Friday, January 11, 2013

Followups From RoanokeHatesBusiness, RoanokeLovesBusiness


RoanokeHatesBusiness / RoanokeLovesBusiness Article Responses....

So I thought you may find it interesting to read a few of the hundred something responses I got from the RoanokeHatesBusiness RoanokeLovesBusiness article I wrote yesterday.

I deleted all information that could link it to who wrote it as I am aware that no one wants a target on their back from anyone in the city that may disagree with the stance of a majority of the property investors and neighborhood association leaders who reside or do business in Roanoke City.

These responses are primarily from neighborhood association leaders, lawyers and local investors.
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"Fantastic letter Dallas. That story is amazing and I know we'd see conditions like that in a ton of homes in ******* **** neighborhood and it's just sad. Your comparison to charging landlords for violence that happens on their property is right on -- landlords can't control such behavior. I'd like to share this article with some of our residents (like **** ******* if you remember him from our meetings, the tall guy who lives on ******* 1300 block) so they understand that most landlords are good people who are trying to improve properties and provide good housing, to make money in the end, sure, but it's not like they want drug dealing and dog feces and child abuse on their properties. That only kills property value, costs money to repair for the next tenant, and makes it harder to attract quality renters."  Anonymous....
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"Dallas, sorry, and so sad. You are such a good guy!"
Anonymous....
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"Does Roanoke hate business or landlords?  It is going to be hard to solve blight until more people own their own homes and the incentive to attract people that drain our society is gone.  There is too much crime in the city.  If more people worked, they wouldn’t have time to steal, vandalize and roam the streets all night getting wasted. Try limiting bus service in certain areas and I bet that area starts to thrive and the crime rate goes down.

Roanoke needs to bring in more colleges to attract better people to the city.  The medical college is a great start." Anonymous.....


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"Dallas:

GREAT EXCELLENT essay. " Anonymous...




"Hi Dallas, I read your email. That is a bunch of crap what Roanoke puts the property owners through. I agree with you completely, the tenants should be responsible for the property that they are renting, if the code enforcement would hold them accountable, the problem would fix itself quickly.  I get your emails every week and I like reading them. I own 13 rental properties myself, but they are all in Montgomery County, mostly in Christiansburg. I am glad that we dont have to deal with alot of the crap that Land Lords in Roanoke do. How many rentals do you own and how long have you been fixing up properties and renting them.  Keep up the fight, thats the only way that you will ever get ahead. Thanks" Anonymous....
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"Dallas:

Good Morning....well I put my newspaper aside and read your article with my coffee. Will need to go for a fill up before finishing this.  I first have to say your description of that inside is utterly appalling. I'm so glad they took her kids away, what about the poor dogs?

Because of our friendship I have come to a better understanding of the plight and problems you all deal with, therefore, I have become more open minded in seeing your side of the problem along with the cities.  As for that blight committee, I believe **** ****** is on it.  I requested to be on it, but of course, as usual, they don't won't informed intelligent people who might rock their boat.

Your over all article is right on, very clearly stated and I'm impressed in general you had the patience for such a long article. (Please no offense intended, lol).

I do think and a very long story of that situation, you shot yourself in the foot by revealing that a background check had not be done.....I would have left that out, for they'll then just say to themselves...." See, had he done things right it might not have happened "

I would like to play devils advocate with you as I can see those within the asking asking and wondering the same thing.....One thought I have for landlords like you and others who have so many properties is the need to have in your lease and even get the renters to initial these separate statements of permission.  On a new tenant, that you will want to inspect (visit) the property after they have been there a month or two.

I have a "Sticker" idea for rental properties.  All this is coming on the top of my head for my mind is in high gear with thoughts and ideas which I can't go into everything here.  With a strict detail, uniform lease that was used by a landlord and agreed on with the city, a sticker would be put on the front door, back door or window.  If a violation was seen and any city employee who came to the property had to first look for this sticker.  Once seeing the sticker, that tells them this landlord is a working landlord with the city and the inspector must notify the landlord of his visit.  If he is leaving a notice or citation, a "Duplicate" must be mailed to the Landlord with more reasonable time for communication and resolution on whatever the given concern is.

I'll stop here.....for maybe all ready this is a bad idea from your perspective....My ultimate point being there has simply got to be a better way for this problem to be resolved in the city and the commonwealth (Judges) all working on this to come up with a more fair and just plan for all.....

It is simply a matter or the right, reasonable intelligent people sitting down and working together.....But, probably the greatest hurdle above all is the being a fucking Commonwealth State and not letting localities made their on rules and laws.

Look forward to your responses on this.

Take care my friend and have a good day...." Anonymous....
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"Very good article Dallas.  Makes me never want to be a landlord!  I will soon officially renounce my Roanoke citizenship and I will be moving my business and residence out of the city because of the city government.

