July 1, 2022

Courtney Profits $320k on Her First Four Flips in Arizona

This is a great conversation with one of our FlipSisters in Arizona! 

Courtney takes us through her first four flips that brought in around $320,000 in net profit! 

In this episode, we discuss:

  • How she found her deals
  • How she financed her deals 
  • The biggest lessons learned on each project
  • Her big "A-HA!" moment that made her drop her fear of losing money
  • The self-awareness she gained around her insecurities
  • How her mindset shifted around contractors, making it a more collaborative effort and just more enjoyable all around

...and so much more! 

This conversation is so rich, you don't want to miss it! 


1. Sick of sitting on the sideline watching other people do the thing you want to be doing? Are you FINALLY ready to do what it takes to flip your first house and want incredible step-by-step training and support to get you there faster? Click here to see if we may be a fit to work together.

2. Follow That Flip! Follow this 8-part video series as we flip a house! 

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Debbie DeBerry | The Flipstress®
Leaving people and places better than we find them.


You're listening to the flip houses like a girl podcast where we educate, empower and celebrate everyday women who are facing their fears juggling family and business, embracing their awesomeness and wholeheartedly chasing their dream of flipping houses. Each episode delivers honest to goodness tools, tips and strategies you can implement today to get closer to your first or next successful house flip. Here's your spiky hair to breakfast, taco loving host house flipping coach Debbie DeBerry! 

Debbie: Hey, how's it going? Today, I'm super excited to share this conversation with you that I had with one of our flip sisters in Arizona. Her name is Courtney. And we debrief her first four flips, she made around $320,000 profit on these first four flips. And we talked about how she found them, how she financed them, we talk about contractors, we have a really important conversation about contractors, and a switch in mindset that a lot of people need to have when it comes to contractors. And then we talk about guilt around making big profits. And how we navigate that. We also talk about her aha moment she had around her fear of losing money. So she had a big fear of losing money. And in particular, losing money she borrowed from like private money lenders, right friends and family members who want to invest and make a great return on their money. And she was having a hang up around that. So we talked about her big aha moment around that. And we just talked about a lot of good stuff. This is a great conversation, buckle up, we cover a lot of ground, and it's totally worth it. Alright, so let's dive in. Let's talk to Courtney. Let's just start with you introducing yourself and giving a little bit of your background and how you arrived at flipping houses.

Courtney: Okay, well, so, um, so my job so I've always freelance when I was like, think 22 my now husband and I drove across country went to Chicago, and I was like, I'm gonna send out a bunch of postcards and see if people hire me, and if not always dress and and I had a photo degree and I want a photo assists. So um, I sent it to a bunch of photographers. And I got lucky I started working right away. And I've never had a real job, I guess a nine to five job my whole career. And I just found I was kind of understood freelancing, and I was into it. So my career so I started off working in on still advertisements. And then new kind of early on, I was like, I don't have the drive to be a photographer. So I started assisting stylists, so I work on kind of larger productions like print advertisements, and TV commercials. And my title is the wardrobe stylists and then I used to sometimes do prop styling as well. So what that means people hear wardrobe stylist, and they think of like Rachel's, though, or being a personal stylist, and making shopping and making people look cute, but that's not really what I do at all. I'm really like, I mean, it's really a blue collar job, like I do shop all day, but I'm shopping for 30 people and giving them 20 options. So it's like insane amount of schlepping. I'm basically more of a costume designer so I kind of if you see any advertisement you know think about it but like the amount of thought that goes into all the nuances of that outfit. So like, come to like tell a story. So I'm basically the person the ad agency comes to me or the director or the producer and they present the concept and I'm the person that goes and buys all the stuff necessary to make that their idea come to life on set for a TV commercial or print as advertisement.

Debbie: That is super cool. Okay, did you Is that what you studied in college?

