Money management during any real estate investment venture is an essential skill. If this is your first time flipping a property it is probably more important on the first flip than any other as you need to fully realize how much things cost and how quickly those expenses can up. It is so simple for the budget on a house flip to get completely out of control. For this reason you need to take control of the financial situation from the very beginning.
Begin by establishing a realistic budget for the entire project. If you find yourself spending more money in one area than you had originally planned you need to either revisit the initial budget and plan for adding more money to the pot or you need to make cost lowering adjustments elsewhere along the way to recover the excess. You will need to have a firm idea of the projects you are going to tackle, big and small, as well as the costs involved in each project. Take a walk through a hardware store and get a firm grasp of today's prices on the hardware, equipment, and supplies you will need to complete the job.
Use contractors when necessary but sparingly. There are times when it will cost much less to use a contractor on a project than to muddle through on your own. There are also times when local laws require a contractor. You need to use contractors for these times but you need to avoid paying the princely labor costs contractors charge for things that you could easily do yourself. You never want to spend a penny on a flip that you don't need to spend and labor costs are a huge budget buster.
Get permits first and up front. Time is money when you are flipping a house and once you start the work that time is precious. Make sure you have all the permits you need and that they are paid for before you begin the project in order to save time and money after the project has commenced.
Then create a habit of accounting for every penny spent throughout the day at the end of every day. This becomes a good habit to have for your first and all subsequent flips. By doing this you will have a solid grasp of how much money you are spending as well as how quickly you are spending it. You will need money to spend on little things throughout the course of the project so if you are spending money too fast up front you may not have the money needed to take care of the small details that mean a lot when all is said and done.
One huge way to better manage your money during a house flip is to make a conscious decision and consistent effort to work according to your tastes. Chances are quite good, especially for a first flip that you will be working on a house for those who have less financial means than you may have. For this reason you need to keep your project within the budget of your buyers. This will save tons of money. In other words a lower income community cannot absorb the costs of granite, marble, and hardwoods in most situations so don't go to that expense.
In order to turn a solid profit when flipping a house or doing any type of real estate investment you absolutely must have a firm grip on your money, where it is going, and what your plans are for the money. The less money you spend the more money, in many cases you stand to bring home in profit. Spend the money you need to spend in order to improve the value of the home but avoid luxury expenditures that aren't necessary for the neighborhood or the home in question in order to maximize the potential profits you can bring home.