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House flipping comes back in vogue

By Mike Wheatley | November 2, 2015
  • House flipping is enjoying a renaissance of sorts as property investors take advantage of favorable conditions in the real estate market to turn a quick profit on their investment properties. According to data from RealtyTrac's Third Quarter 2015 Home Flipping Report, the percentage of flipped homes in the U.S. rose by 18 percent during Q3.

    Flip home

    In total, some 43.197 homes were flipped in the quarter, including condos and single-family homes. RealtyTrac defines 'flipped homes' as those that were sold for the second time within a 12-month period, and said sales in this category amounted to five percent of all condo and single-family home sales in the quarter.

    Why so many properties being flipped? Quite simply, because it's profitable now. According to RealtyTrac, there was an average $62,122 difference between the purchase price and flipped price, not including rehab costs. That's an increase from last year's gross flipping profit of $61,718.

    Here's RealtyTrac's list of the top ten most popular home flipping markets during Q3, ranked by percentage of homes flipped:

    1. Memphis, Tenn.: 10.5%
    2. Fresno, Calif.: 9.5%
    3. Mobile, Ala.: 9.2%
    4. Tampa, Fla.: 9.1%
    5. Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, Fla.: 9%
    6. Las Vegas: 8.7%
    7. Miami: 8.6%
    8. Jacksonville, Fla.: 7.6%
    9. Baltimore: 7.4%
    10. Birmingham, Ala.: 7.4%

    “After curtailing flipping activity last year due to slowing home price appreciation and shrinking inventory of flip-worthy homes, real estate investors have started to jump back on the flipping bandwagon in 2015,” Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac, said in a statement.

    “On the acquisition side, investors are finding creative ways to pinpoint potential flips in the off-market arena, and on the disposition side investors have a bigger pool of potential buyers thanks to a surge in FHA buyers this year, many of them first-time buyers looking for starter homes.”

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