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Old 12-24-2007, 01:57 AM
 
Location: Tampa baby!!
3,258 posts, read 8,268,392 times
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So I am not sure if this is being posted in the right place, but was watching Property Ladder last night and had some serious questions because I am considering this as a self employment option.

1] When contractors screw up, why does the owner end up paying out of their budget? Does anyone ever sue to get that money back after the show is taped?

2] Is it absolutely necessary to pay such a huge to the contractor (builder, plumber, electric) up front, since it seems like many times they start the job, take the money, and then never come back to finish the job. Again, does anyone sue to get that money back?

An example of screw, last night this owner wanted the hardwood floors refinished, and she walked in to the house in the middle of them actually tearing them out. So she ended up with this big hole in the middle that was just floor boards, and had to pull another $1400 out of her budget to fix their mistake. Why is this her responsibility when THEY screwed up? Obviously there is a lot they don't show on the flipping shows, I was just wondering what everyone knows about this.
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Old 12-24-2007, 03:18 AM
 
3,865 posts, read 10,065,872 times
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If you are going into it as a business, you need to know what you are doing and who you are doing it with. Researching any contractor services and finding good people is the hardest part of the job, period.

Anyone can put out the money if you have an unlimited budget, but to make money, you have to spend well.

Do you have any idea the cost of an attorney for any legal action?
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Old 12-24-2007, 04:25 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
36,079 posts, read 62,878,220 times
Reputation: 35739
Quote:
Originally Posted by floridadreamer View Post
So I am not sure if this is being posted in the right place, but was watching Property Ladder last night and had some serious questions because I am considering this as a self employment option.

1] When contractors screw up, why does the owner end up paying out of their budget? Does anyone ever sue to get that money back after the show is taped?

2] Is it absolutely necessary to pay such a huge to the contractor (builder, plumber, electric) up front, since it seems like many times they start the job, take the money, and then never come back to finish the job. Again, does anyone sue to get that money back?

An example of screw, last night this owner wanted the hardwood floors refinished, and she walked in to the house in the middle of them actually tearing them out. So she ended up with this big hole in the middle that was just floor boards, and had to pull another $1400 out of her budget to fix their mistake. Why is this her responsibility when THEY screwed up? Obviously there is a lot they don't show on the flipping shows, I was just wondering what everyone knows about this.
It is her responsibility because of one or more of the following possible reasons:
1. She owns the house and that conveys all responsibility to her.
2. She hired idiots.
3. She beat them down in price until they have no money to make their error right.
4. She proceded with no written contract.
5. She has no more idea what she is doing than they do.

Sue? There isn't enough money in the project, time in the day, benefit ($1400?) to suing broke contractors to make suing worthwhile.
Let your contractor community know that you routinely sue your contractors for every little thing, and take note how you won't be able to get a contractor to answer a phone call or give a quote.
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Old 12-24-2007, 07:19 AM
 
Location: GA
2,791 posts, read 9,920,985 times
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Mike is right on. On many of those shows, the flippers are clueless and think they're going to make big money fast. They don't get permits, and get cheap labor with nothing in writing. Some of them pay too much for the house and have no idea that they can't reno an entire house for $10k (yesterday's Houston show with the hairdresser). I think to be successful, you need a lot of patience (to find the right property) and good contacts. You also need to supervise the job which some of these TV flippers don't do.
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Old 12-24-2007, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Dallas, Texas
3,589 posts, read 3,406,184 times
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I wondered the same thing, but the other posters are right....it's because the flippers are clueless and appear to work without contracts.

