Broker's Background - Carl 'Tom' Hallen, CFA
is the Broker, and you will be working directly with him. He has a Master of Business Administration degree from Duke University and a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from University of Massachusetts.
He worked as a Portfolio Manager/Investment Analyst in the money management industry for about twenty years before getting into the real estate business. He managed a $100 million equity portfolio for Pacific Income Advisers in Santa Monica and a small long/short hedge fund for Ion Partners, LLC. He also was part of a 3-person team that managed a $2 billion portfolio for The Duke Endowment in Charlotte, North Carolina. Prior to going to graduate school he was an electrical engineer in the semiconductor industry for about five years.
Mr. Hallen decided to get a real estate broker license to help him learn how to buy at foreclosure auctions. He went on a foreclosure tour in Las Vegas in 2009 that was sponsored by two California real estate companies. One of the sponsors was trying to flip their properties to people on the tour. This company bought a 2-bedroom, 2-bath condo in Las Vegas for $80,000 and sold it four days later for $119,000. They were buying at the county foreclosure auction, and their profits piqued Mr. Hallen's interest in learning how to buy at the courthouse steps.
When you buy at these auctions there are no agents, no inspections and no escrows. The buyer has to learn how to research title-related issues and how to value properties, often without getting to see the interior. He did his own research on property valuations and chain of title and later purchased three rental properties at the Clark County, Nevada foreclosure auction. Just about all the information he needed for research was available online for free, and it made him question whether brokers in listed transactions really deserve the high commissions they generally make.
Personally, he has finished four 26-mile marathons since 2006 (he admits his finishing times would not impress anyone) and volunteers with Meals on Wheels and HOPE (Helping Other People Eat). He is a cancer survivor. Doctors told him in 1996 that he had six months to live. Click HERE
to see him finishing the 2013 LA Marathon.