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How to Redeem an Apartment Building

​The Wall Street Journal ran an amazing story about a group of investors who redeem gang-infested apartment buildings. (California Firm Gives Rundown Properties New Live, Sept. 22, 2015;…/california-firm-gives-rundown-properti…). In this instance, it’s a former cop named Kyle Kazan, CEO of Long Beach, CA-based Beach Front Properties LCC, who is finding success. Despite its “upscale” market name, most of Beach Front's properties are located in some of Southern California's toughest inner-city communities, including sections of Anaheim, Van Nuys, and Long Beach. The company specializes in acquiring "class C" properties that are often rife with crime and graffiti, then turning the buildings into quieter and cleaner family housing. Investors are often skeptical, until they see the before and after pictures. But this isn't easy. Mr. Kazan says, "I can read graffiti so I can see what's going on and if there's a turf war. If that were the case and we're going to buy the building, I would sit down with the gang families and talk to them and show them the benefits of moving out instead of bringing in law enforcement. If there are gangs on site, there is drug dealing and you can't get good rent. If you evict the drug dealers, you can improve the building and raise the rent." Ah, the agony and glory of reconciliation and redemption. It's never easy, but love makes it all worth it.

We, too, live in a gang-infested and death-ridden place. But God is not giving up. He came to buy the property and did even more so. He came and paid the price for each one of us so we can have life. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16 NIV).

My prayer today is that we all find redemption in Jesus Christ.

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