Transform an Office Building into a Home

Many people are transforming rooms in their homes into home offices, but some people are transforming commercial spaces into homes.

Unused and Vacant

Today, CNN reports that outdoor retailer REI is selling their newly finished unused 8-acre corporate campus in Bellevue, WA as they redefine their experience of “headquarters.” Their new model they say will make remote working the “normalized model” for headquarters employees and the future headquarters building will be instead multiple satellite campuses in the Seattle area.

Businesses all over the US are seeing what REI is seeing and adjusting their business models. Office building occupancies are going down in the downtown areas of large cities across the US primarily because of the effect of the coronavirus pandemic and its associated lockdowns. Businesses are either moving, transitioning to remote working, or closing altogether. Landlords of downtown office buildings in big cities are in danger of losing the income from their properties as companies move to small communities or have their staff work from home. If the landlord has a mortgage and cannot keep up with their payments, they could lose the building. These buildings are then left vacant.

According to STR, a global hospitality data and analytics firm, hotels are suffering as well. Their data show that a fifth of hotel properties are still closed and have been since March. Many of these hotels will not survive the pandemic.

This devastating business and economic situation may offer a sliver of optimism if we look at investing in converting office buildings and hotels into much needed housing.  

According to an article in realtor.com (https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/office-hotel-conversions-to-housing/) office buildings and hotels in urban downtowns are attractive for conversions to apartment housing because they have wifi and cable infrastructure in place, parking areas, and common areas. While offices will require more plumbing to provide bathrooms and perhaps kitchens to each apartment, hotels can be converted less expensively because they are already divided into individual spaces with individual bathrooms.

Creating Affordable Housing

One example of a hotel converted to apartments is Plato’s Cave at 3524 Keetor St. in Branson Missouri. Repvblik (pronounced Republic) LLC, a Los Angeles based firm, converted a vacant six-building Days Inn into multi-family or workforce housing. The complex includes studio apartments, renting for $495.00 a month, and one-bedroom apartments, renting for $695.00 a month. According to its website, https://www.platos-cave.com/pictures-of-units, the complex incudes a gym, commercial kitchen, large dining area, an outdoor pool and beach volleyball on the property. There is plenty of parking and it is right on the strip within walking distance to the jobs there. It is affordable housing that is so badly needed.

Living and working in crowded downtowns were very popular until the pandemic hit these communities so hard. It is not clear how many people will be willing to move back to crowded downtowns after the pandemic ends or if it lingers for years. It looks certain that there will be many vacant office buildings and hotels around by the end of 2021 or when long-term leases run out. Landlords will have to keep their prices in line with demand and it is too soon to tell what demand will be.

Too Early to Give Up

Clare Trapasso, the author of the article, “As the Pandemic Empties Office Buildings, Can Those Spaces Help Solve the Housing Crisis” says, “… it may be too early to write the obituary of urban office buildings and hotels, as many did in the wake of 9/11.”

However, development can drive what happens, so you might want to be thinking about a strategy to help cities, people in need of housing, and your own financial security by seriously studying the risks and rewards of converting vacant downtown office space and hotel space into affordable housing in your own city.

If you need funding, apply now. I am working online with the rest of you.

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

References

Trapasso, Clare, Realtor,com, As the Pandemic Empties Office Buildings, Can Those Spaces Help Solve the Housing Crisis, August 12, 2020. com (https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/office-hotel-conversions-to-housing/)

CNN,  Leah Asmelash and Alison Kosik, August 13, 2020. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/outdoor-retailer-rei-to-sell-sprawling-new-and-unused-headquarters-to-shift-to-remote-work/ar-BB17VDuG?ocid=msedgdhp

Platos Cave website: https://www.platos-cave.com/property-tour

Picture of downtown, USEPA Environmental-Protection-Agency / Public domain

Multi-Family 2020

Investing in, constructing, renting, and remodeling healthy multi-family living environments is still important and even more important now that the coronavirus has rubbed our faces in the dangers of living and working close to other people. Since more land has not materialized in most cities to give us more room to live on and in, builders and investors need to be creative about how to design or redesign compressed housing that will prevent and control the spread of an infection that is viable in air and on surfaces. People are and will be looking for homes that keep them safe from infection.

The Problem of Close Quarters

The necessity of elevators and lobbies, as well as the cost of swimming pools and on-site gyms they pay for but cannot use are scaring renters away from large apartment complexes. These are the places where dwellers must maneuver around each other in tight spaces, share air for minutes at a time, and touch buttons and handles others touched just moments ago.

Photo by San Fermin Pamplona on Pexels.com

Consider in Your Budget Some New Things

To update your multi-family housing project in this time of coronavirus spread, include in your remodeling budget something new, such as, touchless and voice technologies that can improve the safety of getting into or out of a home without touching contaminated surfaces, new air handling technologies that vent air to the outside and clean air within an elevator or other room after each use.

If your project has many units on multiple stories, you may need to consider some robotic or AI technology that will keep the number of occupants in an elevator down to one at a time. Perhaps the elevator itself could be modified into a capsule that only holds one person at a time, a capsule that could be disinfected and dried automatically between uses. Ah that will be expensive. Some complexes would require numerous elevator capsules.

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

It looks like fighting the virus will not be energy efficient. Supplying cleaner air includes containing contaminated air or exhausting it to the outdoors, diluting the virus in the air by injecting clean and filtered outdoor air, and cleaning the air within a room. Any of exchange of air with the outside will make temperature control more difficult and less energy efficient. Thus, to make your multi-family housing as safe as possible, you will likely need to install larger electrical capacity.

Smaller Price Tag for Separate Entrances

If a large complex seems to come with a price tag that is too high, there are smaller multi-family investment projects that have designs that handle the problem of indoor common areas by doing away with them. Small apartment buildings, duplexes, and joined houses work well as rental investments. They include individual entryways and even small yards or gardens.

