We Sold The Flip House! How to Make $25,000 With Your Next Flip

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Remember that flip that took us 8 months to complete??? Well it’s finally gone (woot woot!!!). We officially sold it on Monday and made a cool $27,400. The papers are signed, the transaction took place, and the money was quickly delivered to the bank (staying warm for our next purchase, an old farm house with acreage :)). So how did we really do it? How did we make thousands with a flip house? And can you do it too?

The short answers:

  • Simple, buy low, fix it up, sell high, and
  • Yup, anyone can do this stuff!

The longer answer…have a gander below. 😉

We Sold The Flip House! How to Make Thousands With a Flip House

We finished the house on Tuesday, May 29th and listed it two days later. Over the span of 7 days we had 24 showings and an open house that added another 20 or so viewings. All these lookers…and we had no offer… womp wommmm….

Since we wanted to sell quickly, we dropped the price $5,000, from $139,900 to $134,900. One day later, we had an offer…for $126,000 under an FHA loan.

It was an offer, but that was about it. It wouldn’t have given us nearly the profits we were hoping for (and from what I hear, FHA loans are horrendous to work with when it comes to the inspection). Since we had a couple days to think about it, our realtor decided to spread the word and let all the other realtors and their clients know that there was an offer on the table.

This worked beautifully. Within 24 hours, we had another offer. Full asking price with cash.

What whaaaatttt????? BOOM! We didn’t even counter. We accepted immediately.

The inspection came back with a few things – they wanted $1,200 knocked off the price to help share the imminant costs. Yup, makes sense, signed those papers too. In the end, they paid $133,700 for a fine house (after all, I put most it together myself, so you know it’s going to last forever, right?? :)), and after taxes, closing costs, and realtor fees, we got a check for $122,400.

  • Net House Sale: $122,400
  • Total Expenses: $95,000
  • Profits: $27,400

Not too shabby for a side hustle! Now we’ve got $122,400 sitting in the bank ready for our next adventure!

How to Make Thousands With a Flip House

Flipping houses isn’t for everyone, but if you love:

  • looking at real estate,
  • finding a good deal,
  • putting in some sweat equity, and
  • making tens of thousands of dollars…

…then flipping houses might just be for you.

So what do you need to know to go from the house search to the sale?

1) Find a Deal

You’ll probably have to look at a couple hundred houses online and walk through at least a couple dozen before you find a screaming deal that’s actually worth your time. With so many people interested in houses right now, how can you possibly find a deal that’ll earn you tens of thousands of dollars? (ie. how can you make thousands with a flip house??)

Here’s some solid ideas for you:

  • Watch the house prices online. If they drop the price quickly and by a large margin, they’re hot to sell. Chances are you could offer far less than asking and still get a signed contract.
  • Network with realtors, people at work, neighbors, people at church — pretty much anyone you can talk to — about your interest in a flip house. Somebody always seems to have an uncle with a friend that has a boss that’s selling a property, which might mean a screaming deal for you.
  • Find an ugly house that no one else wants. It smells, it has ugly carpet, the walls are painted hot pink, and the landscape is just one huge bush that covers up the house (this was basically our last house project – not just one of these things, but all of them). Ideally, most of the repairs are cosmetic and are fairly easy to repair. While others are plugging their nose and running out of the house, you’re smiling because you smell a deal. 🙂

Beyond this, I also suggest point #2…

Related: How We Scored a $100,000 House for Just $75,000

make thousand with a flip house

2) Pay With Cash

Yes, I’m serious, and yes, it’s possible. You CAN buy a house with cash.

All you have to do is pay off all your consumer debt, pay off your house, and then save up for like, 2 years to buy a $100,000 house with crisp $1 bills (hahaha, or you know, a cashier’s check).

You next question is probably, “Why the heck would you do this? Isn’t it smarter to use other people’s money to get rich?” That’s what they say…but who are “they” anyway? Banks? People that want to make a buck off you with their books (think about it – how many people would buy books about buying houses with cash vs. zero money down? I would think the audience would be much larger for the latter these days…)? Your broke brother-in-law?

I say ignore the masses and go with the common sense approach. By using cash, you:

  • Save hundreds of thousands in interest that you would have otherwise forked over to the bank
  • Save $350 on the appraisal that you don’t really care about (that’s the cost the bank pushes on you to make sure the investment is wise for them)
  • Avoid all the other closing cost crap (admin fees, loan application fee, credit report fee, blah blah blah…my closing costs are usually $800 or less, not $3,000+)
  • Get a better buy – sellers would rather sell the house to you, the sure buyer, for $100,000 vs. the FHA, zero-percent down schmoes that offered $105,000
  • Gain simplicity – no mortgage payments, no escrow, no hassles when you want to switch insurance companies – life is just so much better when you take banks out of the equation
  • Get Peace of Mind – no matter what happens with your job or your health, you own your house, not the bank. They can’t take it from you if you’re suddenly short on cash.

