The flippers are back.
Bolstered by swelling foreclosures and bottomed-out prices, investors are returning to the South Florida real estate market, snapping up distressed homes with cash payments for either a quick turnaround or a short-term rent-then-sell investment.
Unlike the speculative flippers during the boom – scourges who unnaturally jacked up prices, spawned reality TV shows and led to the economic crumble – today’s flippers are erudite capitalists who could usher in positive change by buying dilapidated and abandoned homes, patching them up and selling them for a market-bearable price, experts say.
The downside: These cash-in-hand guys are competing with regular folks looking for deals and struggling to find loans.
But Realtors say this whole foreclosure flip phenomenon is not for the faint of heart.
It takes legwork. Homes may carry large HOA or tax liens. Many are stripped of appliances, toilets, countertops – everything but the drywall, and sometimes even that has been plundered.
“Without a doubt, people with opportunistic profit motivations are reentering to purchase properties,” said market analyst Jack McCabe of McCabe Research and Consulting in Deerfield Beach. “But this isn’t the group of cocktail sippers who were bragging years ago about buying and flipping. These are real investors.”