I’ve teamed up with Naomi Findlay to bring you a real-time video diary of a reno. In true Phukienso ‘style without the snobbery’ fashion, we’re keeping it real, warts and all, telling like it is. Our camera work and editing skills are by no means world class, but we’re less interested in that and more interested in bringing you practical, useful advice and giving you a realistic view of the highs and lows of renovating for profit, hopefully making you realise you could do it too.
Naomi, with various business partners, has done more than 20 renovations in the last three years (eight just last year!). She also owns and the online International Institute of Home Staging (IIHS). She’s also a mum of four. As well as helping people get the best price when selling their homes, it makes sense that she should renovate and stage her own for profit too
The house we’re bringing to you in this series is in the suburbs of Newcastle, NSW. “It’s an old home that has been bastardised over the years and the original features, other than two lovely ceilings, sadly removed,” Naomi says. “It is in ill repair and needing piering, sub floor repair, re-roofing, and a whole lot more!”
We won’t reveal exactly how much it cost until after it’s sold in case this affects the final sale price, but it was in the $300-to-$400k range. The budget for the reno is around $70K.
“I want to allow people to see the real and unedited world of renos; super quick and in the case of this property, super budget! I am by no means a feminist but it is great to show how a woman like me, juggling a family of four and running my own businesses, can reno for profit and enjoy it,” Naomi adds.
“I hope that people who want to have a go get an insight into what it is like and a thirst to know more about it!”
Naomi’s top five tips for renovating for profit are:
- Buy well. This is where you make your money.
- Have a team of trades as they will keep you alive.
- Don’t forget to count your own time as money.
- Keep a hold of the budget and review it weekly.
- Time is money, so don’t lick stamps!
- Know your market and spend you money based on ROI.
There are two main ways she sees other people get it wrong and these are putting too much or too little money in, depending on the market they are selling to, as well as trying to do everything themselves and it taking far too long. “They will go wrong if they think it is a ‘get rich quick’ thing and if they think it is glamorous!”
Many people put off having a go themselves and Naomi wants to encourage them to have a go, armed with the right information. “Some think that they are too time-poor or have no idea of where to begin. It is really hard as there is so much available on the net regarding developing property and there are so many valid and variable ways to develop or flip or reno for profit. All have their merits but it can be hard to sift through the information and work out what is best for you and your circumstances, considering your time, family, finances and skill level.
“Mentoring is one of the best things that you can do when getting into this game; learning from someone else’s mistakes and their wins! They can help you work out finance, joint ventures, time schedules, budgets, roles and responsibilities.”
Naomi runs courses in home staging and styling, and business mentoring, through the International Institute of Home Staging (IIHS).
Come back next week for the next installment!