The recent series of wildfires here in our own Smokey Mountain region of North Carolina and Tennessee has been devastating. The fires around Gatlinburg, Tennessee late last month resulted in at least 2,460 structures that were damaged or destroyed, and the death toll has reached at least seven.
Lots of people have lost their homes and businesses – and surely many of them were uninsured for wildfire damage, or will find that they were woefully underinsured.
The real estate investment community, including real estate IRA owners, can and should be active in this environment. By offering a fair price for fire damaged properties that we have the capital to repair and resell or rent, investors will be vital players in helping a traumatized community get back on its feet and rebuild.
Families and small real estate investors who have seen their homes and investment properties damaged or destroyed and who are uninsured or underinsured and unable to make the repairs themselves will desperately need the cash from the sale of these properties to start over.
Meanwhile, homes with moderate fire damage are often very good investment opportunities for the skilled property investor. If damage is limited, it's well within the scope of many investors' capabilities to take the damaged home at an appropriate discount, make the needed repairs, and return a very livable, quality home to the community.
But real estate IRA investors who are working in this environment should be investing with open eyes. Fire damage isn't like ordinary wear and tear on a home. Here are some tips for assessing fire-damaged properties:
American IRA, LLC is the leading provider of third party administration services to Self-Directed IRA owners in the Smokey Mountains region. If you would like to put your retirement assets to work in direct ownership of investment real estate, and you want to take advantage of opportunities to help rebuild the Smokey Mountain area following this season's terrible wildfires on a tax-advantaged basis, a Self-Directed IRA is a great way to do that.