Friday, May 25, 2007

My House The Real Estate Show

My House The Real Estate Show

My House offers listeners insight to the South Florida real estate investment market.

(PRWEB) February 19, 2004

For several years now, pockets of residential real estate in South Florida have been offering investors hefty returns. Rising appreciation rates have given way to great investment opportunities, and people are clamoring to learn how they too can pave a path to financial freedom through real estate investing. Real estate seminars and boot camps are often standing room only, and local investment clubs have tripled in size over the past several years.

This surge of interest in the real estate market has created saturation in some of more traditional methods of real estate investing. There are hundreds of investors for every one foreclosure, and HUD properties are now being auctioned off above market value instead of thousands of dollars below. The challenge that investors face today is how to find good investment opportunities – and how to get to them first.

Recognizing this recent shift of supply and demand in the local investment market, real estate finance expert Charles Andrews, and Kendra Todd, licensed Realtor® with ReMax Advantage Plus, decided it was time to share with South Florida a new-school approach to building wealth in real estate. Andrews and Todd teamed up with Clear Channel Station 1230AM WBZT to launch MY HOUSE, South Florida’s own real estate investment talk radio show, dedicated to education on preconstruction and condo conversion investments.

MY HOUSE has featured several well respected real estate figures as guests over the past year, including local mogul Frank McKinney, the queen of fixer-uppers Robin Thompson, and New York Times bestselling author of Rich Dad Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki. But the real excitement is generated from the exclusive investment opportunities aired on the show.

Listeners crowd the dial from 1 - 2 PM each Sunday to tune in to MY HOUSE, where they learn not only the hows of real estate investing, but also where and when the next project offering will be. “We are excited that we can share our developer contacts with the My House listeners and offer exclusive pre-grand opening buying opportunities, “ says Andrews, who has been investing in the local real estate market for years. “We’ve been generating impressive returns on investment for ourselves and our clients by purchasing properties in the preconstruction stage and gaining equity from developer increases as well as typical market appreciation,” he confides.

The other trend the show tackles is finding deals in waterfront and golf course condo conversions – rental communities where the units are individually sold and converted to private ownership. “Land lording can be a headache,” admits Andrews. “Condo conversions are a great way to purchase properties below market value with tenants already in place. And with the right financing in place, we can turn a good deal into a cash cow.”

Each week, listeners are also versed on other topics, including asset protection, tax strategies and financing options. “We provide incredible investment opportunities, but capturing the property is only the first step,” says Todd. “People don’t realize how important the financing aspect of real estate is, or having the right attorneys and accountants on your team,” she points out.

The radio show is really sideline to the bigger picture – The My House Team – a concept that Andrews and Todd have been structuring for some time. The My House Team is a group of about 55 core members that travel from project to project purchasing preconstruction and condo conversion properties. “There’s something to be said for creating buying power,” says Todd. “It creates opportunity. Developers take notice and open doors for us. It’s a win-win for everyone,” she says.

The team concept also includes a wrapping of real estate services. Some of the members are also builders, real estate attorneys, accountants and property managers, who offer other members their services at discounted rates. “The My House Team has experienced great success, because the entire process is smooth from beginning to end,” says Andrews. “And with the radio show, we can reach out to new investors, offering them the chance to share in the fun and successes we’re enjoying from the real estate market right now,” he concludes.

To learn more about the MY HOUSE concept, visit www. myhouseRE. com or call (561) 929-HOME.

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Oregon Winery Boasts Sonoma Winemaker

Oregon Winery Boasts Sonoma Winemaker

HOOD RIVER, Ore. (PRWEB) October 28, 2005

Robb Bell has spent a lifetime telling corporate bosses how to run their businesses better. But when he bought a small local winery last year, he knew he needed help. Professional help.

So he called his friend, Michael Sebastiani. Yes, from that Sebastiani family, the one that’s been making wine in Sonoma, Calif., since the 1800s and which helped put the region on the map.

“Would you consider making wine for a small winery in Hood River?” Bell asked. Sebastiani, who had never been to the Gorge, asked one question: Would he be able to get grapes?

