By Mike Baird
Back when the housing market crashed in 2008, people were walking away from their mortgages left and right. That meant, in the months and first few years afterward, the market was flooded with foreclosed and short-sale homes. You couldn’t throw a rock without finding a great flip house. Even with market values at record lows, real estate investors had no trouble making profits off of their flips, because they’d gotten the properties at such deep discounts to begin with.
As the housing market has bounced back, though, people have started saying that house-flipping is a dead or dying industry. They think that declines in foreclosures and increases in market values will put an end to the heyday of fix-and-flip houses. There’s just one big problem with that reasoning — it’s wrong. And here’s why…
Markets Aren’t Static
First of all, though the country has largely recovered from the housing crash, housing markets are always changing. Business Insider, Forbes, and MarketWatch have all published articles this year on the best house flipping markets in the United States. Not only does that mean that there are still great markets to flip in, but it also means that those markets are subject to change.
Because real estate markets are dynamic, not static, that means that there are always going to be areas where people find that they need to move sooner than they can sell their home, places with a lot of vacancies and worn-down houses with lower market values, etc. These places are prime markets for house flippers.
People Will Always Need Help
Also, yes, the economy and the housing market are both on the mend, but that doesn’t mean people aren’t still struggling. With unemployment rates as high as they are, a lot of people are still having difficulty making their mortgage payments. Distressed homeowners need help avoiding foreclosure, and they can often do better buying a smaller property or renting in a more affordable area.
As a house flipper, you can help these motivated sellers get out from under the burdens of their mortgages. Yes, they’re agreeing to sell their homes for less than market value, but they’re also getting out of debt and away from the threat of foreclosure and bankruptcy. As long as this need exists (and, unfortunately, it probably always will), there will always be a market for flipping houses.
Why It’s Never Too Late for You
Finally, let’s talk about why it’s not too late for you personally to get into house flipping. This business can be as active or as passive as you want it to be. You can find your own leads and DIY a lot of the work that you have experience with, and you can act as your own realtor, too. Or you can hire professionals to do just about everything for you while you find investment capital and make deals.
Basically, if you start flipping houses now, no matter what age you are, you can set yourself up for a really comfortable retirement with passive (and, if you want, active) income coming in regularly, long after you retire from your day job. Like I said, the market for house flipping is not in any way dying. In fact, with improving market values, I’m seeing more profits than ever with my flips, which should be good news to anyone who wants to get into this business.
So, no, it’s definitely not too late to start flipping, either for the market or for you. In fact, if you start with one flip house now, and you start to grow your business slowly but surely over the next few years, you could end up being one of the top real estate investors in your market. There’s really nothing stopping you.