Zen and the Art of Real Estate Investing with Jonathan Greene

Turning Raw Land Developing into Affordable Housing with Ben Julius


Investing in raw land may not be as widespread as other real estate strategies, but its potential for profitability with the right approach shouldn’t be underestimated. While land investments might not suit everyone, they offer unique opportunities that more traditional property investments don’t provide.

In this episode of Zen and the Art of Real Estate Investing, Jonathan hosts Canadian real estate investor Ben Julius, the founder and CEO of Lion Heart Development. What began as A-Game Investments, focusing on flipping homes, short-term rentals, multifamily conversions, and long-term holds evolved over the last few years into a land development and assembly company. Ben shares his thoughts on this less conventional but promising investment avenue.

In an insightful discussion, Jonathan and Ben explore the need for real estate investors to avoid emotional attachments to properties. They also explore why land is Ben’s preferred investment choice while emphasizing the increasing demand for more affordable housing solutions.

The conversation also underscores learning from past failures while planning for the future, reveals current challenges in land development, and provides insight into Ben’s current investment focus and aspirations for the future.

These ideas are just a few from Jonathan and Ben’s conversation that offer wisdom:

  • Creating more affordable housing options doesn’t have to mean government subsidization. Instead, it can include options like allowing accessory dwelling units (ADUs) in backyards or apartment units that can function efficiently with a smaller square footage footprint.

  • Ben’s Toronto-area investments look differently than those he makes in Florida. In Toronto, he’s focused on finding buildings to sell. In Florida, it’s all about finding locations to build apartment buildings.

  • If you want to be a successful investor, you need to remain unattached to the properties you purchase. It’s a principle Ben calls “addition by subtraction.” It may look great now, but sometimes, you must get rid of those things to help your business or life move forward.


Ben Julius’s conversation with Jonathan about land development is eye-opening and filled with practical wisdom.

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