Small units of 2 to 5 homes can easily be designed with individual outdoor entries that meet social distancing requirements. In one design I recently studied online at http://www.houseplans.com, the complex included 5 units. Each house was three stories, but the overall complex was only one housing unit tall. All homes included a ground-floor separate entrance. Those that had garages had two entrances counting the front door and an entrance from the garage.

Although this design might not be great for seniors because of the stairways, I found it a manageable complex size that allowed each home to be independent. Each unit in this design is roughly 1170 sq. feet with 2 beds, 2 baths, 3 floors, 1 garage, 3 levels, and separate outdoor entries. The garage and second bedroom or home office were on lower level. The living room, dining room, and kitchen with washer and dryer and utility room were on the second floor. The master bedroom, bath, walk-in closet and roof-top deck were on the third story. Five printed sets of plans cost $950.00.

If you need funding for your project, apply now. I am working online with the rest of you.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is apply-now-button.gif

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

References

https://www.houseplans.com/plan/5850-square-feet-2-bedrooms-2-bathroom-luxury-home-plans-1-garage-33631

Tax Backlog

National Taxpayer Advocate Erin M. Collins released her first report to Congress June 29, 2020. She was sworn in on March 30, 2020 while IRS offices were closing one by one across the country. The IRS has begun reopening its operations, but it will take some time before they are restored to full capacity. The disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has had an enormous impact. These are the general taxpayer challenges she presents in her report. Her report can be found at irs.gov.

Unopened Mail and Paper Returns: Among the taxpayer challenges arising from COVID-19, and a challenge for the IRS (I might add) is the about ten million pieces of unopened paper mail sitting in trailers at IRS campuses.  The IRS could not process or respond to written correspondence from taxpayer because their operations were shut down during the coronavirus pandemic.

Taxpayers who filed a 2019 paper return and are entitled to refunds may be in for a long wait. The IRS had to suspend the processing of paper tax returns, and as of May 16, it estimated it had a backlog of 4.7 million paper returns. Although the IRS is reopening some of its core operations, it is not clear when it can open and process all the returns sitting in mail facilities.

Delayed Flagged Returns: All tax returns claiming refunds are passed through filters designed to detect identity theft and other types of refund fraud. Some of these filters produce “false positive rates” of more than 50 percent (meaning that more than half the taxpayers whose returns are stopped by certain filters are entitled to the refunds they claimed). Affected taxpayers are often asked to mail in documentation to substantiate their claims, but the IRS has not opened or processed many of their responses, delaying their refunds. Refund delays can have a significant financial impact on low-income taxpayers, as refunds often constitute a significant percentage of their annual household incomes. Notably, some of the refund delays have been generated by claims for the earned income tax credit or additional child tax credit.

No Taxpayer Assistance: Taxpayers who have needed help from the IRS have had difficulty obtaining it. The IRS shut down its Accounts Management telephone lines on March 21, 2020, so taxpayers could not reach a live assistance by telephone. The IRS shut down its Taxpayer Assistance Centers on March 20, 2020, making it impossible for taxpayers to obtain in-person assistance. The IRS also shut down its mail facilities, so it was unable to log or process taxpayer responses to compliance notices.

There was a substantial reduction in Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, Tax Counseling for Elderly, and Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic services.

Photo by Nathan Cowley on Pexels.com

Confusing Old Dates on Compliance Notices. IRS systems prepared over 20 million notices during the pandemic that could not be mailed due to closure of notice production centers between April 8 and May 31. The IRS is mailing these notices now. However, some collection notices bear old dates and include response deadlines that often have passed. The IRS plans to include “inserts” with these notices explaining that response deadlines have been postponed, but the report expresses concern that receiving compliance notices with response deadlines that have passed will be confusing and concerning to many taxpayers who may not read the inserts.

In addition, The National Distribution Center was shut down, depriving taxpayers of a means to acquire pre-printed forms.

The only resources readily available during the coronavirus shut down were IRS.gov and automated telephone lines.

The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is an independent organization within the IRS that helps taxpayers and protects taxpayer rights. Your local advocate’s number is in your local directory and at Taxpayer Advocate Service – Contact Us.

If you need funding, apply now. I am still working online.

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

Photo reference: Edvard Munch between 1893 and 1910.

Deferment Fog

Although real estate agents are seeing increases in inquiries about homes in the suburbs compared to the same period last year and house sales are up slightly in the second-home market, consumers are not applying for as many loans and banks are not lending as much.

Millions of Americans, 29 million, filed for unemployment last week for the first time according to Investopedia.com, slightly more people than expected, but less than the previous week.

As they lost their jobs or were forced to close their businesses, homeowners who could not make their mortgage payments asked their mortgage servicers for permission to pause their payments. Once a rare occurrence, the number of accounts in deferment, forbearance, or some other form of relief rose to 100 million between March 1 and the end of May according to today’s Wall Street Journal article by Anna Maria Andriotis.

For lenders and borrowers, these are difficult times because the coronavirus stimulus package includes a provision that says lenders that allow borrowers to defer their debt payments cannot report these payments as late to the credit reporting companies, making credit scores an unreliable marker of how a borrower is doing paying their loans back.

Banks are pulling back on credit because lenders are having a difficult time determining if applicants’ credit scores and credit reports reflect their true levels of risk. Not only do they not know who to lend to, but they cannot tell how much their loan losses will be if the economy remains a mess.

Across the board, lending standards have been tightened. Even mailed credit card solicitations fell from 316 million in February to 74 million in May. (Wsj.com)

It takes more work to find borrowers who will pay their loans back. A lender will have to sort through more data. Some lenders are asking borrowers for permission to look at their payment history on accounts not appearing in their credit report and to analyze their banking accounts.

If you need funding, apply now. I am working online with the rest of you.

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

References

Andriotis, June 29, 2020, Flying Blind Into a Credit Storm’: Widespread Deferrals Mean Banks Can’t Tell Who is Creditworthy, available online at https://www.wsj.com/articles/flying-blind-into-a-credit-storm-widespread-deferrals-mean-banks-cant-tell-whos-creditworthy-11593423001?mod=hp_lead_pos5

Migration Boom

People are moving. Single-family houses in the suburbs are opportunities real estate investors should consider.

According to an article in Mansion Global, apartment living in densely populated urban areas is already losing its appeal to Americans as they process their experiences during the coronavirus pandemic. Many people are eyeing options for relocating to the suburbs and a single-family home after facing the challenges of coming into contact with infected individuals in apartment building common areas and restrictions on their use of outdoor spaces like pools and game rooms.

Buyers crave —ROOM— living space, outdoor space, privacy, flexibility, and safety.

When you are researching a purchase of a rental property, evaluate:

  1. Is there room for an office in the house?
  2. Does the house have a good-sized yard?
  3. Is there a pool in the backyard?
  4. Is there a deck or porch that offers a sheltered option to living indoors?
  5. Is the neighborhood safe to walk around in at night?
  6. Is there a neighborhood association and is it restrictive?
  7. Did local authorities try to restrict people’s use of their yard during the pandemic?
  8. Consider taxes. People are richer in states where taxes are lower.
  9. Big or tiny, single family homes in suburbs near major cities offer good opportunities for people to escape living in densely populated apartment buildings where entrances and recreation space is shared and access is restricted. If you need funding, apply now. I am working online with the rest of you.

Patrick St.Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

graphic:tsca / CC BY-SA (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)

Fixing Up Houses for Seniors

The coronavirus pandemic has cast a shadow of mortal danger over senior community-living and assisted-living options, nursing home options, and the option of living fulltime on a cruise ship grazing the buffets and watching people, waves, and whales.  Instead of looking forward to being safe with others our own age, with staff to care for us, and convenient medical care, we find that living in community might expose us to a virus we have no immunity to and a particular susceptibility for.

Even if one eyes being sick alone with anxiety, aging in place, at home has become even more attractive in recent months, and it has also become more possible. Advances in electronic technology have given many seniors more tools to use to assist them in staying at home while they age. Online shopping and delivery of even groceries and the surge in telemedicine are a couple of the technologies that have taken off during the pandemic. According to the Wall Street Journal article by Peter Grant, Senior-Housing Communities Face Higher Vacancy Rates Amid Coronavirus, virtual “doctor visits through American Well, also known as Amwell, increased 1000% during a six-week period (1).”

While senior community investors are taking a beating right now, a fix-n-flip real estate investor might be able to turn a profit on small rundown houses by remodeling them into the perfect haven for a senior citizen who wants to avoid community living. The task will mean focusing on details that seniors would be looking for and then marketing those amenities when you sell the home. I’ve scoured several articles for ideas about what to remodel in a fix-n-flip for seniors.

The first Advice I found was “buy a single-story home.” (3)

ENTRANCE

Make a no-rise entry by adding a ramp instead of steps. (3)

Repair uneven or cracked walkways outside and add nonslip surfaces. (3)

If stairs must stay, add 1 ½-inch diameter rails on both sides. (3)

Add reflective strips to top and bottom of stairs. (3)

Create doorways that are wide enough for a wheelchair.

Add benches and hooks for packages both inside and outside an entrance. (3)

Make a cleanup station or mud room near the door so guests can wash hands, remove shoes, discard coats, and pick up a face mask at the entrance and not expose inhabitant to pathogens.

Put a roof over at least one entryway. (3)

KITCHEN

Install appliances with easy-to-read controls and push buttons. (3)

Install a wall oven. (3)

Make a microwave drawer. (3)

Use lazy Susan’s, rollout drawers, glass doors, and open shelving in cabinets and pantries. (3)

Install a single lever kitchen faucet. (3)(4)

LIVING AREA

Removing small step ups and down between rooms and replacing them with ramps.

Install flooring that is nonslip even when wet in bath and kitchen. (2) (3) (4)

Install outlets where they will be most useful, such as on walls where a flat screen would be used so cords don’t show and a little above desk height on walls and in the corners for charging devices or plugging in computers.

BATHROOMS

Install u-shaped and vertical grab bars in the shower and near the bathtub (2) (3) and add back bracing to the walls in these areas. (3)

A walk-in tub.

Install a curb-less entrance to the shower. (4)

Give shower floors a non-slip coating. (4)

Install shower seating, some are fold down. (2) (3)

Install adjustable handheld shower sprayers. (2) (3) (4)

Add extra lightening to shower area. (3) (4)

Install tall or comfort-height toilets and bars to grip when one is lowering and lifting themselves off the toilet. (4)

Add lever faucets to bathroom sinks. (3) (4)

OUTSIDE

Install new decks with handrails and no splinters.

Add Raised garden beds to the landscaping.

I can have private funding for your project. Let’s get our economy going again.

Fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/send me an e-mail or

give me a call.

patrick@reicapital.cash

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.REICapital.cash

References:

Keep Moving

I am sharing with you a blog from a science writer that contains information about respiratory coronavirus transmission. The blog, The Risks – Know Them- Avoid Them, by Erin Bromage, offers information that we laymen and women might not have processed yet. The information is biological and physical and spelled out very clearly. We need to reopen for business, but we need to do so safely, and in order to do that, we need to know the risks and how to avoid them. I was most impressed by how the article, highlights how being in an enclosed space, sharing the same air for a prolonged period increases your chances of exposure and infection. Our guidelines for reopening our economy tend to emphasize distance but have not mentioned much about exposure to the virus over time.

“Infection could occur, through 1000 infectious viral particles you receive in one breath or from one eye-rub, or 100 viral particles inhaled with each breath over 10 breaths, or 10 viral particles with 100 breaths. Each of these situations can lead to an infection (Bromage Blog).”

