Posts Tagged: "rehab"

9 Things to Know Before You Flip Your First House

Flipping a house is an AWESOME idea! You’ve seen the shows, you know someone who did it, or you check in with our blogs and social media often enough to see so many success stories.

Now, you’re ready to try it!

What could go wrong?

While I applaud your enthusiasm and believe that you should do what you’re passionate about, I also want you to be prepared. In addition to guarding yourself with as much education on the subject as possible, let’s kickstart your dreams with a few things you should know before getting started.

Curious about what kind of training you need to set yourself up for success?
You can jump on the line for a FREE conversation with a
Business Development Consultant today
to discuss the best strategies for your business.
Dial (800) 473-6051 NOW to set your appointment.

Knowledge and Confidence Go a Long Way

Do not jump into flipping houses blindly.

Though you don’t need a background in real estate to flip a house, you do need to make sure that the time and money you are investing (whether the money is yours or a lender’s like at Cogo Capital) is well spent and maximized.

Fix and flip education teaches you:

  • How to find funding
  • How to find, negotiate and close a great deal
  • Which materials are trending
  • Which high price items are worth the investment
  • Which materials can be low-cost
  • How to hire contractors for the lowest cost
  • How to manage contractors to meet timelines
  • How to market your property
  • How to yield the highest profit
  • And much more

Essentially, getting an education in the field minimizes your risk and maximizes your profit potential. You’ll go into the industry confident and knowing what to do, when to do it, and why.

If you’re interested in getting started, be sure to check out the Cogo Capital Funded “FUNDING TOUR.” Click Here for more information and to see if we’re coming to a city near you!


Learn How To Analyze the Deal

When determining how much to offer to yield at least a $20k profit, do you account for everything? Do you look at all the taxes? Can you adequately estimate repair costs, contractor cost, and understand how much you should put down versus borrow?

One of the BIGGEST mistakes people make in fixing and flipping houses is made during the deal analysis. Learn to make a sound deal to set yourself up for success.


Don’t Fudge Repair Costs

It’s easy to be optimistic, emotional and of course, unknowing when doing your first real estate rehab deal. Even with a complete inspection from the get-go, you always need a buffer in your costs as you never know what might surface (there are hundreds of investors who know this tale all too well).

Your projected repair costs are rarely ever too high.

When you learn to assess repair costs rationally and in a business-like manner, your first flip will bring you fewer surprises.

Which leads us to…


Don’t Get Emotionally Connected

You are spending money to make money. You’re not spending money to see your dream home come to fruition only to sell it to someone else. It doesn’t make sense to choose the flooring YOU like best or the landscaping as YOU would have, especially if it means more money spent.

Real estate investing isn’t about extravagance, but profit. Spend money ONLY on the deals that make sense, and not the ones that have somehow pulled at your heartstrings.

You can enjoy the process and have fun with it, but real estate investing should be data-driven, and going into your first deal with this thorough understanding is necessary.


Stick to Your Original ARV

You may think adding a swimming pool or another unnecessary amenity can boost your ARV and maximize your profit.

Do NOT give into this temptation. You cannot count on the market consistently appreciating. If the market shifts, ignoring your original ARV can eliminate your room for profit.


Time Is Money

The faster you flip, the faster you pay back your loan, earn your profit and can move onto your next real estate rehab. The most time-consuming elements of the process can range from hiring contractors, getting contractors to complete the project on time and even selling your home.

You must know how to manage your project from start to finish. Your comfort level with negotiating and project management will ensure you the profit you expect.


Know The Area

What sells in that stucco subdivision you grew up in may not sell in your up and coming neighborhood across the county. You need to know what the other homes are like in the area, what people expect in those homes and what’s trending. You can do this by attending a few open houses, doing some slow neighborhood tours, and becoming best friends with Zillow.


Supervise And Regularly Check On Contractors

It’s a hot time of year for the housing market, and contractors are using this opportunity to boost their prices on unsuspecting real estate rehabbers. Do you know what costs you should expect to pay? You need to. (See number 1.)

Contractors can also belabor the process, not only extending the time it takes for you to receive your paycheck but will decrease the size of your paycheck (i.e., more interest paid, increased time between flips). You must learn how to supervise and manage contractors so they are working on your timeline and you aren’t working on theirs. This single skill will catapult you faster toward being a successful, repetitive flipper more than most other traits.


Understand You Don’t Need to Be An Expert

No matter how much education you have, this is still your first fix and flip.

You will be a mix of nerves, stress, excitement, passion. No matter how much you know, you still won’t have the experience until you complete your first project from start to finish.

