In This Article

  1. Exterior
  2. Living Room
  3. Kitchen
  4. Bathrooms
  5. Bedrooms
  6. The Bottom Line: Ultimate House Rehab Checklist

The success of rehabbing a house depends upon a system-built plannot a gut feeling. 

As Benjamin Franklin says, "If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”

Part of that plan is having a house rehab checklist to keep track so that you don’t overspend or miss critical renovations. 

Having a house rehab checklist that covers the necessary in every aspect of the house — kitchen, living room, bedrooms, exterior — can ensure that you know where things are in your renovation timeline — and whether or not you are on budget. 

In this article, we’ll explore the house rehab checklist so that you can get the flip done profitability.  

Exterior

There are many items to address on the exterior of the house. First and foremost: curb appeal. What can you do as a real estate investor to enhance the curb appeal to attract the perfect buyer? 

This includes: 

  • paint/siding
  • roof
  • fencing
  • garage
  • deck
  • lawn

Living Room

The living room is one of the first rooms inside the house that potential buyers will see.

Because of the importance of first impressions, the living room is one of the most important rooms on the house rehab checklist to address.

Walls

Addressing the walls in the living room can include:

  • knocking a wall out to expand the space and open the floorplan 
  • repairing or replacing damaged drywall in the living room
  • even something as simple as a fresh coat of paint that will flow with the rest of your design plan

Flooring

What work — if any — needs to be done to the flooring?

If you’re renovating a home in a colder region of the country, you may want to use carpet to provide a sense of warmth and comfort while warmer areas lend themselves to the presence of hardwood or laminate flooring. 

Finding a budget-friendly flooring that is both practical and easy to clean is an important part of this home rehab checklist.

Windows

The presence of natural light can do wonders for that first impression.

Consider replacing the existing living room windows with larger alternatives — within your budget of course — that allow for more natural light.

Kitchen

Kitchens are often one of the main selling points for potential home buyers, and one of the most important parts of your house rehab checklist.

In the kitchen, it’s important to address any or all of the following if they are outdated:

  • cabinets
  • fixtures 
  • counters 
  • appliances 

Flooring

Installing a kitchen floor that will agree with the other design choices in the investment property while also meeting practical needs is important.

Countertops and Cabinets

Are the countertops and cabinets damaged or outdated? 

If you are gutting or updating the countertops and cabinets, keep in mind a balance of aesthetic as well as practical.

Walls

If you’re rehabbing a home in an area where large kitchens are important and the home you invested in has a small kitchen, you may need to have a wall knocked out to expand the space and open up the floor plan. 

Other factors to consider with the walls are:

  • drywall
  • backsplashes 
  • fixing any damages
  • fresh paint

Bathrooms

Keep in mind that homes typically have a variety of bathrooms, so there may not be a one size fits all solution for the bathrooms in the property. 

For each different bathroom, from a powder room to a full bath, consider a different strategy. 

Flooring

Once again, updating the flooring provides the chance to provide a fresh look while still supporting practicality

Bathroom floors should be easy to clean and waterproof while still providing a look that works with the rest of the home on your house rehab checklist. 

Countertops

How do the countertops look? 

Are they damaged, or in need of an update? 

Does the design flow with the overall look of the house? 

Fixtures

Important fixtures on the ultimate rehab checklist in the bathroom include:

  • showers
  • tubs
  • toilets
  • sinks 

Making plans to install new ones can provide a fresh, new and appealing look to the entire bathroom. 

Bedrooms

Much like bathrooms, the bedrooms in your investment property may provide a variety of designs. For instance, the master bedroom is probably larger than guest bedrooms. 

Additionally, closet sizes may vary wildly between bedrooms and can be a very important part of selling the home. 

It’s important to look at each room closely in the following aspects. 

Walls

Not only does the color of the bedroom matter, but you may need to consider knocking out a wall and building a new one to create more closet space, such as a walk in closet. 

Floors

Some aren’t fond of the idea of stepping out of bed in the morning and having their feet land on a cold, wood floor. 

If recently sold homes in your neighborhood have carpeted bedrooms — something you should know from your market analysis — consider incorporating bedroom carpet into your house rehab checklist. 

Windows

Not only can windows provide a great design touch to a bedroom, but the presence of natural light can make a small space seem much larger. Make sure to include a window update to the bedroom portion of your house rehab checklist.

The Bottom Line: Ultimate House Rehab Checklist

Remember: failing to plan is planning to fail. 

Having a plan for your fix and flip can make all the difference when it comes to whether or not the deal was profitable or a loss. 

We recommend once you have a checklist, refine it so that your entire real estate investing process, from the type of house you’re looking for to the rehab, can be systems oriented. 

Being systems oriented is one way to enhance your profitability as a real estate investor. Another way is to improve your real estate education, which you can do using these additional resources