Investor launches Greeley real estate buying spree – Greeley Tribune
GREELEY – A Texas native with Colorado connections began a real estate buying frenzy in Greeley and has bought dozens of properties in the past few years.
Chris Flaherty, 29, owner of Blue Oak Properties LLC and Rockport Properties LLC, has spent an estimated $ 20 million on the properties, most of which was acquired under the Blue Oak umbrella.
The last acquisition came on Friday when Blue Oak bought Bear’s Den Apartments on 10th Ave. Bought for $ 2.2 million in 1609-1617.
Blue Oak Properties LLC is located at 1808 Boise Ave. along with one of Flaherty’s accountants and property managers. in Loveland. Flaherty acquired his first local estate in April 2019, purchasing 10 single family homes in Greeley, Evans, and Weld Counties. Some of the properties were originally purchased by Flaherty and then transferred to Blue Oak after the limited liability company was formed.
Since entering the market, Blue Oak has bought more single-family homes, but has also ventured into the downtown Greeley market, acquiring retail buildings and small apartment buildings.
Rockport Properties also acquired approximately 35,000 square feet in five office units on Bittersweet Square at 3400 W. 16th St., spent approximately $ 4.5 million on acquisitions, and invested nearly $ 1 million in improvements.
Flaherty’s office property in Bittersweet Square was bought for $ 125 per square foot, with an additional $ 50 to $ 75 for improvements. The offices there rent for $ 12.50 to $ 15 per square foot plus triple networks.
“It’s a good price for smaller offices and businesses, and it’s definitely in good demand,” Flaherty said in an interview with BizWest.
Flaherty also acquired 15 townhouses in Cheyenne, Wyoming, but later sold them.
Flaherty’s father got him interested in the real estate business in Fort Worth, Texas. Flaherty then moved to San Diego, California, where he met his girlfriend. Eventually the two moved to Boulder, where they lived from 2016 to 2019.
“While I was there, I met an investor in northern Colorado and bought 10 single-family homes,” said Flaherty. “I always wanted to invest in real estate because my father did it when he was growing up. But … you just have to have the money. So I saved the money from the family business where we buy mortgages from banks and I bought these 10 houses and once you got into a market you got to know the different people, so over the past few years. I put money in Greeley because I think in terms of jobs, price and rental demand, the hospital there, the university – pretty much everything that is involved there it just seems like a good start. “
Flaherty recently began working with Phil Dankner, a real estate agent at Unique Properties LLC in Denver. Dankner helps Flaherty organize and plan the portfolio, as well as selling some properties and trading in some larger properties.
“That’s the process of getting bigger,” he said. “But I’m using my own resources, so it will take me a little longer,” as he works to improve properties and increase rents over time.
“Originally my game plan was to keep it forever, but I like to be active when it comes to investing, so we’ll see what I can sell and things like that.”
Flaherty has lived in Portland for a year because his girlfriend goes to school there. He said they will return to Colorado after they graduate.
One of the buildings on 9th Ave. 1632, Greeley. (Courtesy Weld County Assessor’s Office)
“I was in acquisition mode this year and the plan was to probably stabilize and improve rents and then maybe sell in a few years,” said Flaherty.
Downtown Greeley offers a fascinating investment opportunity, Flaherty said, referring to its proximity to the University of Northern Colorado, as well as the development of the 55 resort on Eighth Avenue and 11th Street, and the continued investment by Richmark Cos of Greeley along Eighth Avenue .
Revitalizing an area like downtown takes a while.
“I think that’s the hardest part of getting it going,” he said. “Someone has to take a risk. You (Richmark) are from there so they get the ball rolling. “
Flaherty said that since he is spending his own money and is not a syndicator, he can take a longer-term view.
“I have a long-term holding perspective,” he said. “That way I have a longer hold time than most people. I can let it develop. “
Bianca Fisher, executive director of the Greeley Downtown Development Authority, said the district continues to attract investors. The district comprises about 55 blocks, which are roughly bordered by 5th and 17th streets and 7th and 11th streets.
Fisher said real estate sales within the district were $ 10.5 million in 2016, $ 9 million in 2017, $ 27.5 million in 2018, and $ 14 million in 2019. As of November 30, 2020, sales had exceeded $ 22 million, she said.
“It was interesting to see those last few years with“ really strong real estate sales ”in 2018 and 2020, she noted.
905 16th St., Greeley. (Courtesy Weld County Assessor’s Office)
Downtown has seen several major developments in recent years, including a new downtown hotel, town hall, and residential projects like South Maddie. All of this builds confidence for potential buyers and developers, she said, especially since the district includes an opportunity zone.
“It was especially interesting in the last three years, I would say. The activity and interest has definitely increased, ”she said.
Fisher said she took calls from both regional and nongovernmental investors with an eye on downtown.
“To me, it’s a spoken book that even amid a pandemic and everything that’s going on in the world, there is still a lot of interest in downtown and the real estate market is still going strong.”
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