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Evaluating what needs to be done

This is often as difficult as finding the property. When doing flips, it's important to think purely in financial terms when deciding on items to improve or repair. Sure, those granite countertops may look great but chances are you won't get your money back on them in a $150,000 neighborhood. Try to pick items that will only increase the value of the house. (It goes without saying that safety and structural items should be done so you're not selling someone a money pit.)

In this case, I walked through the house and made a list of everything I would like to do. This wasn't an easy task. It took very little time to write the list but a lot of thought to narrow it down to what I actually wanted done. Here's the list:

  • Install new dishwasher near sink 
  • Repair wood rot around garage door and left roof eave 
  • Install crown molding in living, breakfast & master bedroom 
  • Replace front door 
  • Replace door from garage to back yard 
  • Replace exterior door from rear patio to back yard 
  • R&R rear porch addition 
  • Remove stumps in rear 
  • Clean up landscaping 
  • Remove gutters 
  • Rip out all bad carpentry in house and garage 
  • Remove front storm door 
  • Install light in kitchen 
  • Remove second faucet on front porch 
  • Remove old sprinkler system 
  • Replace garage door 
  • Fix sheetrock 
  • Tile or hardwoods in living and kitchen
  • New cabinet pulls 
  • New door handles 
  • New light fixtures 
  • Pressure wash entire house 
  • Paint exterior and interior including doors 
  • Paint/stain front and rear porch

After compiling the list, I spent a couple of hours making a detailed inventory of supplies I need to complete the remodel:

  • Door Knobs-5 Locking and 2 Hall/Closet 
  • 40 Cabinet Knobs 
  • 42 Handles 
  • 5 Door Stops 
  • Lights for the four bedrooms, hall, baths, kitchen, garage, patio, exterior, and living room 
  • Bath Sink and counter 
  • Mirrors for the hall and master baths 
  • 2 Showerheads 
  • 24 wall plate cover 
  • Hall Bath Plumbing fixture 
  • Smoke Detectors 
  • Broken tile-2 edge, 1 corner 
  • 9 x 7 Garage Door 
  • 450 square feet of Hard Floors (tile or wood)

This list is heavily abbreviated so it doesn't take up too much space.

Okay, so that's where I stand now. The next step is a long trip to Lowe's to price out all the supplies. I generally do two trips, the first is a scouting mission and the second is to buy the stuff. Why the scouting mission? A lot of times, it determines the work I'm going to do. For example, hardwoods in the living room would look great but if they run me $5 a foot just for materials, I'll probably choose tile. I'm hoping to have my materials selected (and maybe even purchased) by this weekend. Until next time...

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