How to Get Started in Real Estate

The biggest real estate questions are “How do I get started?” and “Is it really possible to make money?”

Bee and FlowerThe biggest real estate questions are “How do I get started?” and “Is it really possible to make money?”


The best way to get started is to [tag-tec]flip[/tag-tec]. Flipping is simply buying a property with a little something wrong with it; preferably around 25 percent under market value. Make  a few improvements and  sell  for a profit in less than a year. 


I know some  [tag-ice]flippers[/tag-ice] have gotten   some bad publicity over the last few years, and I think that’s a shame, because generally most [tag-cat]flippers[/tag-cat] are sincere real estate investors working very hard to add value to neighborhoods.  By and large, that’s the way many get their “big break” in the business. 


Here’s what you need to  keep in mind.  “A little something wrong” means just that.  Stay away from [tag-cat]properties[/tag-cat] that have more than a little something wrong with them.  You certainly don’t want surprises and you don’t want to deal with major issues like structural damages. 


But this is what amazed me when we  rehabbed  what has become my pride and joy property.  The day of the closing we walked in on a junk farm.  I’ll never forget that sinking feeling.  “This place is a dump” kind of stress. Can it ever look good? 


You know what?  It wasn’t that bad.  Paint really does make a tremendous difference.  We painted, we spruced, we got it back in shape.  And I kept it. 


Here’s today’s thought.  Mostly the rule is for every $1,000 you spend on painting the outside of a house, you can increase the market value by $10,000.  (That works different ways for different people and your results may vary, but that’s the general rule).  Exterior painting can bring spectacular results in many cases. 


We’ll cover more on flipping in future posts.  Meanwhile keep a look-out for the worst and  ugliest houses  in good neighborhoods.  There could be a lot of potential just waiting for a little smooth fresh paint.