Flipping Houses For Dummies
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Flipping Houses For Dummies

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Buy it, fix it, flip it! Are you a wanna-be flipper looking to get the property, get the job done, and get out all while maximizing your profit? Not just another house-flipping book, this hands-on guide shows you how to roll up your sleeves and find the perfect property, secure a mortgage, negotiate with condo associations, increase curb appeal, and much more. Flipping a house is more than just buying, updating, and selling. To be successful, you have to be a bit fearless, highly organized, and, at times, creative. This new edition of Flipping Houses For Dummies gives you practical guidance on the risks and rewards of flipping properties; helps you determine whether you have the time, energy, cash, and other resources to be successful; and then conveys the expert knowledge you need to succeed in a very competitive market. * Find, fix, and sell houses for profit * Score bank-owned and foreclosed properties * Identify the best improvements for maximum ROI * Get quick makeover solutions If you're ready for hard work and big profits, start flipping!
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Product details

  • Paperback | 384 pages
  • 195 x 231 x 20mm | 514g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 3rd Edition
  • 1119363071
  • 9781119363071
  • 65,327

Back cover copy

Find, fix, and sell houses for profit Score bank-owned and foreclosed properties Make improvements for maximum ROI

Buy it, fix it, flip it!

Are you wondering how to turn a house from pitiful to profitable? This hands-on guide shows you how to roll up your sleeves and find the perfect property, secure a mortgage, and make valuable improvements. It also shows you how to market your house, negotiate the sale, and much more. To be successful, you need to be highly organized and, at times, a bit fearless. If you're ready for hard work and big profits, start flipping!

Inside ... Devise a flipping strategy Build your dream team Find flipping hot spots Close in on foreclosures and bank-owned properties Estimate rehab costs Finance your flips Maximize your profit
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Table of contents

