Illinois, US, 25th September 2022, ZEXPRWIRE, The ProActive Realty Income Fund has demonstrated the true profitability of investing in the affordable housing movement. Dr. Canaan Van Williams, CEO of The ProActive Realty Group, utilizes a deft combination of what Sam Zell called the “grave dancer” approach to real estate investment, along with an Oprah Winfrey styled devotion to “finding a way to serve.” Through active involvement in the communities in which they invest and a hands-on approach to property management, Dr. Williams and the team of housing experts at ProActive Realty Group have generated significant returns for investors, as well as created affordable and secure housing opportunities for low-income families and single parents. From August 2019 to present, The ProActive Realty Income Fund has delivered impressive returns of nearly $3 million to investors and despite the difficult economic conditions brought on by the pandemic, they have never missed a preferred payment.
A ProActive Realty Group Success Story
The work done by Dr. Van Williams and ProActive Realty Group in Orangeburg, South Carolina has provided a shining example for those who believe in the effectiveness of impact investing in distressed properties and the affordable housing movement. In November 2018, the ProActive team purchased a manufactured home park for $1.2 million that was weeks away from being condemned. Through personal involvement and determination, they transformed it into a safe and welcoming manufactured home community with 186 developed homesites, which sold in August 2022 for $5.2 million to UMH Properties, Inc., a public equity REIT that owns and operates 132 manufactured home communities with approximately 25,000 developed homesites. The purchase of a rehabilitated property in an Opportunity Zone by a public equity firm is a rare occurrence.
Dr. Van Williams discussed what enabled ProActive Realty Group to achieve such success for investors and residents alike:
“The challenge we address is threefold: (i) restore the dignity and humanity in home ownership, (ii) create resiliency in low-income communities, and (iii) constrain gentrification forces which significantly ruin the lives of lower-income families. The edge we bring to every doorstep and community is the time, sweat and capital we dedicate for each homeowner and attention to detail. Truly impactful investing requires a willingness to serve.
I think it’s important that people understand the full scope of the work done and what an impressive feat it was to take a property on the brink of being condemned to being acquired by a publicly traded company. In the case of the manufactured home park at Orangeburg, before our purchase of the property, there were 68 non-paying residents, 45 residents behind on payments, over 70 code violations, and a majority of the units were dilapidated with significant garbage buildup. Our team at ProActive Realty Group spearheaded huge cleanup efforts, repairs to storm windows, replacement of doors, extensive sheet-rocking, new floor tiling, installation of tub/shower kits, new front and back stairs, replacement of flooring and wood beams, and much more. Imagine the work of flipping a house but carried out on the scale of an entire community.
Two of my sources of inspiration are Sam Zell and Oprah Gail Winfrey, and I think the success we had in South Carolina is a perfect example of how those two intersect. To carry out a successful project that improves the community and delivers a large ROI to investors like we did takes the audacity of a “grave dancer” approach to real estate investing and a willingness to roll up your sleeves and serve the community hands-on, not just throw money at it.”
When asked about how ProActive Realty Group and The ProActive Realty Income Fund measures its social impact, Dr. Williams explained:
“Specifically, our approach utilizes Buffett’s Impact Scoring Model applied by our Fund Administrator, JTC Group, which specializes in impact funds. For example, our impact score was 82 out of 100 on our Orangeburg, S.C. manufactured home park where, in a low-income community, our efforts directly led to 98% home ownership for single mothers and other families who never thought they could own their own home. If you really think about it, that’s remarkable.”
What the Future Holds for ProActive Realty Group, The ProActive Realty Income Fund, and Dr. Van Williams
ProActive Realty Group sees the impact/ESG space growing exponentially as younger generations are more conscious of where they invest their money and do not want their investment dollars contributing negatively to climate change, gentrification and other societal issues. Driven largely by the social consciousness of this generation, more money is starting to flow to clean energy, affordable housing and clean water solutions, creating a new wave of investing and technology with positive social impact.