The rest is not so much history as it is an ongoing story, one that will have sequel upon sequel — not just for Bell’s enterprise, Cathedral Ridge Winery, but for an entire region that is waking up to the exciting and sometimes daunting truth that Mother Nature has rendered it a wine grape-growing paradise.

It’s that very realization that prompted Bell, who has lived in Hood River most of the last 30 years, to put his successful career as a marketing and business strategy consultant behind him in favor of running a small, craft winery. He was also tired of the relentless travel that forced him to miss out on things like his daughter Morgan’s soccer games and school functions.

Bell bought Flerchinger Vineyards on Post Canyon Drive from Don Flerchinger last year. He changed its name to Cathedral Ridge Winery in honor of the western shoulder of Mount Hood visible from the winery. In addition to cultivating the winery’s seven acres planted in Riesling and Pinot Gris grapes, Bell arranged to purchase premiere grapes from some of the best growers in the area — including Lonnie Wright, whose 175 acres of vineyards in The Dalles produce several varieties of grapes, including old vine zinfandel dating to the late 1800s — and, after answering Sebastiani’s question with a resounding yes, brought the winemaker onboard.

Sebastiani was happily surprised by what he found upon visiting Hood River and the surrounding Columbia Gorge AVA. (The area roughly from Hood River to The Dalles and White Salmon to Lyle was federally designated an American Viticultural Area in 2004, meaning wines made mostly with grapes produced in the area can designate them as such on their labels.)

“From a winemaker’s standpoint, my God, it’s great,” Sebastiani said. “Within a 20-mile span, you can pretty much do anything.” The relatively vast climate change from the Hood River Valley to The Dalles provides one of the most unique grape-growing regions in the world.

Across that span, rainfall varies from 36 inches per year to less than 10 inches. Other subtle variables, including seasonal temperature variations across the AVA and how far from the thermal mass of the Columbia River the grapes are grown, create conditions where an unusually wide variety of wine grapes can thrive.

The Columbia Gorge AVA favors varieties like Riesling, Pinot noir and gewurztraminer in its western end and merlot, syrah and zinfandel to the east.

Bell and Sebastiani want to capitalize on that diversity and, as Bell calls it, the “propinquity” of the grapes.

“We have the ability to pick the grapes at the perfectly right time, and they don’t have to travel very far,” Bell said. “We can drive them right down the road and get them into bins before anything bad can happen to them.”

Bell has increased production at Cathedral Ridge during the past year to more than 5,000 cases, along with adding more wines. But he’s more interested in quality than quantity. That’s where Sebastiani comes in.

“We have a common vision,” the winemaker said of Bell’s and his partnership. “It’s a natural fit.” Sebastiani has known Bell, who was a friend and business consultant of his father’s, since he was a boy working in his parents’ vineyard. Sebastiani now has his own winemaking enterprise with some partners in California called Generations of Sonoma. But he commutes to Hood River a couple of times a month — sometimes more, depending on the season — as sole winemaker for Cathedral Ridge.

Along with creating the wines, Sebastiani works closely with the growers, checking on the grapes as the season progresses.

“Eighty percent of winemaking is in the vineyard,” he said. The rest is in what he calls “the kitchen,” — and in his head and his blood.

He enhanced his innate skills as a fourth-generation winemaker (the tradition was started by his great-grandfather, who made wines for monks in a Tuscan village) by a degree in enology and viticulture from U. C. Davis.

Sebastiani is not only enticed by the microclimates here that foster great grape-growing, he’s excited about the burgeoning wine scene in general in the Gorge.

“Hood River is Sonoma 25 years ago,” he said. “It’s real people, real community — it’s got more than Sonoma.”

Bell knows that. Having lived here through the demise of the logging industry, and the subsequent rise of windsurfing and then outdoor recreation in general — and the tourism industry they have fostered — he thinks the growing wine business is a perfect fit for the area.

“We’re a more complete community compared to where we were in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s,” said Bell, who likes to tell people, “We are not it, we are of it.”

“We are fortunate enough to live in this wonderful place,” he said. “At the end of the day, wines enhance the quality of life. The wine scene is inexorably enhancing the quality of life here.”

Bell plans to do his part to contribute to that, with a little help from his friends. 

Janet Cook,

Hood River News

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