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Flipping Houses for Profit

by Jeanette Joy Fisher

Since we've been flipping houses since 1979, I think I have a pretty good grasp on how to make a profit buying, repairing, and reselling fixers. It's becoming an increasingly popular subject on television and in various printed media, so I thought I'd share some of the most basic fundamentals to get you started right.

Perhaps you've heard some horror stories about flipping houses for profit. In most cases, these investors rushed into a deal without fully understanding what it takes to make money fixing and flipping.

Here are a few tips for beginning house flippers:

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First, remember that house flipping can be quite stressful. You won't realize a profit until the project has been completed and the home has been sold, so every day that passes is a direct drain on your bottom line. That means you'll have to devote whatever amount of time it takes to get your house ready for sale, which can mean giving up a lot of other activities that you used to pursue until the project is complete.

Although some people don't like to use real estate agents, we do. We build the cost of their services into our budget and go from there, because agents sometimes find us our best deals, and they know that we're serious about buying and selling, so they're eager to bring us prospects and then to sell the homes quickly upon completion. After all, our success guarantees theirs, and vice versa.

If you're not competent to do a thorough inspection of a home in the beginning, hire someone to do it for you. Mistakes in judgment as to the extent of repairs that will be required can be disastrous, especially when you're just starting out and don't have a reserve fund to cover such catastrophes.

Flipping houses is a business, so you have to make a profit to keep going! That's another good reason to use real estate agents. They have firm grasp on the market, and they can tell you within an accurate range what your property will be worth when it's ready to be flipped. If that figure doesn't allow enough profit, WALK AWAY!

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I simply can't emphasize strongly enough that flipping homes needs to be treated like a business. It's something that's going to take up a significant amount of your time, and it's going to be a direct drain on your finances from the time of purchase until the property is resold and closed, so it's not something that you should even consider entering into if you don't have a total commitment to doing it right.

The bottom line? I can tell you from painful personal experience that it's not as easy as it appears on TV, but I can also tell you that it CAN be done. We've been flipping houses for over thirty years!

Flipping house for profit; mistake on bobcat pictureMistakes Eat Profits

Katie dug too deep with the bobcat and broke a water line. Maybe the film crew distracted her. She has driven a bobcat before this flip.

Because PVC is cheap, Katie's mistake won't cost much other than extra work for her dad.

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Doghouse to Dollhouse for Dollars: The Real Way to Make Money Flipping Houses!