If you want to make thousands with a flip house, start with cash.

3) Do Much of the Work Yourself

You know how you make a huge margin on a house flip? Do as much of the work as you possibly can. Sure, it’s going to take your time, but what were you going to do with that time anyway? Watch 82 more episodes of Survivor?

Fixing up a house isn’t that hard, and to be honest with you, it doesn’t take that much skill. Believe me…my major is in Finance…which is about the furthest degree from carpentry you can get. I learned how to fix a few things here and there from my Dad, and a few more things from my father-in-law…Oh yeah, and some from my buddy Jon, Mr. Knows-How-to-Do-Everything. Mainly though, my teacher has been YouTube – a friend everyone can call in a time of need.

So what projects can you tackle yourself to save a HUGE amount of money?

  • Drywall – no sweat – just cut rectangles and screw them into the wood boards in the wall.
  • Flooring – not a big deal – just cut and click together laminate, sand the hardwood, or stick tile into some mud that you can buy pre-mixed. Sure, things can go wrong here, but everything can be repaired – even botched DIY jobs. 😉
  • Trim – piece of cake – just learn how to cut 45 degree angles and have a blast with that nail gun
  • Crown molding – DO NOT TRY THIS! Lol. I don’t pay anyone to do it – I just avoid it at all costs. 🙂

By doing the work myself in this last house, I saved $5,000 on the drywall, $2,000 on the garage roof, and probably another $3,000 on the laminate hardwood flooring. Instead of $27,000 in profits, we would have only made $17,000!!

4) Use a Realtor to Sell It

Alright, now I might have you scratching your head. I’ve been preaching to you about saving money with cash, finding an extreme deal, and then doing the majority of the work yourself…and now I want you to blow your profits on a realtor?

Yes.

Sure, it costs money to have a realtor sell your house, but here’s what they can do for you:

  • Provide up-to-date information on the market to determine a reasonable asking price
  • Show you the terms and conditions of competing properties
  • Develop a marketing plan that could include repair suggestions, open houses, advertising, etc.
  • Provide security for your home when it is being shown to strangers
  • Negotiate the best price for your home
  • Monitor the sale process, renegotiate as needed, and resolve issues prior to closing

During our home sale, our realtor proved her worth by:

  • Pointing out 4-5 issues with the house that I wouldn’t have noticed prior to the open house. I fixed them all and they became a non-issue.
  • Rounding up all the realtors and clients and telling them we had an offer…which yielded a much higher offer
  • Sharing the feedback from every single walk-through via a handy app that all the realtors use in my area
  • Informing us that our smoke detector certificate was out of date early in the closing process. We got this re-evaluated and certified in time to keep the close date on schedule.
  • Walking us through all the paperwork and legal non-sense that I would have had no clue about

In the end, I paid her $4,000 and the buyer’s realtor $4,000. If I didn’t have a realtor, I probably would have had half the walk-throughs and no solid offers – the house would still be on the market.

Stop thinking that you can save thousands by listing the house yourself. By putting up a “For Sale By Owner” sign, the buyers automatically think they’re going to get a deal and you think you’re going to save all the money you would have spent on the realtor. One of you is wrong…and it’s you…

Are You Ready to Make Thousands with a Flip House?

If you can buy a house for cheap, fix it up, and make 30% on your total investment, then it might just be worth it to flip that house. On the other hand, if it’s going to take you 8 months and your spouse is going to start hating you for it…then you might want to think twice about it (or three or four times…just don’t do it).

The key is to communicate and have a common goal. If you and your spouse and family would love for you quit your job that leaves you lifeless at the end of the day and flipping a few houses will let you escape, then do it! Or, these couple of house flips will get you back on track for your goals to retire in the Bahamas, then start swinging that hammer!

Should you try to make thousands with a flip house? It’s not as much about your skill level as it is about your ‘why’.

Happy flipping!!

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17 comments to We Sold The Flip House! How to Make $25,000 With Your Next Flip

  • Nice post – and congratulations on your sale.

    Overall, very informative – as well as entertaining 🙂

    I also liked the points about the realtor and how you found value in this area.