Introduction 1


About This Book 1


Foolish Assumptions 2


Icons Used in This Book 3


Beyond the Book 4


Where to Go from Here 4


Part 1: Getting Started with House Flipping 5


Chapter 1: Brushing Up on the Basics 7


Grasping the Concept of Flipping 7


Flipping Legally and Ethically 9


Determining Whether You Have What It Takes to Flip 11


Devising a Reliable Flipping Strategy 12


Building an All-Star Team 12


Finding and Buying a Flippable House 13


Rehabbing Your Fixer-Upper 14


Profiting from Your Venture 16


Chapter 2: Do You Have What It Takes to Flip? 17


Tabulating Your Time Budget 18


Shaking Your Piggy Bank 21


Taking Your Personality Pulse 24


Gathering the Essential Tools of the Trade 26


Chapter 3: Devising an Effective Flipping Strategy 29


Surveying Different Strategies 29


Drawing Up a Detailed Plan in Advance 36


Plan B: Surviving a Flip That Flops 38


Chapter 4: Building Your Dream Team 39


Teaming Up with a House Hunter - a Quality Real Estate Agent 40


Recruiting Moneymen (and Women) 44


Consulting a Title Company and an Insurance Agent to Cover Your Back 47


Locating a Valuable Appraiser 48


Adding a Real Estate Lawyer to the Roster 49


Lining Up a Home Inspector 50


Hiring Contractors and Subcontractors 52


Chapter 5: Securing the Funds to Fuel Your Flips 57


Recognizing the Importance of Being a Cash Buyer 57


Tapping Your Own Resources for Cash 58


Leveraging the Power of Other People's Money 63


Using Conventional Financing (for Longer-Term Real Estate Deals) 68


Part 2: House Hunting with an Eye for Flipping 77


Chapter 6: Scoping Out a Fertile Neighborhood 79


Pinpointing House Flipping Hot Spots 80


Sizing Up the Local Real Estate Market 83


Comparing Neighborhoods 85


Considering Other Neighborhood Factors 87


Chapter 7: Hunting for Houses in Your Target Area 93


Focusing Your Search on Affordability 93


Digging Through Property Listings, Ads, and Publications 95


Mining Special Markets for Dontwanners 102


Chapter 8: Closing In on Foreclosure Properties 105


Getting Up to Speed on the Foreclosure Process 106


Brushing Up on Local Rules and Regulations 107


Picking Your Point of Entry into the Foreclosure Process 110


Purchasing Foreclosure Properties Step by Step 120


Advertising to Generate More Leads 126


Chapter 9: Scoping Out Properties in Special Markets 127


Acquiring Properties in Probate 127


Scooping Up Bargains in Bankruptcy 131


Finding Government-Owned Properties 137


Buying Properties at Tax Sales 140


Part 3: Evaluating Properties and Crunching Numbers 141


Chapter 10: Researching Distressed Properties 143


Creating a Property Dossier 144


Checking Out the Property 145


Following the Paper Trail 148


Chapter 11: Inspecting the Property and Estimating Rehab Costs 161


Packing for Your Inspection Mission 162


Finding the Perfect Candidate for a Quick Makeover 165


Assessing Potential Curbside Appeal 166


Taking a Big Whiff, Inside and Out 168


Inspecting the House for Big-Ticket Items 168


Discovering Some Promising Features 173


Arriving at a Ballpark Figure for Repair and Renovation Costs 176


Chapter 12: Calculating Your Profit and Maximum Purchase Price 177


Doing the Math to Ensure a Profitable Flip 177


Estimating a Realistic Resale Value 180


Accounting for Expenses 181


Chapter 13: The Art of Haggling: Negotiating a Price and Terms 189


Planting the Seeds for Successful Negotiation 190


Making an Offer They Can Refuse (But Will Consider) 191


Tending to the Details: Inspections, Appraisals, and Walk-Throughs 196


Closing the Deal 200


Part 4: Fixing Up Your Fixer-Upper 201


Chapter 14: Prioritizing and Planning Your Renovations 203


Developing an Eye for Home Improvements 204


Prioritizing Your Projects 205


Delegating Duties 208


Drawing Up a Tentative Budget 211


Coming Up with a Game Plan 213


Chapter 15: Giving Your Property a Quick Makeover 217


Sprucing Up the Yard 217


Freshening the Facade 220


Touching Up the Interior 222


Chapter 16: Perking Up the Curb Appeal 229


Revitalizing the Landscape 230


Tidying Up the Driveway and Walkways 235


Making Entryways More Inviting 237


Refreshing the Outside Shell of the House 239


Glamming Up the Garage 242


Chapter 17: Dazzling the Crowds with Updated Kitchens and Baths 245


Giving Kitchen Cabinets, Countertops, and Sinks a Facelift 246


Modernizing Kitchen Appliances 250


Updating the Bathrooms 253


Chapter 18: Tackling Moderate Makeovers 261


Installing Replacement Windows 261


Replacing Drab, Weathered Doors 265


Putting on Your Own Floor Show 269


Chapter 19: Reconfiguring Spaces and Other Structural Overhauls 273


Attending to Essential Structure and Infrastructure Repairs 274


Fiddling with the Floor Plan or Not 274


Identifying Load-Bearing Walls 275


Maximizing the Use of Existing Space 277


Building New Rooms from Scratch 282


Adding a Deck or Patio 283


Part 5: Cashing In: Realizing Your Profit 285


Chapter 20: Considering Your Options: Cash or Cash Flow? 287


Setting a Goal: Cash or Cash Flow 287


Cashing Out: Selling the Property 288


Exploring Cash-Flow Possibilities 290


Chapter 21: Marketing Your Home 297


Harnessing the Power of a Real Estate Agent to Market and Sell Your House 298


Setting an Attractive Asking Price 301


Staging a Successful Showing 303


Offering to Help Secure Attractive Financing 304


Becoming a Real Estate Marketing Maven 305


Chapter 22: Negotiating the Sale to Maximize Your Profit 311


Comparing Seemingly Similar Offers 312


Mastering the Art of Counteroffers 317


Shuffling Papers and Other Legal Stuff at Closing 320


Chapter 23: Trudging through Some Taxing Issues 323


Estimating the Tax Man's Take from Your Flipping Profits 324


Maximizing Tax Savings from the Sale of Your Principal Residence 325


Slashing Your Capital Gains through Careful Deductions 329


Deferring Taxes: Rolling Your Gains into Your Next Purchase 330


Selling Your Home at a Loss (Ouch!) 331


Paying Income Tax: When Flipping Houses Becomes Your Occupation 331


Part 6: The Part of Tens 333


Chapter 24: Ten Ways to Find Dontwanners 335


Cruising the Neighborhood 335


Teaming Up with a Great Real Estate Agent 336


Checking Classified Ads and Online Listings 336


Skimming Foreclosure Notices 337


Monitoring Tax Sales 337


Scoping Out Bank-Owned Properties 338


Probing Probate Properties 338


Digging Up Houses in Bankruptcy 339


Sifting through the Government's Stash 339


Networking and Advertising for Leads 340


Chapter 25: Ten Signs of a Great House Flipping Opportunity 341


The Location Is an Obvious Hot Spot 341


Nobody's Home 342


The "For Sale By Owner" Ad Is Shrinking 342


The Seller Is Highly Motivated to Be Freed from the Burden of Ownership 342


The House Is Ugly Outside 343


The House Is Ugly Inside 343


The Decor Is Outdated 344


The House Has Character 344


The House Has Undeveloped Living Space 344


The Property Backs Up to Nothing 344


Chapter 26: Ten House Flipping Blunders 345


Falling for a Scam 345


Speculating on the Housing Market 346


Waffling on an Obviously Good Deal 346


Backing Yourself into a Contractual Corner 346


Failing to Inspect the Property before Closing on It 347


Assuming the Title Is Clear 347


Underestimating the Cost of Repairs and Renovations 348


Doing Shoddy Work to Save Money 348


Over-Improving a Property 348


Forgetting to Pay the Taxes 349


Index 351
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About Ralph R. Roberts

Ralph R. Roberts is a master at flipping houses, earning a profit even in the deeply depressed real estate market in Metro Detroit, Michigan. He is the award-winning author of several books, including Foreclosure Investing For Dummies. Joe Kraynak is a freelance author and writing consultant who has written and coauthored numerous books on a wide range of topics. He is a valued partner and advisor to many For Dummies authors.
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