All Posts by Mike LaCava

Creating Killer Water Views in the Bathroom

House Flipping Tips

We recently finished up a water front renovation that is chock full of helpful house flipping tips you can start using today.

When it comes to flipping houses the kitchen and the bathroom are two of the most important spaces in the entire home.  It is really important to create dynamic and appealing kitchen and bathroom spaces.  Therefore we usually end up gutting both the kitchen and the bathroom on most properties.

In the bathroom we typically do not install windows.  Bathroom windows generally require a fair amount of maintenance work to avoid mold and wood rot.  However in this bathroom we decided to install a window to capitalize on the water views.

Installing windows in strategic spots in order to provide the future home buyer with a view of the water is definitely a house flipping tip that I highly recommend.

I was thinking that giving the future home owner a water view while showering would be a really unique and attractive selling point.

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Flipping Houses 101: How to Start

flipping houses 101In order to learn how to get started flipping houses for a generous pay day, you need to keep some basic flipping houses 101 lessons in mind. As is the same with any business, the key to success is knowing and perfecting the basics, which is what we review today.

 

Flipping Houses 101 Rule #1: Research

 

If there's one thing that is critical to your success in flipping houses, it’s doing exhaustive research on the geographic areas prior to implementing your house flipping plan. If you buy a property in a run-down area with little historical price appreciation, then your target buyer is going to most likely offer below market price.

 

Market research is the most important aspect of flipping houses 101.

 

This can leave you with an extremely tight budget, especially if it's a "fixer-upper" property, where you Continue reading

Water View Scituate Property

house flipping in scituateThe town of Scituate, Massachusetts is located right on the ocean just south of Boston, MA. It's a great little town with many beautiful properties, and of course a few properties that could use a little sprucing up.

This house flipping deal began a long time ago, before I even considered buying a property in Scituate.

House Flipping in Scituate, Mass

A couple of years ago I began regularly attending REI (real estate investors) meetings. These meetings are awesome when it comes to expanding your network and building relationships.

During one particular REI meeting I had the chance to present exactly what I was looking for to the entire group. I voiced that I was hoping to find short sale opportunities, and low and behold, that message stuck with one very important woman in the crowd.

The Importance of Networking in House Flipping

I spoke with this woman (I'd use her name but I want to make sure it is OK with her first!) after that meeting and discovered that she specializes in short sales. I was able to get on her short sale email list which was really unexpected and great all at the same time.

To make a long story really short, she eventually found this Scituate property and contacted me. Having honest, trusting relationships can really pay off in the house flipping business to say the least.

This is especially true now in our current market. Good deals don't come easily. I've noticed that the more people I am able to network with people, the more good house flip deals that come my way.

Now onto the good stuff - what we intend on making...

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Ready to Sell | Wareham Property #1

house flipping business plan

Flipping Houses in Wareham, Massachusetts - Property #1

This property is located in the town of Wareham, MA - right down the road from my office. We have done quite a few house flips in Wareham over the past few years. Often times there are many great deals right under your nose. You just have to get out there and find them.

My team and I recently finished rehabbing this house and have put it on the market. So far I have received a fair amount of activity, so hopefully this house will sell quickly.

I originally purchased this home with the intent of doing a light rehab and then renting it out. Things change pretty often in this business, so after quickly selling two other properties in the same neighborhood, I decided to put this house on the market as well.

The good news is that if the house does not sell quickly, I can always fall back on the original house flipping plan and rent the home.

This is an example of one exit strategy that I commonly incorporate into my house flipping business plan. We'll continue talking about effective and important exit strategies throughout future blog posts.

This house overall did need some rehab love, however it was not a complete gut job.

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Wood Planks Galore! | Wareham Property #2

Flipping Properties in Wareham, Massachusetts | Property #2

I recently purchased this property and I hope to have the rehab process complete in 30-35 days. Needless to say I am pretty excited about this house's potential!

I am not expecting this property's renovations to be too intense. However at first glance this house looks pretty ugly for lack of a better term.

The roof is going to have to be replaced. As I have mentioned before we don't cut corners, especially when it comes to a roof. If the roof is more than 15 years old we are going to replace it no questions asked. While we are it we will also switch out the old gutters with brand new ones.