    Thanks for the post. – Mike

  • Congrats!! Great article as well! Not having a great realtor can cost you thousands on both ends—-buying and selling. Can’t wait to see you in a farmhouse on some land!

  • Beautiful job on the home, Derek! Congratulations on the sale and all the “sweat equity” you put into such an amazing project. Someone got a fine home! This will get you much closer to your farm home dream…. cash in the near future! We purchased our last home in cash. You get some weird looks when you do that because so few people do. A check for $320,000 and we didn’t even have to blink about it! We have since built a second garage, office, and safe room combo plus added geothermal heating and air. If in line with the homes selling in the area, our home should sell for round $500K+ in just 4 years since our purchase. Cannot wait until you get there! I love not paying a single penny of interest. If we had financed, you could double the purchase price or more depending on the interest amount. I certainly prefer that in our pocket. Glad you have the energy to take on such a task! Good luck with your future. You are on a roll of long-term success! Appreciate the sharing of your project.

  • Kathy

    Congratulations! I’ve often thought that I might like to flip houses. Those house flipping shows on TV make it look so easy. However, unless you own a construction company, as you point out I is necessary to do the work yourself or else the profit will fly into the pocket of the contractor you hire to fix it up. And since I’m not a carpenter, that would be the case for me. So what is you next project? Another flip or another rental? Inquiring minds want t know.

    • Hi Kathy. The next “project” will be our next primary house – a farm house in the country most likely. We have no idea where we’ll end up or how much work it will be, but I’m sure there will some kind of adventures that come with it. I’ll definitely be willing to write all about it! 🙂

  • George Seay

    Congratulations Derek. Happy to see all of your family’s hard work paying off.

    • Thanks George! It’ll be awesome once we find that country house. I wasn’t excited about it a year ago, but a nice relaxing setting with property is starting to sound pretty good. 🙂

  • jeffrey

    congrats, well deserved, and to think about how much knowledge you gained from this, your next project will probably have an even higher ROI, hopefully 🙂

    I was just reading a few of the flipping posts, constantly clicking old link after old link to follow the process more in depth. Doing something like this, or getting into real estate as a whole, has been a thought of mine. It is very inspiring to hear your story and the ways you made it happen, thanks. I must ask though, can you really attribute most of what you were doing by learning via Youtube? You were changing the heights of doors, drywalling, insulating, fixing roof leaks, etc. Would you say that Youtube was essential or more, the teacher in the process? These are things I am not familiar with doing but as of recently am certainly becoming more aware of how important of skill sets they are. I am getting older, more things need to be fixed, built, and optimized. When you do it yourself, you keep money in your pocket.

    I have been talking to a colleague very recently about RE and he stated that he hasn’t even stepped foot on the property since he’s owned it, for several months now. So, it seems there is more than one way to go about the whole RE business.

    I think I had some more things to ask you but they are slipping my mind right now. Congrats on the sale and good luck on the farm. Think about raising chickens. It sounds like they are pretty easy maintenance, they are durable, they are good for the land, and eggs 🙂

    • Lol. Awesome comment, Jeffrey! We’ll see if I can answer all of your questions – especially the chicken ones. 😉

      Changing the heights of doorways – I learned this from my ex-father-in-law actually – and you know what? – same thing with the drywall. When I redid my first house with my ex, he gave me a hand with the back entry, which involved removing a wall and all the plaster, then adding a header and all new drywall. It was a big project that took some time, but was totally worth it (I’m staring at it right now, and it still looks awesome).

      Through that process, yes I learned how to hang some drywall boards and learned a little bit about how to secure headers and studs, but mostly I just learned that all this stuff really isn’t that scary. After all, he was mostly self-taught since his dad died when he was just a teenager. Today, I’ve learned to just jump in and use my common sense. If I don’t fully know what I’m doing, then I’ll hop on YouTube or ask a guy at the hardware store (or maybe a handy friend).

      In the end, even if you can’t figure out how to fix something, someone else can. Either get his wisdom verbally or have someone actually do the work. Either way, your projects can certainly get done.

      As for the chickens…I’m still not excited about them. Sure, eggs are great, but cleaning out a chicken coop every week…I’m really hoping I never inherit that chore from my wife.

      Thanks for reading, Jeffrey!

  • You should have the before video in this post, too! Such a neat thing to get a sneak peek into. 🙂

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  • […] and I recently paid cash for a house, fixed it up, and sold it for a $27,000 profit! This allowed us to stash $122,000 in the bank, which is more money than we’ve EVER had at […]

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