Myrick Howard, president of Preservation North Carolina, knows a thing or two about historic real estate redevelopment. Rarely, okay never, have I been in his company when the subject of one real estate deal or another has not come up. Myrick believes and often reminds us that “historic preservation is almost always a real estate transaction.” Or in other words: Preservationists must get their real estate game on!
At the National Preservation Conference in Spokane, October 31 to November 3, we are going to do just that. The National Trust will introduce the first ever Real Estate Learning Lab. Sponsored by The 1772 Foundation, this intensive track of four educational sessions covers the full range of skills, tactics, and knowledge needed to competently engage in real estate development. It begins with Getting Started in Property Intervention which will introduce the fundamentals of real estate intervention, what it means and how it works including property evaluation, acquisition tools, pro forma analysis, financing, market considerations, project management, and more. Next up is Problem Solving: the Roles Preservation Organizations Can Play. Preservationists don’t have to become property owners to influence what happens at a site. This session looks at how preservationists can serve as problem solvers, lenders, project managers, contractors, and match makers. In session three, Using Revolving Funds for Property Intervention, experienced revolving fund managers talk about the myriad of ways they use their revolving funds to save historic resources. And finally in Finding Funds to Finance Real Estate Projects, presenters tackle the complex mix of public, private, cash, credit and in-kind financing available to fund historic rehabilitation projects.
While you may not walk out of these sessions a fat cat real estate magnet, you will be a little more confident talking about real estate, a little more courageous about taking a role in projects, and maybe just a little more creative in finding ways to save historic places.
For those not attending the conference, look for blog postings and resource materials about the Real Estate Learning Lab and watch this space for additional real estate training opportunities. Soon it will be your turn to get your real estate game on.