Zen and the Art of Real Estate Investing with Jonathan Greene

132: Converting Commercial Real Estate into Self-Storage with Clint Harris


Self-storage is appealing as a passive investment opportunity. Most interactions are with your tenants’ belongings. And if you don’t have to construct the building from scratch, it can be an incredibly lucrative investment opportunity.

On this episode of Zen and the Art of Real Estate Investing, Jonathan’s guest is Clint Harris, a general partner and investor relations specialist with Nomad Capital. Like nearly everyone, Clint began his real estate investing with single-family properties. He pivoted to multifamily and Airbnbs and finally landed on self-storage syndications. Clint’s self-storage path has a unique twist because he and his partners convert retail facilities, such as old Kmart buildings, into self-storage buildings. Clint’s background also includes 15 years in medical device sales.

As Jonathan and Clint begin their conversation, Clint shares his two mistakes when he started real estate investing and the three ways he discovered to get to the independence of purpose. They explore what led him to self-storage, the fallacy of passive income, what you should consider before committing to any real estate project, and being slow to hire property managers and quick to fire them. Jonathan and Clint cover how he invested in his first self-storage conversion using vertical integrations, how long it takes for a conversion to cash flow, and why passive investment strategies should be a part of your portfolio. Finally, they explore the generational differences in using self-storage and Clint’s advice for new investors who don’t know what direction to take.

It can take a while to hit your stride as an investor, but Clint Harris makes a compelling case for investing in passive assets like self-storage.

In this episode, you will hear:

  • The two mistakes Clint Harris made as he began real estate investing
  • Why appreciation makes more millionaires and billionaires than cash flow
  • Two questions Clint asked himself to start moving toward independence of purpose and the three ways he discovered he could get there
  • What led him to self-storage and why they’ve been lucrative investments
  • Return of time and why most real estate investors eventually seek that out instead of equity or cash flow
  • The fallacy of passive income
  • Getting on the same page with your spouse or partner and aligning your goals to create a plan to achieve them
  • What you should ask yourself before committing to any real estate project
  • Hiring property managers and why you should be slow to hire and quick to fire them
  • How Clint invested in his first conversion to self-storage, which was an old Kmart building, using vertical integrations
  • The reason converting old retail buildings to self-storage works for Clint
  • The length of time it takes to create cash flow in a self-storage conversion
  • Why a passive investment strategy should be part of your investing portfolio
  • Features Clint Harris looks for in a building as he considers it for self-storage
  • The generational differences in the usage of self-storage units
  • His advice for new investors who aren’t yet sure what direction they want to take

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Supporting Resources:

Visit Nomad Capital’s website –

Truly Passive Income YouTube channel –

Connect with Clint Harris on LinkedIn –

Website –

YouTube –

Instagram –

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Zillow –

Bigger Pockets –

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