Rehab Remotely

Hi all,

I travel a lot in my day job but want to begin rehabbing and flipping houses.

All posts I’ve read here say that you have to be on site every day. Has anyone ever managed a rehab remotely? Should I consider hiring a project manager?

My goal is to flip two houses my first year. The fact that I travel a lot makes it tough but I believe there has to be some way around thus. Any su :helpggestions?

Thanks. :help

That would be a tough way to break into the business. Well, unless your project manager is somebody experienced, affordable, AND somebody you trust. I wouldn’t recommend it… my two cents.

Jared has pegged it right on the money.


Sounds like an episode of property ladder gone bad

Thanks for your replies. However, this can’t be the first time someone has run into this issue can it? I mean I’m not ready for this to be the reason not to become an RE investor. Rehabbing fits my goals. Any ideas will be appreciated. Thanks.

It’s hard enough to break into this business and do well when you are on site everyday, I couldn’t imagine trying to do your first rehab without even being around.

I don’t think your going to get the answer you want to hear Lionel… it’s a bad idea.

Thanks for the replies. This is going to take some re-thinking. The rehab path meets my goals but it’s going to prove logistically untenable. Just curious: do most rehabbers do it full time with no other day job?

I think it just depends. I started on a part time basis and then once I had enough money in savings I jumped in full time and quit my job. I have an investor friend that works full time at his job and then when he has a rehab going he works 4-6 hours a night and weekends to get it done.

Our property is located hundreds of miles away from where we were living. I still took time off and went there to do the rehab. You can do anything if you have enough money, but will you make a profit in the end? I can’t imagine what it would’ve cost to hire someone to do all the work we needed to complete.

Thanks again for the replies.

I had been toying with the idea of a weekend-only rehab but I ruled it out due to concerns about the security of the property during the week and the availability of contractors on the weekend. Also, I imagine holding costs would probably be prohibitive due to the stretched rehab time.

Finding a contractor/partner was another idea I had. However, half the profit is not appetizing but if it would allow me to work twice the number of deals on an annual basis, it may be feasible.

I am going to continue exploring options.

I stop in at lunch just about everyday when I have a rehab going. I have found a great GC and carpenter to spend the rest of the time on site. There aren’t many good ones though.

I have a full time job and I am getting ready for my first rehab. The house I am buying is 1 1/2 block from my work. I agreed with my wife that I will be going to the house everyday after my day job ends and during the weekends. Luckly this first one does not require a lot of work and I will be able to do most of the work myself and hire out the big stuff - carpet, some tile work in the kitchen, and the garage door.

My suggestion would be to get a local partner that could keep an eye on the property. Maybe your wife… or another family member…

Good luck!

I was going to second the wife idea, if you have a wife, because I am the wife.[shadow=red,left] :halo[/shadow]

I also don’t know a hammer from a power drill (slight exageration only) but dh coaches me on the finer points, I take pictures if necessary for him to see when he gets home and he keeps in phone contact with the GC.

DH doesn’t work out of town, but he does work 12 hours shifts which keeps him off the jobsite for days at a time. We’ve definitely had a few snafu’s along the way because of my lack of expertise (like the time I hired some shy-ster to hang sheetrock who didn’t tape the joints, filled them with mud, then fled with the money before the mud hit the floor in huge plops), but overall our rehab business has been profitable (really profitable). :bigthumbup

Thanks for the responses. My wife works as well but has the time to pop into the rehab every day at least once. I guess she hasn’t expressed all that much interest so I haven’t been exactly enthusiastic about talking to her about doing such a thing. She did mention that she could pop in but she is concerned that it wouldn’t do much good because she isn’t very forceful and doesn’t know anything about managing contractors.

Since she brought up the fact that she could pop into the rehab, maybe I’ll explore that option with the photos a little more. I can make calls to the contractor from anywhere. Thanks for the insight.

I have done many rehabs “remotely” as you put it, most of them turned out just fine, just make sure that you are dealing with competant people and you will be fine. Remember its easy to make a costly mistake and its compounded when dealing with a project far away from you. So;

1 work with people you know will do the job right

2 verify everything with a 3rd party untill you know you can trust them.

Do that you you will be fine.

I’m doing an out of state flip right now in san antonio. So far we’re way way over budget but we still should make a profit. This is our first one - I’ll repost and let you know how it goes. It looks like it will take 3 months to complete before we put it on the market - so it should be done about a month from now.

Our realtor is the one who found the property. He is also a licensed plumber and is managing the project.

We’ve made/are making three trips over there: one to walk thru the property, another to check on the progress midway, and the last one we’ll make a punch list. Each trip costs about $500 per person. that covers flight, hotel, car rental, and food. So you just factor that into the expenses when analyzing the deal.

The hardest part was picking out the materials. Being that it’s our first flip, we didn’t know the places to go so we were running all over town looking for the best deals. Next time will be much easier because we now have the knowledge of: 1. where to go, and 2. how much meterials cost.

I have a full time job, and my wife handles most of the details of the flip. It also helps that she’s an interior designer.


Wow, I just got back from San Antonio today.

I am very interested in knowing how you guys fare and how it turns out. Please keep me posted.

I think it’s time to stop thinking and start acting.

Rehabbing while out of state is not really that hard. What you will need in order to pull it off is someone who manages the project for you.

I always tell my in state clients that they should assume the attitude of my out of state investors…Hire competent folks and then let them do their jobs without you breathing down their neck…

If you spend everyday onsite you aren’t doing something right…

Mr. Rehab

:shocked WOW…that advice is almost the opposite of the advice I received earlier in this thread. Do you have any “must know” advice for remote rehabbers?

I will be jumping into my first rehab soon and I will be doing it while I travel. I am taking steps to mitigate the risk so hopefully, everything works out.

Mr. Rehab,

Your telling lionel that on his FIRST rehab that just happens to be out of state that it’s really not that hard to do? Just hire somebody to manage it for you and off you go?

I sincerely hope everything works out for you on this Lionel, just seemed a little too risky for me, especially for rehab #1. Let us know your progress and good luck!