Courtney: No, I was uh, well, I had a photo degrees. So like, kind of But I grew up in a small town. My mom was a teacher for 35 years at the same school, her first job was her last job. And my dad worked at, like managing and like a factory. And I never knew any of this existed, like, had no idea. Yeah, I surprised looking back my parents were never like, why are you majoring in photography? Like, you know? So it was just kind of, you know, I, I feel like I'm like a curious person. So I was just like, looked into one thing, which led to another thing, which led to another thing. And that's pretty much my life. Like, that's kind of how I get anywhere. So yep. So yeah, I've worked in commercial production to call it for my whole career. And I'm just kind of a hired gun that essentially executes the ad agencies concept. And I work with, I've kind of worked with everyone like Nike, Amazon, Adidas, Crate and Barrel. I've done a lot of home stuff. And yeah, so you think a lot about, like, what goes into project and what each little thing means. And it's really crazy, because, you know, like, when I was sitting with peers at lunch, at work, we'd all be like, well, you know, what are we going to do in our life, we have no resumes, we have this super weird, nice job, you're just like, but if people leave my industry, they often go to real estate. And I didn't realize how much it translated. Until we decided to move I kind of got burnt out in my old job. I like how to post before you just have no, you have no control of your time. It's one of those like, you commit to a project, and that project might be three weeks away. And it might, you don't know who is in charge of that project. So that person might start calling you that day and have three requests, even though you're only getting paid for three days, three weeks from now. And it's just like, start so like, and I was always doing multiple projects at the same time. And once I had kids, it just really got tough, because I had no control of my time. And like the requests that came 830 When my son had the flu, just got harder to manage. Because one thing I never had, I could never just say no, like I couldn't, like I had to come up with something. Yeah. So um, so yeah, I really, we were living in Chicago, and we had two little kids, and it just got kind of tough. So we bought a fixer upper in Arizona, my husband went to high school here, okay, in my in laws live here. And it was pretty, like, I look back, I'm like, Oh, that was bold, because it was like a serious fixer upper.
And I kind of quickly saw, I was like, I feel like I get this in a deep way. Like, it's because it's, it's the same thing as putting together production. It's like five, your crew, you have your timeline, you have a budget, you like when you execute things is important on your timeline, because you don't want to have to go back on things. And then just like being resourceful coming up with stuff like, you know, luxury I never had, as a stylist, like, you know, if you're on a, say, a Nike shoe, you don't. And I'm the person in charge of this key product, like I don't get to show up and be like, Yeah, I don't have that I'm sorry, the whole thing shuts down. It's like, you you don't like you might not have the exact thing but you have something. So you're always coming out with solutions. And it's one of those jobs to where it's just constant fireballs. So like, as far as like, the hiccups that you constantly experience with flipping. I don't even really recognize it. Because I feel like my whole job is just been like, like, if you if you take the ideal path, and you actually get to the finish line. It's like, once you look at that, like I never expected it to go that smoothly. And that's just kind of the mentality I've always had. So it's like, you know, I just see it more as like, being agile and constantly pivoting. Yeah. And you just, and I think you can do the best stuff when you do that too. I think when you're really focused on the finish line and what something's supposed to be Oh, yes, you lose a lot. You have tunnel vision and you kind of want to like you know, just like be open at all times and just be like, you know this this is different than I thought I was gonna be but look at this. I don't even think of this

Debbie: Completely agree like just being willing to be open and flexible, and a big word, right? Be flexible, and not be so rigid with how something has to look. Has to? Or, or the how of it right? Or how it comes together like, yeah, yeah, I can completely see how you were, how long did you do that? You're still doing it,

Courtney:  I can have a toe in it now, you know, like, I'll probably, I mean, it's one of those jobs, it's hard, because it's such a hard job to get into and to maintain. Like, I kind of imagined it's like living in New York, like, you work so hard to live there, it's hard to fully let go because it's like a big part of your identity, you know? Sure. So it's like, for me, it's like, you know, different seasons for different reasons. Like, I, I love that job, but I don't feel like it fits my life right now. You know, and so it's really hard. It's just, it's just hard just cuz it's like, I haven't had a sick day in 20 years, you know, like, and I have kids now. And sometimes they get sick and sick

Debbie: all the time they get sick. How old are your kids?

Courtney: So five and seven.

Debbie: Okay, awesome. Let's talk about your first flip as an investment. When did you buy that one?

Courtney: So, um, so I bought that September 30. Of 29. No, 2020.

Debbie: Okay, so after COVID

Courtney: So, so that's kind of, like I kind of this was on my radar. As much as I watch ag TV. I never was like, I want to be a flipper. Like, I wasn't thinking about it at all. But I kind of for probably three years prior to moving, I was like, I gotta figure out a side gig or, like, figure out something because I, I just knew I wasn't in the right place and needed a major change. So, um, so then the pandemic happened, and then I had time all of a sudden, and I was like, I'm just gonna really explore this. So I started listening to podcasts like crazy. And I was learning a ton, but I love the podcasts I was listening to is like, you know, do you want financial freedom, or like, it felt like very, like, it was kind of aggro. men yelling about freedom. And I was, I wasn't really connecting to it. And I was just like, I was trying to, I was trying to, you know, take bits and pieces of it and apply it. But I just, and then I found your podcast. And I was like, oh my god there. You can do this in a way that you know, you can because x isn't the things that I was like, You should never pick up a paintbrush, you should always be, you know, like, there was one way to do it like you're an investor. And so it was just nice to hear through your podcasts. There's a lot of different things you can do. Yes. I mean, I think that's the beauty of this as you can really cater it to your lifestyle.

