It’s Entirely Possible to Fix & Flip 10 Homes at Once: Here’s How

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Throughout most of the country, prices are rising, and investors are scrambling to find deals. My market in Colorado is no different, with prices rising 20 to 40 percent over the last two years.

Investors have come back in a big way since the housing market recovered, and it is definitely harder to find deals. However, I have still been able to buy fix and flips and rental properties in a very competitive market. I have no secret ninja techniques to find deals; I simply used solid fundamentals to buy properties well below market value.

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How Can I Handle 10 Flips at Once?

If you read my recent articles about contractor problems, you will see it has not been smooth having ten flips at once. However, I think I have greatly improved my business by having this many flips. I have added three contractors and started using an old contractor again who used to work with me. Having that many contractors will make my job so much easier, especially once I get caught up on all these houses. I have decided not to start my own contracting company yet, but that may be a future move.

The good news is three of my flips are on the market and under contract with closings all happening in October. I promised myself I would not buy any more flips or rentals until I sold some properties, but I just got a new one under contract yesterday! I decided it was okay to buy another since a couple of my current flips will be closed soon.

How Have I Been Able to Find Fix and Flips?

Nine of my current flips were bought off the MLS, and one was through direct marketing. There are still deals on the MLS, no matter what anyone tells you!

You have to act very fast, and in some cases be willing to do a lot of work, but the deals are there.

Here is a list of my last ten purchases and how I bought them.

Related: My First Flip & Fix: Termites, Hauntings & A Foundation of Dirt

My Last 10 Purchases

House #1

This one I found through direct marketing. I have been sending hundreds of letters a month to probates and absentee owners.

House #2

This was a traditional sale on MLS. The home was built in 1857 and needed a lot of work. The buyers knew it needed work and liked my cash offer enough to close in 15 days with no inspection.

There were multiple offers, and I got the home $10,000 below list. It is being repaired now and should be on the market in a week or two.

House #3

This house was a short sale built in the 1940’s on MLS. I had made an offer on it after another highest and best.

The bank approved my offer in May, and we closed in June. The house is almost ready to be listed and was bought $3,000 over list.

House #4

This house was a traditional sale owned by an investor on MLS. The owners were going to flip, but ran out of money.

I made a cash offer hours after it was listed, and they counter me and I accepted $15,000 below list.  House is gutted and sitting there waiting for a contractor to free up.

House #5

This house was for sale on MLS as an REO. It was priced super low, and I made an even lower offer. They asked for highest and best, and I made my cash offer with no inspection a couple thousand below list.

I could not believe I got it. Work is starting Monday on this one.

Related: How to Analyze a Fix and Flip: A Step by Step Case Study

House #6

This home was an REO on MLS that was priced super low. I made my ash offer about $17,000 more than asking price, and I won that one as well.

It is sitting waiting for a contractor to free up.

House #7

This house was an estate sale available on MLS. It came on the market active/backup, which means under contract. The contract fell through, and it came back on the market.

I made a cash offer that same day. I was notified of another offer, and I raised my offer to slightly above list and got the deal. This one is on the market and set to close next month.

House #8

This house was listed for very cheap on MLS, but I was on vacation when it came on the market. It was a traditional sale that went under contract before I could see it.

When I got back from vacation, the home came back on the market, and I made an offer about an hour later. My offer was countered, and I accepted the counter at $10,000 less than list. This home is closing next week.

House #9

This home was owned by a city and was for sale in MLS. It was listed very cheap, but was advertised as having no water, septic and possibly a squatter.

I made a full price offer the same day it was listed, and I got it. The home is being repaired: new well, electric, kitchen, drywall, windows, doors, flooring, paint and insulation. This house was bought for $75,000 and will sell for close to $200,000.

House #10

This house was an estate sale listed on MLS, and I made an offer the first day it was listed. My offer was full price and accepted before any other offers came in. I put this house on the market, and it had two immediate offers, but the inspections showed major problems that my contractor missed.

I took the home off the market, made more repairs with a new contractor, raised the price and listed it Monday. It is now under contract.

What Traits Do You See in My Offers?

If you see a common trend, it should be speed.

I make offers as soon a possible after I see a house. Being a real estate agent helps me do this, and saving commissions is nice as well.

I have lowered my standards on the amount of repairs a home needs, but I have kept the same profit margins I have always used. My average profit on my flips bought from $75,000 to $150,000 remains just over $30,000.

How many fix and flips are you working at the moment? How did you acquire it/them?

Let’s talk rehabbing in the comments below!

About Author

Mark Ferguson

Mark is Real Estate Broker and investor in Greeley, Colorado. Mark invests in long-term SFR rental homes and also does 8-15 fix and flips a year. Mark started a blog this year that focuses on investing in long term single family rentals.

