Home flipping has never been easier, no matter how fun TV shows like “Flip or Flop” make it.
It has been even more difficult lately due to the low supply, high prices and a rush for apartments triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.
House flipping is defined as buying and reselling the same house over a 12 month period, and profits are heavily dependent on both the health of the housing market and the cost of the flipping. Most pinball machines will upgrade or upgrade the house in some way to increase their return on investment.
Despite the long list of obstacles, almost 80,000 single-family homes and condominiums were turned over in the second quarter of this year, according to Attom’s real estate database. That equates to almost 5% of all home sales. While the volume is below the ten-year average, it is the first spike in flipping in more than a year.
However, profits are shrinking. Gross profit on a typical flip rose to $ 67,000 in the second quarter as home values soared. But the return on investment, which is calculated after taking into account all the costs of the flip, has decreased.
The return was just 33.5% in the second quarter, up from 37% in the previous quarter and 40% in the second quarter of 2020. Investors are now seeing the lowest returns since 2011, when the real estate market hadn’t yet started rebounding from the subprime mortgage crash.
“It’s not that home flipping has become a losing business. A 33% gain on a short-term investment remained pretty decent after renovation and storage costs,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer at Attom. “But with a few more periods like the second quarter of this year, investors may need to re-focus their view of these businesses.”
Of course, all real estate is local, and some markets make pinball more profitable than others.
Metropolitan regions with the highest flipping returns on investment:
- Oklahoma City (196%)
- Fargo, North Dakota (185%)
- Pittsburgh (154%)
- Omaha, Nebraska (135%)
- Philadelphia (100%)
- Buffalo, New York (93%)
- Baltimore (91%)
Areas with the lowest winnings on home flips:
- Gulfport, Mississippi (-8%);
- Corpus Christi, Texas (+ 0.7%)
- College Station, Texas (+ 1%)
- Longview, Texas (+ 7%)
- Daphne-Fairhope, Alabama (+ 8.5%)
The returns are decreasing for several reasons. Home prices are still rising rapidly, but profits have slowed lately. Additionally, the cost of renovating a home is much higher due to inflation and supply chain disruptions from the pandemic.
Additionally, many home pinball machines are individuals or small operators who don’t have access to discounted materials like wood that large home builders have, Teta said.
“As a result, they are basically paying the retail trade like the average consumer,” he added.
The labor shortage also hits flippers, causing additional delays and increased costs that are likely to detract from profits in the quarters to come.