House Flipping 101

If you read my post about my open-ended New Year’s Resolution than you know just how hard I’ll be striving this year to try new things and learn as much as I can about the ones that interest me.

Something I’ve always been interested in is house flipping. Since the days of Ty Pennington on Extreme Home Makeover, I’ve been in complete awe over how a house can be transformed into a home. I watch these 30 minutes to an hour shows with no expectation that things happen as smooth and fast as they portray it, but I’ve always wanted to know the real timeline behind it all.

Like a sign from some New Year’s God, I saw a post on Facebook about a free two-hour house flipping seminar in my area and without hesitation I signed up. I learned in an M.B.A. class I had one time that nothing is actually free, so I expected a curve ball or two. But I was up bright and early Saturday morning eager to learn!

Than Merrill of the show Flip This House was supposed to be hosting the event. However, it was one of his colleagues that talked to us about the in’s & out’s of real estate and rehab. Nothing was elaborated on too much as the point of the seminar was to gain students for Than’s secondary company, Fortune Builders. There was a break on tuition if you signed up that day, yada yada (I told you… nothing’s free), but either way I learned a lot of things I didn’t know before and I wanted to share it with you.

Whether you’re planning on buying a house, or in the midst of fixing up one you own. Whether you rent, or want to rent out to others. Whatever the case may be… these are sure to be interesting for you!

-There are two things you need to do when thinking about flipping a house to sell, rent out, or wholesale (we’ll get to that term in a minute); FIND (the property) and FUND (with someone else’s money).

-Most people think you need a ton of capital and credit to flip homes, but private money resources are the best way to go. Unlike a bank, they look at the credibility of the deal in play and not your individual history.

-Today over 30% of real estate is being purchased with cash. You can’t do that without reaching out to investors.

-NEVER own an income producing property in your name. Take the time to set up and LLC before purchasing a house to flip or keep (only if it’s not your forever home).

-Most house flipping shows are 3 months of work condensed into 30 minutes with commercials. It takes time so have patience.

-Figure out the materials you need and create a system. There are about 13 ways a kitchen can be laid out, no matter the house (L Shape, Galley, etc). Come up with a cost for materials on each style of kitchen and use that same list on every house. Then you can just hire a contractor for the cost of labor only.

-REAL ESTATE WHOLESALE… probably the most interesting thing I learned the entire day. Definitely a way I think I’ll dip my toes into this hobby. Read more about it here. 

(All sources of information came from: Fortune Builders, but are explained as I understood them).

I felt overwhelmed being seemingly the only individual in the room not in home rehab, construction, or real estate, but I was proud of myself for taking a leap and immersing myself into something totally new. I even woke up before 9 on a Saturday to attend!

If this is something you feel you want to pursue as a full time, lucrative career, I really suggest getting involved with Fortune Builders in some way. They have a ton of resources for those looking to pursue the industry further. As for me, I’m happy I learned the truth of the contracts and money behind the shows that make it look so easy. But I’ll be sticking to HGTV for now.

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