Finding Real Estate Developers

by Meredith

What's the best way to get real estate developers interested in your neighborhood? They seem to like to go out and build new subdivisions, but not do anything in our older part of town. What's up with that?


Editors' Reply:

Meredith,

We really advocate for making direct approaches and appeals to real estate developers. Bring them in individually to have coffee and give them a tour so they get acquainted with your neighborhood's best assets.

Explain and demonstrate anything outstanding about you. Anticipate ahead of time their objections, just like any good salesperson, and then have your rebuttal to those objections ready. Just remember to be ultra-polite as you answer and overcome objections.

Ordinary good manners and the personal touch can go a long way with developers. Most of them are the go-go-go aggressive personality type, but if you can get them to agree to coffee, do it up right. Take them to the best place, or have coffee, coffee alternatives, and a tasty treat in a living room or a neighborhood office.

Get them in the car and tour them around, carefully avoiding your worst eyesores and showing off your best assets. Take the asset-based community development approach yourself and make sure you are firmly grounded in that way of thinking before you start selling your neighborhood.

It's also potentially helpful to court several developers at the same time. This has the advantage of setting up the competitive spirit. It also sets up the possibility of "I will if you will" deals. Sometimes a developer doesn't want to be the first one in if he/she perceives the situation as risky. So sometimes you can increase the developer's comfort level if he feels he won't be the only new business in an area.

Move cautiously in this area, as some developers prefer to be the only one or the pioneer in an area.

If your town has a planning office, make sure you have the very best statistics they can give you available when you talk to a developer. Click on planning at the left and read up on neighborhood plans and neighborhood demographics. Understand redevelopment, also a major category of this website, with a button at the left.

Lastly, read a lot on this website so you are an educated neighborhood organization. If you don't have a community organization, by the way, you need to create one before you try to attract a developer.


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