The whole point to flipping is to do it quick and only spend as much money as it takes to multiply your return, which isn’t as easy as it seems. That said, there are a few things you should pretty much always do when you flip.
1. Invest Time Wisely
Flipping successfully relies on moving fast in a rapidly growing market. But moving too fast can be a problem too. If you don’t take the time to find the right property, fix it up with quality materials, and then find the right buyer—you may find yourself up the creek without a paddle.
Set up a schedule for the project so you can see ahead of time what most needs your time and what you can let go of. You may find that you have the time to oversee the kitchen update, but want to hire a realtor to show the house when it’s done.
2. Freshen up Cosmetics
There are two camps when it comes to the cosmetic elements of a flip. Some like to leave cosmetics to the new owner because they can select the colors and materials they like and it makes the flip faster and cheaper. Others like to do the cosmetic update before the home goes on the market because it increases their chances of making a bigger return.
Whichever camp you fall into, you should always at least freshen up the cosmetics. A coat of neutral paint and a deep clean do make the property more appealing.
Remodeling projects that increase your return usually include minor work in the kitchen and bathroom. Other high-yield projects consist of replacing the front entry door, adding a wood deck, and converting an attic to an extra bedroom.
Though expensive to remodel, the bathroom and kitchen are often high on the list of must-haves for the home buyer. They want these spaces updated and move-in ready. Here are a few of the best things you can do to spruce up these spaces:
Granite Countertops are still in high-demand in kitchens across America and always make a great impression for potential home buyers. Redo the kitchen island and countertops in a durable and beautiful granite and you really can’t go wrong.
Backsplash is one of the simplest upgrades and if you are interested in sweat equity, this is a great place to get it. Mosaic tile is a popular choice that gives the kitchen or bathroom an update while staying classic. Subway tile will stand out in the minds of prospective buyers. Consider the classic white 3 x 6 inch tile or opt for a trendier version in an earth-tone or larger format.
Porcelain or Ceramic Tile Floors prove year in and year out to be one of the best investments because they last and look great for decades. Check out ever-popular wood-look tiles or stone-look tiles—they’re cost effective and highly durable.
4. Plan for Funds
Flipping is a huge financial investment. Planning ahead will help you stay above water. Of course there’s the acquisition and the renovation costs, but don’t forget interest if you don’t pay cash up front, the cost of maintaining the property if it doesn't sell right away, and capital gains taxes.
5. Evaluate Your Skills
Sweat equity is a great way to decrease costs and make your return all the better. But take a serious look at your skill set before you make a commitment or you may find yourself in over your head. Building professionals have a lot more experience than the average Joe and can get the job done faster and better than most people. Carefully select the projects you’re sure you have the skill and time to complete and leave the rest to the pros.
6. Strategize Your Purchase
Successfully finding a house to flip is at the intersection of location, price, and the right property. Finding that trifecta requires plenty of research and strategy. The neighborhood has a huge bearing on what you’ll be able to do. You can’t sell a $200k home in a $100k neighborhood. Try to blend-in both design-wise and price-wise.
Flipping is a challenge that can be very rewarding if you make sure to think ahead and patiently wait for the flipping stars to align.