What does a real estate developer do?

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Real estate business can seem confusing, or even like something open only to a privileged few: we’ve all seen people in charge of building structures, but how did they get to that point?

In many ways, a real estate developer is the overseer’s overseer when it comes to construction: he or she will carry the biggest risks while potentially gaining the biggest profit.

What makes a real estate developer

You probably know that no construction project can be done with just the builders – architects and engineers will also have to work full-time so that the upcoming structure is free of flaws.

Yet there’s someone even higher up the construction chain: the real estate developer. This is the person who treats every aspect of the real estate development as their own project: contracting builders, finding the right architects, getting materials, paying everyone…

Sure, a real estate developer can have plenty of help, but it’s still a fairly lonesome craft – if you mess up, there’s nobody to take the blame but you. Even if your contractors end up making a mistake that’s entirely their fault, you’ll get just as much heat if not even more so – after all, you’re the one who picked them, right?

As you can see, there’s no shortage of stress to be had when working as a real estate developer – the mere prospect of making a bad structure and losing a ton of money on it is too much for most to handle. Yet with a little luck, those who persevere can find themselves rewarded plenty: if the structure gets going, the developer will earn considerably more than anyone else involved in its construction.

Real estate development: is it right for you?

Reading about the job description and the potential for massive earnings might have you thinking of changing professions. After all, don’t you wanna make it known that you command dozens of people to build massive structures from the ground up at the next cocktail party? Hold your horses, though – the job isn’t for everyone.

You don’t need much to become a real estate developer: matter of fact, you don’t really need anything besides capital. A couple of connections to get the right permits can help, but in the end, it’s all about how much you’re willing to spend up-front. Unfortunately, this means that anyone with money can start developing buildings, leading to the abundance of lackluster structures seen in present day.

Even if you have the type of financing needed, you still shouldn’t get into real estate development without a vision – a clear idea of how to make things better. If you have the drive to improve your community through unique and exceptionally-made real estate additions, you’ll get a lot more satisfaction than if you were simply hunting for profits, not to mention that your results will be far better as well. Bottom line: if you’re only concerned with multiplying your capital without really minding the how, there are easier and safer ways to do it than real estate development.

How to choose a general contractor

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Many forms of real estate development nowadays are done without the owner of the property present. As an owner-to-be, all you really need is capital – the rest will take care of itself.

How? Well, each build site needs to have its ‘chief’, or general contractor. Essentially, this person will take care of every part of the construction process for you: gathering the materials, finding the right personnel to work with, hiring any subcontractors needed and more. This video goes a bit further into the various responsibilities that general contractors have and what makes the job so difficult.

Choosing a general contractor is easily the most important decision you’ll make past the decision to actually build something. Make no mistake about it: he or she can make or break your project, so take your time and play it steady.

The initial steps

After making known what it is you’re looking to build, you should get bids from contractors fairly soon. Each of these contractors will suggest their own price for the project: how much they need to get the structure up and running for you, even in your absence.

You will likely feel no small amount of compulsion to pick the lowest bidder: the differences in suggested prices for these projects can reach tens of thousands of dollars and you’re perfectly within reason for wanting to save a decent-sized sum of money.

Yet trying to save money on the general contractor is an easy way to have one ‘break’ your real estate project as mentioned above. General contractors know that lower bids mean higher chances of getting picked, so they’ll pull out all the stops when looking to reduce the projected cost. As it is, the ‘savings’ won’t come from their own compensation but rather things that are vital to the project’s success.

Wondering how a general contractor can offer his services so affordably, at least relative to his competitors? There’s a good chance he intends to use materials of a far lower quality that will cause multiple issues with the building, or that the builders he will contract are sloppy or unskilled. Maybe it’s just a case of the contractor managing the costs better, but why take the risk?

Don’t be one of those owners who immediately pick the lowest bidder – structures can stand tall for decades, so do your best not to focus on the short term.

Other things to look out for

Maybe you have one or a couple of contractors in your sights. Their bids are reasonable, and each of them looks like a good person to do business with.

Now come the checks: try and get as good of an idea as possible about the contractor’s past work. Everyone wants someone with a lot of experience, but picking someone with only a few successful projects under the belt can be just as sound.

If possible, try to visit the actual structures that your potential general contractor raised – while there, examine the build quality in every area of the structure and look for feedback from the tenants. Is the building still great to live or work in? If so, yours will probably hold its weight years from now – truly responsible general contractors make sure to get the most out of every structure they work on.

