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Re-Visiting old projects can be a great learning experience for future projects

Past tense, could be past enjoy

It's OK to stand back and admire what you have done in the past. It's also helpful.

A Real Estate developer's past can haunt him, but nine times out of ten it renews energy, fosters change and gives pride to the legacy

The Past may be the past but in real estate it can have lingering benefits”
— Staying current and up to date may require a visit to your past.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, FLORIDA, USA, August 31, 2022 / -- Stephen Gravett, discusses the fun, useful and productive concept of project reunions- visiting old completed projects. He advises peer builders to re-visit past projects whenever possible.

"Do you like High School reunions?- Some people embrace their high school reunions and others will have nothing to do with them. Going back in time is cathartic, enjoyable and disappointing all in one visit." To peer backwards into a builder's personal time machine offers a beneficial look at past trends, past designs and just how well the neighborhood has held up. "It's a window in time to be savored and enjoyed because it reinforces where we have been and where one might be going." The great thing about real estate development is that the creativity required to create a great project is as satisfying as the success of the project itself. Building something that will last many decades and may outlast the life of a company that did the original development is a is a scary yet satisfying realization.

Dropping by to see how the landscaping has grown, what the lake littorals are doing and waving to the neighbors is not enough. An observant eye must pay strict attention if the result is to be worthwhile. A mature project sheds light on things that were missed and should be done differently in the future. Comparing new improved construction methods to those of the past gives insight to progress in the industry. Observing crowded landscaping can improve future plant selection, separation and sheer plant numbers (if the city will allow the reduction). A legacy of success adds confidence that future ideas that were not in past projects must and should be used. Building code changes will force different criteria on future projects and focus builders on pricing alternatives dictated by new technologies.

The amount of time and energy that consumes a developer today just to get an approval is anywhere from several months to years depending on what part of the country the work occurs. Then, building and selling the community takes months and years as well. "It occupies a significant time slot for the company. To go back is only fitting and thought provoking. It's like reading a book for the second time. You will be amazed at the new ideas that will flood your mind." It is not something everyone gets to do.

But, beware things are not always what they seem. Some gated communities that have been turned over to the residents a long time ago are difficult to get back into. Management companies usually run the HOA (Homeowner's Association) and they have strict entrance policies. These policies usually don't cover the original developer. Getting in to those communities is problematic. "In South Florida custom home builders going back to older communities where they built years before sometimes have trouble finding homes they completed. It is very common to have a home even only 15 years old or more that has been torn down and subsequently replaced by a newer and larger home. " I would say that is unnerving. Especially if it was a complete surprise -OH MY GOSH IT’S GONE."

"Occasionally, project reunions may not be what you are expecting. Still I believe the positives far out weigh the negatives."

Stephen Gravett has been a real estate developer for over 45 years and was most recently CEO of Kennedy Homes for the past 11 years and is still CEO of Kennedy Development Partners (KDP). He is also full time Director of Operations for 5 Star Developers. He is a state licensed broker and since 1980 a State licensed General Contractor Unlimited. Before becoming a real estate developer, he flew B-52’s in the US Air Force during the Vietnam War.

Stephen Gravett
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