Condo Flip Step-by-Step: Pittsburgh Edition
Updated: Jan 21
My Dad loves real estate projects and diversifying assets. Over the years, he's brought me in on a few condo flip projects and I love it. So, he agreed to teach me and help me run my own in Pittsburgh.
I'm documenting the whole process for myself and for anyone who wants to learn! It will be the first time we are flipping a condo in Pittsburgh, so we are going to have some fun with this awesome market!
Step 1: Pick a Realtor and a General Contractor
Over the years we've worked with a few different realtors in the area, and I found one that I really like. She is easy to work with, understands my vision, and has the specific experience I need.
From a contractor perspective, I've seen a variety of people's handywork as they come in and out of our home to do projects here and there. Some a good and others are just okay. The important thing I am looking for is someone who is easy to work with, knowledgeable, available for a quick turnaround time, and reasonably priced. We have a few options to pick from and I will ultimately decide based on walk throughs I do with each to get a feel for how we would work together.
Step 2: Pick the condo to flip in Pittsburgh!
While we may do this many more times, we are starting with 1!
Here's what I started with for this step:
I outlined my parameters for the property and shared them with my realtor.
I did my own Zillow search to see what I could find and shared those with her as
We had a call to discuss the options and give her a good idea for comps.
Next, we set up walk throughs of all of the most viable options in the decent or up and coming neighborhoods. For Pittsburgh, we are primarily look at Shadyside, Lawrenceville, Oakland, Strip District, North Side, South Side, and a few others. The walk throughs are set for this coming week! More to come then...
Step 3: Pick the Final Options and Walk Through with the Contractor.
I tend to think in excel, so I wrote up a checklist of items by category of what we needed to discuss during our walk through. For each unit, I was taking notes the entire time while the general contractor and I went over every single detail we could think of.
The more thorough we are, the better price estimates I can create. This will let us know if the unit is a good deal based on what our realtor thinks she can sell it for with the renovations.
Step 4: Closing on the Condo
For this step, all I can say is I am thrilled to have so many attorneys in my life. There are many facets to this part and tons of details that many first-time buyers apparently overlook.
Here's the list of considerations I am working with:
Find a good lawyer for purchasing and selling residential property.
Selecting the best offer based on the math and setting the required contingency period.
Setting up the inspections.