Twenty years into their career as home re-modelers and re-sellers, Matthew and Rebekah Gregory still feel the thrill of creating a dream home for a family.
In 1997 Matthew and Rebekah Gregory were newly married, living in an apartment, and wondering how they could afford a home of their own.
They had dreams for a beautiful life together and Matthew says he had plenty of ambition, but no real direction. His step-father had dabbled in real estate in California, and was newly arrived in Birmingham. Matthew drove him around, showing him different areas of town and picking up tips about the real estate business.
Before long, Matthew and Rebekah had found a house in Roebuck. It was $80,000, inherited by the out-of-town niece of an elderly lady who had passed away.
“It had green shag carpet and overgrown bushes and it hadn’t really been cleaned up. So we moved in, pulled up the old carpet and it had beautiful hardwood floors underneath it. We started painting walls and didn’t put a lot of money into it, but a lot of love and heart and work,” Matthew says.
When they ordered an appraisal from the bank, they were shocked. “We had all this equity in it. I could not believe just cleaning and fixing up this house, made such a huge difference in the value,” he says.
So from those inauspicious beginnings, the Gregorys built a business that has seen them flip 1,000 houses in the Birmingham market since 2001. The business, Gregory Dream Homes, is one of the largest of its kind in the United States.
“Which is pretty remarkable. And, it’s not because I’m great, but I think we’ve just worked hard at building a great reputation. I really truly love making people happy in buying a home. I love making it as stress-free as possible for the buyers and Realtors. I want to be the guy that people want to work with.
“You need to deal with problems as they arise. You’re going to have problems if you flip over a thousand houses, but you stand behind your work. We’ve always tried to do that. And, you know, just treat people right.”
Matthew inherited an entrepreneurial spirit from his mother, Brenda Lovelady Spahn, who owned several businesses throughout her career, and later founded the Lovelady Center, a ministry and center whose mission is to help women rebuild their lives following prison and addiction issues. Matthew sits on the board of directors of the organization.
Matthew looks at his life in terms of a destiny unfolding. He often says it is the strength of he and his wife working together that has led to success.
“It’s almost like that was God’s plan for me and my wife, I tell people all the time. I feel like I was born to do this work. When you find what you’re born to do and you love doing it and it’s profitable, it’s like the perfect storm, right?”
To see how Gregory does it, check out his YouTube channel.
Anatomy of a Renovation
1005 Wickford Road, Vestavia
This renovated home sits in the heart of Vestavia. Stately columns and oversized chandeliers accent the large front porch. The entryway leads to an open floor plan with a renovated kitchen. The main level offers plenty of room for family, friends and entertaining. The extended family space with vaulted ceilings leads out to a private porch overlooking the backyard. The master suite features two walk-in closets, sitting area and master bathroom. Finished basement. Five bedrooms and four and a half baths in 5,145 square feet on a .52 acre lot. Listed in mid-May for $949,900. It was purchased for renovation at the end of 2021 for $471,000.