Today we are…

1. Negotiating and hopefully signing a purchase agreement addendum for a client.

2. Putting in a counter to a counter on a big building.

3. Trying to buy out three tenants.

4. Writing an offer for a client on a medium sized building.

5. Touring two development sites.

Real estate speculators wouldn’t let me sleep last night

Los Angeles was developed as a giant real estate speculation by speculators looking to lure mid-Westerners out here for the weather. The great thing about the business model was that, because the weather is so mild, they could build houses pretty cheaply (out of wood and stucco, instead of brick and steel).

The developers didn’t exactly splurge on the infrastructure, for the most part. Hence the crazy tangle of electric lines dangling haphazardly off utility polls all over the city (except Beverly Hills, where I believe they’ve buried them).*

And, hence, my kid waking up last night when the wind blew tree branches into the power lines, knocking out my power, and disabling  his white noise machine.

So, if you see me today and I look bleary-eyed, know it’s because I was singing The Gambler to a two year old at 2:30AM because some developers cheaped out on utility costs in the 1920s.

*If you want to read more about the history of Los Angeles, I can’t recommend City of Quartz, by Mike Davis, highly enough. You just need to kind of ignore the Marxist slant.

A late post today

Busiest day in a long time.

Most important news is that Jon and I removed contingencies on the first deal for our new fund.

We’re super-excited about this one. But it’s a bit like the excitement that a climber must feel when peering up at the summit of Everest from base camp. In other words: It’s cool we made it this far, but we’ve got a helluva lot further to go!

Wish us luck!

My policy on meetings

I take them. With anyone who asks.

Why? First, there’s a bit of altruism at work. I’ve made a ton of mistakes in this business and I am happy to share my experiences with people so they don’t make them, too.

Second, I genuinely like talking to people about real estate (and lots of other things as well).

Third, because you never know what’s going to come out of a meeting. Maybe it’s the next big idea. Maybe it’s a new client. Maybe it’s a new investor.

Maybe, some day, I’ll get so busy or (self-)important that I’ll change my policy. But I hope that, if I do, you guys will call me on it. Shutting yourself off from new people and new ideas is the fastest way to make yourself irrelevant in this business or any other.

So, if you want to talk real estate, get in touch. We’ll have a coffee at Bottega Louie and who knows what will happen next?

Late post today

Sorry for the late post today.

I’m up to my eyeballs in work and my kid just barfed all over the place.

On the plus side: Jon and I just opened escrow on a great new deal. More info later when I can share more.