Flipping houses is the process where an investor buys a property, makes some repairs and then sells for a profit. Often, flipping houses is a fast process, which means the repairs made are often just cosmetic and do not address serious issues.
When buying a flipped house, it is essential to be cautious about getting a proper inspection. If you do not, you may end up with a home that requires costly repairs that the flipper did not properly address before selling it. Luckily, there are several things you can look for that will tell you this is a bad flip.
While most flippers focus on making their properties look good with the hopes you will not look under the surface, they are usually working so quickly that they leave signs of sloppiness. Check out all finishes. Look for paint splotches where they should not be, doors that do not close properly, loose baseboards or excessive caulking around windows. If they have issues with minor finishing details, then the chances are good they did not do much except aesthetic work.
Look under sinks and in the attic and basement for signs of water damage. Also, check outside along the bottom of the exterior for signs that water is wicking into the siding. They can cover some damage with paint, but it is difficult to hide it all, and water can introduce serious issues in the home.
Careful inspection of a suspected flipped home is the only way to protect yourself. Make sure that you hire an inspector who is willing to do a thorough job to best protect yourself from bad construction.