Billboards - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by Ed Copp (OH) on June 04, 2005 at 07:58:30:

may also have a requirement that signs be registered or licensed in some way. Checking with the city may also lead you to the sign owner.

Billboards - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 03, 2005 at 07:12:32:

Has anyone ever owned a billboard? I have this guy, that I’m buying a few lots from, closing enxt week. He’s now slowly offering me other properties first, before he talks to anyone else. He just called me with several lots and houses. One of the properties has a large billboard on it, that he used to rent out. (he no longer lives in Atlanta and doesn’t know what’s going on - long story - another ‘former’ criminal, that I’m dealing with - I don’t know where I find them :wink: ). Has anyone ever dealt with billboards? Any suggestions you can make. He wants me to make him offers (yeah, yeah, I know, you all say never offer first. BUT, I’ve learned with the lots, that people don’t know about the values and if I give them time to check on values, they will ask for more. I’ve made low-ball offers and people have accepted them. This guy has as well, so, I will make offers) I just don’t ahve any idea on how to estimate the value of a billboard. Any ideas? Should I ask this on the commercial board?



Re: Billboards - Posted by Mr. Big

Posted by Mr. Big on June 05, 2005 at 16:27:26:

You could call up some billboard advertising companies and ask them to make you an offer.

Or take a big roller and paint “THIS BILLBOARD FOR RENT PHONE ----”.

Or paint your own advertising on it “for free”.

There’s really no downside is there. I wonder what a bill board rents for. You don’t have to pay heat or utilities, taxes are minimal and no eviction hassles. Let us know what you find out, you may have discovered a brand new field of real estate investing.

I’m so envious… - Posted by Kristine-CA

Posted by Kristine-CA on June 05, 2005 at 01:00:05:

we have no bill boards here in my town or on this stretch of hwy.
None. My teenaged daughter likes to go to LA just to look at the
billboards. Kristine

Re: Billboards - Posted by Lee

Posted by Lee on June 04, 2005 at 23:44:03:


You Go Girl!

Here is what google says about the (Federal) Highway Beautification Act (1964 Law) which you may have to memorize and comply with to keep your billboard standing.

Every sign that is on a State or Federal road must have a visible permit.

The city (where the board is) will, most likely have a permit it in it’s records,
(?If It Is Legal?) Emphasis added.

If it is not legal, you run the risk of the authorities having the right to tear it down, or make you do it, be nice to the authorities!

In some states, they have a sticker (think bumper sticker), in others, it would be a small tag, (like a motorcycle license plate), depending on the sign age (could be either).
In some areas, the State issues the permit, to my knowledge; the Feds do not issue them.

Go get the permit number off the sign, (write it down and keep it in a paper file).

In some states and cities, some signs are grand fathered in and some are not.

If the sign gets in disrepair, so much so, that the governing authority deems it ?beyond repair? it becomes worthless and you can not repair it or rebuild it. Keep your sign in tiptop shape.

Read more about that in the google links above.

And check this out? in my area, Both the City and State issue permits!


Re: Billboards - Posted by Natalie-VA

Posted by Natalie-VA on June 03, 2005 at 20:48:23:

You might consider the condition of the billboard and local laws. In Virginia Beach, new billboards are no longer allowed and existing ones cannot be substantially repaired; they must come down.

I’d hate for you to pay for something that might have a short term life.

Re: Check courthouse records - Posted by Ed Copp (OH)

Posted by Ed Copp (OH) on June 03, 2005 at 17:27:22:

You will be looking for a land lease. Most billboard companies like to lease the land, for a specific number of years. 20 years seems to be what I have seen. This does require recording in my state. The billboard company owns the sign usually and may abandon it after the lease expires. If this property was ever involved in a BK action the sign and the lease may have been abandoned,

So how does the sign face show? Can you just buy this property and have your own billboard put up? Might be a good thing to own if it can be seen by the public.

Re: Billboards - Posted by DaveD (WI)

Posted by DaveD (WI) on June 03, 2005 at 08:35:52:

You sure have a penchant for dealing with the seamy underbelly of society, michaela. Is it a birds-of-a-feather thing? LOL.

Hal Roark (remember HR?) owns a building on I-10 with a board on it where he was advertising himself some years back, he could possibly help you. Or maybe he just had the building and was negotiating permits to put up the board. I forget. The value of the space depends on daily traffic. Usually, it gets leased to an outdoor advertising company at wholesale rates… they do all the work and charge retail prices to their client companies, of course. Not as good of a deal as a cell tower or an FAA tower, but pretty good beer money.