Although we have not determined just what the infectious load is for COVID-19, for other coronaviruses the number is 1000 virus particles. It is this principle that is behind why grocery stores can open and bars and restaurants must close. It is this principle that should concern you if you share a small office or work in an open space with a lot of people, or work 8 hours on an assembly line 6 feet from another human being who is potentially infected. In the grocery store you pass through quickly, shelves break up the aisles, and you typically don’t talk much as you shop. In bars and restaurants, you linger and talk. At work, you talk and breathe for hours near or in the same room with others.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Taking this to heart, I would suggest that real estate buyers, agents, and lenders pass through homes that you are viewing quickly. Don’t linger too long. Don’t carry on discussions face to face in small rooms or cars.  If you must discuss things, do it outside the home and stand more than 10 feet apart with the wind behind both of you.

Keep greater than 6 feet of distance between you and another person, especially if that person is talking, yelling, or singing and is upwind of you. In an Indoor situation, up wind means between you and an open window, the air conditioner blower, or a fan.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is pexels-photo-3775132-e1589563961957.jpeg

Don’t drive in the same car to a property.

If you are showing a house, make sure it has been vacant for several hours before showing it, so all airborne virus particles have had time to fall out of the air. This doesn’t address surface contamination, but at least your clients won’t breath in an infectious dose as they move from room to room. You should wipe down counters, door handles, and surfaces that will be touched.

Do in-person showings and meetings by appointment only. This way you can judge how many people are around you.

Always pay attention to the physical situation when you are moving about the community. Ask yourself, how many people are here? How big is this room? Is there ventilation and enough of it?

Be sure to read this great article by Erin S. Bromage and apply the knowledge you gain to your work and play.

I am working online with the rest of you. If you need funding, fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send my an e-mail or give me a call.

patrick@reicapital.cash

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

www.REICapital.cash

Reference:

Vote Your Numbers

There is one thing that we can all be sure of: no one knows what will happen next.

The coronavirus has thrown all the cards into the wind and the stock market goes up even along with virus infections and deaths while main street eyes reopening a percentage of their business capacity keeping their distance and wearing masks. Forecasting is impossible.

REI Capital Resources would like to know your plans so we can put funding strategies together and find private lenders that will fit your plans and goals as you forge ahead into the murky future. Please take this brief pole for us.

Funding the BUY

Many jobs have been lost, at least temporarily. Texas has lost 50,900 jobs in the month of March. Louisiana had lost 21,000, Georgia, 7,000, and Florida 36,600. Nevertheless, homes are still selling. Realtors are advising home sellers to be flexible and willing to negotiate if they want to sell their home right now in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic (Forbes.com). Many people may not be comfortable committing a lot of money on a property when they are unemployed.

Photo by Nathan Cowley on Pexels.com

However, if you are in the business of real estate investing, such as fix-n-flip house buy and selling or buying for rental income, this may be a good time to buy. With fewer houses on the market, competition will be even more intense than usual, but sellers might be more amiable to negotiating.

I can help you get private funding for a real estate purchase for an investment. The terms would be 6 to 9 months. No appraisal is required, you can fund up to 90% of the purchase price and up to 100% of the rehab cost. Interest rates would start at 12% with points as low as 3.0%.

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

When you go to see a house, make an appointment and take safety precautions, such as wearing gloves and a mask when you see the home and discarding the gloves as you leave before you touch your car handle or steering wheel. Limit close contact with the real estate agent, seller, or lender. Complete as much paperwork electronically as you can. Wash your hands often. Avoid touching your face.

Let’s get our economy started again but be safe about it.

Fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send my an e-mail or give me a call.

patrick@reicapital.cash

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

www.REICapital.cash

No-Handshake Survival

I have had to really watch myself with this social distancing thing.  I am a toucher. I lean into hugs, always shake hands, pat shoulders. I soak up touch. When I’m talking, I find myself creeping closer to the person I am talking to as if I can’t see them or hear them well enough at a distance. 

I am certain this economy will recover. People still need homes and loans, but we still may not be able to shake hands for a long time.

In some American states, selling real estate is still an essential occupation as is banking. When we are selling homes or signing loan papers, we are working with others in small groups, but we may be working with people from other states or countries and need to keep ourselves and our families safe during this Covid-19 pandemic.

FIRST & IN THE FUTURE

Use only appointment-only open house formats this way you know who is coming when and you are not surprised. But advertise this new situation on the door so people don’t come in unannounced. This will help you assure that only one group is walking through a house at a time.

Use social media to make virtual tours, even if people will want to see a property before they buy. They can spend more time exploring the house online and visit the website multiple times without having to worry about personal protection equipment.

Fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send my an e-mail or give me a call.

YOUR DAILY PREP

Prepare business cards and signs to reflect appointment-only restriction.

Place a separate set of clothes and shoes for home just inside the door to your home or in your mudroom if you have one.

Remove your wedding ring.

Stop using a purse or briefcase and instead use a plastic or washable cloth bag for business cards, open- house guest books and pens.

Place a fresh set of business cards and other items in 6 or 7 bags and label them for each day. Take a fresh bag of supplies with you to an open house or to the office every day.

Equip yourself with gloves, face mask, face shield, and booties for your shoes (For open house).

AT THE OPEN HOUSE

Spend time cleaning doorknobs and surfaces before and after a showing, A glossy kitchen counter can be a magnet for a tactile person. They just have to run their hands over the surface. Windowsills might also need some disinfectant. If your store is out of prepared disinfectant use original unflavored Listerine in a spray bottle.

Wash your hands before and after a showing.

Invite your potential buyer to wash their hands before and after touring the house. And, provide a hand sanitizer.

Remind everyone to be aware of where they set down their mobile phone so they don’t set it down on counters or in the bathroom or on other shared surfaces.

Stay alert to what is touched during a showing so you can be sure to clean these surfaces with extra attention after the showing.

You can wear gloves but know how to take them off and dispose of them correctly without contaminating your hands and everything around you when you take them off. Peel them off before you touch your car, turn them inside out and place them in a plastic bag and tie it shut. Put the plastic bag in the trunk of your car for later disposal if there is no trashcan nearby.