The landscaping should not be too overwhelming either which is great news when flipping properties. Adding in a few mulch beds and sprucing up the walk way will have a big impact on the overall visual appeal of the yard.

A quick power wash job to the house's exterior will clean up the cedar shingles and get the the shingles looking almost like new. In addition we are going to put in vinyl siding. I am not sure of the color yet but I am leaning towards going with a "Cape Cod grey." I think the vinyl siding will look very nice coupled with blue or black shutters.

There are two unique aspects to this property's back yard. There is a sun room and a concrete patio that both need some TLC. Instead of tearing down the sun room and ripping up the concrete patio (which would be expensive!) I am going to leave both in place and opt for a good solid clean job.

I think the future owner of this home will really enjoy the patio and the sun room. Sometimes it helps to put yourself in the shoes of the potential home buyer.

In addition we will be putting in some fencing around the back yard and also put in some mulch beds. All in all the exterior of this home, as well as the landscaping are not too bad - they both just need a little rehab attention.

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How To Flip Houses With No Money

How To Flip Houses With No Money

how to flip houses with no moneyNo doubt, flipping houses has become popular these days. A lot of people contribute it to the rebirth of the American real estate business and the rise of America from a prolonged recession.

But a lot of people have the false notion that you need money to flip houses. The truth is there's been much written on how to flip houses with no money. Even if you are a full time student earning less than $25,000 a year, it is possible for you to flip houses with no money and make a profit.

So what does house flipping involve?

As we have outlined previously, house flipping is simply a process where a person buys a house that is still requiring repairs and therefore can be bought and sold at a much lower price than its actual ARV (After Renovation Value).

For example, a house bought and sold for merely $150,000 could be flipped for $400,000 when all the renovations are done.

How to Flip Houses With No Money

So is it possible to flip houses without cash or if you have really bad credit?

The answer is a resounding yes. Over time, you can save up cash and fix your credit - but you don't need that to learn how to flip houses with no money. Having your own money certainly does help, but its not necessary.

If is that its very possible to Continue reading

House Flipping vs. Real Estate Investing – Which Is Better?

house flipping vs real estate investingI am often times asked the question which is better: house flipping or real estate investing?

They are actually both real estate investing in essence. However, when a lot of people think about "real estate investing" what they really mean is "buy and hold real estate investing".

So when it comes to the difference between house flipping and real estate investing (the buy and hold kind), there are big differences.

To reach an answer, it helps to define each term and put them in perspective.

House Flipping

House flipping is the process of buying a house and then selling it at a profit within the shortest time manageable. An investor is aiming to make a good sum of profit within a very short period of time, thus the word flipping.

Many house flippers learn how to flip houses with no money and do extremely well turning a profit in a short time with very little of their own cash out of pocket.

The typical house flipper does not hold onto the property for the purposes of income. In fact, the shorter period of time the house flipper holds the property, the better their profits usually are.

Real Estate Investing

Buy and hold real estate investment (oftentimes termed "land lording") on the other hand, means buying a house or property, holding it for a period of time thereby creating cash flow through rental income. The buy and hold real estate investor may at some point in time sell that property at a profit - or he may keep it forever.

The real estate investor might also buy the property, renovate it and rent it with the purpose of re-selling it at some time...but Continue reading

“The Secret” to House Flipping Success

the-secret-to-house-flippingOne of the movies we advocate our house flipping school students to watch is The Secret.

The movie got a bit too much exposure when it first came out, with the author Rhoda Byrne making the circuit on Oprah, Ellen, Montel, The Today Show...all advocating the power of “the law of attraction”.

It’s not exactly the kind of self-improvement author you’d think of when learning how to flip houses

The truth is that the movie (and the subsequent best-selling book) is one of the best movies you can watch to inspire you to success when you first start flipping houses.

Aladdin, the Genie and House Flipping

In the fairytale Aladdin and the Magic Lamp, a young boy comes across a magical lamp - out of which a genie appears before him.

The genie asks the boy “your wish is my command”.

Whatever the boy asks for, he gets from the genie.

Sound pretty good, right?

What most people in real estate investing don’t realize is that house flipping success works in the very same way…

When it comes to achieving success flipping houses, the first step is to “ask the genie”.

