Time for the latest on M1’s ongoing relocation drama, as we continue our search for the perfect building to house our new headquarters! The deadline is rapidly approaching, as our move-out date from our current location (Feb. 29, 2020) looms ever closer.
I know you’re feeling our plight, as we are getting more response from my last two articles than ever before! I’m pretty sure that’s because your jaws are on the floor over this ridiculousness, and this time, there’s no way to sugar-coat anything, so let’s get right to it.
- After 14 years, we must vacate our leased facility, as we are bursting at its 19,000-sq.-ft. seams like an overstuffed kid in Garanimals on Thanksgiving.
- Our complex’s new owner raised our rent a whopping 61%, and we are now paying essentially the same amount as we would for a mortgage.
- We have scoured Central Florida 437 times in the past two years trying to locate this mythical unicorn of a perfect building.
- Several months ago, when we finally did find that elusive, perfect, 30,000-sq.-ft. spot, we lost it to another bidder, who beat us by four hours with their offer.
- Then, in a twist that punched us straight in the stocking stuffer, we found out the winning bidder was a client of ours, who promptly asked us to make the signage for their new building!
I don’t know if I’ve ever had that feeling before. We were positive we were getting this building, so excited our search was over – then it all crumbled.
So we toured another building, and another building, and another couple we had toured previously, and on and on all over again. The thought of looking at more buildings had partner Rick Ream and me contemplating daytime shots of Patrón. (Or was it Crown? I can’t remember.) All I know is we were attempting to replace our lost treasure with inferior buildings.
But that building had also seemed meant to be, as two years previous we designed our dream facility (just in case we would build instead of buy). Amazingly, you could overlay our design on this place’s site plan and visualize the same building. We conjured it and there it was. Too bad we lost it by just four hours.
Or did we?
In a crazy turn of events, I received a phone call from that client.
“Dale, if you guys really want that building, you can have it.” Wait, what? For real?! And then she threw a number out. And the number was half a million dollars more than they paid for it just two months earlier.
Well, ring in the New Year with a second punch to the stocking stuffer! Are you serious?! A $500K profit to flip a building in three months? That was a gut check, for sure. But then we started to break the deal down. The original price had actually been well under market value – one of the reasons we jumped on it in the first place. Every single other building we toured was much more money per square foot, and now this new price was accurate to the market. And after closing costs on their first purchase, plus their closing costs on this deal, our client/seller would only net about half of that amount.
So, after some serious soul searching over the weekend, I walked into Rick’s office Monday morning. He didn’t say a word, just picked up a pen and clicked it in a gesture that told me everything I needed to know. He wanted to sign the deal, and so did I.
To haggle a bit, we wrote a contract for $200K less than asking price and signed it. The broker was back in an hour. Our offer was crossed out, with the original offer handwritten in and signed by the seller. All we had to do was say yes and the building would be ours.
So we did!
We breathed a collective sigh of relief. It appears as though our two-year search finally yielded the perfect facility. But, think this was stressful? Now the real adventure begins. How we’re going to pack up and move 17 years of accumulated M1 history, without dropping our work flow… that’s gonna be lit!
And you can watch it happen in real time, as we officially launch our Media 1 YouTube channel this month. (Cat’s out of the bag, people!)