Keep your distance from each other. This is the best way to prevent the spread of a respiratory disease.

Wearing a mask will protect you and your client. While wearing a mask, smile more, wink and speak so you are sure to acknowledge people even if you keep your distance and do not touch.

coronavirus covid-2019 girl in mask – stop pandemic

COMING HOME

Hang up the bag of supplies you return with near the door, spray it with disinfectant and Let the bags hang unused for a week to 9 days so the virus will have time to die out before you use the bag again.

Strip out of your outside or work clothes and shoes near the doorway or in the mudroom.

Wash your hands.

If you are wearing gloves, dispose of them before touching your clean clothes. If you want to reuse them, place them in a plastic bag so you can disinfect them later.

Dress in your indoor clothes.

With gloves on, bag us your work clothes and wash them immediately.

Let jackets and hard items rest for a week or 9 days at room temperature before using them again to give the virus time to die out.


An open house is not as dangerous as a concert or a basketball game. Usually there are 3 people involved and they are usually adults.  Perhaps sometimes parents bring their children, but that is something that can be avoided right now.

Unlike a family, the 3 people involved in the showing usually do not know each other intimately.  The buyer does not know where the realtor had been recently and neither know where the homeowner has been recently if they are still living in the home being shown. Precautions need to be taken so you don’t catch the coronavirus or bring it home to your family.

I hope that I can be of help to you this month. I can be reached at

Patrick@REICapital.cash

512-213-2271

Austin, Texas

Fix-n-Flip Time & Money

Although many states are exempting building, utility, road, and bridge construction from “stay-at-home” work shutdowns carried out to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, some states are calling for a cessation of all residential construction because it is not defined as “life sustaining” work or “construction of essential infrastructure.” If you read the recent Dallas County Shelter in Place order, you will see that Dallas County has not shut down residential construction. However, some states and counties across the country have. A fix-n-flipper needs to pay attention to the exemptions and inclusions in the work-stoppages orders that are being issued by state or county governments because it may affect your schedule and costs in ways you cannot predict.

Dallas county residents are being ordered to stay in their homes except for crucial work and errands, beginning 11:59P.M. Monday. All businesses that aren’t deemed essential also must stop operating.

Dallas Morning News, Updated 3/22/2020

Your construction loan has or will have terms and limits, usually 24 months for a fix-n-flip loan that will pay 100% of your estimated rehab costs. In an epidemic, you may find that you cannot finish construction in 24 months or within the costs you estimated months ago. If you are faced with a situation like the coronavirus pandemic, something you could neither foresee or prevent, you need to review your contracts for “Force Majeure” and price escalation clauses to understand who bears the risk in the case of work stoppages or rising material costs and shortages that are due to situations that cannot be predicted or avoided.

Be proactive. Start working this out with the organization or lender that lent you the money.  Be sure to understand that if the project needs to be stopped and the contract rewritten who calls the stoppage and who and how everyone involved must be informed.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Delays often ripple through a project and can cause you to miss the deadline for your loan to be paid back, increasing your interest and penalties. Perhaps you can’t get a plumbing fixture delivered or a critical subcontractor is quarantined, and the next trades scheduled to work cannot proceed. Jump in and be aggressive about finding local alternative materials and even workers.

Louisiana becomes the ninth state to announce a statewide shelter-in-place order since California did so on Thursday night. Residents in Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon and Pennsylvania have begun or are about to begin staying at home for at least two weeks.

The Advocate, March 22, 2020

Below is a list of ways the coronavirus pandemic might affect your fix-n-flip project:

  • Sick workers who must quarantine for 14 days
  • Exposed workers who must quarantine for 14 days
  • Workers required to take off work to care for children when schools close
  • You have to take off work to care for your children when schools close
  • Subcontractors or specialty contractors who do not show up
  • Government permitting offices shutdown
  • Material shortages caused by epidemic in China or elsewhere
  • Shipping delays due to port-of-entry quarantines
  • Construction work stoppages in your area ordered by government to slow the spread of disease.
  • Material shortages cause prices to rise
  • Shipping costs rise owing to transportation shutdowns
  • Order cancellations

If you are in the process of negotiating your loan and calculating your expenses, you need to be very careful in estimating your materials. Right now, in the middle of this epidemic, it is for me, or might be for you, impossible to tell how long impacts to business will last.  Review your contracts to include appropriate “Force Majeure” and price acceleration provision clauses in your contracts. Look for local alternative suppliers.

We wish health and safety to you and yours.

Fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send my an e-mail or give me a call.

Patrick@InvestorsLendingSource.com

512-213-2271

Austin, Texas

Tools of the Trade: Blanket Loan

A blanket loan is a loan or mortgage used to fund the purchase of 2 or more pieces of real estate (Wikipedia, Investopedia). The real estate is held as collateral for the mortgage, but the individual pieces of property may be sold without retiring the entire mortgage. Builders and developers, investors in multiple apartment communities, or investors in more than on single family rental property use blanket loans to buy a large tract of land to subdivide or multiple properties to manage as a business. The rental investor may sell one property without redoing the mortgage on the other properties. The developer can create many individual parcels to be sold one at a time without securing a new mortgage each time the sale of a parcel is made.

The blanket loan has a release clause that allows the owner to sell a portion of the secured property and make a corresponding payment on the loan. The outstanding balance on the loan is adjusted accordingly without being completely redone or retired. Most single-house traditional mortgages contain a “due-on-sale clause,” which means the entire outstanding debt is due when the securing property is sold. If this is the type of mortgage a developer or an investor with multiple rental properties has, then each time they sell a property they have to redo all the paperwork to remake the mortgage.

Benefits

The financial benefits for an investor include

  • Only have to pay the fees and costs of one loan rather than applying for and closing multiple mortgages.
  • Negotiated terms, such as the monthly payment may be better under the blanket mortgage, freeing up capital for further investment.
  • Acquiring more than one house to fix-n-flip under one loan when several come on the market at the same time would allow a flipper to take advantage of the opportunity to buy multiple properties all at once (saving time and fees) while still being able to sell them one at a time after they are refurbished.

