Micro real estate is certainly analogous to traditional real estate in many ways – it’s all about property rights and agreements to facilitate economic growth – but instead of people living and working on the properties, micro real estate is essentially about machines “living” and “working” on micro-properties to generate income for their owners. It is easy to see that just as traditional real estate has real estate agents, there is opportunity for Micro Real Estate Agents.
Micro This and That
Micro real estate is different from micro flipping – micro real estate is about small properties, while micro flipping is about holding a contract for a property for a short period of time (typically a few weeks).
There’s no reason that a traditional real estate agent couldn’t also become a Micro Real Estate Agent, as they would essentially perform the same type of work. I think the main barrier would be the number of transactions required to make a significant income.
Micro-properties are typically rented for a smaller amount of money than an apartment or home, so a Micro Real Estate agent may need to automate some aspects of their business a bit more than a traditional real estate agent, or lump together several transactions.
There is also the type of micro investing that is in real estate assets- just small sums of money that essentially buys a portion of a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). True micro real estate investing in physical assets and businesses, is very different from micro investing in REITs.
Micro Real Estate By the Numbers
Say, for example, that a commercial building has the potential for 100 vending machines – a Micro Real Estate agent could list all 100 spots for the vending machines and rent them out to a large vending machine operations company.
Similarly for electric vehicle chargers, a hotel may need 50 EV chargers to meet the demand of their guests who need to charge their cars overnight. Instead of the hotel contracting 50 different companies for each of the EV chargers, they are more likely to sign one contract with one EV charger supplier and either have all of the chargers installed at once, or have a provision that some will be installed immediately and others will be added over time.
An opportunity for Micro Real Estate Agents could be to facilitate that transaction, and it is a large enough transaction that the cut of the Micro Real Estate Agent would be significant.
So, if you’re thinking of becoming a Micro Real Estate Agent, make sure to either automate your transactions as much a possible so that each transaction is very little work for you, or set out to land large transactions, possibly even multi-franchise transactions.
You can even think about the fee structure for a deal. Will you ask for a one time lump sum payment, or maybe a percentage of the rent if you’re on the micro CRE side (they make ancillary income and you get a cut), or a percentage of future earnings of the machine if you’re on the hardware side.
There are plenty of proptech companies to help you out along the way, and Leptonic is at the forefront of micro real estate transactions for vending machines, EV chargers, and a variety of other hardware and machines that need locations to generate revenue.