If you work with your spouse in any capacity you know that it can be a little bit of a juggling act. People ask us all the time how we do it and to be honest we are still navigating it all. We are always trying to find a good balance between work life and home life. Thankfully in our case we both run our own businesses and enjoy collaborating when the opportunity presents itself.
For those that don’t know, I work full time as a Realtor and my husband owns a design-build construction company. He specializes in both renovations and custom homes. In my six years of business we have collaborated in many ways; rentals, renovations and even a few new builds.
To break it down I typically identify the property and then we jointly decide what needs to be done - renovate or build new. The design, permitting and construction can take anywhere between 8 months to 2 years. At the end of the project I prefer to lightly stage and get ready to list for sale (and if we are lucky we don’t need to make it that far). Since we only average one project together a year our investments only make up 20% of my business. I spend most of my time working directly with my own clients whether buying or selling. We get asked all the time, what do we prefer - a new build or renovation. To be honest it’s a hard question to answer because I truly love both.
When it comes to renovating both Nick and I have a pretty good eye. There is nothing quite like seeing the transformation that happens during a remodel. Without getting too technical we have many limitations here in Florida when it comes to renovating within a flood zone. Since most of our area falls under the base flood elevation renovating has become difficult and we just don’t see as many of them. These days everyone wants move-in-ready. At this point Nick and I have built two custom homes for ourselves and two for investments. We have an in-house design team that allows us to take the project from start to finish.
There is something very satisfying about taking a project from paper to fruition. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart and one of the reasons I think we do best on our new construction projects.
About 2 years ago I identified a waterfront property that wasn’t on the market, this property was unlike any other - waterfront on both sides, a huge lot (for Florida standards) and great boating water. There was an existing structure on the property that needed to be torn down before we could get started. We spent 3+ months designing a home that was over 6,000 square feet and took advantage of every view imaginable. In December with only 3 months left of construction to go we decided to put it on the market. Even with the holidays we had multiple showings and by the New Year we were under contract. The project has been at a stand still for a month now while we wait to close. Nick will be staying on as the builder and I can’t wait to see how the new buyers finish the space.
So todays the big day, my first closing of the new year but also a day to celebrate as a team. A new buyer is coming in just a little more than halfway through the project to finish what we started. The days leading up to today haven’t been the easiest or without a few arguments but I’m looking forward to celebrating this success and welcome many more.
While I can’t share any details, I’ve already identified our next project. I’m currently dreaming up plans of the new house and can’t wait to take you along on the journey. From the land acquisition to architectural drawings to construction and everything in between. Stay tuned as there will be much more coming in 2020!