Just before Christmas the bulk trash crew took my Avalanche tonneau panels from my yard and crushed them in the truck.  The office of risk management says that they are never responsible for property damage occurring in the line of a civic duty (e.g. picking up trash, high speed police pursuits) even if the damage occurred as a result of employee negligence/ignorance.  Applying that logic, if they had run over a child in the street they would have no liability.  I had to pay $3,000 to replace these panels and that pissed me off just enough to pick my ass up and head for the county!

I'm thankful for all of the time and effort you put into making Roanoke a better place to live and do business.  Keep up the good work.  Better you than me brother....." Anonymous....
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"Dallas    Great post my friend it contains allot of info, and I'm sorry I missed yesterday, I got sick as a dog, yet I did get over there this morning. I'm tempted to collect all that dog shit and deliver it to their new apartment." Anonymous....
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"Great article Dallas! I loved it. I wonder if Roanoke Times would be interested in publishing a portion of it? I suspect they would...it's got the human stories element...nasty woman vs some guys trying to do their job, it pulls in the local market well...I think they might be interested. You should try them.
Thanks for sending and fighting for us." Anonymous....
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"Great job. Yea, I was not thrilled to get my property tax assessment and it dropped $5,000!!" Anonymous.....
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"Dallas   I read your piece "Roanoke Hates Business/Roanoke loves Business" After taking 11 months to get rid of a tenant in Bedford County, I found much the same attitude toward landlords in Bedford Courts, both General District and Circuit Courts as you describe in Roanoke.  Not only did the court let him stay in my house for 11 months but refused to make him  pay any rent for the entire time. I lost $950.00 a month for that time.  Anyhow I can sympathize with you and I liked your piece" Anonymous.....
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"Thanks Dallas. Great perspective. I agree with the points you make.

My unsolicited advise would be: In the future, try to condense the principal points into a much shorter article. I can almost guarantee that I'm the only one who read the whole thing and it took me quite a while.  If you want them to not only read, but understand you point of view, it needs to be more concise and to the point.

Also, I would suggest finding one or more localities (in or outside VA) that have taken the steps necessary to hold tenets responsible for their actions, and make clear references and examples of how it has benefited those localities from blight and sound ED.

I consider myself an advocate for small business similar to you, so please let me know if I can ever be of assistance.

Later,"

Anonymous....
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"Dallas,
      Thanks for the e-mail regarding the city of Roanoke.  I had an interesting conversation earlier today with a friend of mine who is quite an astute businessman.  He is a self-made millionaire many times over (he made most if it in real estate).  He does or has done business in Roanoke, Richmond,  and various cities in North and South Carolina and made an interesting statement while we were discussing the Roanoke Real Estate Market.
His words -  "What people around here don't realize is that the City of Roanoke is dying economically, mostly because of their attitude toward business".

        How's that for confirmation of what your story talks about ??????

My long term goal, if you can have long term goals at 64, with multiple health issues, is to sell every piece of property I own in the city and buy single family in Roanoke County.  I feel like throwing up every time I think about the City and with only a few exceptions, their dumb-ass bureaucrats.

Have a great weekend......." Anonymous....
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"RIGHT ON brother!!!!!!!!!!

Send it to the paper." Anonymous.....
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"Very cool.  And it was well written my friend." Anonymous...
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"Wow Dallas,

When you say "in the trenches", you sure as hell mean it! And a hell-of-a great read here too - you have my ultimate respect. Thank God those kids are safe, for now at least."

Anonymous.....
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"The one guy who said your article was too long, no.., I read every word. The details are what made it so compelling. Must read! A future NYT best seller!

I think I'm going to join you this afternoon, watch some NFL playoffs."
Anonymous.....
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"Dallas,
Thanks for including me in this and I have to agree w/you...This has been a problem for years."
Anonymous.....
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"I read the entire article.
For you to take the time to write the state of affirs is commendable. Nitpicking over how it was written is picyune, and some of us really prefer prose as it reflects the heart of things v. the coldness of information stripped to bullets. 

Many moons ago, I worked for a property management company in FL.  I went with the PM to see an apartment in a good neighborhood, actually I think it was in a condo rental building, and saw the same stuff you experienced.  I saw it after a lot of the crap had been removed from the carpeting and moved out of the unit but the stained rugs, residual excrement, and same spread all over the walls, bathroom, in the closets, the kitchen was appalling.  So,folks, this is not new stuff - just things landlords deal and treat it as a cost of doing business.  But, that is wrong.

Yes, I agree the city needs to be more inviting.  It is gloomy and scary to me.  But that is just me. 

Luv Ya,"
Anonymous.....
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"Dallas,   Very well stated ideas in this article! I wonder if the city will take some of this to heart.
Hope so." Anonymous......
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And they go on and on and on. I didn't have a single negative response with exception of one from one of our leaders far up in Roanoke City Government. I hope the out of the box thinkers in our local government will be able to use this letter and the overwhelming response in favor of my simple message as a tool to in essence to put their finger in the air and determine the currant state of future economic development within the City of  Roanoke. Making  connections with groups such as REI of Virginia who are fighting for change is a good step in the right direction for our city and a win / win for all.


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