Can You Sell Your Quick Flips to FHA Buyers?


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FHA Extends its property flipping waiver through december 2014

In my post, Fannie Mae and the Dodd-Frank Act – Investors Beware, I discussed a quick flipping road block for investors looking to turn properties around in less than three months. At one time, quick flippers had to hold onto their investment property for 90 days before selling it to a home buyer whose loan was secured by Fannie Mae. Since this post, the guidelines have changed.

Selling Your Quick Flips to FHA Buyers

For those quick flippers specializing in acquiring and renovating properties, FHA now encourages investors to renovate foreclosed and abandoned homes to create the availability of affordable homes for first-time home buyers and other purchasers to help stabilize real estate prices as well as the communities.

FHA has extended its Property Flipping Waiver through December 31, 2014.
Everything will stay the same for the next two years, where the seller no longer has to be on the Title of the property for 90 days or more before a new buyer can purchase the subject property on a FHA loan.

While the waiver is designed to assist in the sale of the excess inventory due to foreclosures, it is not limited to only foreclose properties. It is fine for an investor to purchase a property, fix it up, and then resell it to a new buyer who is obtaining FHA financing.

The above information is courtesy of Sean Miller at Van Dyk Mortgages / 813-319-6277

Quick Flipping Property Search / Become the Real Estate Market Expert – Tip #3


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Quick flipping property search

Investing in real estate can be a scary process for new investors. There are so many questions and concerns that run through a new investors mind. One of the biggest hold ups a new investor can make is to over analyze a potential opportunity, waste valuable time, and lose out on a deal.

Doing your research to become the real estate market expert is an important step in the investing process, but don’t let that be the only thing you do as a real estate investor.  Start your quick flip real estate investing career sooner than later. Doing your homework is important, but money won’t be made until you start to invest. Once you’ve defined your target areas, gained knowledge of absorption rates and the market’s direction, it’s time to start your quick flipping property search.

Tip #1 – Defining Target Areas for Quick Flips

Tip #2 – Absorption Rates – The definition and how it’s calculated

Tip #3 – Find your property

Search the Internet daily and familiarize yourself with your local real estate market. Keep a list of potential investment properties. Sub-categorize it into a list of “current deals” and “properties to watch”.

Next, drive by investment homes that are of interest to you.  If it is a potential investment opportunity, make arrangements to view the interior, whether it be at an open house or through a local real estate agent.

Choose an agent

It’s always a good idea to use an agent that has knowledge of real estate investing. They can run comparables and advise you on whether or not the property is good deal. Better yet, see if you can find a local real estate agent that works closely with a licensed contractor who will provide a ball park estimate on the renovation costs.

Not only am I a Sarasota Lakewood Ranch real estate agent, but I am a quick flipper as well. My husband is a local builder (Brista Homes, Inc) and licensed contractor, so my clients have the benefit of viewing properties and receiving renovation estimates quickly, enabling them to make a decision on a property before it’s gone.

Your local real estate agent can set you up to receive email alerts for properties on your “watch list”. My last three quick flip properties were from my “watch list”. All had drastic price reductions. We previously viewed the properties and knew the estimated renovation costs, so once I received the price reduction alert, I submitted the offer within hours. This is one of the many benefits of using a real estate agent.


Real estate investing requires doing your homework, but don’t get stuck in the homework phase. The sooner you get started in your real estate investing career, the more comfortable you will become. It’s like with anything, the more you do, the more you learn.

Downtown Sarasota OPEN HOUSE – NYC in Sarasota!

Saturday, January 25th
11:00 – 2:00
1350 Main Street, Unit 1009, Sarasota 34236

Chic and sophisticated “urban” living at its finest. Live in the one most sought after locations in downtown Sarasota — 1350 Main Street. Turnkey furnished 1/1 end unit with luxurious designer furniture and an office too! This recently remodeled, high end, luxury unit captures the feel of New York yet is steps from the Sarasota Bay. 10th floor city and peek-a-boo Bay views. Gorgeous custom finishes, amenities, guest suites, 24 hour security, secured parking, and pet friendly. Perfect opportunity for an upscale vacation home or business professionals.

