Too renovate or to not?

8 Replies

I’m a newbie in Cleveland Ohio. A friend and I want to learn the skills of buying and rehabbing ourselves. So my question is should we buy a super cheap property and learn how to rehab as we go or should we do an apprenticeship and get a formal education for it?

I'm not sure how you get a 'formal apprenticeship' in rehab but it might be helpful for you to work with a GC or a successful developer to learn the skills. I think that perhaps you're in the novice stage of education so I think reading and doing some GC homework would help with the process. I don't think you should buy a property for the sake of renovation unless the numbers really worked as a flip or a rehab and rent scenario. 

The point of investing in any asset class is for you to create systems and processes for passive income flow, not to create another job for yourself. I see the value in learning those skills first hand but rehab skills is not imperative in making you a successful real estate investor. 

Originally posted by @Dametrius Clark :

I’m a newbie in Cleveland Ohio. A friend and I want to learn the skills of buying and rehabbing ourselves. So my question is should we buy a super cheap property and learn how to rehab as we go or should we do an apprenticeship and get a formal education for it?

Getting a job on a construction crew is a great way to earn whild you earn. Just don't expect the rest of the crew to go out of their way to teach everything to you. #1 priority will be the jobs at hand & learning will be slow. You're gonna need to put in your licks, but with patience & a good work ethic you'll learn an invaluable set of skills for this business.

 

In my opinion, you don't need to know how to fix houses in order to flip them.  You need to have a basic understanding of construction but you don't need to be able to do it yourself unless your goal is to do that as a living.  There are people that buy, do the work on and flip 3-5 houses per year and make a good living.  If that is your goal, learn the construction trades - if not, it's not that important.  There is a good book at Home Depot for $35 that will give you tons of information.

As someone starting out, its more important to learn how to find deals and analyze deals.

If you haven't gotten them already, J. Scott's two BiggerPockets books on flipping houses and estimating rehab costs are the perfect way to start (BTW, he can't do any construction from what I recall).

Don't do the work yourself, especially if you don't know how to. Find your deals that will work with renovation costs ALL done by contractors, if you have a skill and can save some money here and there, then by all means put a bit of that to work but there are too many rehabs that fail because the buyer got too far over their heads with the project and many of these thought they could do every aspect of the rehab themselves... leave that to the professionals, just make sure the numbers support the amount these professionals cost :)

Start with something that does need a lot of work. Learn those things. Then go to properties that require more work and learn those things. Don't jump into a major rehab that is full of things you don't know how to do. It will overwhelm you. Everything takes 2-10 times longer to do when you are learning as you go. You want this first one to be successful to encourage you to keep going. Start small. If you have the opportunity, do a live-in-flip. That way you are only paying for your own housing and if it takes a while then that's okay because you aren't paying two mortgages. Good luck!

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