Helpful Tips for First-Time House Flippers

Asian man repairing house - First-time house flippers concept

If you are looking to buy a house as a fix and flip investment (i.e. “house flipping”), you want to make smart decisions along the way. The TV shows make it look super easy and nothing but fun. However, successfully buying, renovating and selling a house takes a lot of time and effort. It also will cost a lot of money upfront, and profitability is never guaranteed. First-time house flippers should heed this advice we’re about to share!

Here are some helpful tips for first-time house flippers:

Start Small

This is usually a good approach for any type of major investment, especially real estate. You want to be careful not to dive right into a massive project for which you aren’t fully prepared. Start with a smaller, less expensive house or find one that doesn’t require a complete renovation. Look for something that will allow you to ease into the experience and learn the basics of the process before moving up to bigger and better investment opportunities.

Understand the Market

Not all houses are created equal and every neighborhood is unique. You have to do your market research to find a location that will provide the best possible investment returns. Buying houses in bad neighborhoods can sometimes pay off for experienced investors. Otherwise, you want to seek out a location that is in high demand and will allow you to sell the house quickly and for great profit.

Make a Plan

You should never go into any real estate investment without a plan. This is really important for first-time house flippers to remember. Do your market research. Set your budget carefully. Understand your specific goals, including the overall time frame and profit margin you hope to achieve when all is said and done. When budgeting and figuring out what you can afford, review both the cost of the property and the renovation expenses.

Join a Real Estate Network

One of the best ways to become a better real estate investor is to network with other successful real estate investors. PropertyLark is a home buying network with many great resources that will benefit both experienced investors and first-time house flippers. We’re talking about in-depth home search tools and custom analytics, off-market deals and connections with other buyers and sellers that will give you a leg up when making your first investment property purchase.

Plan the Renovation Carefully

Most first-time house flippers lose the most time and money during the renovation process. This is where your investment plan and project-specific budget outline will be extremely important. Carefully review the property and know what needs to be fixed or upgraded versus what you would “like” to fix up. Make sure and take care of the essentials first and leave any extra touches for when you are sure you have the necessary time and money to take care of them.

Think About Your Ideal Buyer

Another mistake that first-time house flippers make is personalizing the design and upgrades to their own tastes. Your style may not appeal to all buyers and you may be limiting your ability to sell the house. Think neutral with colors and design details. Prioritize function over form, unless you are really trying to appeal to a very specific type of buyer.

Be Ready to Delegate

Unless your plan is to live in the house and do all the work yourself, you should prepare to delegate. Find a contractor you trust and vendors who can supply what you need to make the upgrades and repairs in your renovation plan. Find workers to help with certain projects that may be beyond your capabilities or hire specialists for specific things that require more expertise (electrical, plumbing, roofing, etc.) than you might have. It’s okay to ask for help, especially if it will make your house more appealing and valuable when it comes time to sell.

These are just a few tips for first-time house flippers. If you are looking to try your hand at fix and flip investing or you are already a seasoned flipping expert, you will want to join the PropertyLark home buying network. Fill out our contact form and brief questionnaire to see if you qualify.