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Old 01-25-2013, 08:00 PM
 
Location: Indianapolis and Cincinnati
682 posts, read 1,388,065 times
Reputation: 609

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To get back on topic, OTR is doing just fine and in another 5 years people will be lamenting they were stupid not to buy there. Same time I know a lot of people buying over on Dayton street. In case you didnt know you can actually walk through that area without a problem. Price Hill Will is renovating tons of houses having invested millions over there. There is forward movement in places off most peoples radar too like Mt Auburn where more and more of the larger houses are being returned to single family.

I know of three significant historic restorations that just began in Riverside. Sedamsville is now a national historic district. All this has taken place since I came to Cincinnati in 2009. I am working with people restoring in Westwood (which if you actually get off Harrison onto the side streets looks really good) and there is a ton of restoration over there and they keep demoing problem apartment buildings. There is work going on in Walnut Hills too (the bad parts). Camp Washington has a very sucessful rehab program resulting in restored home selling in the 70K-90K range.

When I came to my neighborhood in 2009 people told me I was crazy for going into Fairmount. When I discovered the Knox Hill area and found out its history I knew that was where I wanted to be. Since we started there, many of the illegal multifamilies are back to single family. More and more vacant homes are now being bought and restored. We implemented a Save not Raze Program which purchases and exterior stabilizes endangered property which will be resold with protective covenants, the neighborhood is working on two and we are getting another next month. We held a home tour in May of 2012 which was well attended and focused on the Preservation Opportunities in our area. We had people from 5 states who came to see what we were doing. Demolition has been brought to a stand still because people want these homes and a neighborhood with a 19 acre nature preserve and million dollar views of the city. Do we still have some problems , sure, but to date most of the drug dealers were run out, we kept a motorcycle gang from moving into the neighborhood and according to the district 3 reports I get, crime continues to go down in my area. In terms of things like break-ins and auto thefts, crime is lower in Knox Hill that the very prestigous near downtown neighborhood I left in Indianapolis.

Right now I am working on the Overlook Project which is a major new urbanist makeover of a house that needed everything. Target sales price is 350K and I could sell 3, if I had them right now. We are starting new infil construction this year on several lots we acquired.

The Lunken building, which has been a small business incubator is shifting focus to Artist and Photographer spaces. A number of houses in our area are ready to submit for national register status with the goal being the whole neighborhood.

While no one is sure what will happen with the MSD project, but developers are buying up lots with one out of state bundler for developers buying a bunch of lots over on Montrose paying 20K a lot.

If you ask me what is holding Cincinnati back its two things.

1.) A city government addicted to federal demo money.
2). Locals who have no clue what is happening under their very noses.

Cincinnati is headed in good direction, Yes its behind other urban centers like Indy and Columbus in terms of development but its catching up fast.
Attached Thumbnails
Is Cincinnati stuck in a rut, or is it really turning around?-overlook-elevation.jpg   Is Cincinnati stuck in a rut, or is it really turning around?-img_8405.jpg   Is Cincinnati stuck in a rut, or is it really turning around?-img_7899.jpg   Is Cincinnati stuck in a rut, or is it really turning around?-khnahometour.jpg  
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Old 01-26-2013, 02:04 AM
 
800 posts, read 696,704 times
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RestorationConsultant, those photos are very impressive. I haven't been over there in several years but obviously I need to.

>Mt. Auburn

I agree, that's the neighborhood that is really the most surprising that it hasn't turned around much sooner. It's the closest neighborhood to downtown with the sort of homes with a yard where you can raise several children. I have a friend and his wife raising two boys in a typical row house in Prospect Hill but I have to imagine if they have another they'll have to move.

Mt. Auburn would be way ahead of where it is if the Mt. Auburn Tunnel had been built. This was proposed and studied by OKI in the 1990s and would have built a subway tunnel between Main St. at Mulberry and Jefferson at Corry St. A station would have been built deep under Auburn Ave. at Christ Hospital.

>2). Locals who have no clue what is happening under their very noses.

No kidding. That front page feature The Enquirer did last sunday on couples building new suburban houses was more of the same crap from the 80's and 90's. They have everyone convinced that building new homes out in cornfields is better for the economy than investing in existing neighborhoods where all the infrastructure already exists.
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:52 AM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 13,363,536 times
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restorationconsultant...

Good positive outlook from what you are seeing in your area of town. Liked the pictures very much, like the old saying a picture is worth a thousand words.
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:04 AM
 
2,886 posts, read 3,951,520 times
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RC, what is your take on the City's permitting process for restoration/rehab? I've read that it's extremely cumbersome and difficult and costly to navigate.
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:42 AM
 
307 posts, read 440,927 times
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While the question wasn't directed to at me here's my take on the permitting process. If your a hack, trying to cut corners, etc you likely find the permitting process cumbersome and horrible. Among contractors and subs you have those that want to do it quick and dirty and will cut corners whenever possible vs competent to high end custom outfits. I've never had an issue with a subcontractor pulling permits mainly due to the fact that I only deal with competent outfits. It comes back to if something sounds to good to be true it likely is and your getting quotes where the sub hasn't taken permit cost into account or will try to skip it due to there margins being so tight.
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Old 01-26-2013, 08:42 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
4,007 posts, read 4,828,826 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by restorationconsultant View Post
To get back on topic.....
I really appreciate the update, pics, and perspective! Thanks.
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Old 01-26-2013, 09:47 AM
 
2,886 posts, read 3,951,520 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joeytraveler View Post
While the question wasn't directed to at me here's my take on the permitting process. If your a hack, trying to cut corners, etc you likely find the permitting process cumbersome and horrible. Among contractors and subs you have those that want to do it quick and dirty and will cut corners whenever possible vs competent to high end custom outfits. I've never had an issue with a subcontractor pulling permits mainly due to the fact that I only deal with competent outfits. It comes back to if something sounds to good to be true it likely is and your getting quotes where the sub hasn't taken permit cost into account or will try to skip it due to there margins being so tight.
Thanks. I wasn't really wondering so much about enforcement and/or the specifics of walking in and getting a permit as I was about the entire process from the point someone has purchased a dilapidated building through to the final inspections after the rehab. I've heard it is cumbersome and involves a bunch of different offices and agencies.
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:00 AM
 
307 posts, read 440,927 times
Reputation: 98
I feel like it matches up to the persons skill set. If you're someone who's never picked up a hammer and doesn't have any experience in building you'll have a tough go of it. If you're going to be your own gc you'll likely have a rough go. A competent architect or gc will save you money in the end, though many people don't think so.

As an owner you can do significant work on your own home without pulling permits. Restoring wood wibdows vs replacements = no permits. hvac contractors will pull there own and ive never had any issue with inspections but then again i havent skimped on plumbers, hvac guys, etc. I'm wrapping up a full rehab of 1800 sq ft in a historic district and I've really had no issues getting permits.
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Old 01-26-2013, 01:00 PM
 
800 posts, read 696,704 times
Reputation: 552
Seems to me that complaining about the permit process is a convenient out for those who have gotten in over their heads with home improvements.
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Old 01-26-2013, 01:39 PM
 
2,886 posts, read 3,951,520 times
Reputation: 1499
Sorry, I still failed to make my question clear. i was thinking about things I've read indicating Cincinnati is not a favorable place for people who make a living in the business of buying, rehabbing and reselling properties. The basic allegation is that if you want to do that sort of thing, you'll be better off doing it in some other jurisdiction because the city's process is unnecessarily complicated and inefficient. Yeah, I know a few large developers do it, but presumably they have the money to hire specialists.
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