Real Estate – It’s a Passion

I’ve stated before that my passion in life is real estate, particularly real estate here in East Tennessee. You might be asking yourself, “of all the things to be passionate about on this planet, why real estate? Other than the money, I can’t see what it is about huge stacks of paperwork, constant phone calls and long work hours you’d enjoy doing that much.”

Well, like all jobs, it requires a lot more work than is ideal to sustain, but also like all jobs, the key to enjoying it to consider yourself something of an artist at what you do. To be more specific, I consider each property that I work on the same kind of project that a musician would refer to an album, an author would refer to a manuscript, or a painter might refer to their next exhibit. Still similar to those artists, I often take on work for private acquisition and use, but the ones designed for the public are what I get really thrilled about.

When I drive through Sevierville and see loads of people at Buffalo Wild Wings or Steak’n’Shake, both properties I helped put together, it gives me a tremendous sense of accomplishment and personal satisfaction having made a physical, positive impact on the community. Hundreds of people every day, 7 days a week, get to enjoy the work I put in to each of those restaurants in Sevier County – that’s not something even 75% of artists in the country today get to say. 🙂

And that doesn’t even begin to consider the looks on people’s faces when they see their brand new property and the new opportunities that open up for them then. It’s hard work in the real estate game, like everywhere else, but it has rewards well worth the effort. I’m happy to work in real estate, and I’m happy to work for you in real estate.

If you’d like to be thrilled with an awesome new business opportunity or property, contact me today at 865-691-8195 or

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Considering a New Business in Sevier County, Tennessee?

It goes without saying that the last couple years have seen a tremendous amount of change for Sevier County in East Tennessee. If you hadn’t visited since 2011 or maybe even early 2012, you might be surprised what you’d find with just one 10-15 minute drive from Sevierville to Gatlinburg on the main parkway that connects all three can show you.

The big developments in this area relevant to the topic here have included:

* The Island in Pigeon Forge.
* The new distillery industry featuring Ole Smoky Moonshine, Davy Crockett Distillery, Sugarlands Distillery and more still.
* Rocky Top Sports World in Gatlinburg (unfinished).
* The LeConte Conference Center in Pigeon Forge.
* A resurgence of tourism activity in Wears Valley.
* The announcement of Dollywood’s personal vacation resort and many other developments soon to come on Veteran’s Boulevard between Sevierville and Pigeon Forge.

And those were just the big ones. Many dozens of other new businesses, restaurants and providers have come to the Smoky Mountains to help these advances usher in a new boom period for the area. These changes have not only succeeded in bringing more tourism to Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, Sevierville and Wears Valley, but they’ve helped to elevate the quality of tourism we get, as well as the general quality standing of Sevier County as a prospective vacation destination.

If you”ve been looking for a good time to build your business in Sevier County,this is the time to do so and I welcome the opportunity to help make it happen!

Sevier County holds a good list of other reasons to consider it as a place to invest in commercial property. According to, we rank 3rd throughout the state of Tennessee in total tourism spending, and 2nd in terms of percentage growth in tourism spending since 2004. We’ve seen a near 20% increase in lodging revenue from May 2013 to May 2014 alone, we are within’s a day’s drive of 75% of the US population and at least 13 of the South’s major cities. If you’d like to see some significant business potential for your brand in the next few years, Sevier County is the place to go.

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Key Steps for Selling Your Property

Selling  your property is a large task.  Your property is your “Life’s work”, you should understand the steps involved in order to get every dollar of equity that you can.
Here are the key steps for selling your property.

1. Create a timeline and marketing plan with your agent

Two months before listing:

  • Evaluate your financial situation and budget
  • Determine the bottom dollar you need to net on property after, transaction cost, mortgage, and commissions are paid
  • Get the title, survey , and other due diligence items that a prospective buyer will require
  • Know your NOI, and cape rate averages for your type of property

Evaluate how quickly you need to move your property. Has situation occurred in your life that the property needs to be sold quickly?  Can you afford to hold on to this property until the end of time? Or are you just tired of all the mundane day-to-day operations of managing your property?

This question above determines what price to list your property at. The quicker you need to sell, the LOWER the price.
Either way, you will need to run comparables on your demographic area, and understand (with help of an agent) what price makes good sense for your specific needs.

2. Evaluate the condition and marketability of your property

At least a couple of months before listing:

  • Evaluate the condition of your property, How many years are left on your long term ground lease? What is the financial status of your tenants?
  • Fix problems or adjust price accordingly

In today’s market, with the entire inventory that is out there, your property needs that “WOW” factor to make more attractive to a potential buyer—especially if you want t o move the property quickly.

Have a professional look at your property and evaluate it with a critical and unbiased eye. Just because someone offered you a trillion dollars 4 years ago, does not mean that is what it is worth now. That was in the past, and we are looking at it today.

Look for three types of problems:

Cosmetic problems that can be fixed relatively quickly at minimal cost. Those tenants that have been with you for 5 years, and have the yard piled up with junk.  Have them clean it up. If you drive by the strip center at night, are all lights working properly? Is paint chipping off the side of the building? Any small repairs including wedding the flower beds must be made. GIVE YOUR PROPERTY CURB APPEAL. After all the first impression is always the best.

Repairs and upgrades. Sure, you have had your Handy man go “band aid” that 16 year old hvac unit, and it may still have ten more useful years…maybe. But why would an investor pay top price for an old building with the gutter falling off? Ruthlessly examine the condition of, plumbing, electrical, heating, air conditioning, the roof and structural elements of your property. When you repair and replace fixture and equipment, you remove reasons for investors to discard your property, and go on to the next.