The grass is… - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 05, 2005 at 10:09:06:

always greener on the other side ;-). This city is full of billboards - everywhere. Unfortunately, some of these companies even cut down some of those beautiful 100 year old trees, because they started to cover up their billboards. Yes, tehy get fined, if they get caught, but it’s too late for those trees. I’m envious of your ‘no billboard’ zone.


Re: Billboards - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 04, 2005 at 06:06:00:


thank you. To my untrained eye the billboards look in excellent condition. But I’m sure there are criteria, that I would have no idea about.


Re: Check courthouse records - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 03, 2005 at 18:32:08:


thank you for this info. Do you know where they would ahve to record the lease? There’s nothing in the courthouse records in the deed room.

This is in an area, that is being revitalized and the big billboard is taken up by those’ugly house’ buyers ;-).The other one was ‘subway’ and I don’t remember the other smaller one. ALl the ‘posters’ are new, so, it’s definitely not abandonded.

I structured my offer based on the billboards not being there. I had forgotten about this incident in Atlanta a few years ago, where a billboard collapsed and killed a couple of workers. I bet the liability insurance went up like crazy after that. He may not go for it, but then again he may.


Re: Billboards - Posted by Darren

Posted by Darren on June 03, 2005 at 11:47:49:

Michaela, I sent you an email.

Re: Billboards - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 03, 2005 at 11:07:21:


yep, that’s me - criminal extraordinaire ;-).

I just kind of fell into this. Found the owner of a vacant lot in another state 2 months ago, wrote to him. THen the following week I found out about this defunct mortgage company, which was a major ponzi scheme with a number of corporate entities. That bankruptcy file supposedly takes up 2 full drawers in the courthouse. I did some more research and found a number of properties, that were still in that mortgage company names and have been trying to get the bankruptcy file reopened.

In the meantime I got a call from the owenr of the lot, who is the son of the guy, that owned the mortgage company. He’s got different property all over the place. I told him, I’m interested in anything, that he has, but only if I can get clear title. Now, that I’m about to close ont he 2 lots, he’s starting to offer me some more. It’s a trust issue from both ends. I wouldn’t want to get involved in everything he has - at least not at this time, unless i know it’s completely clean. And he won’t offer me everything he has until he’s seen, that I can perform. But we’re slowly building a little trust. He knows, that I know,what has happened, so he won’t try to pull one over on me. I told him, that I’ve done some research on his old mortgage and other companies. But we’re both professional and so far he’s been straight with me.

How can I get in touch with hal Roarke? I tried to search in the archives, since he used to post here, but his name only appears once, in someone else’s post.


Re: Check courthouse records - Posted by Ed Copp (OH)

Posted by Ed Copp (OH) on June 03, 2005 at 20:30:23:

In my state the leases that are more than 3 years in length must be recorded. They are found like a mortgage or any other exception to clear title. Don’t hesitate to ask for help in finding what you need at the court house. County recorders are elected and need to be reminded that they serve the public, once in a while.

The billboard structure itself may help you get information about a possible lease. In my state the billboard has a license number on it, much like an auto license. You might be able to check it out this way. If there are advertisers on some of the board faces you might ask one of them who to contact for advertising information.

If all else fails it might make a pretty good “supersize” Bandit Sign.

Re: Billboards - Posted by adam

Posted by adam on June 03, 2005 at 13:09:08:

To find Hal, do a Google search for “landlording secrets” in quotes.

Re: Billboards - Posted by DaveD (WI)

Posted by DaveD (WI) on June 03, 2005 at 12:44:24:

I’ll e-mail you off-board

Re: Check courthouse records - Posted by michaela-ATL

Posted by michaela-ATL on June 04, 2005 at 06:03:27:


thank you. There definitely is nothing recorded in the Real estate records. I know my way around the record room. That’s where I do a lot of my research. It certainly makes sense, that a long-term lease would be recorded like an easement. Come to think of it, I’ve never seen any kind of long-term lease in any of the records - but that could also have to do with me not looking at properties, that had any. Actually, there’s a number on the big billboard ‘635’ and it also says ‘viacom’, I assume, that’s the billboard Company.

I’ll keep thinking :wink: