an annual basis and it also effectively allows a tenant to renew and perpetuity. You always have to renew your tenant rent as long as they're paying the rent that you're legally able to charge.

The problem with that though is we had a rent law that changed in 2019 that there was some places that allowed you to dramatically increase rents. If you buy a rent stabilized building today, for the most part, you're limited to the annual bumps that they legally allow in those apartments. And they can be very low. In the last six or seven years, there has been years that goes up 1%. I just tweeted this morning, ‘cause I happened to be looking at a building for an owner in the last three years, their real estate taxes, which are significant. These are not, you know, the real estate taxes went up $6,000 and change over the last three years. So it's about 21%. I think they started around $30,000. If they're paying $36,000 now, in the last three years gone up to $6,000, roughly 20% increases in taxes while their rent has gone up one and a half percent in that amount of time.

So that's really not sustainable. And the problem, you know, one thing is the rules were known up until 2019. If you're buying those buildings, there was a significant amount of upside potential, but it would take time to initiate. But you had the ability to increase those rents at some point in the future though, that's not possible now. And you know, people who don't really understand the New York market tend to say things like, oh, well, who cares? Well in New York, roughly half of the apartments are subject to stabilization. So you're talking over a million units. And there's only a, you know, there's like 1.2 million rent stabilized in 1.2 million market rent apartments. So it's about 50% of our market. And the other problem is the legislature even, you know, even though I don't necessarily disagree with much of the politics in New York, I'm a New York Democrat; the political slant in Albany towards housing has taken a pretty dramatic left hand turn.

And they're talking about this new thing called good cause eviction which is not a rent stabilized law. It's a law that would affect all housing in New York which essentially says you, if the rent in the market goes up by 5%, you effectively can't, you can't evict the tenant or you can't not renew the tenant's lease. So if you own a market rate building, that's not subject to rent stabilization, you've effectively have, if this is passed, this is effectively a back door to a rent control. Now 5% increases are, you know, unusual. Rent typically don't go up 5%, but, you know, you could be a situation there. We were having issues with our retail tenants. We've had a lot of vacancy and that's affected a couple of things. I mean, it's certainly the amortization of the world. Amazonation of the world. That's been part of it, certainly people's buying patterns have changed. But also retail rents are very, very high and they're not high because the landlords want them high, they're high because taxes are high and demand is high.

And the effect of that though is we tend to get a lot of vacancy and then we have something like COVID where we've had, you know, arguably a decade worth of vacancy created in about 18 months. There are council people and Congress people who are talking about rules that are very onerous to landlords, like forcing landlords to rent below market to fill their retail spaces or requiring tenants to renew businesses at some rent. And the problem with that is one we're in capitalist country, right? I mean the real estate market has been built on a capitalist idea that, you know, landlords and developers provide housing and the market determines what the price is and taxes are charged based on what prices are. And if you start pulling the threads of how that's all supposed to work, it tends to disrupt the market in a way that has unintended consequences that are typically bad for tenants. You know, bad for landlords also, but tenants tend to lose. One of the issues we're facing with the rent stabilization market right now is a lot of these buildings are not going to be updated. Landlords look at and say, why should I spend a dollar on my building when I can't be compensated for all that additional expense? So tenants start to live in buildings that are not maintained well, and they're unsafe and are dirty over there you’ve got paint issues and other issues.

So you know, I don't know all the answers, I just know that one of the problems with New York City is legislation. And sometimes we have we face landlord friendly environments and sometimes we face tenant friendly and environments. And right now it's, it's shifting dramatically towards the tenant, which is good in many respects. But it might be very bad for the market in the near and medium term for sure.

LL: And that's with New York. I'm seeing similar things happen in other cities now. Boston, as an example, Michelle Wu has taken a hard left turn on this. Do you think that this is a wider trend or, you know, is this to your my local markets only that governments have found, hey, in this environment, this is a way to buy votes or whatever else you want to call it.

