Introducing… My Flip House!

Psssst… this post *might* contain affiliate links: see my disclosure here.

I’ve purchased a flip house and will take you along as I fix her up!

exterior of my flip house

Sometime last summer, I started stewing on the idea of a bigger project. There are still plenty of things to do around my own home, but… nothing major MAJOR. The idea of finding a smaller place to makeover, share across my channels and then turn around and sell (or rent) was appealing if not terrifying. I enlisted the help of my angelic realtor (who is also a friend and confidante) and started searching the MLS listings in our town and neighboring towns.

historic home for sale

The obvious challenge was finding something in my price range that had potential to then resell for… more. We live about an hour outside of NYC and real estate prices can be bananas, to say the least. There was lots of mathing and comparing comps and trying to wrap my head around the potential for earnings once the cost of the transaction and taxes and attorney’s fees and realtor’s fees etc. were taken’ into consideration. Here’s where your agent will come in clutch: we looked at maybe a dozen homes and getting her perspective as to what updates needed to happen and what a possible resale price would be was all an essential part of the process and it took months. In fact, we went to contract on one cute house, but had to walk away due to a buried fuel tank that the bank who owned the property was unwilling to mitigate.

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smalll yellow cape house

Which brings me to the house that I did end up buying (spoiler… sorry). So why this one? It’s in an amazing neighborhood on a terrific block so location, location, location. It was the right price. And, most importantly, it needed some cosmetic love. I’m fairly handy, but I’m no contractor so any houses that needed *major* help were more or less off the table and this one is in great shape. I was looking for homes that hadn’t been updated for a while aesthetically so shag carpet, paneling, and old light fixtures were right up my makeover alley. Buckle up, because this house needs some unwinding.

interior of flip house dining room saloon
flip house living room before

Downstairs there’s a good sized living room, a lovely foyer, a dining room and a kitchen. The dining room has a lot of decorative bells to unring as does the living room and the foyer. Mainly removing wallpaper, faux beams, and paneling and eventually uncovering the hard wood floors. The kitchen is still a work in progress conceptually. I’ll remove the funny island and possibly wrap the counter around that one wall and add a stove. The current refrigerator is too deep for the space so a counter depth fridge will make a big difference too.

kitchen at the flip house

Upstairs there are three bedrooms, a bathroom and a cute little sunny office. Bedrooms will get the same de-wallpapering, de-paneling, de-wall-to-wall carpeting treatment as downstairs. We found a window covered up in the primary bedroom so I’m hoping my contractor can help open that up. I will also need a bit of his help to borrow some space from a closet to make the bathroom vanity a bit more functional.

upstairs primary bedroom with purple carpet
boys bedroom in flip house before

This house also has a terrific yard! I’ll give the small deck a coat of paint and add a patio space. There’s a metal shed in the back that is looking pretty shabby but I can paint it for a new lease on life. Minor landscaping and the space should look more inviting. A few touchups in the front (shutters, a fresh coat of paint on the porch, etc.) and I’m good to go!

backyard at the flip house
backyard at the flip house

I’ve been working in the house for few weeks and so far the wallpaper has been the biggest challenge which was to be expected. Once I’m done with all the paper, I’ll ask my dry-waller to come and give me an estimate to tape/ patch/ mud whatever he needs to… I suspect he can finish the house in a day or two and it might take me a month!

wallpaper at the flip house

My mantra when looking at houses was that it wasn’t about making a fortune… it was about learning about this whole process. Obviously I’d love to turn a profit, but every step of this endeavor has been a learning experience so far. From searching the area for possible homes, to actually closing the deal, to navigating the inspection to triaging the work… learn-ing. I have a loose timeline and would love to get the house back on the market by the end of our real estate season which is Early fall/ late summer.

working on my flip house

My goal is to demo and remove what I can to present a fresh, clean bright new space. Think clean white walls, refinished hardwood floors, maybe a few fun decorative touches in smaller spaces… the home itself is from the 1920s and is so charming and sweet. Great space with plenty of natural light and a terrific lot. The next home owner can knock down walls or gut the kitchen, but my job is just to clean her up and give her a bit of a glow up. (I’m holding a giant loaf of bread below because that’s a traditional Irish housewarming gift… see here for more info about my giant food!)

buying a flip house

Make sure you follow along to see what progress I make each week. I’m also sharing over on YouTube if you *really* want to see behind the scenes of everything. Leave me a comment if you have any questions for me as I’d love to help!

Check out my YouTube channel here!

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