Land Solutions spent the next two years identifying, assembling and selling parcels of land suitable for residential development to regional and national home builders, all the while keeping their finger on the pulse of the real estate market.
Because the company’s knowledge of the local land market made them experts in the field, Thibaut was asked to become a presenter for Market Watch in 2002, a role he continued for three years. He also recognized a new need in the market and took his business in a new direction. In 2003, he formed a Land Services division specifically to zone, permit, and manage development operations. Prices and terms were good and it was a good time to buy. The permitting process was friendlier toward residential development and the process needed full time focus above that needed for the brokerage operation.
In 2004, in addition to the projects of others, the company partnered with various groups of investors and commenced in-house acquisitions; locating, buying, permitting and selling their own projects to residential builders. By 2006, the company had grown to 13 employees and had been involved in the creation of dozens of residential projects in southwest Florida.
The market and business continued to rise until the real estate slowdown started in late 2006, presenting Land Solutions with challenges and a need to restructure their core business as investor speculation and aggressive lending practices created an over supply of new home inventory and overpriced land. The permitting process had become more expensive and lengthy due to the anti-growth mentality of local governmental agencies and certain citizens groups. Excessive fees and permitting time delays of up to 3 years had driven costs so high that builders and developers found themselves priced out of the market for our local demographics.
In 2008-2009, Land Solutions is back where they started, assisting sellers and/or lenders on their work-out projects, but on a different and much larger scale due to the increased number of players and projects in the market with an abundance of failed or stalled residential and commercial projects in south Florida which are either being liquidated by sellers or being taken over by lenders. The company continues to see the big picture, assessing each project as if it were their own, protecting assets, entitlements, permits and improvements to insure that the land retains its highest value. However, instead of builders and developers, Land Solutions has attracted the attention of capital firms and equity / hedge funds buying distressed assets, taking advantage of today’s more attractive prices.
Land Solutions continues to monitor the market, watching and compiling information on every sold and pending land transaction in the area to provide both sellers and buyers with all the facts needed to successfully sell or purchase property in today’s market, as we wait for better days to come.