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Happy Thanksgiving from Auben Realty

Giving thanks for all the local experts we have met along the way…

When I moved to Augusta in 2006, it would have been challenging for me to point out Augusta on a map. I knew it was in Georgia, not Atlanta, and home of the Masters. That was the extent of my local knowledge. When I moved to Augusta, I also had no clue I would grow to know Augusta better than any city I have ever lived in. 

Scatter site single family rentals force you to cover a lot of terra firma in your operations. Initially, my time spent meeting the city of Augusta was “driving for dollars” looking for homes to buy to flip. As I referenced in an earlier newsletter, driving for dollars is the pursuit of driving “farm areas” (neighborhoods of interest) looking for abandoned and vacant homes. You are part Google Maps recording vehicle, part explorer, and part private investigator. When you are looking to buy, you are trying to search for things that others might not see. 

The obvious signs are overgrown landscaping, stacks of newspapers in driveways, and junk in the yard. While looking for these things, you get to know the streets. Really, really well. You learn what locals in Augusta know, that the street Battle Row can go from $3 million to $30,000 homes in a mile’s drive. AI has a hard time capturing this reality. But locals know. 

After I bought some initial properties, I learned the city even better. Running materials to job sites and checking on progress, and then I learned it again going to check on a problematic maintenance issue and viewing vacant homes that needed turn-renovations.  

In addition to ample windshield time learning the city, I had a lot of local folks help me see the opportunity in Augusta. Amazingly, it was initially a lot of the non-native local folks (transplants) who saw the most potential and opportunity in Augusta. 

Non-native Augustans like Justin, Don, Bernard, Scott, Bob and Sue knew that Grovetown was going to grow to be a lot more than trailers and cow pastures. They saw the potential in South Augusta even though there was a lot of crime at the time. Many of these people were also catalysts of the change 

I was always most drawn to the urban core and met other transplant Augustans like Janie Peel, featured in last week’s spotlight here. Who knew someday/someway downtown Augusta was going to be more than a late night food and drink destination. 

This concept of local experts has been core to Auben since day one, but we don’t go it alone. We are consistently seeking more local experts to learn and grow from and with.

Have a happy thanksgiving with family, friends and loved ones.

To learn more about our structure that helps us stay local, please see the video below!