June 4th 2020, I purchased three 4-unit buildings on the same day. A brick building on Plum. A green monster on east 10th. And a simple 4 unit on east 13th. Here’s the story of east 13th..
I originally found the property over a year ago while driving for dollars on my lunch break one day. It’s a single building with recent siding and vinyl windows, and 4 gas meters facing the road which caught my eye. The Howard Hanna sign belonged to a realtor who we purchased a personal home through several years ago so I called him up and left him a voice mail which was never returned. Fast forward 8mo or so and my buddy Mike Bennett invited me to a new acquisition of his. His new property was directly across the street from this Howard Hanna property. So I called Jake Scheloske from Agresti and inquired.
Jake and I go back to the beginning of my career. He is an animal when it comes to bull dogging through a lot of the buying/selling process. When I gave him the address and mentioned the howard hanna sign, he put me on hold, verified the listing was expired, and asked me if I wanted him to call the owners. Of course! So he put me on hold again, switched back to sellers who said it’s still for sale and they would accept an offer. Jake switched back to me and I offered full asking price of $59,900, $2000 down, 5% for 20years with a 10 year balloon…. He switched back and presented the offer and they accepted. He drafted the digital contract immediately and both sides signed by the next day.
I went to closing with $4,628.99, to be exact.
Now… the real excitement begins. When you buy a 3/4 occupied $2000 4-unit, its not because the sellers are generous and handing out great offers… oh no, this building was housing gypsies. When I say gypsies, picture… motorcycles in the living room, refrigerators on the front porch, chain saw parties in the backyard, truck parts and beer cans scattered through the common walkway area. Music so loud that it shakes the house. And pitbulls. Like a momma pitbull, daddy pitbull, and their dozen pitbull puppies. On a side note, when my insurance broker walked the property, he came face to face with these free roaming pitbulls and my insurance policy was set at $1300 per year because of the dangerous breed.
We cleaned up apartment #3 and handed it over to our leasing agent at the time. Then I began dealing with the gypsies. These guys had water hoses punched through basement windows that were leaking everywhere. Keys to other apartments. It was obvious that they were in complete control over the house and previous owners. They were constantly fighting with each other. They were fighting with their friends upstairs. Kicking in the door when losing keys. Calling from a different phone numbers every time with every complaint in the book through their broken native gypsy tongue like something out of Brad Pitt’s Snatch movie. It was a circus.
At one point, the unruly female of the group called and said they were going to fall through the tub due to a large crack down the center. I asked if they were planning on extended time away so we could schedule a bathroom renovation. They mother F’d me (not sure why but apparently that’s just what they do), then said no. So I put two of my carpenters on the job while I was out of town for a week. I walked them through the whole job, when to do what, they knew what to buy, and the process to do it in. That went south real real quick…. The carpenters have a long history together and began fighting and not wanting to work with each other. One would show up drunk. The other would show up and point and delegate then leave. One would install the flooring wrong. It was a disaster. So after getting more mother f*ing from the tenants while on vacation, I came home, fired the carpenter drinking on the job, grabbed the other, and banged it out in a few hours with 2 of the 3 gypsys watching us mad at the 3rd one for abandoning them after getting drunk on a camping.
To wrap up… our leasing agent at the time put the exact opposite race, gender, demeaner, basically everything, in #3. The hostilities began. #1 pulled a gun on #3. I received phone calls about police. It got so bad so quick that I had to put #3 into my own protective program and move her into another vacant apartment across town in the darkness of night. Seriously. I had to wait until they were out before I could post their door in fear of a violent reaction.
We won the eviction case and they were out with relatively no issue and no need for possession filing. Although they did continued to call relentlessly about every problem they could think of from a variety of gypsy phone numbers and threatening to sue me for their security deposit. They even called weeks later and asked if they could come into the back yard and grab the wood they had been cutting and stacking.
All 4 units are now occupied with simple and down to earth tenants. We have a few deferred maintenance issues we are dealing with but its moderate. Gross rent is currently $1900 per month.