Debbie: So 100% That's the beauty of it. Yes, it can look however you want it to look.


Courtney: Yeah, yes. So, so yeah, so I um, my first lesson, I actually did PML through family, and I found this house on the MLS house is actually the biggest house I've done. You know, there's $5 million houses there. And there's also $300,000 houses. So I found like a cheap, cheaper pocket amongst really expensive homes. Yeah, nice. And this home was like, within the cheaper pocket was one of the largest homes on the street, but not not necessarily huge for the area.

Debbie: So it was 3500 square feet. So Oh, wow, that's so big. Yeah. Okay, so you found on MLS Well, what did you end up buying it for?

Courtney: So I bought it for 535.


Debbie: Okay. And did you say you got all the money through PML through private lenders. Okay. So how was that? Like, was that hard for you to ask? Was it or was it just like, here's an opportunity. Do you guys want to do this or talk to me about that a little bit.

Debbie: I was actually talking to my in laws and just telling them about my how I was gonna go to hard money lenders, and this was the rate I was just casually talking about it and they were like, Why would you do that? You can go through our advisor they're offering a deal right now. We're at I I forgot what the rate was. But basically, my inlaws did the loan. Alright, they didn't the loan and then I did it through them, but they gave me a rate of three and a half percent.


Debbie: Got it.


Courtney: Yeah. So they basically finance the house and then I did a renovation with the HELOC.

Debbie: Okay. Got it. Got it. And how much did the renovation cost? 

Courtney: It was about 120. Yeah.

Debbie: That's not bad for that size of a house.

Courtney: Yes. And I my biggest mistake with that house was I put too much money in things that I should have done. Yeah. Because my background I get kind of lost in the aesthetics. Yeah, I get it. Yeah. That was the big thing I learned from that one. But as far as like, like, you know, cuz I just renovated my house. I did it in a very similar way. I acted as a GC. And I did it almost like a photoshoot. Like I kinda was like, Alright, this is my top flooring guy. He's not available. So I'm gonna move the next guy. Oh, they're not available moves. And it was constant pivoting like, this is the tile I want. It's not available. So you move to the next one. And it's just, you know, just kind of, but just trying to stick as much as I could. So the budget and and the timeline. Yeah. So so yeah.

Debbie: Were there any major surprises on that one?

Courtney: I mean, not beyond like, just the havoc of COVID. Yes. Right. In my husband almost lost his finger because we tried to move the vanity.

Debbie: Oh, geez. Oh, yeah.

Courtney: Yeah, that that was a moment of oh, no, but then the weekend we put the house on the market. Um, we it was like, the first time it rained and like 11 months, and it was like, the first time it like snow, like it was cold and rainy. On top of that, my I was actually at the time using my husband's aunt as my realtor. And she her laptop got stolen from her car. Before she was was the list. And like, so that it didn't post when I hope it would post and there was a there were some things like looking back. It's like I should have waited another week to put it up. There is I've there's a couple of things. Like, yeah, that I feel like, because it was I was really proud of the house, which was the good part. Like I I was kind of like, yeah, I just wish more people got to see it because it was just just a dismal weekend here.


Debbie: But I sold it the first weekend. And I sold it at 745, I believe. Is that what you were thinking? Is that what your ARV was initially or did it go up just because Oh my

Courtney: I kind of ended up my budget went up. But then I also was like, because I'm putting more expensive stuff. And I knew it could appraise for more. So um, so that went up to so I put it on the market at 750. And I sold it at 745.

Debbie: Okay, awesome. And that was a total of how long from purchase to sale?

Courtney: Purchase the sale was just over four months.

Debbie: Nice. Yeah, that's great during COVID during that time of COVID Yeah, that's fantastic. Well, what did your profit end up being on that one?

Courtney: I mean, 48,000

Debbie: Nice. So, yeah, you paid off your in laws, and they were like, I'll do that again.

