How can real estate investors help out in the wake of the massive hurricanes rocking our country?
Hurricane Harvey has dealt massive damage and widespread tragedy on Southern Texas and other parts of the south. Yet, it could be just one of many if predictions of a highly active hurricane season are right. Real estate investors are uniquely positioned to help. What can we do to alleviate some of the stress, and help others bounce back faster?
There are many ways to donate to help. You can give a little or a lot. Many have not only lost their homes and loved ones, but are in desperate need of supplies, and will be hurting financially for weeks, months, and years. Many may not have consistent access to utilities, clean water, and food for days, weeks, and months. Disrupted businesses and closed companies will many are out of work too.
Truck in Supplies
REWW Cares has been running a campaign to get more supplies driven into Houston to directly help those in need. Gracious and brave volunteers have stepped up to make the trip. You can support this campaign, or if you’d rather do, or have more time to give than finances, consider volunteering to take in supplies. Just please be safe.
Open Homes to Those in Need
Shelters for Harvey victims have been opened in many surrounding areas, all the way out to Dallas. There are only so many people that can get into these shelters, and from past experiences we know that they are not always the safest places for families and children. Real estate investors can make a big impact by simply opening their doors. Especially if you have vacant vacation homes or rental properties. There are over 10 million vacant houses in America. Far more than needed to help those affected by these storms.
Cut Renters a Break
There are going to be thousands of people out of work, and many businesses that won’t survive. Landlords have to accept that income may be disrupted for a while. Bullying tenants in their current situation isn’t going to help, and isn’t likely to help your property performance. Instead, try to cut them some slack, come up with a plan that encourages them to get back on track fast and care for your property, while retaining your legal rights. This can also apply to accepting new tenants whose homes and apartments have been damaged or destroyed.
Ethically Buying Distressed Homes
There will certainly be opportunities to buy, flip and wholesale distressed properties in Southern Texas, and other areas of the nation in the next few months. Caring real estate investors will find the ability to create true win-win scenarios to bail out and help these owners to get out of debt, and into new places to live. Sellers do need to be wary of unscrupulous predators, just looking to take advantage of them. Be ethical, act out of a heart of serving others, and do good business.
Acquiring Distressed Debt
Both institutional and private lenders may find they are holding some notes which will have some dips in performance. Payments may stall for a month or two, or the underlying collateral could be damaged. The land will still be there, rents will bounce back, insurance can be collected to rebuild. Some of these lenders won’t want to wait. They may be happy to sell these notes at a discount for quick cash to others who are willing to work them out. Again, be ethical, create win-win solutions.
Offer Good Buying & Investing Opportunities
There will be thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands who need to buy new homes and who will need to invest in order to have shelter and bounce back financially. Experienced investors can offer them great opportunities, as well as jobs and mentoring programs. This can give them a mobile business, lower risk investments in new areas, and may provide lump sums they need to recover lost belongings, quickly.
The major storms and hurricanes we are being hit with are causing a lot of hurt. Real estate investors are very well positioned to help. Consider some of the above ways to help, and share what you are doing with us on social.