Property Ladder is hilarious; it's based on a UK program of the same name that has been on television for years. Kirsten is no Sarah Beeny (host of the original UK version) but she is pretty funny; that face she makes when someone's plans are ridiculous is classic. I do prefer the UK version, though; Sarah Beeny gives a lot more helpful tips and gets stuck in with the people on the show doing some of the work. The US version seems to be more about watching the train wreck.
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Old 12-24-2007, 08:17 AM
 
385 posts, read 1,458,041 times
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Now, I realize this is television, but it still amazes me that any of these people made any money. Of course, their ideal profit may never have come to pass and I am sure they were in markets that were rising out of all reason like California. That Kirsten does have some great facial expressions.You have to ask how some of these folks got the money to do this flipping in the first place!
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Old 12-24-2007, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Dallas, Texas
3,589 posts, read 3,406,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KimK View Post
Now, I realize this is television, but it still amazes me that any of these people made any money. Of course, their ideal profit may never have come to pass and I am sure they were in markets that were rising out of all reason like California. That Kirsten does have some great facial expressions.You have to ask how some of these folks got the money to do this flipping in the first place!
Yeah really, though that gay couple yesterday were counting on their Katrina money from the condo they lost and they never got it. They got lucky on their development!

Another diff. I noticed between the two versions of the show is that the Brit flippers seem to be much more likely to try to do the work themselves while the US flippers mostly contract it out; a lot of the show seems to involve them yelling down the phone at a contractor! They showed the US version of the show in the UK (though at a time when most people were at work); I wish they'd show the UK version here, it's hysterical. What with the real estate market starting to sputter there, it should get very interesting.
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Old 12-24-2007, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Slaughter Creek, Travis County
1,194 posts, read 3,628,444 times
Reputation: 968
Most DIYers have never researched the requirements for the products they want to install and even fewer consider that the infrastructure in the home (electrical, fuel gas, plumbing) may need to be upgraded as a part of the renovation i.e., more $$. I am currently underway of correcting a DIYer's lack of construction in my home (bathroom - fortunately no leaks) but it came down failing to use the proper sealants and a lack of the proper tools.

I had a neighbor completely renovate his house as DIY project and one of the building inspectors correctly shut down the project until a building permit was obtained. It was scary in that the owner had made improper modificiations to load bearing trusses (drilling holes in them - bone head move) and was going to cover it up. That error was a $15K change order and required the services of a contractor because an engineered design was necessary to make the correction.

Given the costs of a simple bathroom renovation or a more complex kitchen renovation, the costs associated with hiring a design professional and working with qualified contractors who obtain permits gives me the piece of mind that the work is correct and will last for 10-20 years.
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Old 12-24-2007, 11:12 AM
 
385 posts, read 1,458,041 times
Reputation: 204
I have also wondered about the people watching these shows who may have purchased one of these houses. Boy, that would concern me if I saw them doing these cheap and often improper things just to make a buck. Those brothers down in San Antonio who were frequently highlighted on Flip that House made my skin crawl for doing all this cheap repair.
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Old 12-24-2007, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Houston, Texas
10,424 posts, read 46,060,618 times
Reputation: 10436
I caught that too but thought I was the only one. The producers are not as smart as us. A good producer would never let the veiwing public be so unimformed.

That flooring contractor was told to refinsh the floor but instead tore it out. I would have thrown him out on his a$$ and never pay him. I would have stalled him long enough to finish the flip and sell it before he could put a lien on the house. Here is a tip for you all. I have a big sign that says ENGLISH SPEAKING ONLY need enter. If it is followed then there is no misunderstanding.

Im in this business. I am fortunate enough to have made some good contacts over the years and use the same contractors who know what I want. The degree of imcompetence goes deep out there.

I watch those shows and at the end you see potential home buyers and Realtors walking in and bragging how nice it is. Im sitting in my livingroom laughing and pointing at mistakes that even show up on camara. Now if these mistakes show up on camara imagine how bad they look in person. I get especially vocal when they show the kitchen which is my expertise. So you have a bunch of dummies bragging how nice everything is. You have home buyers even dumber then them who are not able to see through the smoke.

Also look closely at the end of these shows. They will show the flipper hanging a FSBO sign on the lawn yet they are talking about their Realtor. Huh? They also show them putting Home Depot bought open house signs out yet they talk about the home being listed. Huh?

Also they talk about making $80K profit but never mention that they have to pay $35K of that in RE commission on that $500K home. Oh and did I mention RE Transfer fees? How about seller closing costs? So on TV they tell you they made $80K but after all is said and done they really netted $25-30K. Still nothing to sneeze at.
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