Courtney: Yeah, they were no. Well, for me, like, the anxiety was like, I can't lose people. I knows money, like so I almost rather used her money because it it felt and I just like didn't want to disappoint. You know, like, I was just I just, you know, just want to make sure. God forbid, like, I'm gonna lose money. But then like looking now I know. You just want to make sure and I learned this from your program because I didn't join your program until my third house so so like, now I know like I was by no HOA because I had different exit strategies. And I think about it as the same as the stock market. Like you don't lose money unless you sell when it's love. It's like you just hold on to it. And so, so you're like the fear of losing money, like as long as you have exit strategies Exactly. shouldn't be there. That's not you know,

Debbie: That's exactly the point of having different ways out. Yeah. Okay, so the first one happens and you're like, oh my gosh, that was kind of easy. And that was fun. Is that what you were thinking? Or what were you thinking?

Courtney: Yeah, I mean, I loved it in such a deep way. Like I like, I don't know, it's hard to explain, like, I just fell in the zone, like, the whole time. And like, my husband really saw it, too. He's just like, you're just like a hat, like happy person. Like I, I, I've always struggled with insomnia. But like, when I'm really into something, it's like, I don't need it. I sleep really hard. And then I'm like, good. And I'm like, you know, I could sleep six hours, and I bolt out a bag. So super excited to go to the house.

Debbie:  I totally relate.


Courtney: Yeah. Where if I'm not into something, it's like, I wake up at two and my brain spinning, and I'm just kind of, and then I always just kind of, that's how I knew my job wasn't really working anymore. Because I was like, oh, it's not normal at noon to like, be thinking about how to pack up for the end of the day.

Debbie: This might be a sign.

Courtney: Yeah. And I just felt like tired, like, all the time, you know, but when you're excited about something, you have boundless energy. Yeah, totally. So yeah, I just was, and it was really cool for me, because I've always worked in a creative field, but I've always designed for other people. So I think like, one of the funniest thing was to work on a big project, and then like to see what I could do, because I didn't even know what I could do. Because I like have been doing it for everyone else for 20 years. So totally. Yeah, that was that was really satisfying to be like, oh, like I picked up all those things from working next to the best people like Crate and Barrel, you know, like, in like, I can actually knock this out. So that was cool. So yeah, the then my second house, so my, so I'm pretty specific on the type of houses I try to find. So my grandparents lived in the same house for 70 years. And my grandma was the type of person like she like iron or pillowcases, and she did couldn't touch her iPad use of stylus to
touch her iPad.

Debbie: Lady doesn't touch the iPad.

Courtney: So I try to find houses, like their house where I'm like, if I see that you maintained a kitchen for 40 years or 50 years and like, like that's my perfect house, like something that cosmetically needs to overhaul. But there's just like, it's really well maintained. So

Debbie: we have so much in common. That's my current project. They owned the house for 52 years, original owners, like everything was original. But you know, he piddled around and he caught things and he sealed things and he did write a love it. Yeah, you can feel the love when you walk into those houses. You feel. You feel the love.

Courtney: Yeah, totally. So my next house, it was like, I saw it. And I was like, oh my god, like it was original 1978 kitchen, and I love the things that a lot of Arizonans find dated I find really charming because I'm here and I'm like, Oh, we have a fireplace so to tile like yeah, weird glass atrium in the master like perfect, right? Yeah. So I and this is really before to like I I knew the margins I needed to flip. But I definitely have honed in on that better like looking back at this house. I was like, Oh, that was a risk like, like, you know, now I wouldn't have jumped on it. But I so I wrote the the woman a ladder, and I found out after it was her grandparents house. She was the realtor. And it was very, like symbolic for me because I actually, the week before I bought my first slip my grandfather died. My mother died right before this one. 

Debbie: Yeah. That's so hard. I'm sorry.

Courtney: You were like my second like I saw them. I grew up next to them and like but my budget for this one was 50k. And okay, this is the one where I was like, Well, I'm just going to learn how to tile. Like I do this application called shear creek where I like do it on the shower wall. So yeah, I remember that. Yeah, it almost looks like a Moroccan finish. I refinished the floors myself, I installed like 1400 square feet of stock to I just, I was there every day all day. So that one took same three months, it was about 2100 square feet. And that one was crazy that so I, I switch realtors, because my husband's odd she was, she was new to being a realtor to you. And she was only here part of the time and I found this brokerage it was like a boutique brokerage. And their whole mission is kind of saving older homes. And they I didn't know I was following. They're really good on social media. And I was just like, Oh, these seem like great people. So I started working with them. And yeah, I actually hosted the open house because I kind of wanted I take, I take kind of risks with my design, or I'm, I know, a lot of times we're flipping or a lot of the Freedom pot podcast I was listening to it's like, you want to appeal to the masses? Oh, gosh, you know, or like, yeah, I remember going to get countertop and the guy's like, well, this is the one everyone's buying and you want everyone to like it.

