All over the country, there are empty school buildings just sitting there, waiting for an investor to buy them and transform them. Some of these schools may be empty because the school district consolidated and moved the students to another larger school in the area. Others are empty because the district has built new schools to replace them. One use for these old schools has been to turn them into apartment buildings. If you're thinking of buying an old school and transforming it into apartments, here are some things to consider before you take the plunge.
1. Is the school building structurally sound?
You would not want to purchase a school building and then find out that the foundation has shifted, the walls are unsafe, or the roof is about to cave in. You can't always pick out these big problems in a big building just by looking. So, if there is a specific school you're thinking of buying, you should have a structural engineer or architect look it over to ensure soundness. If there are issues, get an estimate for repairing them. Since these abandoned schools are mostly older buildings, many of them do need some work. You have to decide whether you're willing and able to do the work that a particular building requires.
2. Is the school building's layout compatible with an apartment setup?
Generally, to transform an old school into apartments, you will need to gut the entire interior and start over. This is more feasible with some building layouts than others. There might be walls you cannot move or a strange, L-shaped structure that would make for a less-than-appealing apartment layout. Hire an architect that offers architectural property condition assessment services to take a look at the structure. Ask them to assess the building's condition and tell you what walls need to be removed. They can even draw up some sample plans to show you what layout options you might have for the apartments. This will allow you to see how many apartments would fit in the structure—information you can use to determine how much you can earn in rent each month.
3. Is there demand for this style of apartment in your area?
Once you've worked with an architect to ensure the building is structurally sound and able to be remodeled into apartments, consider whether there truly is a demand for this type of apartment in your area. If there are other buildings with multiple apartments in your area, see how they are doing. Are they always full, or do they always have a few empty units?
Many old schools have been transformed into apartments. Will you transform another one?Share
28 December 2018
When I quit my job to become an entrepreneur, I decided to open a business in the same industry I had worked in for 20 years. I thought I would automatically make a great business owner due to my experience alone. However, I quickly learned that I was neglecting skills that are needed by a business owner, especially money-management skills. Even though I had many happy customers, I stayed "in the red" for months. I then hired a business consultant who helped me learn how to reduce supply costs and even consolidate my business loans to keep my business afloat. Soon, I began not only "making ends meet," but actually earning a great income from my business. I am eager to share the business tips I learned with other business owners and operators on my new blog!