My two best buys

8 Replies

I always come to bigger pockets seeking solutions to my problems but have never shared any success stories.

I wanted to share the stories of my two favorite properties. It is a little tarnished with sadness as due to market changes I know I will never be as lucky again.

Property 1-
I was in Miami on vacation and saw this property on the MLS. There are 2 houses on one plot of land. House one is 3 bedrooms and second house has 2 bedrooms. Total area is around 2300 sq ft. At the time I thought it was in an area which was shabby but would turn around quickly.
Unfortunately I only saw the listing when I was about to leave so I could only do a drive by on the way to the airport. It was listed for 110k which was a very good price for the property.
I called the listing agent and said I wanted to put in an offer. She was super slow to act and ended up taking a week to get me the contract. In the meantime, my currency took a nose dive losing 5% to the USD in that space of time. I told her I would no longer be continuing with my offer.
About 2 months later she emailed me and said the sellers were desperate to sell as the husband had cancer and they had to return to their home country. She asked me to make an offer. I randomly chose my year of birth 86 and said $86,000. She seemed a bit shocked and said that was too low. I was about to email back offering another 10K when an email came through that the sellers accepted. I was elated. 

The property was occupied with long term tenants. Total rent being collected was $1700 which was way below market value. I increased it to $2200 which is still below market value. The tenants were still happy to stay and have been fantastic tenants.
I was right about the neighborhood and it shot up overnight becoming a trendy location. Redfin puts the current value at $270,000.

House 2-
Another very lucky moment. I was trying to buy in this zip code for 2 years but people never sell there. The zip code is very odd as 85% is ghetto and the remainder, around the fringe is high class. It's right in the middle of the city and will undergo immense gentrification in years to come.
The house came up on the MLS and I called the agent immediately. This was 5pm on a Friday. The agent said he was surprised to hear from me as I called 1 minute after he listed it. He asked me to meet him at the property straight away. It was listed at 88k and I knew it would go into a bidding war.
It's a 4 bed, 2 bath on a huge plot of land, right on the border, next to the very, very expensive area.

Now to the part about getting lucky. The agent and I got along like a house on fire, pardon the pun. He invited me out to a party that night and we ended up hanging out for most of the weekend. On Monday he submitted my offer and only my offer to the bank. I closed the deal and put in 12K to make it really nice.

I rented it out as a vacation rental for 4 months averaging $4000 profit a month. I've now placed long term tenants at $2200 per month. The tenants are professional artists from Europe and seem great so far.

Below are 2 pictures of the kitchen. I did a large renovation on a very low budget buying most things off craigslist. The kitchen cost $1400 including all cabinets, stainless steal appliances (microwave, fridge, range, dishwasher) and granite bench-tops. The moving and installation cost another $550. I think it looks like a great kitchen for under $2000.

Redfin currently prices it at $200,000.

Wow, Great deals.  Thanks for sharing.  I need to figure out how you do a kitchen like that for $2k!!

Thanks for sharing! Nice work. 

Did you design the kitchen based on what you could buy off Craigslist or shopped for a while until you found exactly what you had envisioned?

Originally posted by @JOHN DE SOUZA :

Thanks for sharing! Nice work. 

Did you design the kitchen based on what you could buy off Craigslist or shopped for a while until you found exactly what you had envisioned?

 There are multitudes of people selling kitchens on craigslist. Some people are demolishing the whole house, some people install a new kitchen every year.

I look on craigslist daily and find one with measurements and layout to fit my space. 

I would have never thought of using CL to build a kitchen.

What a fantastic idea, I'll have to use this. Thanks @Nat Chan !

great stories. thanks for sharing.   Nicely done.  

Thanks for sharing. It's good to celebrate success and great tip on Craigslist kitchen shopping.

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