Debbie: And I was like, No, yeah, it's my personality. It's yeah, that's what sets us apart. I think. So

Courtney: yeah, that one had multiple offers went the first weekend. And actually, there was a bidding war with escalation. And I know making 90 on that one nice. I know, I put in 10 times the amount of effort as other flippers because I stage and I do all the things like I know, nothing Unturned, like I really Yeah, do it all. And so it's like, what is that worth? So I, you know, when I feel kind of weird about the amount of money I get, I'm like, I don't know, it's, it's tricky. But then it's like it's such a large amount of money. It just I tried to see it as like, it's just going back into this thing that I believe in. 

Debbie: yeah. It's interesting. It's interesting to talk about profit, it's something that comes up where the freedom fighter podcasts or whatever, you know, it's a different conversation. Whereas here on this podcast, when we talk about profit, it's like, I mean, I kind of feel bad, like, I feel a little guilty or just like, and I think it's that. It's kind of like that servant skill, right? Because we have, like, we've served people, we're here to serve people. We're not short, like we're not cutting corners, we're not doing shady things. We're actually putting a lot of love and care into these properties and into the people that we work with. And then the sellers and into the buyers, like we're doing this in a really good way. Yeah. But to financially benefit from it. It's hard for people like us, because it's like, well, I mean, but I'm trying like, I want us to not feel bad about it. It is what it is, right? It's like we are being rewarded for doing good. But it's it's part of the conversation for sure.

Courtney: Every, like I try to like the people I hire, you know, I tried to never barter with them. I like the price. He told me, I'm going to pay you because I get lat come as a freelancer. I really try to treat people like how I wanted to be treated. So yeah, I It's like, if you think you deserve that much, and I know you're good. Of course it'll pay you that.

Debbie: Yes, there is that mentality of you have to negotiate everything. And it's like always get the lowest price to make money. Yeah, get the best deal possible. And even if that means the other person walks away feeling like they lost. It's okay. Because you got you squeezed the juice, right? Like, yeah, that's the best deal, and it just doesn't feel that good to be in that now. And I really believe generosity breeds generosity thing.

Courtney: Yeah, a big thing I learned dealing with contractors there. And I used to be like, This is what I'm looking for. Or this is what I want, and not really knowing how to get there because I didn't really like most people, you know, understand the underbelly of the house, you just have this idea. But now, I've changed my approach and I found it to be so much better to be like really collaborative. Yes. Be like, you know, this is what I was, this is what I was thinking, what do you think? And it's like, every time Yes. And that also like it makes them feel respected and trusted. Exactly. And that brings out the best work of anyone like I know that as a freelancer the jobs that I disliked was The ones where I felt like I was being micromanage, and they were questioning every little thing I did. And I'm like, You guys hired me? Why did you hire me? So I'm the same way with my subs. I'm like, You do this every day? Why would I think, like, it should be done a different way. Like, I hired you. Because I trust you. So, yeah, that was huge, like, understanding that is really what kind of open this world to me to like, like working as like a team and making it truly collaborative. And that's always just been my dream in general. It's like, I just want to work with friends. Like, I just want to, I want to, you know, when the tide rises, we all rise and like we can all do well, yeah. That's the goal. So it's like, and I really respect I, like I find everything they do. So cool. And interesting, like my main key contractor. I'm like, How do you know how to do? Like, how did you get to that, and he's like a MacGyver, he can figure out anything. And I was like, I don't know, I have such respect for those people even painting. It's like, people think I can paint a wall. But it's like, when you like my main painter, he's such a craftsman. He's like a true artist where he really takes pride in his work. And I really admire that.

Debbie: I think it's such a huge. It's such an important part of the conversation. Because, again, it's kind of like the profit conversation. This is another part, that's really important. Because once we really get that it's a relationship business. And we don't have to be combative with our contractors and the people that we work with. And that not everybody's out to screw us. Yeah. Right. Like, this whole mindset around contractors is so infuriating to me sometimes, because one person right having all these bad experiences, it's like, you're the common denominator.

