After developing award-winning franchised real estate offices in Dallas and Houston in the 1970s and 1980s, the late Ken D'Angelo decided to focus on recycling single-family houses in Dallas. That decision was the basis for what has become HomeVestors of America, Inc., the "We Buy Ugly Houses" people!
In the early 1990s, Mr. D'Angelo created a unique billboard advertising campaign that attracted people who were motivated to sell their houses quickly and at a discount. Mr. D'Angelo was willing to purchase the properties -- even when they were in dire need of repair -- thus the beginnings of the HomeVestors® slogan "We Buy Ugly Houses." Mr. D'Angelo resold some of the houses to local real estate investors, and in other instances he repaired the properties -- enhancing the neighborhoods where they existed -- and sold them, often to first-time home buyers.
By the mid-1990s, when he was buying and selling more than 100 properties annually, Mr. D'Angelo decided to teach others how to recycle single-family houses in their communities. That's when he founded the "We Buy Ugly Houses" franchise business system, HomeVestors of America, Inc. (HVA), the first franchise company of its kind. HVA trains and supports franchisees who specialize in buying properties in need of repair. After purchasing a home, a franchisee can employ one of several exit strategies, including:
1. Rehabbing and selling the property to a new owner
2. Rehabbing and adding the property to their own rental portfolio
3. Selling the home to an investor.
In September of 2004, when he was diagnosed with a deadly cancer, Mr. D'Angelo selected John P. Hayes, Ph. D., to serve as president and COO of the rapidly growing company. HVA's Board of Directors promoted Dr. Hayes to president and CEO and elected him chairman of the board in January of 2005, shortly after Mr. D'Angelo's death.
Today, HomeVestors of America, Inc., has nearly 260 franchised offices across the United States. By 2010, HomeVestors plans to have 500 franchised offices nationwide.