Problems you can do nothing about.  The fact that your property is on an on old road that was the main street ten years ago, and is now a ghost town is something you cannot fix. The same can be said for the fact that your ground lease only has three years remaining on it, or that Wal-Mart is moving their location from directly beside you to 10 miles down the road. Be honest that these factors do affect the value of your property.  Price and market your property with these aspects in mind.

3. Setting the price for your property

A couple of weeks before listing the property:

  • Research the local market
  • Have an agent do comparables in the area
  • If you would like hire an independent appraiser——–Yes pay the extra money, it will ensure that you do not leave money on the closing table
  • Establish your price based on the above criteria

In today’s volatile market, it is easy to not get a true value of your property.  Foreclosures, short sales and bank-owned real estate can drag down the value of neighboring parcels.
Here are the essential steps to establishing a fair market value for your house.

  • Have an agent research comparables locally, and nationally
  • The most in-depth valuation is an appraisal done on-site, in person, by an appraiser who is familiar with your area and trends. At will give you an idea of the worth of the property based on today’s market. An independent appraiser will also confirm that your property is worth what you are asking when negotiating with a prospective buyer. It is a great tool for when negotiating starts.

4. List and Market

One week before listing:

  •  Get an agent to assemble materials for listing (photos, pricing documentation, room measurements, etc.)
  • Sign an exclusive agreement with an agent of your choice. The agent is going to work harder on your property, if they are guaranteed to get paid when the property sells………………….It’s Human Nature!
  • Do not beat an agent up on their commission.  If two properties are the same price, but one is listed as having a hirer commission, which property do you really think will sell quicker?

5. Sell your property!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Sevier County is ahead of the Curve for Commercial Real Estate

 The phones are ringing and the tourist are pouring in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Sevierville. Growth is rampant. New projects are starting ever day.
It is no wonder with major attractions including Great Smoky Mountains National Park (the nation’s most visited), Dollywood Theme Park, Dolly’s Splash Country Water Park, The Titanic Museum, WonderWorks, Smoky Mountain Opry, Ne Event Center, and Proposed Cal Ripken Baseball Site, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Tanger outlet malls, large show theaters, and Numerous other tourist Attractions.
If you have been looking for an area to put cash into…………………………….YOU HAVE CAME TO THE RIGHT SPOT.
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Investing in an Income Producing Property

If you’re thinking about investing in a Income Producing property, experts say the time is now…… low  prices combined with low interest rates make this the best time in years to become a real-estate investor.
The Real Estate Market is starting to recover
When the money is cheap and property values are moderate…………………The time to buy is now.
Below are some steps to help make you a savvy investor:
Know your opportunities. All investment properties are not the same, it’s important to determine what type of property fits you. Do you want to become a landlord for the long term, or would you prefer to get in and get out quick, and move on to the next deal? Are you interested in multifamily, office buildings, and other commercial real estate, or do you to prefer to try your hand at development?  I would recommend to start out small,( maybe residential), and grow from there.
Let Experience work for you. New investors should find an experienced real-estate agent. The more familiar they are with investment property deals, the better the can find the best opportunity for you. Find a broker that is looking to make money with you for the next thirty years, and not just trying to sell you the first thing that comes along. Another idea is to work with an agent or real estate investor. Learn from their mistakes. In many circumstances, a real estate developer or investor may be willing to work with you in exchange for the capital you provide. If you sell tooth brushes, you might not know everything you need to know right out of the gate. Protect your hard earned capital with an experienced professional while you learn the ropes.
 Location, Location, Location.  If you buy a property to rent, location should be the first thing to consider after budget. Stay in well populated “high Traffic areas”. You may have to pay more money for the property, but the return will be exponentially better. Look for areas with low crime rate. Have an exit strategy in mind. If you are planning on selling the property in 30 years, you can find property that is on the fringe of the development area versus if you are selling in 2 years. Use inside knowledge to gain a competitive advantage, study your area………know your market.
Have the money in place before you go shopping. Know how much you can afford before you go looking for property. Money can be made in real estate, but it can also be lost very quickly. Have a budget already in place with a “rainy day” fund. If the property is projected to be rented every month, plan for a vacancy period. I usually estimate 25% vacancy period. Many people would advise that is too conservative. I  like to be on the side of caution. “You cannot lose money, you have not invested”. If the deal works using very conservative estimates, then it will mitigate some of the risks with investing.
The trick is to plan, research, and execute!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Ready for Christmas??

I hope that everyone is prepared for Christmas……………………………..Gentleman, if you are like me, go ahead and buy that special someone a Christmas gift. DO not put it off!!!!!! (I know this from experience). You wait, and wait thinking you will have more time. Then………………………………………………………………………………………………….. you are scrambling to get that perfect gift or just running by the store on Christmas eve to grab whatever is left on an empty shelf!!!!
This same Christmas lesson relates to Real Estate.
The market is recovering, and the time is now to invest in real estate, or sell that property that you have been holding on waiting for the economy to recover. If you choose not to act now, it may be the same result as forgetting to get that special someone a Christmas gift>>>>>>>

Buyers are plentiful right now, and have four years worth of time burning a hole in their pocket. So why not give it a try!!!!

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Happy Thanksgiving!

With The Election over, it is time to Put Property on the market. “Big Business” has been holding off on investments until after the election is over.
Now that there is no more “uncertainty” investors can plan accordingly. If you have commercial property the time is NOW>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
For my small niche Market of Sevier County TN, Pigeon Forge officially has passed Liquor by the drink. This will be a boost for the local economy with numerous chain restaurants wanting to be a part of the 11-14 million visitors a year.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Commercial Real Estate

Thomas King Properties specializes in both commerical and residential real estate covering Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, Sevierville and Knoxville Tennessee.

You can view our properties for the Great Smoky Mountains here:


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