Courtney: Exactly. And that's what I realized. I was guilty in Chicago. And it stemmed from being insecure, because I, you realize this expensive thing, and you don't want to be taking advantage of, I've done the same thing with buying a car, I'm totally guilty of it. It's like you Google a bunch the night before, and you take your like, two hours of knowledge, we're like, suddenly, you're the expert. Yeah, and this is what I want. And then like, in the being rigid, like that making like, because it's like having thinking your egos gonna like control the situation really, really hurts you and I, I've heard in the group too, people talk about assertiveness, like, I don't want to be a bitch. And it's like, and it's like, you can be really nice and assertive. And that also comes from respecting people. And then the flip side, they respect you. So like, when you say something to them, they know that, you know, you you like them. And you're not just saying that, because you want to control them. Like they already know that you respect them. So building that relationship with someone,

Debbie: you know, I don't think enough people realize I was just having a conversation with my H vac contractor. I've been working with him for like, I don't know, 12 or 13 years. And I was having a conversation with him. And he was like, you know, I just I, I appreciate you that. You're just you're always paying like you're just always paying you don't question it. You don't? You don't take a week, I asked him for payment, and you pay it. And I'm like, well, well, that's how it should be. And he's like, you would think so. But just like people have all these negative things about contractors, we have negative things about some people than the world to because we can't get paid. Sometimes, even though we did our job. People just decide that, well, they have control of the money, and they're not going to give up that they're not giving up the money that we're owed. He's like, he was telling me that one person owes like 10s of 1000s of dollars, and they're just choosing not to pay him. And like, you know, we're all connected, all of the trades are connected. And we all know who pays and who doesn't pay. So the people who are having a hard time finding people who will work for them are generally the ones who have a bad reputation in the contractor world.

Courtney: And the thing now it's like the wheel has turned like they're all in such demand right now. They don't need you. They can work for someone else. So like the good people like, they don't have to show up for you. And that doesn't mean that you let them do whatever they want, but Like, like my main guy at the beginning, he was like, there was a couple of times where he was late or just didn't let me know that he couldn't show up. And he's a really shy person. He's actually very similar to my brother. And I recognize that and I was like, if I yell at this guy, because he didn't show up, he's gonna, like, go under something like a cat and hide and like, but I know how talented and how good he is. So I just said to him, I'm like, I want you to work. And I want you to make money. I just, if you're not here, just text me and let me know, because I always keep the ball rolling. I'll never be mad at you, because you went and got money from someone and you're working hard, like, I support that. I just want communication so I can keep this going.

Debbie: Yeah, communication. And, you know, talking to my contractor the other day, he he made a mistake. And, and I saw it, and he came through later, and he wasn't talking about it. And this was somebody new, new to me. And then finally, I just I was like, Oh, and hey, I just wanted to check in on that thing over there. And he was like, I'm so sorry. Like, real? Like, oh, my gosh, I'm so sorry, I, I am going to handle it. And I was like, Hey, man, mistakes happen. I'm not mad at you, like, what do we need to do to resolve it? Like, do you need something from me, if you're waiting for something for me, let me know, I don't ever want to hold you up. But that freedom, and that, that space for making mistakes, because we're we're human,

Courtney: and like a house, all houses, they're like living breathing things. Like, they're not all the same. So people feel like they're everyone approaches everything the same, but it's like, you didn't you don't know what work was done prior to you. You don't know if like, little critters got in there overnight, we have no idea what's happening. So like, you know, it's your mindset, again, just like knowing, you just gotta keep pivoting and like and give that flexibility to your contractors, you're gonna run into stuff too, right?

Debbie: And don't make it make make it a space where we're open communication is okay. Like, they can say, I screwed up, and you're not going to come down on them, or shame them. Because that's what typically happens is they get shamed, and they make a mistake, they get shamed. And that doesn't feel good to anybody. So that space of you can make mistakes. Let's just talk about him. Like, let's Yeah, I was like, it's totally fine. Let's just talk about it. Like what needs to happen? Do you need something from me? Let's keep moving. And he was like, Oh my gosh, I've never like nobody's ever just like, talk to me like that. And I was like, I'm sorry.

Courtney: But now he'll forever be loyal to you for that thing. Because all of these guys it's like, like, I think it's like, they could have done a million things with their life. But they want to work in the trades, right? Because they, you know, they don't want to be talked down to they don't want to like, and I feel like, it's interesting since the pandemic, because it turned and everyone's looking at their house and wants a million things done. And these guys get so busy. And it's like, like, like, it used to be that like, oh, like, I'm giving you money, you got to do what I said, but it's really, you know, these a lot of these guys are artists, they're craftsmans, like, respect them and it and it's also you're kind of the coach of a team. It's like, you're the leader. So yeah, it's just, you know, just creating a good team that's essentially in a good environment where people want to work like yes, yeah, that whole thing has made it much more enjoyable to just that shift of like, or just, again came from insecurity of my knowledge, like and then recognizing that, you know, that's huge. And makes it just much more enjoyable.

