TGIFFF! Friday’s Featured Flip on Penniman is here. This is the first week I thought I might not be able to find a flip to bring you. Thankfully at the 11th hour I found this one. I’ll warn you now…this flip will not be as stunning as the last few Friday’s Featured Flip’s have been but there is still a lot to learn from this flip. As you will see, you’ll mostly learn what NOT to do…
I think this flip starts disappointing out of the gate. The curb appeal on this house leaves a lot to be desired. It’s clearly an older home and there are a lot of nice original details inside and out, but it looks like it’s suffered over the years as people have tried adding on to it. The end result is a ramshackle home. (Question: Is “ramshackle” a compound word putting “ram” and “shack” together? Or does it involve a ram needing shackling? Or maybe something else entirely…)
If I’m being kind and generous (which I strive and fail to do everyday), I think the profit margins on this house didn’t leave enough money for the Penniman flippers to do much structurally to this house in order to fix/improve the lay out. But it’s hard to say because despite spending hours staring at the pictures I still couldn’t figure out the house’s layout. My struggles may be due to the fact that there are so few pictures of the after. As you will see there were 17 pictures of the house before but only 11 pictures of it after.
There were some highlights to this flip (e.g. decent staging, nice paint colors, and nice kitchen) but a lot more low-lights (too many to list). When you compare the pictures from before and after it almost seems like the house got smaller. I know I’m a rookie flipper but even I know that is NOT a good move.
This house is in a part of Oakland that is very quiet and charming but it’s about a half mile off the freeway in the less desireable direction. In this area, a large freeway cuts through about 5 miles of this area of Oakland. Over the years the neighborhoods above the freeway have had a better reputation than the neighborhoods below the freeway. (Translation for “better reputation” = higher resale values.) The Penniman is below the freeway. I think this neighborhood is great but it takes a certain pioneering spirit and some faith to actually buy a house here. As such, I’m not sure who the buyers of this house will be.
Maybe the buyers will be a young couple who’ve recently had their first kid and are looking to move out of their apartment/condo. The commute into the City from here will be a nightmare so hopefully one of them can telecommute, otherwise their days in this house will be short-lived. Or maybe the buyer will be a recent divorcee with college aged kids, looking for a home with character because their a**hole ex made them move to the ‘burbs all those years ago. Either way, the buyers will likely be people who have friends/family who already live in the neighborhood and will end up getting more for the money than they would have in a more popular neighborhood.
Living room: before
Living room: after
Dining room: before
Dining room: after
I mean, I don’t even know what to say about the fact that they changed a dining room into a bedroom. I guess this is where they added the 3rd bedroom. The biggest issue I have with this is that the living room is so darn small it would have been nice to have additional entertaining space — or even just more family living space. This wee-little bedroom does not seem worth losing the dining room over. Plus, it seems like there are so many weird little rooms in this ramshackle house, they could have kept the dining room and thrown a twin bed in one of those to create the impression of a 3rd bedroom.
I appreciate that the flippers tried to incorporate period-ish details into the rehab, like penny-round and subway tiles. But as you can see in this picture the tile lay out is off (as highlighted by the grout) in a lot of places. It’s most noticeable around the tub but really if you scan the whole room your eye will find all the areas where the tile setting is off and the grout isn’t uniform. I suspect it will look even worse in person because, generally, minor imperfections such as this aren’t noticeable in photos; which means if we’re noticing it here it must be pretty glaring in person. It’s like when you have a huge zit on your face that by some miracle doesn’t seem that noticeable in the picture you were forced to be in. Same principle.
Bedrooms & hall way: before
Bedroom & hallway: after
So…they didn’t do anything to the paneling. Paneling is now on trend because people started calling it shiplap. But really shiplap and paneling are the same thing. It’s like people who were prejudiced against crock-pots until people started calling them “slow cookers” and now they can’t get enough of their “slow cooker”. Do you know anyone like this? I do but he’ll remain nameless…
Outdoor shed: before
Outdoor shed: after
Not sure if this was here before but if not this is good value-added. It still doesn’t make up for the dining room-into-bedroom fiasco. I’m still mad about that.
Alright then. There you have it. What do you think of this house? Will the Penniman make a pretty penny on this house or not?