Buying a Flipped House: 4 Things To Watch Out For

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Playing 4 Things To Look For Before You Buy a Flipped House | Million Dollar Listing Star Ryan Serhant
4 Things To Look For Before You Buy a Flipped House | Million Dollar Listing Star Ryan Serhant Aired February 05, 2020

Everybody loves watching a good house flip on TV — but when it comes down to buying a flipped home, are the picture-perfect exteriors ever too good to be true? Are there issues hiding behind closed doors? 

Well, real estate powerhouse and star of Bravo's "Million Dollar Listing," Ryan Serhant, not only has advice for house flippers, but also for buyers who are considering investing in a flipped home. 

1. Be wary of the word "luxury"

"That word, I think, is the most overused term in every real estate listing around the world," the author of Sell It Like Serhant explains, "and it doesn't always mean luxury."

"They use the word 'luxury' for a kitchen, [saying], 'This is a luxurious kitchen,'" he goes on. "But what they don't tell you is how the kitchen was made and [that] the kitchen cabinets are cardboard."

Ryan even showed us a listing that used the word FOUR times. 

real estate listing
Rachael Ray Show

2. Take a close look at... the FLOORS

Ask yourself this question, Ryan says: "Is the home brand-new or is it a resale?"

"People flip homes all the time, but you want to be cautious of the money that was put into the home," he explains. "Is it a good investment, and what's the quality of the construction?"

How can you tell, you ask? According to Ryan, the main indicators of quality in a home (or lack thereof) are ...

Scuffed up floors, floors that look inexpensive and floors with inconsistent staining throughout the room could be red flags, the real estate expert says. 

Or, in the case of this photo, if there is a gap in the floor seams, that might not be a good sign.

floor
Rachael Ray Show

"If the owner went cheap on the floors," Ryan explains, "I don't know what they put in the walls." 

3. Take a close look at... the KITCHEN

"You want to pay attention to a triangle layout for the appliances," the Bravo star explains. "That's a good investment."

"Often times," he continues, "the inexpensive way to design a kitchen is to just put it all up against one wall because you run all the pipes up against the wall there. And it's going to be tough on you, because you have no counter space." 

See what he means? 

kitchen layout
Rachael Ray Show

4. Take a close look at… the DOORS

Are there doors — and do they all open and close? That may seem obvious, but it's important to check, Ryan says. 

Beware of interior or exterior doors that don’t close smoothly, fail to latch securely, or tend to open or close by themselves. 

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