Debbie: Yes, it does. Yeah, it does if you don't have to be on guard and defensive and assume they're out to screw you. Yeah. Because I mean, honestly, they're just they're just not and there are ways to protect yourself and to also protect them like both parties should be protected. Yeah. And both parties should get you know should be treated with respect and not get paid and get paid when it's time for them to get paid. Yes. Oh my gosh, that's a big one for sure. Yeah. Um Oh my gosh, that was such an important tangent to take. Yeah, let's get back to flip number two. When did flip number two sell? 

Courtney: So flip number two sold. Are we closed ended July I then I got flipped number three beginning of August. And in that one it was a house on a golf course. yep yeah. So I I think in my head because the market was crazy at that time I was like it's a house on the golf course for 400 grand which here seemed so cheap I was like, This is crazy. And the their agent just like they did the thing they listed it without posting photos and then all the things worked in my advantage so I didn't have much competition and get off the MLS. But I goofed on my I had a bit of a pie in the sky ARV where I think it probably also overconfidence with my last lip, I was like, get in my head a little bit, if I build it, they will come, which doesn't always work. Um, so that one same thing. Three months, it was about 2000 square feet. Crazy cool house did the same approach as far as how I do see it myself. I staged it myself, I'm always like a pastime is also just I'm constantly accumulating vintage furniture and furnishings. And but so when it came time to put on the market, my realtor is like, like at that time there were no night like even close to remodeled homes that in like even the past six months like no homes I've sold on the golf course. So I had no comp so we had off of houses that look like my house when I bought it like needed total overhauls. And I think it's because it is a little bit of a cheaper area. So like people there are probably and I'm seeing this happen more and more like because people aren't wanting to move now. Because Where are you going to go? And because this is a cheaper pocket? Like maybe that's why people are just like, where are we gonna go like, so. So I had to list the house. At my break even which was terrifying.

Debbie: What did you did you buy? What did you buy that one for? 400 bought it for 400. And what was the renovation?

Courtney: I put 65 in, okay, this one was hard money. And I use my HELOC. Again. I didn't use any private. And then I listed it at 499 and sold it at 535. I knew like it was a really special house like it was I and I was really proud of it. So I always kind of like every house, there's something I think I don't have to do. And then the more I'm there, I'm like I got to do this thing. And I don't know if I'll get my money back. I'm going to do this thing. Because for me too. It's just as exciting to see what it will look like. So it's like, I just want to I want to see how great it can look. And so I fall a little victim to that every time. And I don't know if I feel bad about it. I think

Debbie:  I think it's what sets them apart? I do yeah, I think caring more and thinking about it differently than just I hate the saying lipstick on a pig, which is what yeah, oh, that was the same when I first got into flipping and I was like, That is not I don't drive with that. That's not my that's not that's not how I'm going to do things fells good. 

Courtney: feels good. And now listening to so many podcasts. It's like, I get why flipping has gotten a bad name because everything comes from an investor perspective. And it's more now about like, what we can get away with. And we've lost sight of the fact that we're making homes for people, which is their biggest asset is where they spend all their time and make all their memories. That's the way I feel such responsibility with each house. Like I don't really have fear of losing money, but I have fear of just like not making the house. What it could be like not reaching the like, or hitting the opportunity, right and making what I knew it could be so it's like, um, so yeah, I so that has, I got I got, I think 14 offers on it. So when the sale went well They bought it as is.

Debbie: So what was the profit on that one?

Courtney: So that one was around 30. Okay, and then most recent one,
most recent one. So I bought this one. I really love this neighborhood. This is the third house, I put an offer on the neighborhood. And they're all custom homes. And they're all really they're all built mid 70s, mid 80s. And they're kind of quirky and weird, and I just love them I love and this house was getting the margins were slim, like I was like, and now I know better because I'm in your program at this point. And I was like, it's not the 10% ARV. But I really saw the potential in this house. And there were comps to prove that I knew I wouldn't lose money. So I was like I wanted and I knew that a woman that owned the house was super meticulous, like handed over like multiple three ring binders of everything to be done to the house. So it was awesome house. So that said at my ARV so I bought this house at C I bought at 516. And my original ARV was 640. So my budget was crazy tight. I ended up putting in 50 grand. And then like I was in the throes of staging and doing my thing, I didn't notice a sale that happened that made my realtor think that I could list it at 700. So or 699. So and that's what's so crazy about real estate is like, oh, there's 50 grand or like bananas. It's bananas. And I know it can go the other way. Right? It can go the other way, but unlikely to go that far. But so I like was never expecting to get anywhere near that. And then we did coming soon. And I got offer at 60 over during the call coming soon. And also like the realtor is going to give me part of her commission and they wanted to buy all the furniture. And then we ended up getting multiple offers around this 70 over ask. And then these people, the original people raise their offer to 783. But then this became like where I started feeling weird online. This is a lot of money in Irish just like me. And my realtor. Like she kind of talked me off too because she's sometimes she's like, not that you can be too generous. But she's like, Oh, no, Courtney, like, you know, like, it's okay. It's okay. But I ended up telling them because the other offers are at 770. I sold it to them at seven, seven D and I didn't take the realtors commission because I realized how hard it is these days. Like trying to get people a house right then end up giving them like 5k worth of furniture.

