One-on-One with Craig Fuhr, Flip Club Founder and Real Estate Fix-and-Flip Machine | Think Realty | A Real Estate of Mind
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One-on-One with Craig Fuhr, Flip Club Founder and Real Estate Fix-and-Flip Machine

Craig Fuhr is a Maryland real estate investor with a lot of power and passion for fix-and-flips. In fact, as his website states, he’s not just a “real estate rehab machine” but also an “all around good guy.” This good guy has been working in real estate since 2007, when he was fired from his IT job and realized it was time to follow his entrepreneurial calling and live life on his own terms, including spending lots of time with his family and perfecting the art of doing “champagne rehabs on Budweiser budgets.”

Think Realty Magazine sat down with Fuhr to talk about his first rehab (nearly a decade ago), his “secret sauce” in real estate (and his favorite specific area in which to flip), and why he’s just plain old “unemployable” thanks to house flipping.

Craig Fuhr will join other local market experts on the Baltimore market insights panel, “Finding Your Place (and Profiting In It) in the Baltimore Market,” at the Think Realty National Conference & Expo in Baltimore, Maryland, on June 24, 2017. Click HERE to reserve your spot in that session.

Think Realty: So tell us, how did you get started in real estate?

Craig Fuhr: I got fired from my job the day after my 40th birthday in April 2007! Before that, I was a computer-chip salesman, a bar owner, a mortgage broker, a wine salesman, and an IT security analyst. With the exception of owning the bar, I hated every one of those jobs, and when I lost my well-paying IT job, I knew that I had to follow my entrepreneurial calling and live life on my terms. I had been investing in real estate part-time for four years previously. I knew how to find deals and how to evaluate them. I had the best mentors who cared about my success, and I had a plan.

Since 2007, I’ve flipped more than 150 houses and sometimes run as many as 10 rehab projects simultaneously, and I’ve experienced the unbelievable joy of teaching others how to do the same.

TR: What is your favorite real estate strategy?

CF: My favorite rehab strategy by far is fix-and-flip. We like to buy houses in great homeowner neighborhoods for cheap, make them beautiful, and sell them quick!

TR: And just where are those neighborhoods? Can you tell us your favorite local market for fix-and-flips?

CF: I love any neighborhood just inside or just outside of the Baltimore Beltway (695).

TR: A lot of people say flipping can be tough in the Baltimore area. What’s your “secret sauce” for successful deals?

CF: My secret sauce is to always add a little “Sizzle with The Steak,” when doing a rehab. When you go to a fancy steak house, they know that you could go to Costco to get your steak for far less than what you pay at the fancy steak house. They have to justify the $50 bucks for the piece of meat, but they really can’t. So, to get the consumer all emotional and giddy, the add a little butter to the super-hot plate to get that “sizzle” when they bring the steak to the table. That’s what I do with my rehabs. I try to find little inexpensive add-ons that elicit great emotion in the buyers. Things like mosaic medallion tiles in the foyer or bath, a 2-person shower with multiple heads, or a small wet bar in the basement.

TR: What is your proudest moment in real estate?

 CF: First rehab ever! I netted $98,000 in exactly 90 days. I’ve been looking for that deal ever since. Also, I’m really proud of struggling back through adversity after the crash.

TR: And finally, if you were not in real estate, what would you be doing instead?

CF: I can’t see myself doing anything but real estate. I am a total REI junkie, and I’m completely unemployable!

Craig Fuhr will join other local market experts on the Baltimore market insights panel, “Finding Your Place (and Profiting In It) in the Baltimore Market,” at the Think Realty National Conference & Expo in Baltimore, Maryland, on June 24, 2017. Click HERE to reserve your spot in that session.