Our real estate agent had shown us a few houses last week but they were either going to be too expensive to repair (like the hoarder's house - I might have to write a separate post just on that for you guys) or the seller was asking too much to make it work. To be honest, we were getting a little discouraged on our house flipping endeavors. In fact, after seeing the last house, we had decided to take a break from actively looking (aka stalking MLS and Craigslist and Zillow like it's our job). Then, after a dud showing, our agent said there is this house that hasn't gone on the market yet - would we like to swing by and take a look? She also mentioned it is in great shape. Um, yes, yes we would.Read More
I know it has been crickets around here lately but that is because we sadly have not been able to get our next flip under contract! Inventory is low and what is available is selling pretty quickly. Great for flipping when you sell! Bad for when you have no house to sell. :(
Since selling Dalton, we have looked at five houses and scouted out about a dozen more. See the five we viewed below.
Those top four we ended up not offering on because they either had too funky of a layout or needed way too much work (check out that bottom left photo). However, this little gem shown below... You guys, I made the ultimate flipping mistake. I kind of fell in love with this house. It was immaculate but completely outdated. Inside it was nothing but brown trim and wood paneling but had so.much.potential. It had been on the market for 200 days, so we made an offer thinking we had a pretty good chance. We had to offer significantly lower than asking because while the changes were mostly cosmetic, we had to get the house for a certain price for it to make sense. Unfortunately, there was another offer that was accepted (what are the chances after being on the market for so long) so we lost out. We were actually pretty bummed.
It is more time consuming than I thought searching for deals and then crunching the numbers to see if the house makes sense. However, Brian and I have found a system that works well for us so far.
- Once we find a house that seems interesting, we do a drive by to check out the neighborhood and see if we can inspect the outside of the house from the car. Often photos will be misleading (in a good or bad way). Some houses look way worse in person but often they actually look better.
- If the house looks promising, we will schedule a showing with our real estate agent.
- Before the showing, Brian will do some research on comps to figure out what it could sell for once renovated.
- During the showing, I take notes on the condition of the house and try to take photos. Do we need to replace the roof? Refinish hardwoods? How many doors are in the house? This lets me go back after the showing and come up with a ballpark renovation estimate.
- We then determine based on comps and renovation estimates if we can make an offer.
We're still new to this whole flipping business and are probably a little more cautious right now than most. Actually, I think that is just me. I'm pretty sure Brian would buy anything if I agreed to it. :) We are also learning that we can't drag our feet on offering on a house if we like it. A good deal will move fast. I am trying to be more diligent about searching the MLS, foreclosure listings, and Craigslist regularly. I think our next tactic soon is going to be "driving for dollars" to see if there are any opportunities that aren't on the market yet.
I know this isn't a very exciting post full of before and afters, but I want to be as completely transparent as I can about house flipping. I am starting to think finding a deal is half the battle! Hopefully we will nail down our next project soon and I'll have more to share with you guys. :)
If you didn't hear on Instagram, we have accepted an offer on the Dalton House! It was definitely an interesting experience, to say the least. The last house we sold (Brooklyn Street House) was in a really hot real estate market, so selling in our new small town was not the frenzy of action we were used to. Basically, we worked around the clock to renovate the property, then listed, and then... crickets. No showings, little interest. Eeek! We had to remind ourselves that this market is a little (ok, a lot) slower and we were happy to accept a good offer after only a couple of weeks. Phew!Read More