Morris invest properties recommendations ?

22 Replies

Hello friends , I am thinking about buying Morris invest properties in Jacksonville Florida ..Does anyone have any experience with them ? Appreciate any input Thank you

There are multiple threads on this company.. from what others have posted Morris does not actually own the assets so they are just selling real estate.. would be good to ask them if they actually own them and have reps and warrenties and if they don't own them are they licensed brokers in the states they work.. you need to have a license to sell real estate you don't own as we all know.  those would be basic questions to ask them

my personal opinion I think Morris statement

that low end tenants are better than high end tenant because they don't complain as much is absurd..

but you just make sure you go check it all out and read the very long threads on the company.

lowest price point assets in any MSA in the US are the absolute riskest.. can you afford to risk your cash.. that's the question.

@Lakshmi P. , the great thing about Jacksonville Fl id the Duval County Tax Appraiser's Office, is that they have a user friendly website. Most counties do not disclose the owners name of property's  unless you go into the office but Jacksonville does. You can navigate through this website to the taxes and city liens page, very helpful for a prelim investigation.

Here's the link: http://apps.coj.net/pao_propertySearch/Basic/Search.aspx

@Robert Rayford   every county GIS or assessors office i have gone on line an checked out you can find the vesting... maybe there is something more to what your saying.. 

but normally you pop on an assessors page and you either put in address tax id or owners name and then search... maybe I am missing something.

from the INDY threads on BP it was evident morris did not actually own them at least from what some said in their post and many i don't believe  who bought those really knew who owned them  LOL.. pretty much newbie's and they just don't know what they don't know

@Jay Hinrichs , He's from California as I, It takes a little more effort to pry info from the Assessor's Office here. This state makes it hard for newbies to get started, well that and our entry price points here in the Bay Area. I guess that's why we all are focused on other states. 

I recently bought a property in Indianapolis from them. I coming to find out that Morris Invest is almost more of a marketing arm to sell properties for Oceanpointe Investments.

First the good news. Morris Invest is a turnkey rental provider and his team is, for the most part, good.

Now the bad. Oceanpointe boarders on criminal, in my opinion.

I first purchased my property in May of 2017. The Morris Invest team was very helpful, but because of their rapid growth you must jump on an available property immediately. In fact I had agreed to buy a property and it had sold to someone else durning my conversations with the realtor. I purchased a different property that needed 17K in rehab, so I understood that it would take about 3 months before it was rental ready. In the middle of August as my Rehab Insurance was expiring, they just finished the rehab and the property was rented. Turns out the property was sold to me by Oceanpointe Investments. Oceanpointe also happens to be the contractor doing the rehab. Oceanpointe is also the property management company that will rent your property and manage it. Unfortunately Oceanpointe is not a very good property management company. I never received a tenant lease agreement. Thus I don't know what the tenant agreed to for rent, when the lease was signed, etc. Trying to get this information is like pulling teeth. I did not get my first rental check until November, that was 3.5 months behind. If they were tenants the eviction process would have been started. I only got rent for September, October, and November. Even though I was told the property was rented late August around the 21st. Because they won't send me a copy of the lease agreement I can't tell when the property was first occupied. They kept telling me my bank was rejecting the ACH direct deposit, even though I confirmed with my bank several times the direct deposit info I gave them was correct. Then somehow in November they were miraculaously able to make the deposit, with the same information they already had. To my understanding they are supposed to manage my property, dealing with any issues that may arise, including paying the property tax on it. Instead they forwarded the property tax bill to me in an hand addressed envelope with no explanation. I literally had 3 days to get a check in the mail to pay the taxes. I have also never received from the county or state a deed/title to my property. I suspect it went to Oceanpointe as their address was listed as managing the property. I am now in the process of changing PMs.

I'm very disappointed in my experience with this investment, I thought Morris Invest was the way to go. Because of their close ties to Oceanpointe my recommendations would be to look elsewhere.

