All of the shows on TV make flipping homes very attractive but once you purchase an old building, what in the world do you do with it?
When Edan Gelt and her husband purchased their first building, it was built in the 1890’s and came equipped with gas space heaters – they had no idea of what they even were. This meant no central heat. The contraptions looked like large spaceships in the middle of the room.
Given below are some points that help you decide how to approach rehabbing:
The first thing that you need to decide is if you are rehabbing to hold or rehabbing to flip – this can impact your budget and expectations. Obviously if you are going to flip, you are going to spend less and will be more focused on aesthetics and may not invest much in mechanicals.
Think kitchen and bathrooms – this is where the value is. This is what your potential buyer or renter will be most focused on. If you are renovating to hold, you will have to address not only the cabinetry, appliances, floors and counters but also make sure that the plumbing is updated and the electrical systems are addressed.
Many homes that were built in late 1800’s or early 1900’s are not equipped to handle today’s electrical load. They were built with only 30 – 60 amps for the entire home, using a just a few circuits. Combining old circuits with today’s electrical load, the circuits can overload and become hot, sometimes catching fire, according to Edan Gelt.
You never know what you will find once you start opening walls to update electric or plumbing, you can find mold issues, structural issues and more. It is important to ensure you have reserves to cover the unexpected.
According to Edan Gelt, finding a good inspector before you purchase the property may help you forecast some issues but some won’t be discovered until after your start construction.
Edan Gelt and her husband have rehabbed apartments and homes.