Are TV shows realistic in pricing?

14 Replies

Hi All,

You know the shows such as "income property" & "flip or flop"? Are the cost estimates they give on rehab jobs realistic? Such as re-doing a kitchen, moving a wall or replacing all floors? I'm trying to get an idea of what typical rehab costs are.

Sometimes the cost look realistic. The costs are tied to negotiation. You let your guard down and you get hosed. Frank

Every property is different, every job is different. It all depends on who does the work, what finishes you use, etc. I remodeled my entire kitchen for $5,000. My neighbor is remodeling hers for $60,000. Yes, hers is bigger, but it isn't 12 times bigger. 

No they have their own crews...if you hire it out you can never get the numbers they get 

@Mindy Jensen 

Did you act as your own contractor? When I compare what I see on TV with what I paid 5 years ago to a GC my cost seemed quite high.  Is a GC paid some typical % of the total  job cost?

@Brian Tremaine

Hello,

My suggestion would be to network and interview contractors. Find out what their hourly rate would be. Then I would go to Home Depot/Lowes or whatever home improvement store you have by you and get an idea of pricing on products. That way you have an idea of cost. Honestly those reality shows really aren't reality or for educational purposes. The only reason why I love to watch them is to get design ideas. 

If you are going to get into flipping, I really recommend J Scott's book on flipping and rehab costs.

http://get.biggerpockets.com/flippingbook/

Thanks Nicole,

I will definitely check out that book. I don't plan on getting into flipping in a big way. I own a half dozen SFH and am nearing retirement. My "retirement" will be consulting in engineering (because I really like it!) and maybe once a year flipping a house. To maximize my property income I think I will probably renovating each one over time.

@Brian Tremaine if you are asking if the prices are realistic if you were to go through a GC I would say yes and no. Contractors pricing can vary substantially. You'll want to find guys who work with investors and get multiple bids. In the case of one of those shows you'll notice that they throw out an original bid number, then it changes when they decide to go with different finishes (pushing the price up) I can tell you I have worked with one of the contractors on Flip or Flop and his numbers on the show are realistic. 

@Brian Tremaine

Income Property is based in Canada, Flip or Flop is based in So. California.  If you're in those areas the prices might be representative.

Their prices are not representative of prices here in Pennsylvania, that's for sure.

A 10 year old kid spinning around with a can of gas with no lid smoking a cigarette... Makes me think of somone jumping into a flip without a team or experience.

Frank

My last comment is not directed at anyone.  Just a personal thought from pervious experiences.

Frank

Originally posted by @David Krulac :

@Brian Tremaine

Income Property is based in Canada, Flip or Flop is based in So. California.  If you're in those areas the prices might be representative.

Their prices are not representative of prices here in Pennsylvania, that's for sure.

 David:

Income Property occurs within the microcosm that the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).  The incredible housing prices regularly seen on the show - $600K for a bungalow - are not representative of most of the country.

As for the renovation costs ... Option #1 60K, Option #2 70K ...  I doubt you or I could carry out such a retrofit in the GTA for those prices unless we were running our own crew.  That said, Down East here, I can renovate an apartment, to a comparable level, for much less

Thanks Roy,

I'll read your rehab posting completely. Here in SJ a modest 3/2 SFH in a C+ neighborhood is $670K. In that regard the demand for housing is probably similar to the GTA. Thank-you for your insight.

I think that some of these rehaber's already own the contracting company. Could be a family business as well, like the Montelongo's. Perhaps these contractors have develeped a strong business relationship, therefore more favorable prices. Just some thoughts.

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