Flip this House… are these guys for real?

flipthishousesmI enjoy watching the show Flip this House and regularly Tivo it.  After flipping properties I think a lot of the stuff they do is very unrealistic and staged for TV.  Some of the featured flippers are better then others.

Armando Montelongo is my least favorite and seems to be extremely rude to all his trades.  I can’t believe he gets any of them back.  It seems like he has switched to selling mostly his flipping products versus making the TV show anymore.  Armando works, or used to work in, San Antonio, TX.

Paul and Than seem to run a quality company.  They’ve done rehabs of all sizes it seems. They are from New Haven, CT.

Rudy Martinez is from Los Angeles (my area) and seems a bit arrogant but overall I think he does quality work.

Peter and Brian seem to do a decent job.  They seem to do a lot of additions. Brian seems to run a quality job site and Peter seems on the annoying side.

The Property Ladder, which I don’t think they make anymore, is my favorite though.  They almost always feature new flippers which makes for good TV.  Somehow most of the time these investors end up to double their budget and still end up profitable.  So they must screen the deals and make sure they only film investors who picked up something on the cheap side.

Overall, I think these shows paint a bad picture of the industry.  They make everything look so easy.  In reality you need to do two things to be successful.  Pick up and incredible deal and have the cash flow to finish the project.  Of course, you need to do a good rehab and sell it, but if you buy it right you have a lot of room in these areas.  But the TV shows don’t really talk about how the person found the deal which is the hardest part.

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6 Responses to “ Flip this House… are these guys for real? ”

  1. J Scott says:

    Steve –

    One thing to keep in mind about Property Ladder is that most of the episodes were filmed in 2003-2006 in California, where most flippers COULD double their budgets and still make a profit… :)

    J
    .-= J Scott´s last blog ..Staging #2: Pictures =-.

  2. Maggie says:

    I just saw the episode first aired July 11, 2009 and was horrified that Rudy not only used a nailgun without eye protection but then allowed his young son to do the same; I could swear that one time the boy pulled the trigger, something shot past his head! Then, to make matters even worse, Rudy demonstrates for the kid how he used to fire the nailgun at other workers. I hope that when his wife saw this she set him straight. I cannot believe A&E would show this without putting a disclaimer on it. For shame, Rudy, I hope your kid is still alive and able to see!

  3. Brian says:

    I caught an episode where Rudy pad $200 total to drywall and spackle a house. He then turned around and was bitching when the nails were popped and tapes cracked, etc and threatened the contractor to fix it. Now I know it is Cali, but there is no way you are using legal licensed and insured workers buying materials and getting a house hung and spackled for only $200. Gee you wonder why the workmanship is poor. $200? What do they give each guy $20 and free tacos? It is one thing to treat your contractors like crap, but if work is that hard to find in Cali that you have to work for free then hear crap about professionalism then no wonder they use illegals for everything. I just thought that a reputable tv show like Flip this House would be more scrutinizing when it came to using licensed and insured companies and using legal workers. Guess not.

  4. Brian says:

    Yes Scott if you use illegal workers and treat them like they should be glad they have the work you can double your profit. Problem is these people have no intention on staying in it for the long haul. They make fast money and then sell money making packages or move on to something else. To be a contractor or a flipper for a living you need to build relationships with your contractors and treat them like human beings. Some want to be known for how much they can make in the flip and some like to be known for the pride in which the work was done. I say the latter will last and thrive. The former may make money but will lose all integrity and respect.

  5. Philip Elmes says:

    To concentrate on “getting the best price” for work on the job and then to complain about the workmanship is to show the amateurism of the flipper or rehabber. It’s not hard to get great prices and great work with a couple of simple guidelines:

    One, I agree with Brian, treating you trades with respect is not just the right thing to do but will pay relationship dividends over the long haul.

    Secondly, no one should undertake the business without at least rudimentary knowledge of how the craft work is done is making a mistake. Whether from Home Depot on Saturday mornings — where proper craft techniques and applications are taught — or from books, learn the fundamentals.

    You don’t have to be a drywall taper to appreciate a well-struck joint. (And who uses drywall nails anymore?) Nor do you need to be a tile man to know to use concrete or “backer board” instead of “green board” behind the tile.

    At the end of the day, such mishaps are the responsibility of the rehabber. Tradesmen told it’s all about keeping costs at the minimum will cut corners, thinking it’s the right thing to do.

    It’s the rehabber (“flipper”) who sets the stage for a job well done. Or signals that no one really knows the difference.

    Including the boss.

  6. Philip Elmes says:

    To concentrate on “getting the best price” for work on the job and then to complain about the workmanship is to show the amateurism of the flipper or rehabber. It’s not hard to get great prices and great work with a couple of simple guidelines:

    One, I agree with Brian, treating you trades with respect is not just the right thing to do but will pay relationship dividends over the long haul.

    Secondly, to undertake the business without at least rudimentary knowledge of how the craft work is done is making a mistake. Whether from Home Depot on Saturday mornings — where proper craft techniques and applications are taught — or from books, learn the fundamentals. HINT: You won’t get what you need from cable television (except maybe This Old House).

    You don’t have to be a drywall taper to appreciate a well-struck joint. (And who uses drywall nails anymore?) Nor do you need to be a tile man to know to use concrete or “backer board” instead of “green board” behind the tile. And caulk instead of grout where the tile tub surround meets the tub.

    At the end of the day, such mishaps are the responsibility of the rehabber. Tradesmen told it’s all about keeping costs at the minimum will cut corners, thinking it’s the right thing to do.

    It’s the rehabber (“flipper”) who sets the stage for a job well done. Or signals that no one really knows the difference.

    Including the boss.

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