We are putting the finishing touches on Moreland, and it should be ready around Independence Day. We have been out of the country (Paris) while this has progressed.
You may recall that we have The State street property. The sale fell through. We are leaving it on the market while we debate doubling down. That is, the "charming and quaint" floors are not so charming and quaint. So we may do something there and possibly add-on... We'll see.
In the interim, we have a small condo project that we will be working on for two weeks in June. However, this is not a Box Bend property, but rather a rental. And, it is work that we are doing for a "family" member. This will take us on a little detour.
We still have our lots for Box Bend Home (our spec home division) but we are also considering holding off for a moment or two as we possibly go after a slightly more interesting (& new!) Box Bend Division. Maybe.
We are happy to say that Carolina finally closed yesterday. We have to call out Judson Vickery who went way above and beyond in his role as a realtor with Century 21 Triangle Group, and Steve Mattocks of Above and Beyond Remodeling and Contracting for another super job.
We trust that the new owner(s) will be happy.
The value of a good realtor is just as critical as a good contractor. We've been blessed to have both. However, allow a little expansion on the realtor side of the equation.
We have a realtor that we work with more often than not because he brings an extraordinary amount of value to the equation.
First, he doesn't bring us bad or mediocre deals. Far too often we get a phone call that goes like this:
"Hey, I have a good deal for you!"
"Okay. Let's hear it."
"It's a blah, blah, blah hous/condo/manufactured home... It's selling for 140 and only needs a few things like paint, carpet, and new kitchen cabs!"
"What's the ARV?" ( After repair value)
"I think I can get it for 130... Not 140."
"Okay. What's the estimated selling price once it's sold?"
"Oh... Um... You should be able to get 160 for it -easy."
"Thanks. I don't think it will work for me."
"Thank you for asking. If I buy it for 130 and sell it for 160, I am going to run into 6 to 8% commissions and closing costs."
"Let's be conservative and say eight percent. We'll be conservative and say that that's around 13 grand. That brings the 160 'easy' down to 147. Now, do I have to give the sight unseen estimate of cabs, carpet and paint? Not to mention utilities and insurance."
"Well, you should be able to do that for less than ten grand."
"Okay, so you are asking me to tie up 140 grand to make seven grand if nothing goes wrong, correct."
"Sure. I don't see the problem."
And it is obvious that they don't see the problem. However, from an investment standpoint, five percent isn't too hard to get with a lot less risk. Note that we haven't talked about days on market, neighborhood, etc. And, I have yet to have a house go as planned.
Contrast that to the Realtor we work with now:
"We have a good opportunity. ARV after repairs, purchase and overhead should give you a return of 20% minimum within 120 days."
He brings the value and experience with him that tells us that we don't have to question his numbers. He is right 90% of the time on his estimates.
In addition, he has saved our bacon more than once. We've bought a few at auction without his input and have suffered from ego, mistake on value or underestimated expenses. He has come in and given us better than expected results through creative solutions. Speaking of...
We were going to reduce the price on one house by 2 to 3k. Our realtor came along and said, "Hey (Southern greeting), why don't you put a slider and a deck off the kitchen instead? It will open it up and counter the negative comments about it feeling small."
We did that. We followed his suggestion and the place sold quickly after that. This is one of two main goals: profit and time. (The quicker the better.)
The suggestion here is to either find a realtor like this guy, or, if not, then become that realtor/broker. This is where we were going before we met our realtor. We were going to get licensed just to buy and sell. But... right now it makes sense to do what we do and give up those things we don't do. (Don't step over hours to pick up minutes.). He's experienced, smart and efficient. His marketing is on point.
Finally, ask yourself what business you are in. We are in the business of renovating and transforming homes. We are also in the business of educating brokers. More brokers means more deals to consider. We are also in the business of being educated ourselves. We are always willng to listen -at least once. A good realtor will give you an education. This alone is an inherent value worth more than a 20% return.
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