Don’t let fear stop you, either. You won’t be an expert, but hopefully, you can feel comfortable and confident enough in your knowledge to know you can make even your first deal an incredible success.

We provide options at the Lee Arnold System of Real Estate to not only educate you but to provide one-on-one coaching to guide you through the process. To learn more, schedule a call with a Business Development Consultant to day. (800) 473-6051

The benefits of flipping houses can outweigh the trials if you go in with an understanding of the process and your role in it. The key is to assure that you’re doing everything in your power to do your best. And if you make a mistake, learn from it.

“Success does not consist
in never making mistakes
but in never making
the same one a
second time.”
George Bernard Shaw

If you’re uncomfortable with your limited knowledge base, get the training you need.

If you don’t know how to get funding, attend a Funding Tour and learn all about it.

If you’re worried about negotiating your first deal, learn from those who’ve done it hundreds of times.

When you have the opportunity to make money, why wait? And why let your lack of knowledge stop you? Whether you’d do two deals a year or 20, you can have access to the extra cash and can rest assured you’re making the most out of every deal when you have the right education.

To Your Success;

Lee A. Arnold


The Lee Arnold System of Real Estate Investing

Follow me on Twitter: @CogoCapital  and @LeeArnoldSystem 

Have a deal under contract that you would like a quote on? Let us know. You can fill out a quick questionnaire at to receive a rate quote via email or you can call us anytime at (800) 747-1104 to talk to a loan officer. With millions deployed and millions to deploy, we want you to get the capital you need for your real estate investing.

When you come to Cogo Capital® looking for a private money loan on a property under contract, we’ll assure you have quick turnaround, excellent terms, and millions to lend. Cogo Capital® serves both local and national real estate investors, real estate agents, and private money lenders in quality, multiple loans.

10 Questions Your Potential Buyers Are Asking

Do you know what potential buyers are asking themselves when they look at your property?

We can anticipate the basics: Will they like the kitchen? Are there enough bathrooms? But what about the underlying questions every homeowner wants to know?

By now, we know that you make money when you buy and you realize that money when you sell. Easy. If you want to fully actualize all the money you can, consider some of the questions your potential buyers will have in mind when touring all the hard work you’ve made happen.

The more you can anticipate a buyer’s needs, the better you can work those into your repair plans.

But with so many various needs and demographics to consider, how do you cater to the desires of others in a way that helps you sell a house faster without going over budget and cutting into profit margin?

Can you have your cake and eat it too?

There are a handful of questions that most buyers will consider regardless of the neighborhood, ideal buyer, and price point.

Let’s count them down!

10. What about the seller’s disclosure?

Despite how a house looks, many buyers will want to know if there’s anything they need to watch out for. An inspection will show off all the properties flaws, but you may run into a buyer who wants to know what you know as soon as you know it. For instance, if there was an old septic system buried in the backyard that doesn’t affect the house’s current operation but may impact the buyer’s decision on putting in a pool someday, they may want to know.

9.What inspections do we need?

Speaking of inspections, many buyers will do multiple checks on a property; anything that the original inspector recommends. If there’s an issue in the fireplace, an inspector will recommend a professional opinion. Any problems could result in a delayed closing and further inspections. Though these things happen, and you can’t anticipate every problem, it’s worth considering what could result in future repairs for the home buyer before you put the property on the market.

This is especially true if your home buyers are using a picky lender (such as a VA loan) who requires certain items to be fixed before securing the mortgage. Have a basic understanding of codes–what height should porch steps be? Where do you need handrails? Does the bathroom vent go through the roof or stop in the attic creating possible mold problems in the future? It never hurts to know.

8. Has the home ever had mold?

There are some states where the question won’t even cross the home buyer’s mind. But in areas of heavy moisture or storm history, people will want to know. It’s assumed that a real estate investor who has flipped a property will know better than anyone whether there is mold or not. After all, very few people see behind the drywall. But what if the job requires only a few lipstick patches like new carpet and fresh paint? You may not know if there’s a problem.

It is also assumed–because there’s a rotten apple in every bunch–that some investors cut corners. Though you and I would never dream of doing unsafe, less-than-quality work, some people have been burned and word gets around. If a potential buyer asks for an inspection or the home’s history, be prepared. Buyers may also ask about radon, so be prepared if with any applicable reports you may have.

7. Why is this house for sale?

There are so many ways a potential buyer will know the house they’re viewing looked different before. It’s possible they know the neighborhood and saw the house in its distressed condition, or perhaps they’ve pulled buyer history. And usually, the beautifully staged home gives away that the property isn’t lived in at the time of sale. But buyers often want to know a little about the house’s history and why it’s for sale. This will often work in your favor as the desire for fresh upgrades is always on the rise.