The 3 Step Formula for House Flipping Success

Step 1: Ask For House Flipping Success

The first step is to ask, make a command to the universe – let the universe know what it is that you want.

Sit down and write it out on a piece of paper. Write it in the present tense.

Start it with “I am so happy and grateful now that…I make $100,000 per year in profit flipping houses.

You must be very clear on what you want and state it positively; otherwise “the genie” will not know what to bring you.

Likewise if you think and if you ask for bad things, he’ll bring that to you too.

When people do this, sometimes for the first time in their lives, they get very clear on what it is that they really want. If you don’t ask for success flipping houses, how will the universe know you actually want it?

Think of the universe as your personal catalog, and you are just placing an order.

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The House Flipping Mindset

house flipping mindsetIt’s been said many times by many success experts that people’s behaviors are driven by just two forces of nature:

  • The pursuit of pleasure
  • The avoidance of pain

Out of the two...fear is the bigger motivator by far.

You may have seen this before - but Tony Robbins said it best:

“The secret of success is learning how to use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you do that, you're in control of your life. If you don't, life controls you”

If you are just getting started house flipping as either full time job or just part time, this is the most critical element to conquer before you even consider doing your first house flip.

House Flipping, Pain and Pleasure

Here’s the really strange thing. We make the vast majority of our decisions to do something or not do something based entirely on what we THINK will happen instead of what will ACTUALLY happen.

So in any case, when we are confronted with a decision to either do it or not to it, whether it’s flipping houses or deciding on going to a party, most of us think about what we would LOSE by choosing to move forward with that decision.

We project ourselves into the future and THINK about what these things will feel like in the future. More often than not, this is not based on reality at all.

The reality for most of us is we completely fabricate painful outcomes based on very little data, if any at all.

This “projection” is all about our own twisted PERCEPTION of what reality may actually be.

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How to Get Started Flipping Houses: My First House Flip

How to Get Started Flipping Houses

how to get started flipping housesI've told this story dozens of times at various real estate investing and house flipping events and seminars, as well as business meetings and networking events - but wherever I go it is still the biggest question people ask me:

How do you get started flipping houses?

For me flipping houses began with a wonderful coincidence of events.

A few years ago a good friend of mine who had some solid real estate investing experience approached me and asked me if I wanted to partner with him on a real estate deal. As it would've been my first real estate investment, I had no experience but I trusted him to do the right thing with the deal.

Needless to say, it turned out to be a great experience because I learned a lot – both what not to do and what to do!

We bought a house flip fixer-upper single-family home at the peak of the real estate market. We fixed it up ourselves and sold it just before the real estate market began to crash.

I ended up losing $1,800 on that first deal.  I'm lucky I didn't lose more.

Despite the less than stellar results of that first deal, I still managed learned something incredibly valuable.  After going through the process of making that first deal, I realized what I wanted to do with my career - I wanted to flip houses for profit.

I resolved that the next time I would try to flip a house, I would know everything I could about the entire real estate investing process. I knew that next time, I would make a profit.

How to Get Started Flipping Houses

In order to do this right I knew I needed to learn everything that I possibly could learn about flipping houses and real estate investing.

How to Get Started Flipping Houses - LEARN

So when people ask me how to get started flipping houses, I tell them to do what I did:

  • I went to seminars, bought books, watched DVDs and listened to audios. I learned from some of the best real estate investors in the business.
  • I engaged in weekly coaching calls and assignments, trying to learn everything I could about flipping houses and real estate investing.

Education is not enough though. If you REALLY want to know how to get started flipping houses, the next (and most important) step is ACTION.

How to Get Started Flipping Houses - TAKE ACTION

Once I felt confident with my real estate education, I took bold action. I sucked up all my courage and made a big move and invested in my first property with the intention of doing a house flip within three months. You can see some of those first properties here.

The point is that you cannot start flipping houses until you take action and actually start doing it. If you have a mental block on how to get started, think about your house flipping mindset. Is it the right mindset to become rich flipping houses and investing in real estate?

If it isn't, start reading our ongoing series on how to flip and grow rich. This ongoing series will help you to overcome your fears and start taking action by giving you concrete steps towards house flip success.

house flipping

 

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