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.
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.