In 2017, business magnate Warren Buffett did something that’s somewhat unusual for him. He poured hundreds of millions of dollars into a real estate investment. Buffett has been dismissive of real estate investing in the past. He’s called it a “lousy investment” in part because real estate can be expensive to maintain. Real estate also often requires “sweat equity” or the physical effort needed to upgrade properties or simply keep them from falling into disrepair.