Friday, January 22, 2010

Fix and Flippers, Bustin’ Your Chops Again

Alright folks. I’m going to rag on fix and flippers again. I can’t help it; they leave themselves wide open.

Investors! Listen up! When you buy a home at foreclosure auction, it’s going to need some work. Paint and carpet might not be all the house needs to make it livable. Case in point (these are all from 1 home). . .

fix and flipper fix the sink Kitchen sink has a temporary drain pipe. It’s designed to get you through a weekend until the plumber arrives.

fix and flipper fix the toilet Oh, fix and flipper. Seriously?! You put in laminate floors. But they’re already buckling because the toilet leaks where it connects to the wall. This is about $20 in parts and 30 minutes of labor!

fix and flipper fix the tub While you’ve got the plumber in the house, how about having him spend another 10 minutes and $15 in parts to make the shower/tub diverter work? So I could, ya know, maybe. . . take a shower?

fix and flipper fix the water heater Now this one’s truly stoopid. That red arrow is pointing to the pressure relief valve on the water heater. It’s connected to. . . wait for it. . . nothing. So if the pressure relief valve starts working, it will spew hot water all over the wall of the garage. Not how it’s designed to work. Again, 30-45 of labor and maybe $10-$20 worth of parts.

fix and flipper fix the closet doors Oh fix and flipper. Again I say unto you, Seriously?!  You installed shiny new carpet over what I presume is a new carpet pad. But you didn’t install door handles on the doors. Or the $8 worth of hardware that makes the doors stick to the floor instead of flopping freely in the breeze.  Ohhhhhh, Le Sigh.

fix and flipper fix the double tap Can’t tell what it is? Click to enlarge. It’s the circuit breaker box at the side of the house. Showing 1 circuit breaker attached to 2 household items (hence ‘double tap’). I’ve seen this job done. It requires an electrician buy about $10 worth of parts and spend 15 minutes installing another circuit breaker, then re-wiring 1 of the 2 household items to the new breaker. Fix and flipper: for realsies? you couldn’t manage this?

OK, all snark aside. The work here amounts to maybe $600 worth of parts and labor from a plumber and an electrician. They call them fix and flips; the buyer shouldn't have to ask for these to be fixed. If you’re flipping houses and your profit margin is so slim you can’t absorb $600, you shouldn’t be flipping houses. You’re doing it wrong. Stop. Get a desk job. Seriously.