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Straight Up Chicago Investor Podcast Episode 196: Going A-to-Z on a Sight Unseen Purchase and Gut Renovation in Cicero with John Warren

Straight Up Chicago Investor Podcast Episode 196: Going A-to-Z on a Sight Unseen Purchase and Gut Renovation in Cicero with John Warren

Are you considering buying a multifamily building without physically seeing it? John Warren’s experience with his purchase and gut renovation in Cicero can give you an insight into what to expect.

Underwriting and estimating rehab costs are the very first steps in making an offer. John Warren shares that it’s important to factor in the potential costs and risks involved in such a purchase. Once the purchase is made, a Cicero point of sale inspection is conducted, and negotiations follow.

Managing the tenants is a delicate matter, especially if they are involved in illegal activities. John shares that it’s essential to handle this professionally to ensure the safety of everyone, including the tenant. A blown rehab budget was also one of the challenges John faced, but instead of giving up, he adapted his approach and found a way to move forward.

Lessons learned from managing a tenant-occupied building are shared on this show. One of the main insights is that you should take notes and avoid making the same mistakes. Overall, John’s experience is a great example of how a sight-unseen purchase and gut renovation can be successful with preparation and problem-solving skills.

Questions We Answer In this Show:

Q. What is the process for calculating the rehab number when buying a property sight unseen in Chicago?

Q. What is the process for dealing with point of sale inspections repairs post-closing in Cicero?

Q. Should I general contract my Chicago rehab or hire someone?

Show Notes:

  • 03:03 Housing Provider Tip: Be proactive about preventing frozen pipes during frigid Chicago Winters!

  • 06:21 Intro to our guest, John Warren!

  • 07:45 John introduces the deal that will be discussed on this show!

  • 13:20 John talks about Cicero’s point of sale inspection!

  • 14:07 How do you calculate the rehab on a sight-unseen project?

  • 26:29 What were the next steps after receiving the inspection report and closing on the property?

  • 33:31 John talks about the initial management after closing on the property!

  • 42:10 Why does Cicero outsource certain inspections?

  • 43:24 Where did the additional rehab funds come from and what was the project’s planned time frame?

  • 51:11 Any lessons learned from the leasing process?

  • 52:50 John talks about resolving the pest control issues.

  • 58:42 Good book that you would recommend?

  • Guest Name: John Warren

  • Guest Company: Forte Properties 

  • Guest Link:

  • Other Links for show notes:

  • The Four Hour Workweek (Book Recommendation)

  • Tools of Titans (Book Recommendation)

  • John’s Email:

Chicago Investor Resources Shared

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