Diary of a new flippers, 1st flip, Chapel Hill NC

34 Replies

I just closed on this 3 bed 1 1/2 bath 1152 sq ft house in Chapel Hill NC. Found it on the MLS listed for $125K. I offered $107,500 thinking that that was a really good lowball offer and they said yes! Comps around the house ranged from $155-$195 and I'm swinging for the top end of that!

House needs: new kitchen, both bathrooms, flooring throughout, interior paint, landscaping, and some rooms have sagging floors. 

How did you price out the renovation costs?  How much do you estimate them at?  How old is the house?

It's your first flip so what has your experience been with Building or renovating or construction or with Real Estate.

Good Luck.  It looks like it can work!

House was built in 74. I've got a renovation budget of of $20K doing most of the work myself and hiring out only the things I have to like laying hardwoods. I came up with this price by doing a lot of google searches to find different prices for each thing that needs to be done and by running my estimates by a contractor. 

It's my 1st solo flip. I did a flip a few years back partnered with my brother. I also spent a year as a home inspector several years ago. 


Thanks for sharing and hopefully you continue to post as you progress through this flip. Did you use the BP flip calculator? Did you look at the pics of the closed housed at the top of the valuation range to see what warrants top dollars?

Well if you were a house inspector you know  great deal about construcion and plimbing and electrical so you are ahead of most people.

Sounds like a can't miss project.  You should post some inside pictures.  $20,000 is a low estimate.

@ Peter Philando I didn't use the flip calculator for this one. The comps the realtor sent had pictures of each one. The house at the top end were in the mid $180's and maxed out at $195. All had hardwoods and new updated kitchens.

Today's plan remove kitchen cabinets and gut bathroom. 

8x8 Kitchen with laundry room behind the bifold doors. I'll move the fridge to the end of the right side of cabinets, use all stainless steel appliances, install white cabinets with granite tops, and put in some type of back splash.  

This is the only full bath in the house. It actually is a little bigger than it looks because it has a double vanity. I'm going to put in a new tub, tile the flower and shower, and a new double vanity.

why do you think the refrigerator will be better on the right?

What kind of kitchen cabinets and what color?

Are you furnishing the washer and dryer or just the hook ups?

Why are the floors sagging and what are you going to do about them.

What are the holding costs and what is your time frame

It looks like it will be good

 Looks like it could be good.  Only word of caution I would advise, never assume you're going to get an offer at the top end of the market.  Go on the assumption that you're going to be closer to the bottom end.  If you're numbers still work, then go for it.  Also, I would recommend buying the book by j scott " the book on flipping houses."  Unbelievable source on info.

Progress so far..

Kitchen cabinets removed and fridge was hauled off by Duke Energy. Some of the vinyl flooring removed. 

Bath room gutted! Also scrapped the popcorn off the ceilings! Need to finish pulling the wallpaper off the kitchen and bathroom walls and remove the rest of the vinyl from the floors.

Thanks for this story and all the pictures. Fascinating! And congratulations! It looks like you're going to make some money and have some fun doing it.

Earlier in the thread you said you were going to hire a contractor to do things "like laying hardwoods". I have never done it myself, but i have read that installing hardwood flooring is actually one of the easier jobs in rehabbing. Would you comment on the thinking behind this decision?

@Glen Doki I'm not sure if I'll have time to do it. I read a lot about how to install and sand hardwood floors and I've watched a lot of You Tube videos and I'm pretty sure I could do it but from a timing stand point I'm not sure I want to take the time to do it. I'm going to get quotes from a couple of different flooring companies for the cost of buying flooring for the entire house and having them install it. 

After 2 months of work this project is coming to a close! I've stayed really close to the $20k rehab budget. Here is a picture of the kitchen. I'll post more pics tomorrow. Met with the realtor today going to list it at $179,900. 

I really like your Kitchen.  Rhe house looks really good.  How old is it?  How is the eletricl and hte plumbing?    The $20,000 budget is great.  I wish we could have kept our remodeling at $25,000 instead it spireled into $50,000 but it was  duplex and we had to do  2 kitchens and 2 baths and electrical and plumbing and trees were cut down for $2,600, and the backyard gad to be expanded so we old have private space for the tenants and a retaining wall and that ended up  another $5,000 and 2 ceilings came down and new radiators etc etc.  Never again will we let that happen

@Larry Roberts found them online at Kitchen Cabinet Depot. Shipping time was about a week. They came ready to assemble. I spent about a day putting them all together while the flooring company was installing the engineered hardwoods. 

@Account Closed electrical is good and the plumbing well the water lines are all new PEX. The house was built in 74. It had been sitting empty for the last 2 years or so. I think someone had stolen the copper waterlines so I think the seller had the new PEX lines installed before they listed it. If I would have hired everything out it would have been closer to $50K as well. For example, the tile and materials to install it cost $1600 and the labor to install it was $1500. The hardwoods was $1800 to buy and $1500 to install. I spent 2 days cutting trees and underbrush that had tried to take over the lot and house and paid $300 and helped a crew chip up the brush.

@Henry Sims  Is it just the photo or are those bath sinks and mirrors different sizes?  I know we all have different tastes but if it's the latter, I don't care for it.  I hope that's not going to become a new style trend!  :) 

I do think the kitchen looks attractive and I applaud you for addressing the sagging floors.  

Good luck with it!

@Henry Sims  great job on the house. A few things to satisfy my curiosity?

1. What all did you personally do and how long did it take?  I gather from the thread that you gutted and redid bathrooms and kitchen, painted, popcorn ceiling (you are more of a man than me), brush and trees, subfloor and sister joist?  What did I miss?  How much time do you have into it?  200 hours?  More/less?

I am a big fan of sweat equity and the opportunity it provides and curious how much time all of this took.

2. You mentioned a/c problems. What happened?

3. Would the footprint of the 1/2 bath have supported conversion to full?  Curious on opportunity there?

4. If you chose to keep it, what kind of rent would this house in its location bring? 

Here's to a quick sale!

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