Danger

The danger to the owner is that if he or she defaults on the mortgage, the lender may seek control of all the properties secured by the loan.

Give me a call or send an e-mail and I will help you to move quickly, get the best deal, and start making money sooner. Patrick@InvestorsLendingSource.com

512-214-2271 Austin, Texas

References:

Kagan, Julia, Investopedia, Defining a Blanket Mortgage, March 8, 2018. https://www.investopedia.com/terms/b/blanket_mortgage.asp

Wikipedia, Blanket Loan. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blanket_loan

Photo by Dimitry Anikin on Pexels.comPhoto by Frans Van Heerden on Pexels.com

2 Home-Buyer Surveys of Note

Buyer Surveys

Earlier this year, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) surveyed nearly 4,000 home buyers, those who have either recently purchased a home or plan to purchase a home within the next 3 years. Realtor.com also reviewed home transactions between January 2018 and September 2018 and compared them to the 2017 home sales to come up with some statistics about who will drive home sales in 2019.

These statistics become meaningful when you apply them to your own real estate investment plan as much as possible. As you approach your real estate fix-n-flip project, it is important to apply the money in your budget toward the areas that will give you the most buyer draw for the dollar. This is not easy, and the target is constantly moving as new products come onto the market, new buyer demographics emerge, incomes fluctuate, and young buyers learn from their parents, study what their parents have done and listen to what they would have done differently.

Millennial Generation Buyers

When you first start looking for the right property to remodel, you may want to consider looking in areas where the largest group of people are looking. The realtor.com survey of emerging home buyers in 2019 points out that affordable homes, jobs, and the availability of entry level homes are “magnets for young buyer.” A large segment of the millennial generation will be turning 30 years old in 2020, so they are starting families, and, as rents rise, moving out of apartments and buying houses.  According to the NAHB survey, 64% of buyers preferred to buy a home in the suburbs. 24% of buyers were looking for a house in a rural area. 11% of buyers were looking for a house in or near the center of a city.

Storage and Energy Efficiency

The information in the NAHB buyer survey gives you some general guidelines on what home buyers are looking for in their homes. After location, buyers prefer

  • laundry rooms
  • energy saving appliances
  • energy saving insulation
  • energy saving windows
  • home storage
  • garage storage
  • walk-in pantries
  • hardwood flooring
  • patios
  • exterior lightening

A few rising trends were noted in the NAHB buyer survey that may pique your interest and inspire some research, including: houses are getting smaller, engineered quartz countertops, vinyl and resilient flooring, wireless controls, open interior and exterior spaces in kitchens, and higher-end fixtures in bathrooms, such as wall-mounted sinks, faucets, and toilets, are becoming more popular.

REI Capital Resources built its reputation on finding private funding for investors for quick turn purchases and difficult situations.  This is still true today.  

Give me a call or send an e-mail and share with me your plans and needs, and I’ll see what lending solution I can generate for you.

Patrick St.Cin

512-213-2271
Patrick@REICapital.cash
Info@REICapital.cash Menti

4 Most Common Mistakes that Slow Down the Loan Process

Getting a property financed can be an overwhelming process. Sometimes borrowers don’t recognize the bumps in the road that will derail their project plans and loan schedule. Here is a list to help you see and remember the small, but important, details involved in getting a loan. These are the most common time sucking land mines that drag the loan process out (or even cause disqualification) along with tips to avoid them.

  1. Scheduling & Anticipating the Appraisal

Loans officially start when they are put into processing, which does not happen until appraisal reports are turned in or the application fee is paid. A loan will be delayed if there is an issue getting the appraisal. Sometimes a borrower will schedule an appraisal when the property is not available or repairs/rehab are incomplete. For example, someone may live in or on the property and will not allow the appraiser access to the property. The loan will be delayed if this happens. If the appraiser arrives and finds the home in the midst of rehab, the loan will also be delayed.

Another bump in the road related to the appraisal occurs when the value of the property is based on too little research. This usually leads to an inflated initial value. If the appraisal comes in lower than what the borrower expected, this will delay the loan process and can even halt it altogether.

Key: Be ready, careful, and deliberate about scheduling the appraisal. Coordinate with the current occupants and your contractor.

Key: Be really accurate from the start about the value of the property.

  1. Documentation

Procrastination, my favorite strategy, does not help when it comes to loan documentation; like taxes and even more than hearing protection, documentation is required. It is a terrible idea to wait to start gathering the documents necessary to move the loan process along until the appraisal comes in. Start by making a list of the documents you need as soon as you come up with your project and begin immediately, while the idea is hot, to gather them and check them off your list. Your goal is to have them ready as soon as your loan goes into processing.

Key: Gather the necessary documents when your idea is hot.

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  1. Hazard: Wrong Policy Type or Amount

You might not think of hazard insurance in connection with your loan but obtaining hazard insurance is a very important component to securing a loan. Carefully study the types of coverage available and don’t just buy a policy to say you have it. Buy hazard insurance that covers 100% of the replacement cost of the property and calculate the premium carefully. Often the wrong type or amount of coverage is purchased, which will not only slow the loan down but can also potentially change your loan parameters (up to and including disqualification).

Key: Know your numbers. Buy hazard insurance that covers 100% of the replacement cost of your property

  1. Title Clouds

Liens, judgments, delinquent taxes, and mortgage releases are all common things that show up on a title. These things take time to clean up and drag the loan process out. Be sure to check your title for these attachments before you start your loan. If you have any clouds on the title, you’ll want to clean them up asap to keep your loan on schedule.

Key: Start early, Clean up the title ASAP.

Patience may be a virtue, but it is one that is often tested when you are eager to close a loan and get on with your project. To save your dream and your nerves, follow these tips: coordinate the appraisal, be accurate on the value, gather the necessary documents, buy the right insurance, and clean up that title.

I would be pleased to give you a hand, and I have funds available for lending.