How to find a tree service for your apartment complex

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When it comes to certain apartment complexes, getting the trees in the area serviced can be tough. Why? Well, a scenario can occur in which nobody wants to take responsibility: the fees, the pressure of finding the right company, the possibility of them doing their job poorly… Most people will proclaim that it’s better to wait for the landlord even if he’s never around and the trees are reaching frightening mass.

Maybe your apartment complex has a stronger community: maybe you’ve made the decision to hire a tree service but are still stuck on picking the best contractor. Here are some tips on how to do it.

General guidelines: telling the good from bad

You probably want to head straight to Google and look for your tree service companies, which isn’t a bad idea. However, even a lousy company can have a good website with tons of ‘positive feedback’ on it – it’s easy to be misled when the company is handling the search engines well.

To find the right tree service for your apartment complex, don’t rush things – be prepared to read what could be dozens of reviews as well as scour the web for lesser-known locations that might provide the odd piece of customer feedback.

Of course, even reviews can be limited in their usefulness: a tree service company hitting a string of moody and vocal customers could come off much worse than it really is. Likewise, when reading reviews, pay attention to the nuances – you might not think it, but there’s a big difference between reviews from a happy customer and one who just doesn’t want to say anything bad.

If you can ask for word-of-mouth advice, good, but remember: this won’t bring you as much knowledge as you’d like, since most people only find themselves exposed to a single tree service company over a prolonged period of time. As a result, they have little way of realistically assessing a tree service company’s skill and dedication – coincidentally, these are the things that are of the biggest importance to you.

Assessing the company on your own

Positive reviews or a good vibe might have given you a couple of likely candidates to do your tree trimming. Now, it’s time to check them out on your own by probing the company for every question mark you could have.

Feel free to get in touch with them for these purposes – doing so will also help you get a better feel of what the company is like and how they treat their customers. Ask about whether they are licensed and insured (and, preferably, bonded), then move onto the real specifics: how long have they been in business? How long does it take for them to do their work?

You also want to ask about prices, although this subject could easily have its own post. Basically, try and gather the prices of as many tree services as possible and compare them to one another to see who’s got the best deals. Keep in mind, though, that the same type of service could differ greatly between two companies and that it sometimes pays to pay a little extra.

Can an SEO company help your real estate business?

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If you’re looking to run a successful business, you better have a good idea of how to market yourself. There are many different paths to victory here, although most of them will have you hitching a thread on the world wide web.

That’s right: to get ahead in the game in present day, you can’t afford to not have mastery over the search engines coupled with a good understanding of how pages rank higher. If you’re feeling confused or downright intimidated already, don’t be – there’s plenty of people who can take a SEO load off your back.

Why SEO companies are so important

It doesn’t matter if you run a real estate business, a trade-based one or anything else you could think of – you need SEO to put yourself on the map and beat out your competitors looking to do the same.

Therefore, you’ll pretty much never encounter a point in your business ownership when hiring a SEO company is a bad idea. Doing your own search engine optimization is tough and usually yields limited results – all the hours you’ll spend on propelling your real estate business through the search engines can definitely be used more productively.

If you’re looking for help of the best kind, find a good SEO company and stick with them for a couple of months. Chances are, what they do for your brand will blow your mind and make you want to do business with them on a regular basis.

A SEO company can help you get more traffic (and, with it, leads you can convert), improve your rankings, put you in Google’s favor and much more. Just the same, however, a SEO company can end up not doing all that much for you and your brand – always make sure you’re in business with the right people.

Choosing your SEO company

If you don’t know the first thing about SEO, choosing a company to handle all aspects of it can feel overwhelming. There’s quite a few of them out there, with each promising sublime services: how can you tell who’s the real deal?

Well, for starters, setting goals and deadlines helps a ton. SEO isn’t what comes to mind when people think of a deadline-centric practice – the volatile nature of search engines and the overall low familiarity with the craft has led to business owners allowing SEO companies to take their time even when it’s detrimental to the brand they’re trying to boost.

This is a big mistake: instead of letting your SEO experts do whatever they want with your online presence, you should set clear goals and deadlines for them. Ask them what they can accomplish and then ask how long it will take – put it on paper and feel free to remind them of it whenever you feel that they’re slacking.

Past that, it also comes down to simply picking the right company. As mentioned, every SEO expert will tell you that their company is the best – it’s your job to read reviews and gather feedback if you want the very best for your real estate business.