With less than a week left before completing a major rehab on our latest real estate investing deal, all Kim wanted to do was to drop to the floor and cry when she saw what had happened to every interior wall in the home.
The day before, the walls had been perfect. But on this day, the walls looked like something you’d see in one of those circus houses with funny mirrors that make your head look huge while making your body look the size of a walnut.
In this home, we’d replaced all the paneling with new paneling. Then came two days of constant rain. Because the HVAC system wasn’t yet working, there was a significant increase in the home’s humidity level. The new paneling quickly absorbed the excess humidity and became wavy.
A multitude of things made Kim want to cry. All the time and money spent demolishing the old walls and installing the new ones was for naught. The rehab was scheduled to be completed in five more days, but now would be extended by at least two weeks. The extra work would cause this rehab to go over budget.
If something like this happened to you, Mr. or Ms. Real Estate Investor – and it will – what would YOU do? Would you focus on the problem or focus on the solution? It’s my experience that way too many people, when presented with a significant problem, seem to get caught up in a vicious, unproductive loop of thinking and talking about the problem, instead of quickly moving forward and finding a solution.
Kim is in charge of our rehabs. She’s fantastic at turning out beautiful homes where most everyone would love to live! And though Kim’s first reaction was to cry, she said to herself: There are no tears in real estate! And with that, she hitched up her Wranglers and began solving the problem.
First, she brought in our contractor to help her better understand the situation, as well as to come up with a solution. Though he is experienced, he’d never seen anything like this before. He believed the walls buckled either because of the excessive humidity or because the paneling was defective.
It was decided to bring in heaters and dehumidifiers to remove as much humidity as possible with the hope that the paneling – once the excess moisture was removed – would return to its former shape.
Second, Kim contacted Matt at the Cartersville Home Depot. She’d bought the paneling from him. His service was top-notch. He told Kim something that was absolutely the right thing to say. Matt said, “Kim, Home Depot is always your partner on any project you do. As your partner, I will always do everything to make things right!” This touched Kim’s heart, plus it won him a customer for life!
Third, Kim contacted our HVAC man (Tom Too Cool) to explain the problem to him. Because Tom also does restoration work, he agreed to bring over his commercial dehumidifiers. He explained that he had seen this before and that yes, using his dehumidifiers for a day or two would allow the home’s paneling to return to its original shape.
Real estate investing is not a sticks and bricks business. Rather, it’s a face-to-face relationship business. Surround yourself with the best, most experienced folks you can find. You’ll find our contractors on our website. At CashFlowREI.com, click on “RE Professionals.”
Know that real estate investing is NOTHING like those hogwash infomercials you see on TV. Investing is pretty simple, but it’s not easy. Yes, you are going to run into problems, but with every problem you solve, you’ll become a better, wiser, more experienced real estate investor.
Now get out there and meet with some sellers!
Bill and Kim’s North Georgia Real Estate Investors Association meets on the 2nd Thursday of each month, from 7 to 9 p.m., at the beautiful Hilton Garden Inn off Main Street in Cartersville, Georgia. For more info, go to CashFlowREI.com.