Forgetful Flippers

Let’s face it. There is so much to remember when investing in real estate. We have definitely given plenty advice and tips on how to leverage other people’s time so you don’t have to be the one to do and remember everything, but there are still some small items that can escape an REI’s mind.


Have you ever overlooked any of these items when flipping a house?

1. Vanishing Vandals

vandalismRehabbing property is not a one day job. Depending on the time of year, it can take several months to finish. An empty piece of property is vulnerable to vandalism. Vacant Home Insurance is not required in all states and will cover vandalism only during the first month that your property is unoccupied, after that you are on your own. Keep in mind these easy tips:



  • Cover windows with sheets or drapes
  • Request the police for extra patrol and also explain to them that you are rehabbing
  • Barricade all windows and doors that do not lock
  • Change the locks
  • See #2


2. Light it up!

If you were a buyer, would you buy a house that is full of shadows and dullness or one that is adequately lit and looks like it has some life in it? A well lit house looks less depressing and livelier.

Yellow lights are a no no. You can easily establish an upbeat mood with a bright set of lights so it’s a good idea to go for those. Another thing that you should never forget to replace is flickering lights. Some people associate flickering lights with horror films with gory murder scenes. Overall, proper lighting is a very economic way of showing potential buyers what you have done with the property.


3. Conforming and Comparing

If you are going to install new fixtures in the house at least ensure that they match. For starters, door knobs and hinges should match and so should shower heads, faucets and towel racks.

If you are going to purchase new appliances ensure they are all from the same brand or at least have the same style. Make sure your upgrades are comparable to other in the neighborhood as well.


4. For Sale Only When Finished!

american housing market
Curb appeal is one way of attracting potential buyers but if a buyer sees a “for sale” sign outside a house that looks like it survived a storm, they might make a mental note never to return. Also don’t list a house with a picture before the renovating the front of the house. If the front of the house is dilapidated, that is what buyers will see on the picture. If you want to sell your house as soon as possible, this would be a less than ideal way to begin.


5. A New Mailbox

What’s the first thing you notice when you pull up to a house that you are interested in buying? Most people notice the mailbox.

Don’t mistakenly give potential buyers the wrong impression with an old rusty mailbox. This could tell them that the inside of the house is probably just as rusty. After all, if you didn’t bother to take care of it, what other thing did you also forget to take care of inside the house? Remember that mailboxes are not that expensive. You can get custom mailboxes from any of the local shops in your area for under a hundred bucks.


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Erik Hitzelberger has been Real Estate Investor since 2007. While learning the ropes in the market down-cycle, he now teaches others how to use his systems and leverage other people’s expertise to achieve their own goals.

Erik Hitzelberger – who has written posts on Part Time REI.

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About Erik Hitzelberger

Erik Hitzelberger has been Real Estate Investor since 2007. While learning the ropes in the market down-cycle, he now teaches others how to use his systems and leverage other people's expertise to achieve their own goals.

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