Couple buys Barcelona Hair Lounge as an investment

WICHITA — When looking for investment opportunities, some people choose stocks or bonds. Others choose real estate.

Physician assistant Kathryn Welch and her husband, high school journalism teacher Jeffrey Welch, have surprised everyone — including themselves — and bought Barcelona Hair Lounge in Clifton Square as an investment.

“I’ve talked with several hair stylists, and they’ve said, ‘You’re crazy. Why would you do that?’ ” Kathryn Welch says.

Unlike, say, a rental property, she says there will be very little maintenance and not much risk in the salon.

There’s one stylist there already and there’s room for two more along with a manicurist.

Previous owner Maria Jose Diaz Vera is returning to Planet Hair, where she used to work.

“I just want to do hair,” she says. “I’m just kind of sick of the responsibilities.”

She starts at Planet Hair on Thursday, and she’s excited.

“I love them.”

Welch is keeping her job at Neurology Center of Wichita, and her husband is keeping his at South High School.

Kathryn Welch says as long as they have two stylists renting space from them, they’ll break even. Everything else, including product sales, is extra profit.

So could salons become a new trend in investing?

“Ask me that in a year,” she says.