Broken Motel Dreams: Behind the Scenes of a Failed Real Estate Deal (Episode 337)

Broken Motel Dreams: Behind the Scenes of a Failed Real Estate Deal

Tips for Setting Up (and Stepping Away From) a Motel Rehab Project

Today’s export guest is Tanya Rooney, a creative real estate seeker, life guide and owner of BAFS Real Estate + Yay You’re Here Properties. We’re thrilled that she’s taken the time to join us today to talk about a very important, and very on-trend, topic in our industry: motels and mid-term rentals.

She gives us the low down on a painstaking deal that did NOT go through, sharing important lessons so you can better understand and take action on your own real estate opportunities in the future. We’re talking underwriting, we’re talking numbers, we’re talking inspections – all the juicy behind-the-scenes nuance that you won’t see on TikTok or in YouTube comment sections. 

Tanya joined our membership years ago and has always been a champion of masterminds, really leveraging the power of networking. She’s a great resource for other hosts and a perfect example of how, even when things don’t go exactly as planned, they can be of benefit to our end goals.

(00:01:26) #STRShareSunday: @elylogcabin

(00:05:42) BTS of Tanya Rooney’s Short-Term Rental Business

  • How a failed flip turned into an STR passion 
  • Using data to make the switch (AirDNA)
  • Tanya’s favorite parts of hosting
  • Mapping out her 5 properties in the Twin Cities area
  • What does her operations team look like?
  • Using PriceLabs and Hospitable in security protocol 

(00:12:34) Setting Up an Exciting New Real Estate Deal

  • The drool-worthy potential of a fixer upper 
  • How and why she ran 17 versions of the numbers 
  • Listed at $600k, offered $500, and contracted at $525k
  • Flip or hold? How Tanya planned to use the property
  • Tallying up investments of time, money, and emotions 

(00:24:36) Inspecting a Potential Motel Acquisition

  • Difficulty in finding the right inspector 
  • Commercial/multifamily approach to the inspection 
  • $4,000 to 5,000 on a twelve-hour inspection 
  • The hard lesson we all learn in real estate 

(00:26:58) Leveraging Her Network to Underwrite the Deal

  • Getting help with her research 
  • Finding the right coach to help you learn new things
  • Quick rundown of important financial/staffing factors 
  • Rehab numbers on a motel (X18)
  • Most surprising part of the underwriting process

(00:35:29) Interior Design on a New STR Space

  • Why she engaged with an interior designer 
  • Turning her ideas and dreams into a visualization 
  • Using designs to help raise money 

(00:37:53) When (and How) a Motel Deal Breaks Down

(00:44:37) Important Lessons & Tough Takeaways

  • What if they would have hit the fundraising goal?
  • Applying her new skills to a future deal 
  • Vulnerability as a female investor 
  • Dreaming of a project in Moab, Utah 
  • Shout out to Mike Hicks, creative deal maker 
  • Mike Hicks: Instagram and TikTok

(00:50:28) Making the Magic Happen Through Networking

  • Value of connections made in masterminds 
  • Find your network, build your tribe 
  • Asking random questions to break the ice 
  • Suggestions for Facebook group participation 
  • Read: Hospitable Hosts 3

Download a transcript of this episode.




Hosted by prior podcast guest, Addie Wales, this beautiful Instagram account is home to a growing number of picturesque log cabin rentals. Located in Ely Minnesota, these pet-friendly properties are off the grid and perfect for a cozy getaway. Explore the scenery or plan a trip to see the Northern Lights. Check out this account, specifically, for its elevated Reels strategy and animated LinkTree effect – directing eyeballs to a direct booking link and cabin discounts.

We would love to feature YOU, so don’t forget to use #STRShareSunday to get your chance!

Together, Annette & Sarah are the dynamic duo behind the wildly popular podcast Thanks For Visiting, co-creators of the Hosting Business Mastery Method, & seasoned short-term-rental hosts.

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