“This Fund was designed for the impact-minded investor who wants to ‘Invest with Meaning’ and to make a real and positive impact in distressed communities with affordable housing shortages,” said Dr. Van Williams. “Our investors are first. Period. And based on current trends, we expect significant growth over the next several years. We have a solid track record of successful projects and returns for our investors. In 2020, we paid a 12% return, which beat the S&P, and while other companies were halting dividends, we had no interruptions for our investors. On average, we achieve returns of 27% net over three years. We just completed the sale of our Orangeburg property for $5.2 million to UMH Properties, which generated almost $3 million for our investors and an average return of 25%. This is especially noteworthy because historically it is very rare for a public equity firm to make that kind of purchase in the real estate sector. But for ProActive Realty Group that was just the most recent example for our winning model. We have had similar success stories across the United States, including properties in Las Vegas, in the Midwest, and throughout the Southeast.”
Dr. Van Williams will have the honor of representing ProActive Realty Group at SOCAP22, which will take place at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in downtown San Francisco from October 17 to October 20, 2022. SOCAP Global is the thought leadership platform for the accelerating movement towards a more just and sustainable economy. They convene a global ecosystem and marketplace – social entrepreneurs, investors, foundation and nonprofit leaders, government and policy leaders, creators, corporations, academics, and beyond – through live and digital experiences that educate, spur conversation, and inspire investment in positive impact.
“I’m very excited to be a part of SOCAP22. This is the biggest convention for leaders and stakeholders in impact investing. It is a great opportunity to learn from experts in the field, to exchange ideas and share knowledge, and to further important causes such as social entrepreneurship, equity and inclusion, sustainable development, and stakeholder capitalism,” says Dr. Williams.
The Affordable Housing Multi-Millionaire
Currently in the works, Dr. Van Williams’s book on investing will be published soon. The Affordable Housing Multi-Millionaire: Invest with Meaning, Create Housing Security, and a Ton of Cash-Flow will cover a wide range of topics, including social impact in low-income areas and Opportunity Zones, how to raise capital for investing, how to create an Affordable Housing Vision, what “investing with meaning” involves, how to create the greatest social impact while simultaneously generating impressive cash flow, and much more.
Dr. Williams’s work with ProActive Realty Group and The ProActive Realty Income Fund allows him to offer firsthand accounts of the successes and obstacles of investing in the affordable housing movement. As opposed to some who theorize in the abstract or invest passively, Dr. Williams and ProActive Realty Group are active managers with a hands-on approach. This allows him to draw on personal experience as he develops and shares their investment strategies.
A Call to Action
The teams at ProActive Realty Group and The ProActive Realty Income Fund are passionate about delivering returns to their investors and creating positive social change for the communities in which they invest. Dr. Williams, who has over 20 years of active experience in real estate investment and management, believes that impact investing, ESG, and the affordable housing movement are just getting started.
“I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say that this is the future of investing. This generation of investors has just started to realize the true profitability of affordable housing investing, and the younger generation is hungry for meaningful change in the financial sector. They understand that making money and making a difference are not mutually exclusive. I truly believe that this is just the beginning for us and like-minded investors everywhere. The more that people get involved the better the returns – and the greater the positive community impact – will be.
To invest in the Affordable Housing movement, and to learn about ProActive Realty Group, LLC and The ProActive Realty Income Fund, please contact:
Dr. Canaan Van Williams
About ProActive Realty Group, LLC
ProActive Realty Group is a multifamily real estate investment management team, prioritizing both consistent income and capital appreciation. The firm creates economic benefits to its communities and investors alike by providing quality housing in underserved areas and by actively engaging in the betterment of its communities. The ProActive Realty Income Fund is an active income fund providing consistent and immediate income, secured by real estate. It focuses on developing deals that are low-leverage with high impact. Additionally, they have created the Opportunity Zone Fund (Proactive QOZ Fund 1,LLP).
ProActive Realty Group concentrates on three specific areas: Multi-family Units, Single-Room Occupancy (SRO) Housing, and Manufactured Housing (mobile home communities), including new and used mobile home sales. Their team of researchers have found powerful opportunities in Class C and B properties, particularly in areas facing significant workforce housing shortages, and its investments nationwide reflect this perception.
As their name indicates, they take a proactive approach to property revitalization and management–it is high-touch and risk-managed. ProActive Realty Group goes above and beyond simple turnaround projects. Their high-impact approach raises the quality and value of the very communities that surround each investment property. ProActive Realty Group brings experience and demonstrated value in the many factors required for successful real estate investing.
To learn more about ProActive Realty Group, LLC and The ProActive Realty Income Fund, please visit https://www.proactivefunds.com/
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Disclaimer: The views, suggestions, and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Smart Herald journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.