View a virtual tour of 1350 Main Street, Unit 1009

For more information call, text or email:
Gina Ursini / Keller Williams / 941-812-4894

Absorption Rate / Become the Real Estate Market Expert – Tip #2


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Become the real estate market expert – Tip #1


What is absorption rate?

The absorption rate is the rate at which the currently active inventory is turning over– or how fast homes are selling in relation to new listings on the market. It is calculated by taking the current number of available homes, and dividing it by the average number of sales per month.

For example, let’s say that there are 1,000 active listings in a particular city and they are selling at 100 per month. Divide the current number of listings (1000) by the number of sales per month (100). This gives you how many months of homes are in the current inventory. In this case, the supply of homes will be depleted in ten months.

Additional homes are coming onto the market and being sold all the time. The above calculation does not take this into account, so real estate investors should make it a habit to calculate absorption rates on a monthly basis.

How can absorption rates help real estate investors?

Absorption rates can give you an advance indication of market changes. If a market area you have been tracking has had a steady inventory of six to seven months, and over a two month period drops to six months and five months consecutively, then you are seeing a drop in supply.  If the drop in supply trend continues, but the demand for homes does not diminish, then you are looking at the possibility of an upward swing on home prices.


Defining Target Areas for Quick Flips / Become the Real Estate Market Expert – Tip #1


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Leverage a Real Estate Agent and become the real estate market expert

Do you know which areas are best to invest in and which areas to stay away from? If you are on the road to becoming a successful real estate investor, the answer will be “yes”. To be more informed than the average real estate investor, first, define your target area, then view and assess monthly real estate market reports to determine what is happening in that market.

Defining Target Areas

If your plan is to buy a home and fix it up for a quick turn around, the areas of target will be the working class and middle income neighborhoods.  If your plan is to wholesale, the target area will be the low income or distressed neighborhoods. Never start investing in real estate before learning the area first.

If you are not sure where these target areas are located, then your first step will be to start segmenting the city. Follow these helpful segmenting tips to define the areas that meet your goals.

Monthly Market Reports for Real Estate Investors

One of the very best resources for real estate market is the Multiple Listing Service, also known as the MLS. The MLS provides detailed reports of what is happening in the local area market.  Market reports include statistics such as:

  • The total number of homes sold
  • The average home price
  • The median home price
  • The median days on the market
  • The average price per square foot
  • The average list price
  • The average days to close

Real Estate agents have access to these reports. To become the market expert, leverage the assistance of a real estate agent who will email you market update reports on a regular basis. Real estate market reports will help you determine what areas are “hot” and which are not.

Request your monthly market report for Bradenton / Manatee County, FL

Market Reports: A Tool for Real Estate Investors


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Free Market Reports for Real Estate Investors

Both experienced and novice real estate investors need to keep up to date on the changes within their specific markets. A great way to accomplish this is through local market reports. Free reports are available for Sarasota, Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat Key, Siesta Key and the surrounding areas. The data used in these free market reports is consolidated from multiple sources and includes current listings, recent sales, and more. The knowledge gained from these market reports will put you in control of your real estate transactions.

Price trends market report
Understand the difference between list price (what sellers are asking) and sold price (what buyers are willing to pay). Real estate investors who compare these price trends will have a better idea of where the market is heading. View a price trend report for your zip code.

sarasota price trend market reports

Sample price trends report

Community information market report
In the community information report, you will find the median income level by household for your specific market. View community information for your zip code.

community information market report

Sample community information report

Crime risk index market reportThe crime risk index compares the likelihood of different crimes happening within the community to the national average. The national average for each type of crime equals 100, so a score of 200 would mean twice the risk of the national average, and a score of 50 would mean half the risk.  View a crime risk market report for your zipcode.

market report on crime risks

Sample crime risk report

For more information on Sarasota real estate or its surrounding areas, please do not hesitate to contact Gina Ursini at 941-812-4894

Quick Tips Foreclosure Buying Guide


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True or false?

Investors should go after foreclosure properties because they can purchase them at a deep discount.

Foreclosure and bank owned properties may be priced at lower than similar fair market properties, but be careful because you may get what you pay for. Buying foreclosure homes requires research and experience. With this in mind, here is a quick tips foreclosure buying guide for purchasing foreclosure and REO bank owned homes.

