House #20: The Lake House

November 12, 2010 · 13 comments

We just put our 20th house under (verbal) contract. We’re calling it The Lake House — not because it’s situated on a real lake, but because there’s a small lake within the subdivision and we just can’t think of a more creative name for the house… šŸ™‚

Here are some pictures.

The house is about 11 years old, and except for some major termite damage around the exterior trim and sills (see pics), it’s in pretty good shape. The siding is a composite cement-board (Hardiplank), so it wasn’t affected by the termites, the roof is in great shape, the parquet hardwoods are ugly but in great shape, and the kitchen can mostly be salvaged. For the most part, this will be a “paint and carpet” rehab, with a few extra repairs thrown in.

We’re picking up the property for $60K, will likely put between $10-15K into the rehab, and plan to resell somewhere between $90-105K. I expect the rehab to be quick — likely no more than a week or two.

I’ll have more to say about this one once we’re officially under contract and have had a chance to get some rehab estimates…

13 responses to “House #20: The Lake House”

  1. ezra says:

    You need to spice up your blog. It’s always the same. Buy house for cheap. Give it a somewhat, but not really, catchy name. Rehab super cheap in record time, making me feel like crap for every home renovation project I’ve ever done or ever will do. Sell house for big profit and post your stats showing your off the charts ROI. Blah, blah, blah.

    Hate you,


    ps. But seriously. You have a winning formula and you’re up to house 20. How long do you need to continue your posts before you’ve covered every topic?!

  2. jingle says:

    I’m constantly amazed what $60K will buy in your neck of the woods. What does a non-war zone, junked house sell for in Atlanta?

  3. J Scott says:

    Jingle –

    If you don’t mind going into the bad areas, you can find decent houses for under $20K pretty easily. You can also find not-so-decent properties for $5K… šŸ™‚

  4. Mark in Fl says:

    You do have a winning formula and I’ll never tire of viewing the results even though I do similar deals as well.

    I know it takes a lot of work keeping the blog up and we appreciate your resistance to allowing flashing ads all over the place. Check out the ads on our local newspaper for instance:

    Thanks for the way you give back to the investment community.

  5. J Scott says:

    Thanks Mark — I appreciate that!

    Ez – If I tried your style of investing, there is no doubt my blog would be more interesting, but I might not be able to afford the hosting costs anymore… šŸ˜‰

  6. ezra says:

    Did Mark just say that it’s nice your blog doesn’t have ads, now go check out my ad?

  7. Mark in Fl says:

    I said “flashing ads all over” and offered a typical website for comparison. I feel I need to clean my computer after reading the frickin local online newspaper.

    Many don’t realize that J Scott is making a decision to forgo cash in order to keep this site professional looking – just like he’s made a decision to share information that othes wouldn’t. He certainly has competion in the Atlanta market yet freely shows his cards.

  8. ezra says:

    Don’t mind me Mark, that’s just my stupid sense of humor. Jason is smart! He’s following the Facebook strategy of no advertising until he has a million members.

  9. Levi says:


    In my market, which is nothing to write home about, that house would retail for $170,000, and as a foreclosure in that condition, would probably be bought by a homeowner for $150,000…

  10. chris says:

    great deal what areas are you looking for houses in the same as before or you you moving out . i thinking of moving to altanta this fall and try a few flips to taste the waters. i like to find the carpet and paint houses that you work so well . what areas should i be looking in and after doing 19 houses what have you learned about the altanta market that you wish you had know before what sells the most ? to me its value and price that something extra that your house has that others dont that wow factor thanks for your help let 20 become 30 become 40 happy thanksgiving

  11. bill says:

    60k for the lake house is amazing. That house in Louisville in any decent part of town would sell for 130 easily. Really enjoy your blog, My partner and I are getting ready to look for our first to flip, we have 60k between us to get started. We are intent on staying on a cash basis for this first one. Do you do any of the rehab work yourself, to save money or do you use a GC?

  12. J Scott says:

    Hey Bill,

    In general, our philosophy is to do as little of the work as possible. Two reasons for that:

    1. We are NOT AT ALL handy. You probably don’t want me trying to change a lightbulb in your house;

    2. I’m a big believer in this business philosophy.

    That said, if you’re just starting out, are short on cash (or want the experience), there is no reason not to do some of the work yourself if you’re qualified (and have the time) to do so. I wouldn’t make it a long-term habit — based on my business philosophy — but nothing wrong with doing what you have to do to get started!

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