Law Office Of William F Underwood III


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JULY 2017

My New Little Lakeside Property A Rewarding Enterprise This month, I’d like to say I have some big plans for Fourth of July. But the truth is, I’ve spent nearly all my free time lately working on my new project: the small apartment complex I bought on Lake Chehaw. I closed on the five-unit place way back in December 2014, but I only just moved in last April and started working on the property. know what’s reasonable if you’ve never gone through the process before. So, I’ve been shopping around.

There are all these little details you never consider. The current building is connected to a septic tank. I thought that, when we added more units, we could get it rigged up to the city sewer line, but even that is proving to be more complicated than I expected. We may have to dig it up and install an additional tank. The catch is, since the big flood in 1994, there are strict rules about where you can dig and how far everything has to be from the water — all things that add to the cost. Maybe I sound like I’m complaining, but far from it. I welcome the challenge, and it’s incredibly satisfying owning and working on something yourself. And I really do enjoy the place. Being right there on the water makes it all worth it. Certainly, the days of finding excuses to avoid kayaking are gone. The humble little lake might not exactly be a vacation destination, but that’s fine with me — that means it’s always quiet.

Everybody is probably aware of the huge amount of paperwork you have to deal with when you run a housing property. For a few months, I’ve tried to see if I might be able to build another little five-unit complex next to the current one, but the obstacles keep piling up. People love to complain about lawyers, but I have to say, in my experience, I’ve had a much easier time dealing with my fellow attorneys than these contractors. Especially lately, with these big storms that have hit, it seems almost impossible to get in touch with anybody. When I bought the place, I’m not sure I was fully prepared for what an undertaking it would be, especially when it comes to adding another five units. The way the regulations shake out, after you have five or more rental units on a property, you need to have an engineer scope out the area and put together a site plan. These guys aren’t cheap. I’ve received one estimate, but it is almost impossible to

- William F. “Trey” Underwood, III

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