Dirty Pools, Short Sales, and New Website Updates

The new site is still a work in progress. Its amazing how customized you can make these WordPress sites, with all the themes, plug-ins, widgets and who knows what else, it’s actually a little overwhelming. I should have the new site ready over the next few days.

On the house flipping front we are still cruising right along. We’ve got three new properties lined up that we should be closing on over the next 10 days…. and I just heard from my negotiator that we got another short sale deal approved today.

The three new purchases are all really good deals. Two of them are REO’s that we are buying through the same agent and one is a short sale that we have been negotiating for the last 10 months.

One of the bank owned houses has yet another pool. This is the fourth pool we’ve had to deal with in the last three months. We were thinking we may actually be able to save this one, but after draining it and having a pool company look at it closer, it turns out there are some problems that are going to make it too costly to fix. In determining if we are going to keep a pool we look at how much it’s gonna cost to fix it and get it up and running vs. how much it will cost to fill it in….. usually it’s just cheaper to fill them in…. and so that is what we do.  Of the four pools, one was an above ground that we knocked down, and three were inground that we filled in. Here in the Northeast pools add very little resale value, if any at all, so that is why we fill them in.

Heres a look at it before we drained it. This thing looked and smelled like a swamp. Notice the nice green color.

Green Pool

 

Dominic tried to throw a whole bunch of chlorine in their to clean it up, but I don’t think it worked.

I’ve got to share this video with you…. it’s the funniest thing ever. I was laughing so hard when I saw this on TV for the first time. This is Armando visiting our pool pictured above!!!!

LOL!!!!! Oh man I could watch that all day 🙂

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Historic Home Rehab

We’ve officially closed on the historic home and our renovation plans have been approved by the historical society. Our first job is to smash up the concrete pool deck, fill the pool in, clear and level the overgrown yard, and tear off the illegal addition built on the rear of the house. 

I was a bit surprised to find that the interior of the house is no where near as bad as the exterior. Don’t get me wrong….. it definitely needs lots of work, and it smells terrible, but overall it isn’t as bad as we first thought.

We are doing a full renovation on over 3,000 sq. ft., so this job is going to take several months to complete. The budget is around $75k-$80k, but hopefully our contractor can find a way to save a few bucks here and there. 🙂

 Heres a bunch of before pictures for you to look at:

Bowdoin St Springfield MA

Pool

Pondwater in Pool

Illegal/Halfassed addition built on rear of House

Overgrown Yard

Overgrown Yard

Interior of illegal addition

Kitchen

Kitchen pic 2

Kitchen Pic 3

Dining Room

Living Room

Main Hallway/Staircase

Full Bath 1

Full Bath 2

Half Bath

Bedroom with Fireplace

Bedroom 2

Scarface Bedroom

The REO broker told us that they took 8 dumpsters worth of trash out of this house just from the inside, and then they hired a professional cleaning crew to come in and scrub everything down…. and it still looks real nasty, and smells even worse. If you add up the cash-for-keys the bank had to give to the owners to get them out ($2,000), the cost of the trash out and the cost of the cleaning crew, the bank probably spent more getting the house ready for sale than what we paid for it!!!! Not to mention the $176,000 they lost on the mortgage they gave in 2006.  Hmmmm I wonder why all these banks are going out of business??

I’ll post some more updates of this project as things progress, as well as a few videos that we’ve put together.

70 Glenwood; Where Have You Gone

If you’ve been following my blog for a little while you may have remembered the property at 70 Glenwood St. This is the property with some major fire damage where we completely knocked out the floor of the first level. If you missed that video you have to see it … click HERE to watch it!!

Well we hit some delays getting our heat on there because the gas company told us they cut the line at the street and they wouldn’t be able to fix it until spring time. Long story short, they finally sent someone to the house and realized the line wasn’t cut at the street and we did have gas to the house, however we lost a good amount of time because we couldn’t get heat to the house, which also meant no water.

So I have a video we put together awhile back, as well as some more recent photos of the property near completion. Heres the video:

And here are some pictures of the house nearly complete. This is the first property we started using those nice archways, we borrowed the idea from Tom Tarrant over at www.TomTarrant.com .

Check it out:

Living Room with Bamboo Flooring

Front Door Looking from Living Room

Kitchen Looking from Dining Room

Archway Between Dining Room and Kitchen

Kitchen

Full Bath

Master Bedroom

Finished Attic Space

New Main Support Beam

This house was a small two family home that we converted to a single family. It is now 4-5 bedrooms with 2 1/2 baths and maybe 1600-1700 square feet.

Next step is to stage it and get it SOLD!!

Deal Updates – 209 Gifford St, Springfield

Our sweet little cape on Gifford St is nearing completion. All the finish electrical work is done and the plumbers should be completing their finish work over the next week. We installed some new hard wood floors and added a nice deck to the back of the house.

We put a  FSBO sign out on all our properties as we are nearing completion and Dom has been receiving quite a few calls  from interested buyers. I also noticed quite a few google searches for 209 Gifford St finding their way to this blog. The property is in an awesome neighborhood and its a good sign that we are getting alot of interest already.

Heres a couple pics of some of the work;

209 Gifford St Springfield MA

 

New Front Entrance Just Added

 

New Deck just Built off Rear of House

 

Open Kitchen

New Hardwoods just Installed

Double Sink Vanity

Glass Tile Inlay

Stainless Steel Appliances, Birch Cabinets

This house has come a long way since we first purchased it.

Well thats all I’ve got for tonight. I’ll work on getting some updates done on a few of our other houses.

