Real Estate development is fun for someone who loves nature. The object of Real Estate development is to turn raw land into habitable land at the lowest cost possible. The very first forest I developed was the 5 acres I bought before I left California. It was located a few miles north of Shelton on Brockdale Road. The 1976 $12,500.00 purchase included an adjacent 60X100 foot lot with a single wide mobile home. I rented out the mobile home and began clearing a site in the forest next to the single wide mobile home. I put a double wide mobile on the clearing while I was still in California. It was ready for occupancy by early 1977. When I arrived in April I started short platting the property into four parcels. I surveyed the new parcels, put in a community water system, ran underground utilities to all the lot corners and began to clear the 2 acres site on the back of the property where I was going to build our house. I had less than $75,000.00 in the finished home, the short plat, survey, and other development costs. I sold the house and the 5 short platted acres in 1991 for over $200,000.00. Remember that single wide mobile home that came as a second parcel number adjacent to the 5 acres I developed? 35 years later that single wide mobile adjacent to the five acres is still producing passive positive cash flow It is currently under a Rent to Own contract paying $720.00 per month. It has netted me more than $150,000.00. Real Estate is a good long time investment.
If humans keep reproducing and the earth stays the same size the Real Estate market will recover. The just released, 2013 Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price indexes report the highest annual increases in home prices since 2007 with interest rates on the rise. So now is definitely the time to buy. I have been riding the real estate roller coaster for more than 50 years. Ups & downs, twists & turns, highs & lows; it is by far and away the best adrenaline ride on the planet. If you can stay on the ride long enough you end up in a very comfortable position. Except for the eight hours a day spent in the carrot chasing corporate nightmare of the Western Electric Company, I have lived each day of my life the way I wanted to live it. Nobody will ever be able to find true happiness doing something with their precious time that they don't want to do. If I knew then what I know now I would have spent those 35,360 hours doing something that made me feel happiness, peace and joy. Just like any other profession, if you are going to be successful you need to be the best at what you do. The Real Estate investment arena is full of competition. If you are one of the gladiators fighting for your life in the Real Estate coliseum I hope you know the Emperor.
If you have not seen the movie "Gladiator" with Russell Crowe, go check it out. I can really relate to his survival tactics as employed at the end of the movie. Emperor Caesar Augustus Commodus wants General Maximus, played by Crowe, dead. He has a plan to kill the Roman General. But Russell, who is now a gladiator in the movie, needs to stay alive until he kills the Emperor. The Emperor's plan of destruction by centurions on chariot is thwarted when Maximus instructs his gladiator comrades to unite in a circle of defense. He realized they would all be slaughtered if they defended themselves as individuals but as a small army they were victorious.
Over the years I have been able to put together a circle of gladiators that I can depend on to help me fight my battles and achieve my goals. These professional fighters are also my friends. There are no conflicts in our relationship. When I ask them to do what I feel needs to be done I can count on it being done right, in a timely manner with little or no supervision on my part. They are the crew of my ship. I am at the wheel, but without them the ship goes nowhere. They are all in the process of helping me achieve my finally planetary GOAL. I must leave this planet debt free with no mess for anybody else to clean up. Once I have reached my goal I will be able to leave the planet with a big smile on my face.
I find myself a slave to debt just as Maximus was a slave to the Emperor. My desire is to wipe out that which keeps me in bondage. It was just part of doing business in a good Real Estate Market. But in this market it is a financial catastrophe. They say the market is recovering, but how long do we wait? The statistics verify increasing numbers of bank failures, unemployment, home and investment property foreclosures, lost retirement nest eggs, families living on the road in their RV's. This does not sound like a recovery to me. I could be one of these statistics if my fighting strength fails me. When my ship was at full steam ahead in the late 90's I owned 55 properties valued at $8,000,000.00. I was $3,500.000.00 in debt, had a dozen lines of credit with $60.000.00 to $100,000.00 available on each line, and I owned a Real Estate Sales Company, a Property Management Company, a Development Company and a Construction Company. Working from that point to now, in spite of a devastated Real Estate market, I have been able to reduce my holding down to 20 properties, my debt down to $1,500,000.00, the number of Companies I own down to 1 and my lines of credit down to 0. Through all of that I managed to hold onto what I knew to be the best of my property holdings with current equities of several million dollars. Not a lot, but enough, for a new beginning and the formation of a new life without my soul mate.
In order to pay off all my debt it will not be necessary to sell all of my properties. However, with the exception of the Fish Farm, that will be my goal. I liquidated everything I owned before I came North to Washington to escape the smog of California. From a $96.00 beginning in 1963 when I got married, I was able to begin a new life in Washington in 1977 with $84,000.00. Now once again I plan to liquidate everything I own and head South to return to the sunshine in Las Vegas. Along with my music, golf & swimming are other passions of mine. I can enjoy my music everyday, anywhere, but in Washington the weather will not allow me to enjoy playing golf or swimming outdoors everyday. So I have decided to buy a winter home in Las Vegas so I can play golf year around. That is MY PLAN. The only question that remains is how long is it going to take me to achieve the goal of this plan. It matters not if I am in Washington or Nevada I can liquidate my holding and achieve my ultimate goal of being debt free from either location. Now it is time for you to contemplate your possible participation in helping me achieve my goal.
I hope I have not bored you to tears reading about what I plan to do with my personal life. But I really feel it is important to a prospective purchaser to thoroughly understand why a seller is selling. Especially if what is being sold comes with a net positive cash flow with room for growth. So on the following PROJECTS page you will be introduced to the DEAL. You will need to know about the condition of my properties, the ongoing maintenance responsibilities, the taxes, the insurance costs, the income producing agreements, and what projects are planned for the future. So click on the PROJECTS link and we will get into the meat of the deal.