Because of HGTV, we get asked almost daily, "wow, you're house flippers? How do I get into that business?" I mean, HGTV definitely makes it cool (thankfully, because I completely lack coolness otherwise :). And, it is an incredibly fun business. So, here are my quick tips on getting into the flipping biz:
1. Start with humility and a desire to learn. I laugh now to think about how many years I've wasted with a chip on my shoulder, thinking I had the answers. It wasn't until I realized that I didn't know diddly that I started to learn. If you have this mindset, you can crush it in the "we buy houses" game.
2. Now that you have the right mindset, learn, learn, learn. We are so blessed to live in a day where education is often free and bountiful. Youtube has thousands of great videos on real estate investing. There are dozens of incredible books on the topic and there are amazing online forums where you can read, discuss and learn.
3. Network baby. Now that you know a bit and still keep that humble mindset, start to pursue experienced investors. Think about how you can provide them value. Can you drive for dollars and then you work a deal together? What about giving them a couple days of free labor on a job site, see how it's run, see what type of finishes they are putting in to the home flip.
Because I've been in the business for a while, I've often been asked the question, "can you be my mentor" and a couple of times I have tried... but here's what I found out: that is usually a one-sided relationship the mentee sucks the mentors time and energy but often doesn't give much in return.
But, I've had a number of other people come and say, "Can I come out and work on a job for a day and see how you're doing this?" That's an easy Yes and they come first with the "I want to bring value" mindset instead of the "mentor me so I can be rich" approach. If you have humility, and a base understanding of some real estate find experienced investors and see how you can serve them. The good ones will reward your investment 100 fold.
4. Take the plunge! Now that you have your foundation built and your network (which could only be 1 good mentor) in place, my recommendation is that you as Nike says, "Just do it". Before I started investing, I went to a 3 day "training seminar" more like a 3 day "hype you up and sell you stuff seminar" where at the end of the 3 days I knew I wanted to do real estate but still knew I didn't know enough to even attempt a deal. For the low price of $48,999 these folks would help me do my first deal. Between us, I was tempted... I know that's a lot of money but man, if they could set me on the path to being a "flipper" that would be amazing.
Thankfully, my lack of money made the decision a little easier. What I did instead was maxed out my credit cards with a bunch of those 3% 15 month deals and purchased a home for $32,000. I know that's crazy (both that I did that and that I found a home that cheap). But, I figured I could put my money into a hard asset or into more training. For me, hard asset was the right choice.
For the next 7 weeks, 6 day weeks, 12-14 hour days my father-in-law and I WORKED on that house we did it ALL... and in the end, we came out positive. I think we earned a whopping $4 an hour each. But it gave us the confidence that we needed to do it again, and again and here we are today.
The we buy houses business is not a hard business. It's not an easy business either. It's a work hard, work smart get rewarded nicely business. Whether you're looking to flip homes in Boston MA, or Charleston SC, the philosophy will always be the same.
I love it and wish you the best as you dive in!