76.7 F
San Fernando
Tuesday, Aug 16, 2022
-Advertisement-

Husband, Wife Developing Niche in Real Estate Market

In working with wife Heather in their real estate firm that develops residential and commercial projects, Terry Heller admits that there are times when the two will butt heads. But the former music video director said they butt heads for all the right reasons. “When you constantly challenge each other in a positive way, the best work comes out of that,” Terry Heller said. The couple started Woodland Hills-based Heller Holdings three years ago to create commercial space and entry-level condominiums with an upscale look and feel. The company has done projects in Santa Clarita, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades and Long Beach. Heather Heller said she and Terry work well with each other as business associates because they have someone with whom to celebrate the successes while at the same time someone who can shoulder some of the burden of hardships. “What works for us is we have the same amount of drive, we’re both willing to put in as much work as the other person is,” Heather Heller added. “Each one of us always thinks outside the box. We’ve never used traditional thinking or traditional approaches.” Although the couple met when they were in the entertainment field, Terry Heller said he always knew he would eventually get involved in real estate. Younger audience Heller Holdings’ residential properties are geared for a market that other developers are not going after the young professional wanting amenities usually found in higher-priced homes. Steve Berson, an accountant who works with the Hellers, said that Terry Heller has good business savvy and filled a need in the marketplace with condo conversions. “The company’s successful because (Terry’s) successful and he’s able to make a project profitable,” Berson said. “He makes a good product at a fair price.” Robert Braun, an attorney who has known Terry Heller for almost five years, said that Terry and Heather strive for the same goals, and don’t trip over each other. “They are very detailed oriented,” Braun said. “Unlike a lot of people they focus on the deal in front of them and getting it done. There is a tendency for developers to be attracted to the new deal. They don’t do that. They don’t let a new deal get in the way of doing what needs to be done now.” Heather Heller’s role in the company is as the designer of the condo buildings and units. For a project in Long Beach, she came up with a vibe and look similar to what can be found in a boutique hotel. The balconies have private cabanas, the lobby has the look of a New York hotel, and the kitchen and baths include Carrera marble. “These are things you wouldn’t find in condo conversions,” Heather Heller said. “We want to bring some style and innovation to the entry-level market which is usually bland and boring.” The involvement of family in Heller Holdings extends beyond just Terry and Heather. Kristin Loftin, Heather’s sister, is the third member of the core group running the company and handles the bookkeeping, underwriting, and overall financial outlook and forecasts. Beyond the family Terry parents, who work together as real estate agents, were brought on board in 2004 to broker sales at the 59-unit Confetti project in Santa Clarita. But with five to six projects a year and an eye on expanding into multi-family housing and developing boutique hotels, the Hellers admit they are at a crossroads of whether to bring non-family members to the core of the business. “If we want to grow any more, we will have to bring in more people,” Terry Heller said. “There’s only so much we can handle ourselves. We might need an acquisitions person who might not only procure a deal but see it through as something we would need to grow the company. Or maybe someone to help on the bookkeeping side, someone to beef it up.” With a 4-1/2-year-old son and a 20-month old daughter, the issue of succession at Heller Holdings is still decades off. But, Terry Heller said, he already detects an interest in his son in the world of real estate, a spark in the eye when his son accompanies him to open houses. Yet, the couple does have guidelines it follows in which they keep their business life away from home and don’t discuss work in front of their children. “I don’t think it’s fair to children they should feel the ups and downs of business,” Terry Heller said. “I want my kids to just have fun and get an education and be children.”

-Advertisement-

Featured Articles

-Advertisement-
-Advertisement-

Related Articles

-Advertisement-
-Advertisement-