Curb Appeal – Doing Quality Work For The Lender
Realtors know the challenge: get a bank-owned, vacant and often dilapidated home back into decent shape so that it is showable and ultimately sellable. Selling that home is why the lender hired you, right? Every agent understands that curb appeal and a well-staged interior are key to a quick sale. The bank, on the other hand, has probably already taken a “hit” on the foreclosure, they didn’t get paid. Now they are stuck with an inventory of REO they have to unload.
Many evicted owners are angry. They begin to defer maintenance as eviction day approaches and when they leave, they take even those things nailed down: bathtubs, appliances, light fixtures. Many even vandalize their former home.
This is when Realtors contact us – REO Rescue & Preservation LLC. We are a property preservation company, we service Florida state-wide.
Let’s take an example. I was recently asked to provide a bid to remove debris from a local property. We arrived and found about 25 cubic yards of debris inside. The home was totally trashed, ceilings pulled down, all the copper pipes stolen, vandalism everywhere, infested by rats and possums. Sure, the bank can choose to sell the listing in “as is” condition, but that debris has to go. You literally could not get into some of the rooms without climbing over junk. No way could the home be shown like that.
Realtors and banks are constrained by HUD to dollar limits for various services. Debris removal, in Florida, is limited to 12 cubic yards. And $40 per yard is the maximum that may be paid to me to remove it. Here I have 25 cubic yards to remove. What do I do? Remove half and leave half? The Realtor wants all of the debris removed, but if I bid to do so, the bank will either reject the bid or will have to obtain special approval from HUD. THe job may just never get done. The Realtor will never earn a commission. Or should I price the job at less than I will have to pay my crew to do it?
The above is but a single example. Let’s take one more: mold/mildew. The EPA has set standards and procedures for mold remediation because it is a proven health hazard. The process is expensive but banks don’t want to pay for it. Am I supposed to just slap a coat of paint on the moldy drywall? That is a moral issue for me, one day a family and children will be living in a sick building. And in Florida, we get a lot of mold!
In summer, Florida gets a LOT of rain and the grass grows fast. Weekly mowings are needed yet some banks will only pay for bi-weekly or even monthly. So the lawn looks good for one week and increasingly overgrown for three more weeks. Lessening curb appeal that helps the Realtor show and sell.
I have over 30 years in real estate. Agent, mortgage broker, contractor and mortgage field services. I want to do a quality job and finish on time. Most often, my customer is the Realtor and I want to give them an outstanding experience in terms of on-time quality work and service.
As Mike Holmes, from HGTV show, “Holmes on Homes” says, “If you do the job right the first time, you won’t have to do it a second time.” HGTV is discussing a show on property preservation with me. That means my work will be on TV, so I am even more motivated to do a good job, not a cheap job.
I invite your thoughts and feedback! Just reply to this newsletter and I will get it. We need to work together to get properties in shape to be sold so Realtors can get paid!
Like this content:
- Does Your Property Have Curb Appeal? (oulahen.com)
- 10 Tips For Increasing Your Curb Appeal For $150 or Less (casasugar.com)
- Add More Value to Your Home (activerain.com)
- Walt Harvey speaks on REO (librarealtygroup.wordpress.com)