Updated 4 months ago

Update on how it all turned out for me. After I contacted another PM, I was advised by them to immediately let Oceanpointe know that I would be changing PMs and to please give the new PM the renter information and any other relavent info needed. The new PM also sent a letter, to both Oceanpointe and the rental property, informing they would be taking over my property. Oceanpointe never responded as well as the tenant. In the mean time I received a letter from Public Health Department of property violations. Which included large rubbish and junk and overgrown vegitation. This prompted me to contact Oceanpointe immediately, as fines were as high as $2500 per day! Oceanpointe assured me they were on it. After a little over 2 weeks of no reply my new PM had one of their employee go by the property to introduce themselves to the renters as the new PMs. Unfortunately what they found was my property completely boarded up. When I asked Oceanpointe as to why my property was boarded up, I was told that it had been broken into and robbed. This was in a property had supposedly finished rehab just 3 months earlier. Yet I got a letter from the Board of Health of overgrown vegetation, in the month of December no less! Bert Walen the supposed head of construction for Oceanpointe said that it was a bad neighborhood and that, though unusual, these things happen and that they were in the middle of putting everything back together for me. He even told me one of his workers had a gun pulled on him by a police officer as he was boarding up the property. Odd as I looked up police and sheriff reports and there were none in that 2 weeks time frame. I say 2 weeks because supposedly someone was renting the house through November, as they did finally give me rent for through November. Even more odd was the fact that Bert was in the process of replacing a water heater, FAU, and flooring that had supposedly been stolen. But he never informed me of the theft. I thought that was what I had insurance for, though they must be the best PM in the world if they were going to just "fix" these items for me and never tell me. So I think I basically caught him red handed and demanded they buy the property back. He immediately agreed and ultimately they did buy back the property and I got away fairly unscathed. I lost just under $1k in fees and such and of course 6 months of time wasted. It looks like they've changed their name to Urban Construction Management. I recommend avoiding anything to do with them, Oceanpointe Management, Bert Walen or Natalie Bastion.

http://www.theindychannel.com/news/call-6-investigators/call-6-tenants-with-no-heat-fear-asbestos-ocean-pointe-investments-promises-to-make-repairs

@Lakshmi P. There are numerous threads about Morris Invest on BP. You should not have any troubled finding the information you're looking for. I highly encourage you to talk to some of these people who have experience with them. Morris Invest sells low end properties in rough neighborhoods. Whether it's Morris Invest or another turn key company, this asset class does not perform. I'm sure the projections of high cash on cash returns look good to you, but I can guarantee that what you see on paper won't be close to reality. You can expect high vacancy rates, evictions and high turn over costs due to the damage the tenants leave behind. The experience that @hiroki okamoto shares is a very common one with Oceanpointe. 

Thanks for the info guys. I was highly considering them with my first investment property.

Sorry, @Mike D'Arrigo , your statement that an entire asset class does not perform is not really fair....especially in this case.  It's clear that OP simply cannot meet the demand that MI is throwing their way.  MI has gotten very huge, very fast.  They are simply a marketing company with great marketing, and the suppliers cannot keep up.  

We know very well what's going on in Indy.  As a TK company, we mix it up with other TK's and wholesalers.  We've learned that we can do really well for us and our investors by the way we manage our processes.  We take our time.  We scope EVERY property before we buy it.  We fix them up nicely, have professional PM, and we have very little trouble with tenants.  In fact, the C-class stuff outperforms the B-class by MILES.  My biz partner and I have almost 90 doors now in these areas, and are continuing to buy more.  It's all about buying right, rehabbing right, and managing right.  It's NOT about an entire property class.  

A big chunk of our business is from investors who have had bad luck with TK's like this...TK's that don't put processes in place to protect the investors and their properties.  Given our high percentage of repeat buyers, I'd say that proper acquisition, rehab, and management are the keys to making C-class properties work.  

@Hiroki Okamoto I have previously commented on OceanPointe and have found that, unfortunately, your experience is more than common.  Over the last six months we have started to resolve many issues for owners associated with OceanPointe property management.  What I commonly state is trust your hunch and don't wait to long to take action. 

