The most popular (and easiest to understand) real estate investment strategy is certainly the “fix & flip”, which is simply buying a home that needs repairs, fixing it up, and then reselling it to a retail buyer/homeowner. While reality television shows may have made it the most common technique, tackling the renovation business is certainly not the easiest path to real estate success. However, with a sufficient source of capital, a reliable crew, and the right deal…it can definitely be the most profitable. So, if you’re thinking about living out your own real life episode of “Flip this House”, here are a few great online resources to help you in this new endeavor.
TheSweeten.com – Sometimes the hardest part about renovating homes is finding a reliable crew that will show up on time (and sober) and get the job done on budget. If you’re a member of PIG, the best place is to head on over to the private members-only Facebook page and ask for referrals. If not, TheSweeten.com is a new website that matches investors (and homeowners) with the right contractor from their invite-only network of professionals. You simply submit a project description, along with your timeline, budget, and photos, and the Sweeten will match you with 3 contractors from their database. You then get the chance to review the contractor’s profiles, interview them, and select the best one for the job.
Google SketchUp – On a rare ocassion, you may decide to re-design a home’s layout, or remove some walls to open up the floorplan. If you don’t have the budget for an architect, you can use Google SketchUp to get your thoughts on paper and help your contractor visualize your ideas. Check out this great 2-minute YouTube tutorial, which shows how easy it is to create your own 3-D floorplan drawings.
Valspar’s Virtual Painter – When you do a lot of renovation projects, you will eventually settle in on a color scheme that you will use on nearly all of your projects. After all, if it isn’t broken, don’t try to fix it. However, every once in a while you will come across a project that needs a special touch of color to help set it off. Whenever that day comes, a great free online tool is Valspar’s Virtual Painter. Simply set up your account, upload a picture of the room, and you can then choose from Valspar’s hundreds of colors to help find that perfect hue for your project.
Cost vs. Value Tool – One mistake that new rehabbers often make is to over-improve a house, or spend too much money in less important areas, and not enough money where it really counts. While it’s usually common knowledge that the biggest bang for your buck comes from the wet areas (kitchens and baths), other renovation projects aren’t so obvious. Remodeling Magazine’s annual cost vs. value tool is a great place to get ideas on where to best spend your investment dollars.
Here are some other great tools that you will find helpful in planning and organizing your renovation projects:
Discounts from PIG – As a member of PIG, you get access to exclusive member benefits through our partnership with national retailers like Sherwin Williams, Home Depot, Sunbelt and More!
Kitchen Planner Online – Enter your kitchen dimensions, and then design your cabinet layout, sink, dishwasher, stove, etc.
Home Depot Calculators – Enter your measurements and find out exactly how much material/supplies you need for carpet, tile, sheetrock, and more!
Pinterest – No, it’s not just your wife’s favorite go-to resource for a great quiche recipe. Pinterest is a great resource for ideas and inspiration for your remodeling projects as well.
If you need a great educational course on renovating houses, we are offering our “Fix & Flip Fortunes” complete 6-part audio course ($597 Value) for only $49 for a limited time! Click here to claim your copy!
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