6. Have all the safety features been installed?

With new builds and gutted properties, you or the contractor could overlook small details like working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in all recommended places. Though this should never make or break a sale, you should catch the missing devices in the BLUE TAPE INSPECTION.


Want a checklist of all the Blue Tape Inspection points to look for before paying your contractor’s final bill?

CLICK HERE for a detailed list!


5. What are the zoning guidelines?

Although this may be more clear in some neighborhoods than others, buyers will often want to know if it’s possible to split the property into a multi-family home in the future or whether other houses down the street have been turned into insurance offices. Although this won’t be as important to some as to others, it could be a factor in the purchasing decisions of others. Because this effects other aspects–such as the home value and comps–you should already know the zoning and be prepared to answer any questions that arise.

4. Who are the neighbors?

This is one of the most important non-home related questions a potential buyer will ask. It’s also a question they won’t likely ask YOU directly (or the real estate agent); they’ll observe. Although you can’t control who lives next door or behind your investment property, you can make improvements to the property to compensate. If the neighbors breed dogs that are thought to be aggressive, you may consider putting in a privacy fence.

3. Does this house have everything I need?

It’s true that you can’t anticipate the needs of every buyer; that’s why houses vary so vastly. What a young couple just starting out in life needs is different than what a large family with an aging parent to care for does. You don’t have a magic ball, but you can look at trending desires; wider hallways to support both strollers and wheelchairs, a master suite on the same level as the living space on to avoid regular stair use, outdoor space in warm areas and additional parking for boats in lake towns. But how do you know what demographic will purchase your property?…

2. What neighborhood factors should we consider before making an offer?

If the neighborhood is nice but has mediocre schools, you can assume the street draws an older demographic and can plan your design and features accordingly. If the community has a plethora of trendy shops and startup tech companies, you’ll likely be selling to millennials buying their first or second home. There isn’t much you can do about the whole area, but you can make the property work for those who are most likely to purchase the property.

Understanding factors such as where the nearest stores are, if there’s public transportation or highways nearby, and what the local parks are like can help you understand what your ideal buyers look like. Though we live in blended societies, buyers will want to know what the area has to offer, who lives down the street, what the noise levels will be, and most importantly…

1. What’s the crime level?

Safety is vital! An interested buyer will look this up online or have their agent pull reports. Finding out the crime rate, area registered offenders, and more is just a click away. Although you can’t control these factors at the time of sale, you can consider them at the time of purchase and decide if the current quality of the area crime rate will affect your selling potential.

Remember the cliche that “crime has no zip code.” Anything can happen anywhere. Fortunately, most buyers won’t look at a house in a neighborhood they wouldn’t want to live in, so it’s safe to assume most of the leads you have touring the home will already be okay with the community in which it resides, but it’s always a factor to consider.

When you can anticipate the needs of the buyer and work any plans you have for the house around the most important ones, you have a better chance of selling a property fast.

However, none of these factors will matter as much as doing a quality job without cutting corners, hitting all the safety requirements, and pricing the property right. When you do your best to create a house that anyone could call home and provide a neutral slate upon which anyone could build their life, you’ll sell as well as the market allows.

Want to increase your odds of selling faster? We can help! Call us at (800) 473-6051 to learn what program will best fit your needs. Not everyone is ready for a coach or one-on-one training, but with events, home study courses, and certifications at your finger tips, why struggle along on your own?

Lee A. Arnold


The Lee Arnold System of Real Estate Investing

Follow me on Twitter: @CogoCapital  and @LeeArnoldSystem 

Have a deal? Visit us at to fill out your fast and easy quote. Want to learn more about COGO first? CLICK HERE to get to know all the ins and out!

For our latest success stories, click HERE to read how others are finding, funding, and making money on their deals.


Attend a FUNDING TOUR to receive a $250,000 pre-approval letter for your next property. To learn more and claim your seat today, visit or call us at (800) 473-6051.

What Everybody Ought To Know About Living In A Rehab Home

- - Fixing

Cleaning Up after the Flood Water is Gone

Does it make you wonder what it would be like to live in your fix and flip? Maybe it’s in a different city or state? Maybe it’ll cut the cost of travel or rent? Or, just imagine all the work you will get done. Is living with the roaches and the dust really worth it? Or are you the kind who likes the disorder because you like the break from the world of Mr.Clean and Febreeze? Read on to discover if living in your rehab home is really worth the inconveniences it creates.

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