House flipping has been very popular as of late. TV shows make this process seem easy and like an insanely simple way to make a lot of money. Rehabbing homes can be a great investment, but it also comes with risks not often shown on TV. Practice and research makes perfect in this realm. Whether you are trying to flip a house or you’re trying to attract people to lease or rent a property, these tips will help you maximize your profits.

Never let the yard look like this!

  1. Maintaining the Interior: Much of what prospective buyers or leasers will base decisions on is inside the property, they want to see clean and clutter free houses. When showing houses, furnishing and appliances can help the buyer see themselves living there—but don’t overdo it. Depending on the surrounding houses, high-end material floors, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and leather furniture might help attract buyers or renters due to the potential, but unless those are all included, it will not affect the rent. Even if they are included, it could be hard to justify higher rent based on appliances. When decorating and furnishing, always keep in mind that many buyers or renters want to see the potential in a property. They want to know what they can do to make the place their own—too much décor and included appliances can intimidate them—sometimes it’s best to keep it simple and “boring.”
  2. Curb Appeal. Making sure the yard is well kept and the exterior paint job is clean, simple, and well-kept can increase curb appeal. You want the property to stand out for the right reasons, meaning hot-pink trim and bright blue paneling might not be the best idea, but a brand new paint job with updated molding is likely to get some attention—even in basic colors. A little landscaping can go a long way. Flowers, shrubs, trees, and general lawn maintenance will give the impression that the inside is as nice as the outside. Plants are a fairly low-cost way to make a property look more appealing—especially if you do not put a lot of focus on the furnishing and decorating of the interior.
  3. Areas to focus on: People spend significant amounts of time in kitchens and bathrooms. Bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms, and offices can be easily improved by fresh paint, wallpaper, or furnishing but anything to do with plumbing can become expensive when renovating. Having high quality pipes, sinks, floors, and lighting in these rooms is crucial. Keep appliances timeless and comparable to those in the rest of the neighborhood.
  4. Always invest in homeowner’s insurance: Even if you’re planning on selling the property, this is a wise investment to protect yourself against accidents and acts of nature.
  5. Set up the electricity and water: When you purchase the property, get some basic utilities set up to test your repairs, to keep workers safe and productive, and to give the best walk-through of the property.
  6. Check on zoning codes. Make sure anything done outside is accepted by the town, make sure water pressure is correct, septic tanks are well-kept, and trash disposal laws are followed.

It’s never a bad idea to see advice from homeowners, real estate agents, rehab lenders, and contractors to ensure your property is the best it can be without spending all of your money.