20 Feb Life Lessons Learned From House Flipping
After flipping houses for over a year now, we’ve learned a thing or two.
Bryce and I have been reflecting on some of the crazy things we’ve seen, and how many of the lessons we’ve learned apply to life in general. So, in the spirit of pause and reflection, I thought we’d jot down a few to keep as a reminder here for the next year of flipping! I hope that I am able to convey these ideas in a meaningful way — let me know your thoughts!
Look for opportunities in unexpected places.
A lot of times, we will find our best deals in plain site: listed right on the MLS. People tend to complicate things like “finding the right house” to flip by trying to get creative. They’ll invest in expensive mailer campaigns, spend hours door-knocking, the list goes on.
We found that, until we build up our referral source, it’s paid to put in the hard work of sifting through MLS listings. Over time, the more flips we do, the more people we meet. So, the referrals will come, but it’s nice to know that we didn’t break our backs (or the bank) while finding our first sweet deals.
Make decisions quickly and with conviction.
Our personalities predispose us to “analysis paralysis”. We naturally want to overanalyze everything. (During our very first flip, Bryce and I spent over an hour in Lowe’s debating over two shower heads.) Having started our careers in a risk-adverse, corporate environment certainly didn’t help with this notion. But, time is money, and in the real estate game, hesitating can cost you.
We’ve learned to embrace risk and trust our gut with difficult decisions. We also trust that our mistakes are our greatest teachers. If something doesn’t turn out the way we’d hope, we simply learn to take note and make adjustments going forward.
Give it 100% the first time.
Today’s buyers are savvy enough to spot cut corners. In this market, there is simply no reason not to use high-quality labor, finishings, and repairs. It will only come back to bite you in the long run.
What’s more, we know that our clients deserve our very best. At the end of the day, we are crafting what will be someone’s home. They deserve work that was done right the first time, and with the utmost care. Our team approaches each property as if it was our own, and that’s why we get top dollar for our product.
Don’t take more just because you can.
A big constant for us is to “play the long game”. It’s important to us that everyone leaves a deal feeling like they got a good shake. No one wants to feel like they’ve been taken. Whether it’s contractors, other investors, or potential buyers, it pays to play fair. The best work won’t usually be found at the cheapest cost, and the quickest sale doesn’t always occur at the highest price.
TUMS are a powerful antacid.
Seriously! I knew getting into this game would be stressful, but nothing could have prepared us for how difficult it can really be. Forget the glamorous before-and-afters: a lot of blood, sweat, and sometimes even tears go into making these properties reality. Luckily, we’ve surrounded ourselves with great people, an awesome partner (Andrew Glenn!), and the resources we need to be successful. It takes a village, and we are lucky to have wonderful people helping us along the way!
We are sure you have some lessons of your own from flipping or otherwise! Share with us in the comments, we’d love to hear from you. In the mean time, be sure to follow us on Instagram to keep tabs on our latest remodels!