Hello again! We hope you had a nice weekend, and if you were celebrating Easter or Passover, that you had some good food and time with family and friends. We did, from various places. But now it’s time to get back to work.
Today is no April Fool’s Day! Unless something really weird happens, we should close on the Saint John house today, and get that little bone of contention off the books. We’re really grateful for all the work everyone’s done on the project, from Larry’s first renovation, to the things Russell did via sweat equity, Frank’s checking up on the house periodically, to Carol’s attempt to use a new service to sell the place, and to Bobby’s hustling to get that thing finally sold as our local agent. There have been struggles and issues galore (remember the dude who tried to live there and burned the carpet?), but the end is in sight.
Oh yes, we have a few of those. One big thing we’ve learned is that, no matter how much experience you have, there’s always something new that comes up to stump you. This house was full of surprises. Here is a partial list of painful lessons we got from this house:
- Renovating too far away from your home base is challenging without a local person with eyes and ears near the property. We are glad Frank, and later Bobby, helped us out.
- Renovating in a “transitional” neighborhood can be very risky. We got into this neighborhood too soon, and the drug deals near the home scared people off at first. But, by waiting until more of the neighborhood was improved, we were able to safely sell the house.
- Also, it was humbling to be reminded that not everyone in an area is thrilled when “flippers” come in and fix up houses in their neighborhoods. Gentrification can make homes unaffordable to the traditional residents. And this makes us uncomfortable (although, do remember that this house was originally purchased to help an elderly woman get the care she needed).
- General contractors need to be supervised closely. Because Larry was unable to be present while the house was being worked on, he wasn’t able to see that the contractor situation changed, and the quality of the work went down as the job progressed. Those folks disappeared and we haven’t heard from them since.
There are others, and maybe Lee or someone can add to the list. There is always risk when you renovate homes. And there is always a chance you will not make the profit of your dreams. That’s how business works. On the other hand, someone has a nice home to live in or rent out as of today, which is good.
Now we shall go kick today’s butt.