Life’s trajectory can shift at a moment’s notice. Incomes fluctuate, family dynamics change, and sometimes, an opportunity for relocation is too good to pass up. Unfortunately, not every trajectory shift is a pleasant one, and for homeowners, the thought of facing real estate trouble is too big a burden to bear. In these moments, having an ally and industry expert in your corner is imperative. They’re someone who knows the housing market and can help develop creative solutions that make navigating these life changes a breeze. More than having someone who understands the market, you also need a professional who has your best interest in mind when negotiating and works on your behalf.
Martine Jackson prides herself on being one of the allies that uses industry knowledge to develop creative solutions for Richmond homeowners. The owner of Hoover Homes, LLC, a Richmond-based real estate investing company, Jackson has spent the past three years buying, selling, and educating the public on the process of sealing real estate deals. She delves into the challenges investors often face, from bidding wars to accepting defeat, and stresses the importance of building a solid relationship with every potential seller, even after hearing “no.” More important than the actual process, Jackson educates homeowners on the various solutions available when looking to sell. Through Facebook Live sessions and in-person consultations, Jackson continues to grow her business while offering a one-of-a-kind service to Richmond residents.
“I meet people in all types of situations,” Jackson explains. “Some are pretty straightforward, like they’ve inherited a property that comes with a mortgage or taxes that they weren’t financial prepared to take on. Others can get complex, like they need to sell their home to relocate to another city, but need the proceeds from the sale before they can move to their next place. In that situation, I’ve been able to work out a solution that allowed the buyer to stay in the home a week or two after the sale is final.”
What Jackson’s clients appreciate most is the sense of camaraderie that begins before any deal is made and lasts far beyond the signing of a check. For her, it’s not about the money, but more about the relationships she’s building around the city she holds dear. She looks out for everyone involved, and ensures they’re taken care of after contracts are signed. In fact, if she purchases a home that someone’s occupying, she’ll take the time to search for another place for them to move. These small, informal touches is what has carried her business to incredible levels of success in just a few short years.
Since opening her company’s doors, Jackson has noticed no slowing down in Richmond’s housing market. She specifically targets homeowners in the most rapidly-developing areas with a strong rental market, area codes 23223 and 23224. With the incredible growth this city experiences, there’s no shortage of landlord-tenant relationships that constantly evolve and need the help of a real estate investor to develop fast, sound solutions.
“I do work with some rental properties owners who no longer want to be landlords,” Jackson says. “Especially the elderly, who sometimes just want out of the business. That’s where investors come in; having us involved allows them to simply transfer ownership as opposed to placing the house totally on the market. This especially works out in cases where a reliable tenant wants to remain in the home but doesn’t qualify for the home loan needed to own the property; as investors, we develop solutions to make it possible to have a seamless transition.”
Clearly, this entire process can become invasive rather quickly. Investors are privy to extremely personal information, not just about finances or the lack thereof, but also family dynamics, loss, and overall uncertainty. Facing foreclosure is arguably one of the most stressful predicaments a homeowner can face, and working with the right investor to discuss every option helps ease the stress and frustration.
Things also get particularly personal when dealing with the loss of a spouse. Perhaps a homeowner is grieving the loss of a loved one and doesn’t want to live in the home with the painful reminder. Or maybe they can’t afford the mortgage with their income alone. In these cases, having the option to sell quickly is made easier with an investor, and Jackson knows first-hand the importance of having them readily available and willing to help.
“I often work with individuals who are in retirement age,” Jackson says. “Many times, they’re dealing with the loss of a spouse and want to move, or have high medical bills that make it difficult to keep up with the mortgage. And if they have high equity, it means they have more solutions available.”
Whether you’re in a vulnerable state or just ready to sell your home quickly without a lengthy process, Jackson suggests taking your time when choosing an investor. Not everyone has your best interest in mind, and not everyone wants to help you make the best decision. Because of this, Jackson recommends sitting and meeting with potential investors to feel them out and see if you genuinely like them. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is also an excellent resource for finding quality investors.
According to Freedom Mentor, a program and website dedicated to mentoring real estate investors and educating the public on financial freedom, the BBB helps the public find the most creative and well-respected investors. Traditional investors typically work with real estate agents or auctions to find deals for which they can pay all cash. They offer no creative solutions, so they seldom rely on reviews to gain clientele.
Creative investors, however, work directly with the seller to identify the need and discuss a variety of solutions and options, so they rely more on reviews to build their business. Freedom Mentor directs these types of investors to the BBB to showcase their ability to structure creative deals and solutions with sellers.
“The Better Business Bureau is typically where people go to research if a company is legit or not,” the site says in a 2013 article titled, Should Real Estate Investors Join the BBB? “When they see a good rating, it eases their fears about working with you.”
With the BBB, it’s all about building reputation and credibility, so sellers can trust this resource when finding reliable investors who develop creative solutions to unique situations.
Whether you take the online route or search for investors via word of mouth, Jackson says that above, all, it’s about your level of comfort.
“It’s okay to actually like the person you’re doing business with,” she says. “If you don’t like them, you don’t have to sell to them. Many people look at the entire transaction like it’s a check, but you have to decide who’s trustworthy and really wants to help you. The name of the game is ‘Who’s really here for you?’ When you can answer that question, then you know who you need to work with.
For homeowners seeking solutions or looking to discuss selling options, contact Martine Jackson and Hoover Homes, LLC at (804) 876-0212 or on Facebook, at www.facebook.com/hooverhomesllc.