Debbie: And that's amazing. So that's what felt good to you.

Courtney: It felt good. Like yeah, I yeah, it Yeah. But again, like almost froze me because I made about 150 on that one. It's crazy.

Debbie: Wow. Yeah. That's incredible, incredible profit. It's really been it's been so fun to talk to you. We're we're very similar.

Courtney: I always think that listening to your podcast, I was like, I feel like I'd be friends with them.

Debbie: Yeah, right. Like, let's hang out me on it. So I love that. I just love that this community attracts who it attracts, which is women who want to do this in a way that isn't screwing everybody around like right, not like we're not leaving people thinking they got a bad deal, or they were taken advantage of, or any of that negative stuff that just feels gross. We just go in we love these houses, we keep things that we can keep. We replace things that we can't. And we just put a lot of heart into it. And it's not based on what's like the cheapest thing to do. It's what's gonna make this house like, what is this house telling me? And I know that's so weird, but it's like, really, what is this house telling me exactly?

Courtney: Like the house is more of my client than me thinking of the buyers like, and that saves you money too, because you're like, how do I work with what's here rather than? Well, the person the buyers on the street had the super modern, whatever and I just bought a craftsman and like trying to like, but it's like design For the house, and then you're keeping the legacy of the house going and cool things happen.
Debbie: Totally. And I think that's that's the thing, though people who are, are drawn to that style house, they are drawn to the design pieces, right? They're, they're drawn to the things that make it unique and give it character and they pay more for it.

Courtney: Yeah. Yeah. So that's what I'm, I mean, I'm still in the very much trial and error, but I'm like really seeing like, it's like, I almost want to get, like my creative friends to do this, too. Because I was like, I flips can and should look better, you know?

Debbie: Yes.Totally. A they are though, they really are. Like, when I first started 2007 2008, like, Nope, that I think there was me and maybe three other that I can think of three others in Austin that were like, loving the houses, not just doing the lipstick on a pig thing. Yeah. And now definitely, more people are for sure. But I mean, you can tell just by MLS photos, who's right, you can tell who's doing it right. And who's going after the easy money coaches? Yeah.

Courtney: It's just Yeah. Yeah. So I'm, I'm very appreciative of this program. And just like, you're the feeling of not being that you're at it alone, just like, and just the immediate response, you get to posting questions and, and just like having truly cheerleaders at all times to you like, everyone's very supportive. Yeah. Being part of the positive community that's doing something I truly believe is good. And so yes, it's pretty cool. What you created.

Debbie: Oh, my gosh. Well, thanks for coming to the party. Thanks for hanging out in the party. Yes, we've all co created it. Like every single person who comes in just continues to co create it. It's really, it's really beautiful. It's yeah, I'm super grateful for the awesome women that find their way to us for sure. Yeah, you included. I'm so glad that we were finally able to have this conversation. You just embody so much of the spirit here like, Yeah, it's awesome. Thank you. Thanks for hanging out with me. Thanks for sharing parts of your story. Yes, of course. Awesome, Courtney. All right. Thank you. Thanks for hanging out. Yeah, see you in the group. Okay, fine.

Such a great conversation. I told you, we were going to cover a lot of ground. And we did. Thank you, Courtney. Again, that was really fantastic. I loved it. I love having the conversation of flipping houses in a way that's done with love and care, and not taking advantage of people and letting everyone involved when, and letting our team shine, and doing the things that we enjoy doing and that we're good at doing. And getting to have time freedom, and spending that time with friends and family and the people that we love instead of at a job that's sucking the life out of us. Oh my gosh, so good. All right. It's totally possible to buy, renovate and sell or rent houses in a way that feels good to you. And is positive and adds value to people. All right. If you want to talk to us, and see how we do that, that's our specialty. See how we help women start flipping houses in any kind of market and how we support women. In doing that, go to her first flip.com and book a call to talk to us and see if we're a fit. All right. Until next time, go out there flip houses like a girl leave people in places better than you find them and make it a great day. Bye