27 Comments

  1. Mark, great article and thanks for sharing what your current flips look like. I currently and 3 flips going and rehab on 2 houses that will be rentals. It’s definitely possible to manage numerous flips but there’s always issues that come up it seems. One of mine is about 2 months behind schedule due to the cabinet company’s shop catching on fire. This put our kitchen cabinets behind which delayed some of the plumbing and flooring work. Thankfully this was a cash purchase so we’re not paying interest but utilities are insurance add up quickly as well. All 3 flips that I’m working on were purchased at the courthouse steps foreclosure sale. One was just purchased and rehab just began and the other is complete and under contract to close this Tuesday. It took about 2 months on it and I had a buyer under contract on it prior to completion of the work.

    I have completed a few flips with that profit margin but in my market I see more in the $20,000 range which is my average on flips.

    I have purchased through the MLS (I am a broker as well) but here lately the competition is so stiff on MLS listings, I’ve had to find most of my deals at the courthouse steps or via direct marketing.

    Thanks again and keep it up!

    • Hi Clint, I used to buy 90% of flips at the trustee sale, which is like the courthouse sale. However, completion has gotten so tough there that I can get a better deal off mls. I stopped going to the sales because houses were selling for at least 10% more than I would pay.

  2. I love the energy in this post. Very motivational. My question is how much of your own money is tied up on these 10 deals or projected holding costs before selling. If not your own money how are you financing these deals?

  3. We typically do 3 to 4 flips at a time. We use our own money most if the time with 2 outside investors if needed. However, with acquisitions slowing down,
    We are only doing 1 right now. We live in an area that is very competitive,Northern Virginia.
    Great for quick sales after rehab, but the REO’s are drying up and the banks are putting in paint and carpet before they list them. Last week, for the first time in over 6 years we were making low offers in. ” regular” sales that had been in the market for a while.
    We are changing our business strategy to acquiring a few more rentals this year as well.
    The ” up” side of this is that we have done lots if work to our own home and our beach house this month. Gotta keep our contractors busy or they might jump ship!

  4. Thanks Mark for updating us on your Fix and Flip projects. Most times I see something written about direct mail marketing it’s referring to wholesaling. Out of curiosity, how long have you been using direct mail marketing for the sole purpose of finding “buy and hold” and/or “Fix and Flip” properties? I’m strongly considering adding a direct mail campaign for the sole purpose of finding deep discounted “buy and hold” properties and breaking into the “Fix and Flip” arena. Can you provide a little more insight into your direct mail marketing campaign? How successful have you been with direct mail marketing?

      • Do you wholesale the properties that don’t fit your real estate investment model? From your direct marketing, I see you’ve bought one and listed one as an agent. Out of one year of direct marketing, are you saying you’ve only come across two deals worthy of doing anything with?

  5. How are you able to make offers near (or above) the list price on the MLS and still keep your profit above $30,000? By the time I have estimated the ARV on what I consider to already be priced well below the ARV, accounted for a profit of about 25% – 30% and then deducted the repair costs and other fixed costs, there’s not usually much left to offer and, what there is, doesn’t get accepted.

  6. Mark, thank you for breaking down your process for making offers on potential flips. It’s good to see that I’m not crazy making offers on properties listed on the MLS. I’ve looked at so many deals know, it’s pretty easy to recognize when a potential property would make an excellent purchase!

  7. Great and inspiring article, and some great linked resources as well. I’ve been working on a rental portfolio for a couple years here in Nashville, but I am eager and committed now to moving into doing rehabs. I’ve run into almost all of the various types of work with my rentals at this point, and I have some great subs at my disposal. I have also written up my business plan and specified what work I’d be willing to take on, my parameters for a deal, etc. What I haven’t done successfully yet, though, is find private money. Any tips on finding the cash to do these deals? That is my last remaining hurdle…

  8. Erik Peterson on

    Mark, Thanks for a great post and letting us into a bit of your process. How long is it taking you on average to flip a house? Say from when you take possesion util you are ready to list it back up for sale? Thanks!

        • Margaret Smith on

          Erik- from the time we take possession it takes us 6-8 weeks to rehab most flips.
          We make a construction schedule and hold the contractors to it via a perr diem penalty.
          From the time they are listed it takes about two weeks in our area to get an offer ( but the last two took 60 days!) so I would say allow 30-45 days. Then another 30 to close.
          So 2 mos rehab+ 1 mo listed+ 1 month closing time= 4 months aprox
          That has been about what the last 15 houses for us averaged.
          But everything has CHANGED in the last 3-4 mos!
          Stuff is sitting on the market here in Virginia… Time to buy and hold a few…

  9. john horner

    We own 4 flips right now and 4 more in contract to purchase in the next 2 weeks. 1 flip is in contract to sell and closing tomorrow, 1 we just listed 2 days ago, another will be ready to list next week and the 4th is a bigger project we are probably 4 weeks away from finishing.

    All of our deals have come from direct mail or website marketing. We used to make tons of MLS offers but we were never able to get them cheaper then with our marketing .

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