Long Awaited Update

September 26, 2013 · 7 comments

As you may know, we sold our house in Atlanta and are in the process of relocating to Maryland. We’ve decided to build a new house as our personal residence (I’ll have a LOT to about this in the near future), and in the meantime, we’re not really settled anywhere. I’m spending time in various cities where we have houses and when I’m not traveling, the family is in Buffalo, where we have some extended family.

I haven’t updated the blog in a while, as I just haven’t had much time. But, I plan to start writing again!

The quick update is that we haven’t bought any houses in the past couple months. Between our move, the tougher real estate market, and some other issues we’ve been having with the houses we’re currently rehabbing, we’ve decided it was best to slow down our purchasing and focus on the deals we currently have going on. Hopefully things will be settled again very soon and we’ll start buying again.

In the meantime, we still have a dozen properties that we’re in various stages of working on, and over the next week or two, I’ll be providing detailed updates of each of those properties, our plans moving forward, and some cool new educational materials that we’ve been putting together.

Sorry about the long break in posts…but I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of this blog over the next couple weeks. Stay tuned!

7 responses to “Long Awaited Update”

  1. Phil says:

    Looking forward to it! A couple weeks ago I finished reading your blog from cover to cover, 2008-present. Getting to the end was like getting to the end of a good book — you don’t want it to end. Thanks for everything you post — it’s inspired me to get started in the biz!

  2. Michelle says:

    Sounds like you guys have been busier than usual! Looking forward to your posts!

  3. Cooper says:

    Hi J,

    It is interesting reading about the changes in your business as you guys have relocated and expanded into different markets.

    If you don’t mind, I have a couple of followup questions for you. First, would you mind telling me what were the end results of your direct marketing campaign? Or is that something that you think you will continue to do in your new markets? Second, can you comment on if you have been able to incorporate your “brand” into your deals in Milwaukee? Or, if you are just listing with a local realtor without any personalized branding (i.e. no more Lish Properties), then do you feel that the lack of this branding has had an adverse effect on your sales?

  4. J Scott says:

    Hey Cooper,

    Our direct marketing went “okay”…ultimately, we were able to pull down a few really good short sale deals, but our timing was a bit off. We started direct mail towards the end of the short sale boom, and many of the deals we were able to get into the pipeline towards the end fell through when prices were starting to rise and banks were demanding too much for the short sale approvals. Overall, from a financial perspective it was a success, but if/when we start direct mail again, we’ll focus on a niche other than short sales.

    As to your second question, that’s pretty simple, unfortunately — our brand didn’t translate at all to the Milwaukee market, and it was very much like starting over, but without much control (since we weren’t listing the property and don’t live there). Ultimately, our plans in Milwaukee are going to be changing — we will probably keep working there, but in a completely different capacity.

  5. Cooper says:

    Hi J,
    Thanks so much for the reply. Would you care to give your opinion on the value of creating and marketing your “brand” while you were in Atlanta? I’m not sure to what extent you maintained a website for your company and/or properties, but would you say that it is a worthwhile investment of time and resources to do so rather than to just list the homes traditionally?

    Or, put another way, as you start over in new markets, is creating a brand for your product something that you will do again?

    As always, thanks so much for sharing all of this information and advice so generously.


  6. J Scott says:

    Hey Cooper,

    I believe we had a very strong brand in Atlanta, at least among the agents who brought us buyers. When I say that, it wasn’t like a brand that everyone knew, but it was a brand that the *right* people knew — the agents who brought us our buyers. Our brand was very much driven by my wife and her ability to network and meet buyer agents (and other professionals) who could repeatedly bring us customers. It got to the point where agents would call us every couple weeks to inquire about what we had coming up, as they had buyers looking for a “product like ours.”

    We saved a lot of time/energy/money by having agents come to us instead of us having to market our properties to them. This is very powerful in this business, as saving a couple of marketing time on each project adds up to a lot of time and money.

    And yes, hopefully after some time, we can replicate that model here in Maryland (and other markets)…

  7. Cooper says:

    Thanks for the response J. That is an interesting and very good point…it is not about how many people know the brand but about which people know the brand. After all, most people rarely purchase a home, but buyer’s agents are essentially always in the market.

    Marketing is not my greatest strength, so I’m thinking that a good way to increase our brand recognition will be to pursue having our properties be a stop on the local “agent caravans”.

    Thanks again!

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