On Flip or Flop, we show you the whole house flipping process, from beginning to end. You get to see just how trashed and gross some of the flips we deal with are, and if you see my reaction, you can get a pretty good idea of not only how bad they look but also how bad they smell. Because we’re known for our show and the huge transformations we make in our house flips, it makes sense for us to show before-and-after pictures of our flips on social media. But is it a good idea for most house flippers?
Let’s explore some of the reasons you might want to post those crazy pics and some of the reasons you might want to keep them to yourself.
Showing the Transformation Can Build Trust
First of all, you might want to show your house flips’ transformations to build trust with your homebuyers. If they do any research at all on the property before they come to look at it, then they’re going to find out that it’s a flip. If they find out that you’re real estate investors from searching through public records or from their real estate agent, they’re going to wonder why you weren’t upfront about that info in the first place. Once they start wondering, they’re going to be suspicious and wonder if you’re trying to hide any damage or problems with the house.
If you’re upfront with the whole world about your flips and show the transformations that you make with your high-quality rehabs, then your potential buyers are going to be a lot more likely to trust you and not assume that you’re hiding some terrible secret about the house.
But Graphic “Before” Pictures Can Be Problematic Too
At the same time, what happens when you show pictures of a bathroom covered in black mold? What about rotted floors and sagging ceilings? While the “after” pictures show that you took care of these problems, the “before” pictures can leave your potential buyers wondering if it’s safe to move in.
Really gross “before” pictures can either work for you or against you. They can show how much work you’ve put in and what a great deal the buyer is going to get on an almost-new house that’s been totally rehabbed. Or they can show how bad the house was before, making the buyers consider what elements you didn’t fix and how long it’s going to be until they go.
Post Some—But Not All—of Your “Before” Pictures
So what can you do? There’s no question that you should post your “after” pictures. Those show what your buyers are getting when they make an offer on your house flips. They show that you put quality work into your properties and that your buyers get great deals on beautiful homes.
With your “before” pictures, though, you might want to save the really gross ones for a while. Once you’ve developed your reputation (like Tarek and I have on Flip or Flop), you can show some of the more gruesome details of your house flips before you put your design skills to work and got your contractors on the job. Until you’ve built your business and your reputation, you might want to stick to just posting before and after pictures of the outside, the living room, and the kitchen. Oh, and don’t forget to wait until your stagers work their magic to post your “after” pictures. Then they’ll really wow people!