Episode 150: Michael Moulton

Dec 21, 2023Podcast

Do late-night calls and property emergencies have you longing for a more tranquil investment experience? If you’re in search of an asset class that promises both stability and peace of mind, self-storage could be your golden ticket. Self-storage facilities offer a unique proposition. They provide consistent and predictable income streams free from the erratic and high-maintenance demands often associated with residential property management. The beauty of self-storage lies in its minimal need for daily oversight, making it a compelling choice for investors who crave a more hands-off approach while still reaping the benefits of a resilient and evergreen asset class.

In today’s episode, Michael opens up about a common entrepreneurial pitfall – his relentless desire to invest in every facet of the real estate realm. Over the years, he’s ventured into the complexities of short-term rentals, long-term single-family rentals, fix and flip, manufactured houses, and self-storage. His pursuit led him to do all the hard stuff, leaving him proficient at 70 to 75% in many different areas rather than 100% good at 2 to 3 things. Michael’s passion for construction and development has been at the forefront, but he’s now dialing back to focus on his latest goal: self-storage. He is making a significant shift into the self-storage asset class, a decision fueled by its streamlined operations. According to Michael, self-storage has fewer moving parts, and nothing is a pressing emergency. It’s easier to manage and enjoy the business. Michael made most of his money by holding rentals, appreciation, and fix and flip, and his goal is to duplicate that on the commercial side. With 2.5 years of self-storage experience under his belt, Michael has developed a deep affection for this resilient and rewarding asset class.

Michael’s journey into real estate is a testament to the power of pursuing one’s passion. After graduating from college, he worked for 7 years in a global IT role, a path that failed to ignite his enthusiasm. It was the world of real estate that truly captivated Michael’s heart. While working in the corporate realm, he began investing in rental properties on the side, engaging in daring fix-and-flip endeavors, and seizing opportunities in the foreclosure market. The more he delved into these real estate ventures, the more he realized that the corporate world didn’t align with his aspirations. This epiphany led him to make a bold decision – to follow his passion for real estate. Michael took courses in fix, flip, and rehab, and from there, his real estate journey took flight. He acquired his brokerage license, fired his manager back in 2005, and went full-time with a primary focus on lease options.

That is what Michael shares with Fuquan today. Real estate is teeming with creative opportunities, offering investors the choice to work hard, smart, and even learn from their mistakes. The ultimate reward lies in the ability to pour one’s efforts into a project and witness the tangible results. Michael underscores the immense satisfaction that a career in real estate can provide. As an investor, there are so many ways you can generate wealth, and no matter how many years you have been doing it, you will never learn it all.

Tune into a wealth of insights on self-storage as an asset class and uncover Michael’s invaluable insights and experiences gleaned from his extensive investing journey.

Highlights from the interview

  • How Michael got into real estate and how his journey prepared him to be risk-averse 
  • Michael’s diversity investing strategy and how it has affected his portfolio
  • Michael’s transition into self-storage and how it has enhanced his business model
  • Why Michael is so passionate about investing in real estate 
  • Optimistic capital and Michael’s transition from active investor to raising capital
  • How Michael is reshaping his business model to scale up in self-storage
  • Michael’s 10X self-storage strategy to be better instead of bigger



About Michael Moulton

Michael is a highly seasoned investor with a proven track record in the lucrative southeast real estate market. With a strong focus on self-storage acquisitions and a vast portfolio of single family and commercial assets, Michael is the go-to expert for those seeking lucrative investment opportunities.

Having mastered various investment strategies, including self-storage investments, fix and flip projects, new construction ventures, adaptive reuse apartments, and short and long-term rentals, Michael and his team are always on the lookout for the next profitable opportunity. Additionally, his mastery in wholesaling and involvement in multifamily syndications further demonstrate his versatility and expertise.

Prior to his real estate career, Michael held esteemed positions in a corporate setting, including global IT leadership and six sigma black belt roles with GE. These experiences honed his analytical skills and developed a keen eye for identifying lucrative investment opportunities.

In 2005, Michael took a bold leap of faith, “firing” his manager and dedicating himself to his passion for real estate. Since then, he has built a strong and efficient team based in Charlotte, NC. Together, they operate virtually, overseeing a multitude of investment companies that Michael owns, all from the comfort of their headquarters.

Among these companies, Optimistic Capital stands out as Michael’s premier capital raising arm.

To learn more about Michael, you can stay connected with him on his website and LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram.


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