Originally posted by @Lakshmi P. :
Hello friends , I am thinking about buying Morris invest properties in Jacksonville Florida ..Does anyone have any experience with them ? Appreciate any input Thank you

I do not know much about them. I always suggest asking others who have worked them (which you are doing) and seeing how they liked it. When going with a Turnkey, I always suggest the same thing. Make sure the company actually owns the property and they are not just agents trying to earn a commission. Also, make sure they renovate/manage the property all in house! You do not want a  bunch of third parties being involved, otherwise, they are just a middleman. 

Try looking at:

The Best Types of Markets for Profitable Turnkey Properties

and

What to Ask When Working With a Turnkey Provider

@Jeff Schechter   in my Mind Morris has created this whole Social media bashing of their company. 

1. First they give the allusion they are a turn key company IE they own the assets and rehab them  THEY DONT>

2. some of the claims MOrris makes are just plain wrong and silly and defy common knowledge or wisdom in the asset class.

3. There is no question that a business can grow too fast and out strip its ability to service its existing clientele.. but when you have a company like this that is simply the marketing arm and Is relying on you as a provider / and maybe its not your homes that are wonky.. but its some of your fellow providers that are wonky... its the asset class that is failing..

4. It would have been nice if Morris had just come out with it already and said hey we are like Roofstock or Hartman or Norada or Maverick or Ali Boone or who ever we are just a marketing arm.. and this is who your actual seller is.

To have buyers get on social media and not even know who they bought from.. IF they even own the asset .. not get their doc's and deeds and all sorts of other VERY routine aspects of a real estate transactions just screams of amateur hour.. and the marketing company just throwing up as much as will stick make their money have no back end liability and laugh all the way to the bank.  So now they are taking their marketing arm to other markets.. and sure enough repping the worse product in the MSA and buyers are still confused.. IE I am buying a Morris house when none of them are Morris.

However we can disagree on the safety of out of state investing in what REALLY is D class and at best low C class that Morris is selling.

And unfortunately like @Mike D'Arrigo   I have had more than one of my clients get totally wiped out buying low end duplex's in INDY specifically ... are they all bad of course not.. But enough of them turn into nightmares that when you have an out of state or country investor lose 60k on an 80k purchase because their duplex won't stay rented and when its vacant two days its stripped and that happens 3 times in 2 years.. well that's a bummer for that one investor.. but that's rolling the dice on these.

There is no question that you guys that live and work it daily can make this stuff work.. I know I fund a ton of you guys in C class but your all owner operators.. when something goes vacant your there the next day pulling the condenser and appliances.. LOL. out of state out of mind investors find those items pulled by thieves..

But to each their own right.. two sides of the coin.  And having personally owned well over 400 of these doors .. there is no WAY your going to convince me that this low end C / D product out performs B class in ease of ownership and ability to collect rent over time.. break ins and trashed units at turn over.. Just not going to drink that cool aid personally.

@Jay Hinrichs absolutely nails it. I couldn't have said it better myself. Years ago, before I knew better, we dabbled in this class of property. I quickly learned that if I wanted to stay in business and not get calls from angry investors every day, we needed to move up the food chain and out of that class of property. The ONLY way to make a D class property work is to be local and hands on. Not only will you be replacing stolen AC units, there's a good chance you'll be replacing the copper wiring and plumbing that gets stripped. I would pay close attention to what Jay is saying. He's been at this game a while and knows his stuff.

@Hiroki Okamoto how much was your property. I did not feel they would have good resale nor did they look scalable. I see some people not getting inspections which is not a good idea.

@Lane Kawaoka I paid just under $38K for the property, being a first timer and decidedly NOT an active real estate investor I was hoping this investment would be totally turnkey and I could sit back and watch my investment start paying me back. This experience has been helpful though. Even The Investing in Real Estate podcast that Clayton started says do your due diligence. Unfortunately I didn't know what that due diligence was. Though painful, I found Bigger Pockets because of it, and it's not a complete loss just a big headache. At this point I've put into motion to retain a different PM and I did finally get my rent. So so far it's been relatively inexpensive schooling. Hopefully there won't be any other "bigger" lessons.

@Jay Hinrichs - appreciate your insights and wisdom re your previous experiences....certainly valid.  And, we've heard that from others too.  FYI, We do not EVER go after D stuff, and the C-class properties that we acquire, rehab, and manage are treated vastly differently than our competitors.  It's funny....when you treat someone with lower income with respect...give them a clean, decent place to live, and manage their expectations correctly, they respond well.  They pay their rent, and don't trash your place.  

