Brothers buying real estate to combat gentrification

    Via Because of Them We Can

    In 2013, Timothy Webb Jr. graduated from the University of South Carolina ready to use his degree in information technology to help secure data, and now he’s added securing land to his plate.

    Last year, Webb founded More Than a 9 to 5, a lifestyle brand bridging the gap between entrepreneurship and traditional careers because he said he believes people can have the best of both worlds. Recently, he and his Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity brother, Rashae Bey, purchased almost two acres of land in Webb’s hometown of Columbia, S.C., and have a total of 26 rental units between South Carolina and Virginia.

    “There is a lot of gentrification by those who don’t look like us, and I believe if we want to see change, we need to be the change we want to see,” Webb said. “Our goal is to get our hands onto as much real estate in the South Carolina area as possible.”

    As Webb continues to purchase property, he also plans to expand the lifestyle brand to an academy to teach people how to invest in real estate, stocks, and more.

    “I want to change the mindset of people to expand into the unknown of what they may not have been taught,” Webb said. “I want to change the generational curses that have been handed down to us and build generational wealth for our bloodlines.”

    According to a study done by the Boston College’s Center for Retirement, the average Black household had just 46% of a typical white family’s retirement wealth in 2016. And the global pandemic hasn’t helped; 48% of Black people were left unable to pay their bills according to an April Pew Research study. Webb said their ultimate goal is to create generational wealth for Black people by teaching them how to invest in assets, not liabilities.

    “I think we have been oppressed for so long as a culture that we think materialistic things make us who we are, but one of the biggest things [that worries me] is that Black wealth will be 0 by 2083,” Webb said. “We are inspiring people to invest in themselves and their families because we can see with the statistics that we can create black wealth. We don’t need to fund other people’s generational wealth; we have to create assets and not liabilities that depreciate in value.”

    As Webb and his team continue to redefine what building Black wealth looks like in their community, he said that he plans to continue developing his real estate portfolio and hopes to have government contracts with a team of minority consultants eventually. He currently works in that sector, yet doesn’t see anyone that looks like him.

    “The world doesn’t move without Black creativity, all of us are creative people, and we have to make a decision if our God-given talent is something we can use in entrepreneurship or just a hobby. We are too creative not to use our gifts,” he said. “What I’ve seen is that you can be a full-blown entrepreneur, do a mix of 9-5 and entrepreneurship, or work so hard in your career that you can build yourself up. My Black is creative, always!”

    You can learn more about More Than A 9 To 5 and purchase their apparel and e-books here.