Here’s a Twist: Students Giving YOU Money!

The UNC Charlotte Childress Klein Center for Real Estate has a cool investment fund that I have been surprised to learn that not many professionals are aware of. It’s a student-managed real estate investment fund, and it is struggling with a unique challenge: The fund’s managers are having a hard time finding good investment opportunities.

While there are a lot of great real estate schools across the country, few have national investment funds directed by the students. It’s a really unique opportunity for those studying at UNCC.

The fund was established thanks to a generous donation by Peter Fioretti to the Childress Klein Center for Real Estate. The investment fund was established in 2016 to provide students with real world experience in the analysis, investment and management of private and public real estate securities. This is one of the only student-managed real estate investment funds in the U.S. allowing students to participate in private real estate deals.

Working closely with real estate faculty, students will identify and evaluate real estate investment opportunities. Students will make investment and reporting presentations to an investment committee comprised of faculty and real estate investment professionals. All full-time students and second year part-time students will participate in this program throughout the academic year.

I sit on the board for the Childress Klein Center for Real Estate at UNCC and have hired many of the center’s students and alums as both interns, and as full-time hires. I know first hand that these students are smart and they have real experience. All are working toward a master’s degree and most are already working full-time with area commercial real estate firms.

The center has some capital. They are ready to get money out the door. These are hungry students who want to chase deals. And they know what they are doing, and are guided by some of the best faculty in the business.

Are you interested in having a savvy equity partner? A smaller developer looking to do a first development deal, or someone who is going to self develop but wouldn’t mind having students looking at the details may find the fund interesting.

There’s also the potential for a larger development firm that wants to give back to the community. Such a firm could get students involved, give them experience, and get some capital in return.

For more information about the fund, reach out to me, or email Elona Ellis or check out the fund online.

Real estate transactions can be fraught with frustration and pitfalls.

Sometimes the hardest part turns out to be working with your broker, the person who is supposed to help you through the complexities. Veteran commercial real estate broker and client advisor John Culbertson discovered that brokers’ interests aren’t always aligned with those of their clients. He realized there was a better way to advocate for clients and get the deal done.


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