Box Trucks and Paint Colors

Well it’s been another productive week in Springfield. We got two BPO’s done for short sales that we are working on, looked at a ton of houses, got an offer accepted on a nice REO deal, and yesterday we had lunch with a group of investors that came up to Springfield from southern CT for a little mastermind session. I know they read my blog so I want to thank you guys for lunch!! 

On the marketing front, we picked up a big box truck a few weeks back that we’ve been having our contractor use to cruise around town with. The truck serves two purposes; it’s great for our contractor to store all his tools and transport materials to all the various job sites, but more importantly we are using it for a bit of shameless advertising. Heres a look at it:

Sweet Box Truck

 

Now isn’t that a sweet ride!!!! It’s too bad our contractor is married with kids because I know he could be getting a lot of chicks driving around in a truck like that 🙂 

On the deal front we are going to be closing on the Giant Historic house next week as the title issues are finally cleared up. We spent today in Boston visiting a friend of mine who develops six unit condominium complexes. These are new construction buildings that he develops in existing neighborhoods. He builds them to look like older historic homes to match the surrounding properties. His buildings come out awesome and he uses some real nice exterior paint schemes. We visited a couple of his properties to get some good ideas for our exterior paint colors on the historic house. Heres a look at a few of his buildings:

House #1

This property has a darker sage green for the main body… almost an olive-green. The trim is a pale yellow and the accents are a burnt orange. I really like this particular look.

Historic Color Scheme 1

House #2

This house has a very deep red for the main body with a pale yellow trim and black accents. I think this may be a little too dark for what we are looking for.

House #3

This property has a lighter sage green for the main body with cream trim and a very rich/deep purple on the trim. I like this color scheme as well but I think I prefer the burnt orange over the deep purple.

Historic House Paint Color #3

House #4

This property has a lighter blue for the main body with pale yellow trim and burnt orange accent.

I’m leaning towards a sage green for the main body and I really like the contrasting look of the burnt orange accents. Tomorrow I’m going to go to Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore to look at their books and get some more ideas. We are suppose to be meeting with the local Historical Society on Monday so I’d like to have the exterior paint colors nailed down so I can show them what we are going to be using.

Let me know which of the houses you like or which colors you think look good. Leave a comment as any feedback would be greatly appreciated!!!

Well that was Quick!! Ravenwood Finished

So I posted a semi-before video of the property at Ravenwood on Friday…. and now I’ve already got the after pictures for you to see. This renovation went real quick, and believe it or not it’s already sold and our new buyer has moved in.

We purchased this house as a short sale on January 21, 2010, had the renovation complete by February 12, and had our new buyer moving in on February 20th. That is lightning fast… but we did cheat a little bit. See ,we actually started working on the house about two weeks before we even owned it, a little risky, yes, but the rehab business is about taking risks. Also, we had been working with this buyer for a few months. She had wanted to buy our Plumtree Rd house and Lasalle St house but missed out on both those… so she was very determined not to miss this one. She saw Ravenwood before we were even done with the work and said she’d take it…. so it was an easy sale!!!

The house came out real nice… I’m not a huge fan of the color of the roof, but one half was brand new shingles (reddish brown color) and the other half of the roof needed to be replaced. So rather than tear off the brand new section we just matched what was there (the reddish brown shingle). My first choice is always a blackish grey shingle, this color looks awesome no matter what color the house is. The only time we really deviate from this is when we have to match an existing shingle… and honestly, I don’t know what some of these homeowners are thinking when they are choosing a roof color??? Shingle color is something I am very particular about, almost like a pet peeve, but I realize I am probably boring most of you so let’s get on with the pictures;

Ravenwood St Springfield MA

Ravenwood St Front

So I just realized you can’t even really see the roof in these photos… just take my word for it.

Kitchen 1

Kitchen 2

Kitchen 3

Kitchen -- Again....

I took alot of pictures of the kitchen, I think it came out nice!! Check out the appliances, top of the line GE Profile… yes that is a Double Oven!!  We went even more over the top on the Fridge….

GE Cafe Series French Door Fridge

If you look hard enough you can see the little GE symbol on the Fridge is Red… this is the Cafe series…. and supposedly it is a step up from the Profile Series… which means it’s a real bad-ass fridge, almost better than Electrolux!!! Plus it’s a French Door Fridge… so that makes it even more awesome.

Kitchen Looking in from Living Room

Living Room

Dining Area -- Nice 18x18 Tiles on the Floor

Living Room from Kitchen

Bathroom

Tiled Tub Surround with Glass Tile Border

Shower Panel w/ Glass Tile Inlay

 We did the bathroom a little different here… We used a glass tile inlay and I think it looks real Sweet. You will see this in all our houses moving forward. Also we added one of those curved Hotel Shower Bars… a nice little upgrade.

Bedroom

Finished Basement

So, that’s about it for Ravenwood… In and Out in the blink of an eye, a real text-book flip. On to the next one!!

Crazy Week + 37 Mansfield St Final Video

The week started and ended very good with us getting two more offers accepted, one on Monday and the other on Friday. The first deal is an estate property that was brought to us by one of the bigger REO agents in our city. The house is in a little rougher neighborhood than I like, but this will be the third property we’ve purchased from this particular agent in the last couple months so I’m viewing it as a way to further solidify our relationship.

The second deal is a short sale that we received an approval letter for on Friday. This should be a pretty sweet deal but we’ve got to clear up a few little title issues before we can close on it.

In other news, after only owning the house on Ravenwood St for a little over two weeks, we’ve got the rehab finished and our new buyer is already moving in!!!  I’ll have pictures and videos of this property coming up in the next week or so.

OK… to wrap it up I want to post our final walkthrough of the fire damaged multi family home we did at 37 Mansfield St in Springfield. You can see all the before pictures here, and our initial walk through video here.

Check it out;