Patrick@InvestorsLendingSource.com

512-213-2271

Austin, Texas

 

Photo credit: Niklas Bildhauer CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Rent Payments 😶

The National Multifamily Housing Council’s rent payment tracker found that 92.1 percent of apartment households made a full or partial rent payment by August 27. The survey included 11.4 million units of professionally managed apartments across the country.

This is 210,458 households down from last August and compares to 93.3 percent of households paying last month (July 27, 2020).

When the economy collapsed because of coronavirus shutdowns, the federal government helped with additional unemployment benefits, stimulus checks, and a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures. Those who did not lose their jobs cut back on costs, paid off debts, and made home improvements 🔨🔧(WSJ.com). Those who did lose their jobs made it through the crisis but, according to Ben Eisen’s WSJ article, now are not sure they can pay their next month’s rent (WSJ.com).  

People are uncertain about the economy. Gasparro & Kang report in their WSJ article that one indicator of this anxiety is that spending on groceries 🍗🍺🧀🍦dropped sharply in mid-August particularly in states with high unemployment.  

The federal government’s $600 per week additional unemployment benefits ended July 31. People who got those benefits and the $1200 economic stimulus payment from the federal government spent that money. Another round of stimulus has been discussed in Congress, but no agreement has been reached so far.

Doug Bibby, the President of the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) (nmhc.org), said “Lawmakers in Congress and the Administration need to come back to the table and work together on comprehensive legislation that protects and supports tens of millions of American renters by extending unemployment benefits and providing desperately needed rental assistance.”

Photo by Kelly Lacy on Pexels.com

“The [multifamily housing] industry remains encouraged by the degree residents have prioritized their housing obligations 🔑🏡so far, but each passing day means more distress for individuals and families, and greater risk for the nations housing sector. If policymakers want to prevent a health and economic crisis from quickly evolving into a house crisis, they should act quickly to extend financial assistance to renters.”

REI Capital Resources is a funding source for SFR Fix-n-Flip, Fix-to-Rent, and refinance projects as well as larger commercial projects such as office buildings, 5-40 door multi-family buildings, and many others.  These programs vary wide and far throughout the gamut of lending. Call or e-mail for more information.

Give me a call or send an e-mail.

Patrick StCin, 512-213-2271,

e-mail: patrick@REICapital.cash

References

https://www.nmhc.org/research-insight/nmhc-rent-payment-tracker/

Ben Eisen, “How’s the Coronavirus Economy? Great or Awful, Depending on Whom You Ask.” WSJ.com. September 2, 2020. Available at https://www.wsj.com/articles/hows-the-coronavirus-economy-great-or-awful-depending-on-whom-you-ask-11599039003?mod=hp_lista_pos4

Annie Gasparro and Jaewon Kang, With Second Stimulus Checks on Hold, Americans Spend Less at the Grocery Store.” WSJ.com August 27, 2020. Available online at https://www.wsj.com/articles/with-stimulus-checks-on-hold-americans-are-spending-less-at-the-grocery-store-11598526249

Rental Concessions

Landlords should not bear all the risk of another government shutdown, but tenants are being more aggressive about demanding pandemic language in new leases, this according to reporter Esther Fung’s article, Retail Landlords Offer Pandemic Clauses in New Leases, August 25, 2020 in WSJ.com.

Covid-19 is persisting in many parts of the country and it is hard to tell what will happen now that schools begin to open and fall and winter approach. When the government ordered nonessential businesses to shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many households lost their income and businesses lost their sales. Rents became hard to pay whether you were paying rent for your home or paying rent for your retail shop or office.

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

Previous force majeure language in lease contracts did not specifically mention “government mandated shutdowns in response to a global pandemic” under what was categorized as an “Act of God.”  Force majeure language in lease paperwork allows tenants to terminate leases or reduce rent in extraordinary circumstances.  However, the WSJ article cited above by Fung points out that “force majeure language in a lease hurts owners’ ability to get financing for the property.”

Landlords of both multifamily units and retail units have had to offer concessions to retain tenants and attract new ones. Philippe Lanier a principal for a property developer managing retail properties in Washington DC told Fung, that as a landlord, “You have to provide the tenant an easy decision. If you make it complicated, you’re not going to get this done.” Philippe Lanier, EastBanc

Percentage Concessions and Shorter Leases

What is a simple concession in a lease agreement? Lanier offered to cut the base rent by 50% if retail stores are forbidden to operate their businesses and this same concession could apply to an apartment tenant loses their job in a mandatory shut down. In Lanier’s agreement, the difference would be repaid in 6 equal installments that begin on the first day a business can reopen, or a tenant returns to work.

In Detroit, Bedrock, offered to waive base rents in return for 7% of gross sales for eligible tenants, which include restaurants and retailers. (WSJ.com) This company was also allowing the use of security deposits for other purposes.

Some investors are signing leases with shorter terms and that are more revocable by either party.

Photo by Bich Tran on Pexels.com

With rents taking a hit in large cities across the country it is hard to tell how long it will take an investor to make a profit on a rental property. Location still seems to matter, but the location may be in smaller towns and the suburbs near large cities rather than in the large metropolitan areas themselves.

Clear, simple language in a lease is best but the concessions themselves can be as creative as you are.

If you need funding, apply now. I am working online with the rest of you.

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

Senior Renters Are Attractive

As families migrate away from the high population concentrations of the northeastern cities, looking for more space, a lower cost of living, expanding employment opportunities, and lower taxes, they are likely to bring along their senior members who tend to retire close to family. These seniors will need housing, and despite the health crisis that has occurred in skilled nursing settings across the country during the pandemic, other senior living environments, such as independent living, assisted living, and memory care communities can still claim that seniors are better off in their care versus at home (MHN article). Independent senior living is attractive because seniors can be protected from uncontrolled interaction with younger family members better in an apartment than in a single-family home where multiple generations live together.

