Flipping Properties

A couple of hundred people can do impressive things when they are organized.  They can create their own opportunity.  Flipping properties is one such opportunity that is worth discussing.

The idea is sound: Buy a home, fix it up, sell it for a profit.  People do this all the time.  I know several people who do this as a side income.  I know a couple of folks that do this as their primary income.  Most of the time, the properties are distressed: the foundation is in need of repair or the interior is in need of major renovation.  There is homework to do on the property before purchase: is there a lien on the place or back taxes due upon transfer of title?  About 15 years ago I was looking at a house to fix up.  It needed a complete plumbing overhaul, considerable interior renovation, and the yard was a terrific mess.  I did some checking, found out the owner had passed away and a hospital held a lien on the place for $200,000.  I've got a hunch the $200k was unpaid medical bills (the guy died after all).  That lien would have to be settled before the title for the property could be transferred.  I drove by it a couple of months ago.  It's quite literally falling in.  The yard has grown wild, the roof has collapsed on one side, the doors and windows have been boarded up (probably by the city to keep out the druggies).  It's a darn shame.  It was a cute little house.  If not for the lien, it could have been fixed up pretty quickly, with only a few thousand bucks invested, and a handy carpenter could have earned a tidy profit if purchased for a reasonable price.

A suitable property will come along from time to time.  This is not a regular or scheduled opportunity, but one that must be siezed upon.  This makes it difficult for the co-op to tackle, as budget decisions will be planned in advance.  However, an organized group of people could put together the funding on their own in short order, acquire the property, use the tool library to great advantage, and put themselves to work to repair and renovate the property.  It would be possible to take advantage of scavenged and repurpose items.  Cleanup of the property can offer materials suitable for use on the farm.

A project such as this offers a glimpse of the value of networking with other members of the co-op.  Doing this alone can be daunting or unaffordable.  Several people working together can put larger projects within reach and brings to bear the experience and know-how that one person alone may not have.  The nature of the organized group creates opportunity.


Cooperative Enterprise, Plan Outline