Have you ever walked by an old house that has been on the vacant for years?
You ask yourself, why hasn’t it sold? Is it haunted? Is there black mold in the entire house?
Is it Rat infested? Is the basement floor cracked?
Years later you are at a cocktail party and a conversation with another guest and it turns out that she was the one who bought the building for 50 cents, put a couple of hundred thousand dollars into the building and now it is worth $5 Million dollars.
It takes a special skill to see value in something that most people deem useless.
When 100 west 82nd street was a quiet restaurant space that had tons of failed restaurants in it, we saw value. We bought the lease from the previous restaurant owners and had a great 13 year run of Rain. I still miss the food.
Last night I met a new client at The Park Avenue Tavern located at 99 Park Avenue. Corner of 39th and park. Of course, I was early and was standing in front of the place. I knew I had been in the space about 2 years ago and it was a horror show. Dirty, bad food and really scary décor.
Well, someone saw value in that restaurant space that was down for the count. They bought it, put a few $100K into it, and now the place is rocking.
I got there at 4:50 pm on a Thursday and the bar was 95% full. By the time we left at 6pm- the joint was jumping.
The beers were cold and the service was crisp. I did not eat anything, but I will surely be back.
The moral of this story? Always look for value in real estate, especially when others think it is worthless.