Photo by Tristan Le on Pexels.com

For investors in and operators of senior living communities, seniors make attractive renters because they do not depend on employment income to pay their rent. According to a July 16, 2020 MHN article, rent collection in the senior living real estate sector has remained strong during the pandemic. For other commercial real estate multi-family sectors, federal unemployment benefits and loan and rent forbearance measures have bolstered rent collections for a few months, but the true rent collection and apartment occupancy picture in the long term will not begin emerging until after the end of July when government unemployment benefits expire. It is uncertain how many renters will be able to keep paying their rent, how many vacancies will be created, and how rental rates will be affected by the withdrawal of federal program support.

According to the National Multifamily Housing Council, 87.6 % of renters made full or partial rent payments by July 13. That is slightly down from a month ago and from the same period last year.

Marketing a senior living community may require appealing to the adult children of seniors as much as to the seniors themselves. According to Brett Gelsomino, Vice President of ZOM Senior Living some amenities to consider in new multifamily rental construction projects for seniors and in remodeling projects include amenities that ZOM is putting in its South Florida communities:  walkable locations nearby, pools, lounges, dining venues, library, and business centers, garage parking, valet service. He expects that there will be pent-up demand for senior living communities by mid-2022.

Demand for senior living communities could rise as soon as the covid-19 pandemic expends itself and people can move about again. Hopefully by 2021. Who knows? If you have the funds and the desire, building through low economic times is good for the economy and good for your mental wellbeing. If you need funding, apply now.

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I am working online with the rest of you.

Patrick St. Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

http://www.reicapital.cash/

References:

Laura Calugar, Multifamily Housing News. https://www.multihousingnews.com/post/close-up-on-south-floridas-senior-housing-sector/ July 16, 2020.

IvyLee Rosario, Multifamily Housing News. https://www.multihousingnews.com/post/national-multifamily-report-may-2020/ July 19, 2020.

Fluctuating LTV

The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is the amount a borrower can borrow from a lender compared to the appraised value of the property that he or she wants to buy. The LTV determines the amount of a down payment a borrower has to supply from his own pocket to invest in the property.

Loan-to-Value ratio = Mortgage amount ∕Appraised value of the property.

For example, if the lender offers a loan at a 90% loan-to-value ratio, the borrower must supply 10% of the total cost of the purchase. In a fix-n-flip loan the same is true, the lender that supplies up to 90% (for example) of the home purchase price, requires the borrower to provide the other 10% of the price.

The Coronavirus pandemic has changed things rapidly including the market value of homes, thus affecting the LTV ratios lenders depend on. Please call for the most up-to-date loan-to-value ratios on our loans for your upcoming projects. 512-213-2271

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Default

If a borrower defaults on a home loan, which is more likely to happen if they do not have much of their own money in the home, the lender takes back the home and sells it to get back the money they lent. Market fluctuations can cause lenders to lose money if the value of a house goes down and the borrower defaults on the loan. The value of the home may be less the amount of the loan. The coronavirus pandemic may make home prices goes down, but that is not certain and may not be true in all locations.

Equity

If the borrower had equity in the home and defaults, then the borrower loses the equity they have in the home because the lender takes the property and sells it to recoup their investment and expenses as quickly as possible.

Equity is the amount of money that would be returned to homeowner if the asset is liquidated (sold) and all debts are paid off. It is in a home owner’s best interest to sell a home before they default on a loan and pay the loan off if possible both so they can get their equity out of the home and so that they can keep their credit history in good shape.

FICO Score Requirements

The FICO score required on loans relates to the buyer’s credit history. It reflects how often they have been late or defaulted on loans in the past. Before the coronavirus pandemic set our lives, marketplace, and economy into a spin, REI Capital Resources required a FICO score of 650 on a hard money loan with a term of up to 24 months. Many people have lost their jobs and their credit scores have suffered. Watching the unemployment rate go up, lenders across the country have tightened up their FICO requirements and these requirements are changing daily. Please call me for our latest FICO requirements. 512-213-2271.

Selling to Avoid Foreclosure

Owners in default or facing default will sometimes take less than the market value for a house to avoid foreclosure. They may settle for only getting part of their equity back, reasoning that some is better than none. None is what they will get if they go into foreclosure and the lender takes back the property and sells it for the balance owed on the loan. The borrower may even give up all their equity to sell the house before defaulting to keep their credit history intact and their FICO scores high.

Buying Opportunity

The distressed homeowner’s situation becomes the buyer’s opportunity. The homeowner needs help to retain their high FICO score and some equity, and the fix-n-flip buyer needs to purchase a property for the lowest price. It can be a win-win deal.

As a direct lender, it is my job to help you get a purchase and rehab loan as quickly and as easily as possible. The perfect fit is still out there. Call me though for the most up-to-date information.

I am working online with the rest of you. If you need funding, fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send me an e-mail or give me a call.

Patrick St.Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

www.REICapital.cash

Waking Up

Real Estate is waking up. U.S. mortgage applications to purchase a home 🏠 rose 9% last week from the previous week and from a year earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index. It was the sixth straight week of gains and a 54% recovery since early April. Investopedia.com.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

This is despite the sobering news from the Labor Dept. Weekly pay fell 11% in April from the prior month. That was the biggest drop on record, but it will likely be broken in May. Investopedia.com This, plus historically high unemployment, will be immense hurdles for people buying homes but might be incentive to start a business fixing and flipping homes to add to your own income and to provide homes, maybe small homes, to young and old consumers alike. Both want to get out of community living and out of big mortgages. I have the funds to help you fill this void in housing.

Real estate agents are using more virtual tours to showcase their homes. You might be able to use a video 🎥 to showcase your remodeling experience on a loan application for a private money loan for your next project.

I am working online with the rest of you. If you need funding, fill out the BLN application at   http://reicapital.blnsoftware.com/ or send my an e-mail or give me a call.

Patrick St.Cin

W – 512-213-2271

M – 505-239-3026

Patrick@REICapital.cash

www.REICapital.cash