According to research by US News, the average cost of attending a public or private American college totals $10,423 and $39,723, respectively. Understandably, affording these expenses single-handedly is a tough ordeal, especially as an adult who is planning to go back to school.
But, in this scenario, house flipping can be an unconventional yet successful strategy to help you pay for college without having to undertake massive debt. In this article by Arte Patio, we’ll explore the steps you can follow to put yourself through college by flipping houses.
1. Ascertain Where You Stand
The housing market is vast, with the type and cost of properties changing from one
neighborhood to another. Hence, your first step will be to choose a location with housing prices within your means and ensure you have all the right credentials to be a homeowner, such as:
A healthy credit score, favorably above the 700 mark
Enough cash to afford a 20% down payment on the property and negotiate good repayment terms
A financial budget with forecasts regarding how much you’ll be able to afford to pay towards renovations, maintenance, insurance, and mortgage payments until the property is sold.
2. Find the Right Property
When it comes to finding the right property to flip, you’ll need to consider various factors such as its price, current condition, the required level of repair, and, most importantly, location! A property in a great location providing ease of connectivity and proximity to necessities such as grocery stores, city centers, etc., is bound to have a lot of takers.
3. Work with a Real Estate Professional
Navigating the real estate world alone can be a challenging task, especially if you haven’t bought a property in the last few years. While a real estate agent will charge a fee, the service they provide will help you find, renovate and sell properties much faster than you’ll be able to do alone.
A real estate agent will be able to provide legal advice on contracts, create agreements, book property showings, conduct home inspections and manage all closing-related requirements. This will help save hours of your time which can rather be dedicated to marketing the property and finding suitable buyers to sell to.
4. Make the Right Renovations
The key to making money on house flipping is to sell the home for a higher price than what you paid. According to Fortune Builders, here’s a list of home improvements with the highest ROI for you to consider:
Minor Bathroom Remodel: 102%
Minor Kitchen Remodel: 98.5%
Entry Door Replacement: 90.7%
If you do not want to spend a lot on renovation, then simply adding a fresh coat of paint can help you fetch a marginally higher price, enough to cover a good chunk of your college-related expenses.
5. Establish an LLC
Flipping homes as an individual opens you up to a host of legal and financial issues in case things don’t go your way. The better approach is to buy and sell houses through a Limited Liability Company (LLC). The biggest benefit of an LLC is that it protects your personal finances and assets from business (home flipping) related liabilities. Additionally, you’ll be eligible to claim certain expenses as tax write-offs. The money saved can be directly invested into your college fund.
6. Consider Online Certifications
Rather than pursuing a traditional degree, you can consider completing your education online. For instance, if you’re interested in pursuing a career in IT, CompTIA A+ certification is the best in the industry. The curriculum is made by experienced IT professionals, and you’ll be able to learn at your pace and receive guidance from experts at every step of the way. Additionally, compared to in-person degrees, you’ll need to pay much less and won’t have to spend on housing, transportation, and meal plans either.
For individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit, flipping homes is a viable strategy to pay for college. The process can be made simpler by leveraging the help of a real estate agent. Additionally, by choosing to pursue the degree online, you'll have the option to fulfill your educational goals while making a living on the side, flipping properties.