Real Estate Knowledge Library

The latest from our experts (articles, guest posts, videos, eBooks, and more)

How to get started in Real Estate Flipping

Flipping houses is a lucrative business opportunity. But it requires a lot of time, planning and skill to be successful.

Many would-be house flippers make the mistake of jumping in without significant capital, guidance and preparation. This can lead to a poor outcome.

1. Find a Lender

If you’re thinking of flipping real estate, it’s important to find a lender who can help you finance the project. This will give you the funds needed to buy a property, invest in repairs and pay contractors.

Banks, credit unions and other financial institutions offer conventional mortgages and home equity loans to borrowers with good credit. These loans typically have low interest rates, but they can be difficult and time-consuming to qualify for.

Hard money lenders, also called asset lenders or rehab lenders, are non-bank lenders that lend cash for short-term real estate investments such as home flipping. Often these private lenders will require a higher credit score and longer loan terms than other lenders.

Individual private lenders and groups of private investors can provide cash for your real estate projects. They can be a great way to get financing and build relationships that continue over several projects.

Another option is seller financing, which is when you negotiate a deal directly with the seller of the home. This can be a quick and cost-effective method of buying a property.

These loans are less risky for the lender since you’re using an existing property as collateral. They’re usually a bit more expensive than other funding options, but they can be a great way to fund your first flip.

A home equity line of credit, or HELOC, is a revolving credit line that you can use to buy and renovate homes. These are a great option for borrowers with good credit, as they can have interest rates that are as low as 3% to 5%.

If you’re a seasoned house flipper, you can also use crowdfunding platforms to raise capital for your project. These platforms bring investors to you and allow you to borrow money from people who want to make a profit on your real estate venture. However, this method is more expensive than other lending options and requires a high credit score and previous experience.

2. Find a Property

Finding a property is one of the most important steps in Real Estate Flipping. You can use a variety of tools to find the right property.

Foreclosures, short sales, and pre-foreclosures are all good places to start your search. These types of properties are typically more affordable than traditional homebuyer homes, and the seller is generally motivated to sell quickly.

You can also try a wholesale transaction where you buy a property from the original seller. This process is especially helpful for distressed properties and those with low resale prices.

Another great way to find homes to buy is by networking with other real estate investors. This can be done through real estate investment forums, LinkedIn groups, and local meetups.

The more connected you are with other investors, the more potential houses you'll be able to find and evaluate. Additionally, these investors can often be more knowledgeable about the local market than you are, so they'll be able to recommend properties that will be profitable for you.

Once you find a house, it's critical to get a professional home inspection. This will allow you to determine how much work is needed on the home, and if it will be worth the price tag.

Once you have the property under contract, be sure to hire a contractor to help you with the renovations. This can save you time and money on the project, as well as keep your profit margins high.

The contractor you choose should be experienced in the area you're buying in, and should be able to work within your budget. It's also a good idea to find a contractor who is licensed and insured.

3. Create a Budget

Creating a budget is the first step in getting started in Real Estate Flipping. This will ensure you have enough funds to make renovations and sell the property for a profit when the work is finished. It’s also important to set aside a small amount of money in case of unexpected expenses such as emergency repairs or unexpected property taxes.

Once you’ve created a budget, it’s time to find the perfect property. This may take a while, but it’s important to find a good deal in a great location.

You should also research the market to get a sense of what houses are selling for in your area. This will help you determine if the house you’re interested in is a good investment and will also give you an idea of how much to ask for when you decide to sell it.

If you don’t have enough cash to buy a home, there are several financing options available. These can include a home equity loan or line of credit, a traditional mortgage, and even a VA loan.

The best part about these types of loans is that they can be used to cover both the cost of buying the house and renovating it. This can allow you to complete the project faster while maximizing your profits.

Another way to save money when it comes to flipping a home is to hire a professional staging company to prepare the house for sale. This will help the home look more liveable and help it sell for a higher price.

4. Find a Contractor

If you want to flip houses, you need a reliable contractor. This person will help you complete the project and ensure it goes smoothly. They will also work with you to create a realistic budget, timeline, and payments.

The first thing to do when finding a contractor is to research the market in your area. This will help you find houses that are a good investment and have the potential to sell quickly. You can also find out what types of repairs are needed to increase the property’s value.

It’s also important to find out if the contractor has any experience in flipping houses. This will help you determine if they can deliver on time and within your budget.

One of the best places to look for contractors is through referrals from other real estate investors. This is the quickest way to find a trustworthy, professional contractor.

Another option is to go to your local Home Depot and ask around for recommendations.

Many people there have developed friendships with the people who work at the pro desk and can give you some great contractors that are dependable and honest.

Once you’ve found a few candidates, make sure to interview each of them. They should be able to explain their background, the type of projects they do, and how they manage their clients.

It’s also a good idea to get references from their past clients. This will give you a better idea of how they handle their clients and the quality of their work.

Finally, it’s a good idea to ask the contractor about their insurance and licensing. This will ensure that they are licensed and insured to work on your project. It’s also a good idea to have them sign a lien waiver before they start work. This is to protect your interests and ensure that they can’t put a lien on the property if they aren’t paid for their work.

5. Get Started

Real estate flipping is a great way to make money in the real estate market. However, it requires a lot of time and hard work. It also involves a large investment of money. If you are interested in getting started, there are several steps that you can take to get the ball rolling.

First, you should find a lender to help you finance your flipping project.

The key is to find a lender that understands your business plan and financial situation, since flipping is often considered a riskier proposition than buying a primary residence.

A good place to start is by searching for local real estate listing websites. These websites are easy to use and provide extensive property and market data that can help you learn how to find houses to flip.

Another option is to search for foreclosure properties. These are usually low-priced homes that are repossessed by banks because the borrowers failed to pay their mortgage. These types of homes are not usually sold by real estate agents and need a little work to be sold successfully.

Investing in foreclosed homes is a great option because it requires little cash outlay. It also provides you with the opportunity to profit from a quick sale, and it is possible to negotiate for the property at a reduced price.

In addition, there are a number of ways that you can find a home to flip, including through auctions and real estate listings. You can also consider wholesaling, a process that allows investors to make a high percentage of the final sale without actually purchasing a property.

Finally, you can seek out a portfolio loan from a small, local bank. These lenders are more flexible about your finances than larger banks who issue conventional loans.

Community Discussion