Kevin: Yeah. I mean, I think it is. I do think there is certainly a progressive shift in certainly in blue states. I don't know what's happening in the redder states. I think the redder states, one of the reasons why they're seeing so much interest in investment is their rules are much less tenant friendly. And I do think there is a shift in that direction. I think partly it's been brought on by landlords. I mean most landlords and most of my clients are good, upstanding wonderful people who care about their buildings, care about their tenants. There's certainly landlords and you read about them in the news that make it easy for politicians to scapegoat the landlords. And I think that happens in every market and it is one of the reasons why interest rates going up is really, I think a good thing is it has widened the gap in between sort of the haves and the have nots. You know, people who are able to use capital have had a very good run with the debt markets that we're in. And I think the response is generally that politicians will speak to their base and they'll pass laws that are favorable for tenants, because those are the voters. I mean, in New York City I think it's roughly 75% of the occupants of New York City are renters. So it's easy for politicians to get elected on a platform that’s anti-landlord or anti-development. The irony of course, though, is the reason our rents are high is because our supply is low relative to demand.

So if you penalize or disincentivize development, or you create an environment where 50% of the housing stock is...I’ll give you an example in, New York City, roughly 30% or third of the apartments, market rate apartments turn over every year. So a tenant typically stays two or three years, and that's on average for market rate. In rent stabilized 3% of the market turns over every year. So you have people staying in apartments for a long, long period of time. And you're essentially creating a situation where people are staying in housing that's artificially below market, and it's creating sort of this bifurcated market where the supply and demand imbalance is exacerbated by these policies.

Now on the flip side, a lot, the politicians that when they've tried to incentivize development have done it really, really poorly. 421A, J51, all of these tax incentives to incentivize development has been counterproductive in many respects. It's driven up the price of housing rather than created more housing stock, which was the intention. So you know, it's not an easy answer, but I think we absolutely are heading towards a period of certainly in the states that are considering it now where rent control and it’s going to be a thing. Now, this tends to be cyclical and I will argue that there are demographic trends that do not follow the narrative of housing is just going to continue to go ever, ever higher and demand is just through the roof. The reality is from a demographic standpoint, our housing, the number of housing units are in the last decade, the growth has been at the slowest periods, been in the last 30 years. So we are not creating as many new households as we were previously. So the demo trends tend to show that we're slowing down and you know, baby boomers, while they are staying in their houses longer than 30 years ago people thought they would, at some point, they're going to start needing to move out of their homes, or they're going to start to die off. And that will create a housing supply that I think is going to, is counter sort of the narrative of, you know, we need five million new houses to keep up with demand. The demographics don't show that quite frankly. So if, and the reason I bring that up is if housing prices fall or start to fall, as they have cyclically every decade, other than the last one, you know, it tends to take pressure off the, you know, the political class to start doing sort of draconian measures to change things.

The only thing I will say, though, is once they initiate these policies, they don't tend to go away. Rent control started just after World War II when GIs came home from Europe and the housing prices in New York City went up three, four, 500% overnight. It was supposed to be a temporary emergency measure. And here we are 67, 68 years on, and we still have the same we still have rent control 2.0 is rent stabilization. And it was supposed to be a temporary measure up until 2019. It was annually renewed every year and, or 2019. I'm not sure is that right. But so yeah, it's complicated, complicated process for sure.

LL: Final question. What did you learn from Disturbing the Peace by Richard Yates?

Kevin: Oh, that's a good question. I used to write short and a study writing teacher of mine had me read that and it's, I don't know if you know who Raymond Carver is. But it's sort of like in between, Richard Yates is sort of a John Updike, Raymond Carver, sort of right in between. I don't know. It's dark and it's, I don't know. It’s a dark story about a guy who sort of ends up in a mental institution after, you know, pursuing, you know, what he thought was the, you know, the path he was supposed to choose and it definitely is an interesting book. And when somebody asked me about something to recommend, I was, I was happy to see that it's back in print because it used to be and this is, you know, going back, I don't know, 20 year when I read it the first time, it was one of those books that you couldn't find. And if you were able to get a copy of it, you were told you were, you'd be hunted down, killed if you lost it or stole it. So but now it's back in print. So if people want to read it, it's a very good book. And he's an amazing writer, so.

LL: I have just ordered it in the library. So I will be reading that. Kevin, thank you so much. And very much for today’s insight. I really appreciate your comments today.

Kevin: Hey, thanks very much, man. Nice to do it.

LL: Cheers.

Kevin: Talk to you soon.

If you like this post, you'll love getting my email every other week right to your inbox. Subscribe here:

Laziest Landlord
Build a passive income stream. Learn the basics of real estate investing in easy, bite-sized chunks. Just here to help you.

For random takes on real estate investing you can follow me on Twitter @laziestlandlord.