Flipping a Home on a Budget

Flipping homes can be a risky venture but it can also be rewarding if done correctly.  It’s important as a buyer that you know your market, do your research and understand the renovations needed to add value to your home.  Generally, house flippers aim for at least 10 to 15 profit margin from their flipped properties.  Dependent upon the shape of the house you are planning on flipping, you can still renovate on a reasonable budget.

Play Detective

Always check out the competition! Be sure to check out a few open houses in the neighborhood to see what others are doing. Don’t go above and beyond what other sellers have done to their homes. If you notice that all the homes have laminate countertops, don’t go out on a limb to add granite countertops. Be sure to view homes comparable to the ONE you intend to flip so you have a better idea of what upgrades or improvements you need to make.    

Focus on the Most Important Rooms


The most important rooms in a home are the kitchen and bathroom! Buyers always focus on these two rooms and dependent on your budget the remodeling can get expensive if you lose site of your plan. Be mindful that a white, bright and clean area will sell the buyer much quicker than a darker area.   If you are on an extremely small budget, consider reusing the cabinets by staining them.  If you can afford to lose some storage space, eliminate the top cabinets to give the kitchen a more spacious feel or replace the space with a European-style range hood above the stove. If you shop around, you can find an affordably priced one online and it can be integrated into your decor a number of creative ways.     

Add Lighting

mood lighting

Well-executed lighting can add ambiance and enhance any dull or dark room. It sets a mood and helps define a style. Accent lighting or soft spotlights can improve the look and feel of any area of the home. Try highlighting the silhouette of a cabinet with under-cabinet lighting. Tape lighting can illuminate and achieve a subtle effect. For a more affordable option that is less than LED lighting, try Xenon lighting.   Replacing an old light fixture with an elegant chandelier can add glamour and elegance within a room and there are many affordable options for chandeliers nowadays. Steer away from older fixtures. You can find some amazing light-fixtures that can dramatically dress up a room for a reasonable price.  

Update the Flooring

Don’t forget to look under the carpet! Often, older homes can have hidden wood flooring worth refinishing. Hardwood flooring can be costly; however, there are a number of beautiful laminates now available at a reasonable price. Don’t be afraid to take a class and learn the skill of flooring installation. If you decide to lay carpeting in a room, it’s recommended that you stick with beige-colored carpeting to keep everything neutral. For more on flooring, check out our Flooring 101 Guide here  

Have Freshly Painted Walls

Make sure to have a fresh coat of paint throughout the entire home. Be sure to stick with neutral paint tones and avoid flat paints because the walls can show dirt much quicker.  

Upgrade Accents

door knob

Check that all door knobs, faucets, cabinet pulls and switch plates match throughout the house. These smaller items matter and can be updated on a reasonable budget.  

Check Beyond Aesthetics

Catch improvements before the buyer’s home inspector catches something. Check the electrical, water heater, plumbing, as well as heater and air conditioning unit. Replacing an outdated heating and air conditioning unit can add instant value to your home.  

Add Curb Appeal

natural landscaping

Today, there are many options for natural landscaping. Most people prefer a well-kept, easily maintainable yard. Tear out the grass and consider using plants that require low water. Ground-hugging perennials like thyme, vinca and creeping jenny make a great lawn cover without ever having to pull out the lawn mower.

If you want less green to maintain, grass or plants can be replaced with hardscapes that offer space for entertainment and add a more modern look and feel. Consider laying flagstone or slate to add curb and texture appeal but don’t forget to consider drainage should you lay a large amount of slate or stone.

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