There is a ton of money being poured into Indy right now....not just from investors, but the city itself, and things are changing....quickly.  We are definitely a part of that, and very proud of it.  ALL of our OOS investors are doing well, and are coming back for more.  And it's clear they appreciate being able to work with the company who actually owns the properties they're buying, and not some 3rd party.  

Originally posted by @Jeff Schechter :

Sorry, @Mike D'Arrigo, your statement that an entire asset class does not perform is not really fair....especially in this case.  It's clear that OP simply cannot meet the demand that MI is throwing their way.  MI has gotten very huge, very fast.  They are simply a marketing company with great marketing, and the suppliers cannot keep up.  

We know very well what's going on in Indy.  As a TK company, we mix it up with other TK's and wholesalers.  We've learned that we can do really well for us and our investors by the way we manage our processes.  We take our time.  We scope EVERY property before we buy it.  We fix them up nicely, have professional PM, and we have very little trouble with tenants.  In fact, the C-class stuff outperforms the B-class by MILES.  My biz partner and I have almost 90 doors now in these areas, and are continuing to buy more.  It's all about buying right, rehabbing right, and managing right.  It's NOT about an entire property class.  

A big chunk of our business is from investors who have had bad luck with TK's like this...TK's that don't put processes in place to protect the investors and their properties.  Given our high percentage of repeat buyers, I'd say that proper acquisition, rehab, and management are the keys to making C-class properties work.  

Jeff, I'm not referring to C or even C- class properties. We do a lot in this class ourselves so I know that they can perform well. I'm referring to D class properties in rougher areas. I have never seen an out of state investor be successful with this asset class in the nearly 8 years that I have been doing this in Indianapolis. No matter how nicely you fix them up and how professional your property management is, the fact is that you can't get good tenants to live in bad neighborhoods. All it means is that they're trashing a more nicely rehabbed property. I've been doing this for far too long in every asset class to believe that C- class properties outperform B class by miles when it comes to tenant quality and stability. Even if you somehow get lucky and land a great tenant, the numbers don't favor lower rent properties. That's because repairs and rent ready costs are fixed across all rent ranges. It costs the same to fix a broken pipe, unclog a drain, replace a furnace, paint or re carpet a house that rents for $650/mth as it does one renting for $800/mth. Maintenance/repairs and CAP Ex is a much higher percentage of rent on this asset class than higher end properties with higher rents.

@Mike D'Arrigo - Seems like we may have a different definition of property classes.  And, I completely agree with your comment about CAPex as a % of rent.  For myself, my partner, and hundreds of OOS investors, we make better returns in that $600-750/mo rent range than the $800-950 range.  We definitely get more consistency of appraisals in the better properties, but the better returns in C-class have been pretty consistent for the last couple of years.  Of course, Indy is very different town now than it was just 2 years ago.
   
This conversation seems a bit like dating...sometimes someone who is rejected may make an excellent mate for someone else.    :)

@Lakshmi P. If you have any questions about the location of the property I will be delighted to help. I am a GC/Investor and always looking to network with others and provide some value.

@Lakshmi P. I and 3 other partners bought 4 properties(SF homes) in Indianapolis,IN through Morris invest . The properties are under rehab, they usually say it can take anywhere from 10-12 weeks once they start the rehab but due to bad weather this year, it is taking a little longer for the rehab on those  properties. Hopefully we can find renters in the next 2 months.

@Hiroki Okamoto , Thanks for your insight. I have been in contact with Morris Invest and been reading a lot about them and this is the first bad thing I've heard. I knew they wholesaled the properties but didn't know they just wash their hands after you buy it. I thought they put you in touch with people they trusted and helped you along the way. I am not completely disregarding them but will definitely be asking a lot more questions.

@Vamsi Boddu, I am sorry you bought properties from them. Please make sure you have an outside inspector look at the houses as Morris Invest has been known to do horrible renovations (please search other threads here or on Youtube). I bought two properties from them last August and neither renovation has started or was completed. I was also shorted rent money.

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