I remember in early March of this year, reading an article about Charlotte’s real estate market and how it hadn’t cooled yet. As an investor, this made me happy, but the rest of the paper had stories beginning to trickle in about the coronavirus. I wondered how that might impact the market.
Now, that article—which didn’t mention the virus or economic crash at all—seems from a distant time. But, that doesn’t mean the news is entirely bad. While there has been a slowdown in home-buying here, this economy provides a lot of opportunity for flipping houses in Charlotte NC—provided you know what you’re doing.
Everything has changed over the last couple of months. But what hasn’t changed is what it takes to flip houses in Charlotte.
Understanding Charlotte’s Real Estate Market
In this time, there are elements of Charlotte’s economy, with its mix of industry and technology, that could make fix-and-flipping a solid proposition. Understanding how the economy works, the best ways to strike, and how to get the resources you need to see good ROI will be key to setting yourself up for potential success.
Let’s start by taking a look at one of Charlotte’s up-and-coming neighborhoods, North Division.
When this region of North Carolina was best known as an agricultural powerhouse, it was all farmland. After WWI, as we slowly transitioned into a manufacturing economy, this was one of the key areas for the textile industry. And then, when that collapsed, the neighborhood went into a decades-long tailspin.
But over the last 20 years, the Charlotte miracle has reached North Division. As tech, finance, and research companies began to turn this into an information hub city, North Division started to become a trendy, artsy neighborhood. It’s still one where the grit of the bad years can be seen around corners and on some blocks, though. So right now, it is a pretty mixed community.
This recession could change that. It seems pretty certain that technology and research are going to survive and, after an initial stock market disaster, it looks like the financial sector is recovering. But, other small businesses, like retail and lingering manufacturing jobs, might be going away for a while.
That means there will be people whose housing situations are turning “ugly.” They need quick cash and a quick, fair way to get out of that situation. Luckily, there is a good chance there will be other people to buy, people from the industries that are surviving and who would love to move into a neighborhood that is likely to bounce back stronger than ever.
If you are flipping houses in Charlotte NC, that means opportunity. But what do you need to achieve your goals?
What to Look For When Flipping Houses in Charlotte NC
Now, none of this means that you should just start buying whatever houses are on the market. A house in Washington Heights isn’t going to suddenly double in value. In fact, in a lot of neighborhoods, prices will continue to go down. What is a deal today might be an albatross tomorrow.
That’s why you have to be smart about things. In this economic climate, there are a handful of general guidelines to be aware of.
1. Don’t hold onto a property for a long time.
You never want to hold for very long, since you’re paying holding costs. But, in this case, you want to be able to sell as soon as possible. “Sell in the same market that you buy in” is my general advice. This increases your certainty.
2. Look for neighborhoods that were already up-and-coming.
A neighborhood that is already at the top of the market, like Eastover, probably won’t be seeing the same economic convulsions. Most white-collar jobs are ok (for now). And, really run-down neighborhoods like Pinecrest aren’t going to improve rapidly because of this. So you want to find houses in areas that are desirable but still have pockets of less-expensive housing. That’s usually where you will find distressed homeowners.
3. Avoid huge fixers.
Again, even though you will come across a lot of fixers around Charlotte, you don’t want to spend a lot of time and money fixing a house to sell it. There will almost always need to be work done, unless you are wholesaling, but you don’t want to put in a ton of expensive materials. Remember, buyers are also looking for deals now, and they’ll want to move fast. So, you have to understand how to balance improvement and speed.
4. Have a network of potential buyers.
There are a lot of regular homebuyers, but they might be a bit skittish. Then, there are flippers who might want to buy the home from you after you’ve bought it. This is called wholesaling and is generally part of the investors’ fix-and-flipping business plan. Remember that you want to sell, not hold. Don’t be worried if the buyer is planning on turning it into a mansion or is going to settle there with her family for 40 years.
So what do you need? Speed and knowledge. What’s the best way to get them? I know the way I chose.
The Best Way To Flip Houses in Charlotte NC
“Speed” and “knowledge” aren’t two separate things, or at least they shouldn’t be. You want to act fast but you also want to be smart. You want to have the insight to move on the right property. More knowledge helps you move faster and smarter.
I got smarter and faster when I became an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchisee.
The nationally-known and trusted “We Buy Ugly Houses®” advertising campaign helps me find qualified leads, of course. When distressed homeowners in Charlotte need to get out from under an “ugly” situation, they call me first. But, it is more than that. And, I can make them a fair offer fast.
I am also able to be connected to a nationwide network of other independent franchisees. Not only do I get boots-on-the-ground advice from my colleagues, but I also have a ready-made professional investor network of potential buyers for wholesaling any house. It’s that simple.
Even though we’re in unprecedented and exciting times, these two resources are invaluable when it comes to buying and selling investment properties here. If you’re interested in learning how to potentially be successful flipping houses in Charlotte, NC, request information about becoming a franchisee today.
Each franchise office is independently owned and operated.