Welcome to our Author Interview series.
Today we're featuring an interview with James A. Browning, author of BPO & REO Simplified: How To Work With Asset Managers. Our author interview series provides an opportunity for our readers to get to know our authors on a deeper level and also learn more about the types of books we're publishing.
James is the broker/owner of the Browning Group LLC which has sold 429 REO assets with a volume of $115M in the last 3 years. James is a national instructor/speaker for several organizations (Five Star Institute, REBAC, NAR, CREOBA, REO Institute of Colorado) and has designed and developed six (6) courses related to the valuation and disposition of both commercial and residential properties, and how to value distressed assets in todays market. He has a Masters Degree in Real Estate and holds numerous designations.
James was a former commercial director for CB NRT for 17 years in his 26 year real estate career. In 2009, James established the REO Institute of Colorado to provide BPO and REO training to real estate professionals in eight (8) Western states. You will find James has an excellent understanding of todays real estate market, along with thorough knowledge of both the commercial and residential sectors.
This book provides a thorough understanding of the complex procedures, guidelines, timeframes, and tasks the Outsourcers, Banks and Lenders demand in today’s REO (Real Estate Owned), or Bank Owned Distressed Market. Through comprehensive training and the knowledge obtained reading the BPO & REO Simplified book, Real Estate Professionals are able to provide solutions for the Outsourcers, Banks and Lenders on foreclosed and bank owned properties/assets.
Have you always considered yourself a writer?
No. I had a bad experience while taking an English course in College. I was assigned a project to write a fiction story about any subject that I desired. I wrote a story about the moon having negative gravity and the United States creating a city on the dark side of the moon. I handed the writing assignment to my professor for grading and never received the assignment back to me. I was very angry about that and vowed never to write again. It took me quite a long time to erase that memory and to start writing again.
How do you research your books?
The research on this book was done though our experience and knowledge gained from our Real Estate practice. My wife worked in corporate America for 21 years as a VP of Marketing and Advertising. She quit her position as a VP and asked me how she could work in Real Estate working 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM during the weekdays and not work weekends. I then answered, “We can work with Bank Owned Properties, as the banks are only open weekdays and not weekends.”
So, my wife assigned me to contact the banks and lenders to obtain Real Estate Owned accounts to list their properties. After 90 days of calling every bank that was available at that time, I had three accounts with the banks. From that point on we learned from the seat of our pants or by trial and error. We experienced every problem and issue, imaginable. After 6 years of REO experience, handling literally thousands of properties, we thought, Real Estate Professionals could use our advice, information, experience, and knowledge to make their jobs easier if they wanted to conduct Broker Price Opinions assignments or Real Estate Owned Listings.
Who inspires you?
Actually, my wife inspires me; she is such an amazing woman. She helps me when I write, and corrects any problems with editing, organizes the content, puts the final touches on the book. She should be on the book as one of the Authors. This book would not possible without her being involved in the book.
What is your writing process?
I write based on my experience in Real Estate, the problems, issues, transactions that I have encountered in my years in the industry. My writing process has two speeds, slow and none. It takes me forever to write a book. My second book is taking forever to write: Short Sale Certified.
State 5 random facts about yourself.
I was born in Chicago
I have been married to my wife for 30 years
I have 3 wonderful children, Amber lives in Covina CA, Kyle lives in NYC, and Jake lives in Northern California.
I was in the US Air Force during the Vietnam War.
I really enjoy speaking and being a full time educator nationally.
Have you ever sat and just watched the people go by?
Yes, I was in San Diego on the beach some time ago, and I watched the sunset. The sunset lasted about an hour. Hundreds of people had gathered on the long pier and were clapping and yelling because the sunset was spectacular and had numerous shades of red, orange, and yellow! For some reason this sunset was different than one I had ever seen before. It was like a religious experience, completely transfixing me. The crowd on the beach and the long pier were smiling and yelling positive things about this about magical experience.
Do you like to travel and what is your favorite city?
I do like to travel and see different parts of the world. My favorite city is Amsterdam. The atmosphere and lifestyle is more liberal than many other cities I have visited. The history of the area is incredible and the canals are very cool way to navigate the city. The population is friendly and courteous towards tourism.
If you could visit a place to write a book, where would it be?
One of my favorite destinations for peace and quiet to write would be on the Island of Roatan, Honduras. The silky white beaches and undeveloped island is a perfect scenario to write a book. The Island has the second largest barrier reef in the world. Enough said about the island, I do not want to expose the Island to more development.
Who designed the cover?
The cover was a joint collaboration between Infinity Publishing and me. We wanted something striking so we chose the image of a house of money, but the effect we wanted was that the house was not stable and could collapse if enough stress was put on the house. This was our way of suggesting the housing economy was on the verge of collapse.
To order a copy of BPO & REO Simplified: How To Work With Asset Managers go to www.buybooksontheweb.com.