Real Estate Foreclosure Auctions

]If you are unfamiliar with real estate auctions, the new HGTV show, Flip or Flop, is a good example of what you might expect. During the shows foreclosure auctions, seasoned investors with deep pockets bid against one another to purchase a home, sight unseen, and what lurks on the inside of the home is pretty much a mystery. Trashed homes, funky layouts, and mold issues are all potential unidentified risks which widdle away at an investors potential profits.

Once you take possession, the seller washes their hands of the property. Undisclosed issues or title defects that arise after you take possession are no longer the sellers problem, they become your problem.  So, if unbeknownst to you there are people living in the home, it is your responsibility to get rid of them. To minimize the risk of claims or liens on the home, always do a title search in advance on properties that are of interest to you.

Buying Bank Owned Real Estate

When a property does not sell at a foreclosure auction, the financial institution purchases the property and it becomes known as REO or real estate owned. For the novice investor, buying a bank owned REO is the safest way to purchase a foreclosure property.

With the dispassionate financial institution as the seller, the process is slower and longer than an auction or regular transaction, but there are several advantages to purchasing a bank owned REO property. Investors have the opportunity to view the property in advance, perform an inspection, and conduct a title search. This means less risk and more potential profit.

Although many bank owned properties sell close to asking price, there are still opportunities for a good deal. One of the best tips for investors is to watch properties on a daily basis. When an owner-occupant period expires or a price drop occurs, immediately submit your offer.  A good real estate agent can assist in the process by setting you up for property alerts. As soon as one of your interested properties drops in price, you are alerted by email. I do it for my buyers all the time. I have personally purchased multiple properties using this technique.


When seeking a great deal, a foreclosure auction could be a good opportunity for the experienced investor, but novice real estate investors may want start with buying lender owned REO homes.

An REO purchase requires experience, research, and is more complex than a regular real estate transaction. Educate yourself on the keys to success. Learn how to submit a competitive offer and most importantly know what your are signing. There are critical things you should know when signing the bank addendum. A great real estate agent can assist you through the entire process.

REMODELED TO PERFECTION / 6342 Grand Oak Circle #105


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Listing courtesy of Gina Ursini / Keller Williams Lakewood Ranch / 941-812-4894

Bradenton Real Estate / 6342 Grand Oak Circle #105

6342 Grand Oak Circle #105 Bradenton, FLTour 6342 Grand Oak Circle, unit 105 right from your own home.

Beautifully remodeled ground floor condo in the golf and tennis community of Grand Oak at Tara Preserve. This designer kitchen boasts 42″ espresso shaker style cabinets, Cambria counter tops, glass tile back splash, and stainless steel appliances. Stylish industrial pendant lights accentuate the breakfast bar. Rectangular ceramic tile which mimics salvaged hard wood completes the look and continues through out the main areas, including the two newly remodeled bathrooms. The two bedrooms switch up to hand scraped hard wood flooring.

Everything in this condo is new– new AC, new water heater, new mouldings, new paver brick lanai, new everything. It’s like moving into a new home.

Additional features include a one car detached garage, storage closet, interior fire sprinkler, two community pools, and beautiful lake and golf course lanai views.  Low maintenance fees, a financially stable association, and pet friendly community, make 6342 Grand Oak Circle #105 unit a must see.

Click here to view additional information on 6342 Grand Oak Circle, #105, Bradenton, FL

Quick Flip Finishes That Make a Difference


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Maximizing Your Investment

When I buy investment properties at a great price, they usually need a lot of work.  The repairs can be extensive, so it’s important I prioritize and renovate the areas in which I will get the best return on my investment. Selecting quick flip finishes that appeal to a broad range of buyers, staying within the budget, and making my quick flip look better than its competition is key.


A kitchen remodel is one area in which you will see the greatest return on an investment. My blog post, Remodeling: Get the Most Bang for your Buck provides valuable insight on the best areas to spend your money for the highest returns. In my quick flips, the biggest chunk of money is used in the kitchen. Because I deal with quick flips and not rentals, I have not salvaged any of the kitchens. In each property the room was gutted and redesigned.

My husband is a Sarasota home builder and in some of his high end projects, his clients remodel “like new” kitchens. In one of my flippers I reused his clients 42″ cherry cabinets and black granite counter tops. In another, I used the cabinet boxes and had new door and drawer fronts made.  Their junk became my treasure.

The new trend for our area lends itself to a contemporary feel, so I tend not to use raised panel cabinets. Although I use contemporary finishes, I am careful not to make the home too taste specific. I use the following selections: espresso or white shaker style cabinets, stone counter tops, stainless steel appliances, and glass tile back splash. I want to reach a broad range of buyers, so moderation is important.


Kitchens and baths sell a home, so baths are another focal point on my quick flips. If the existing tile is in good shape, it is salvaged. When replacing shower walls, I use a white or cream subway tile for several reasons. First, neutral tones are the best color options for quick flips. Second, it is less expensive than colored subway tile. Third, it brings the contemporary feel into the room.

Light fixtures

Lighting is an integral part of any room and therefore should not be neglected. In my quick flips, I assess each room — what will the room be used for?  What type of lighting will work best?  For example, in kitchens that requires task lighting I install recessed lights for maximum bright lighting.

Lighting can also become the focal point of the room. In my most recent flipper, I added industrial pendant lights over the breakfast bar.  It added the wow factor to an otherwise ordinary space. When selecting fixtures, my preference is to use chrome or brushed nickle finishes, but I have used bronze as well.


Paint is the cheapest and most satisfying way to transform a room. When choosing colors for my quick flips I use neutral tones in tan or gray. In a past quick flip, I used Sherwin Williams mindful gray, and had positive feedback. Agents were calling me to inquire on the color. I used it in my next flipper, and low and behold, had the same results. For the trim and doors I use either a bright white or a soft white, depending on the feel I am hoping to achieve.

Avoid using white or bright colors on the walls. White makes a room feel cold and sterile. Bright colors may be great for some buyers, but to reach a broader range of buyers, keep it neutral.


To maximize your investment, determine the repairs that will provide the greatest return, estimate the time and cost of the repairs, and stay within your budget. You do not need to use the quality of finishes that I use, but I feel that these are what make my quick flips stand out from the competition. They sell fast and for the best possible price.

How I Got Started in Quick Flipping Houses


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Discovering opportunities in quick flips

The sting of the housing bubble burst affected investors across the nation, my husband and I being one of them.  Our venture in real estate investing began in 2004 when we purchased and flipped our first property. Our goal was to make enough profit to cover our daughters high school tuition. The profit covered three years tuition, so needless to say, we were eager to do more. We found it an opportunity to build our future.

The 2007 housing market decline 

When the housing market declined in 2007, our plans took a sharp left hand turn. With a majority of our money invested in properties, and market values declining quickly, we were forced to sell our investments at a loss. Our savings was depleted. The private school I taught at ran into financial problems and closed. My husbands employer cut salaries by almost 50%, but with so many lay offs were thankful he still had a job.

Worried about how we were going to afford a mortgage and two college tuitions, we down sized from a two story home on the water to a modest rental and cut back where ever possible. Throughout it all we remained positive, knowing God would bring us thorough it. At times, it felt we just about kept our head above water, but we remained faithful and optimistic. Believing that words can either bless or curse our future, we avoided negative thoughts and words. We knew were going to come out better than we were before.

Flipping houses in 2013

As things started to turn around for us, we were able to save enough money for a small flipper. We purchased a villa for $79,000, fixed it up and within three months sold it for a profit of $27,000. After a few successful flips, friends and family saw the potential, and have partnered with us on some recent quick flips, allowing us to invest in more than one property at a time. Although flipping houses is a second income source for us, it has proven to be very profitable.

I no longer teach and have started a career in real estate. My husband is a local Sarasota builder. We have found our careers to be the perfect combination for quick flipping houses. I locate properties, any condition, for the right price. My husband purchases and renovates the properties to new home standards, significantly increasing the value of the property. Once re-listed, our properties on average sell within one weeks time, allowing us to move quickly onto our next investment.

If you are interested in learning more about real estate investing and our recent quick flips, visit:

Remodeling on a Budget: Contractor Tips

Real Estate Investing:  The Key to Success

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