Page Turner is a real estate broker boss who has been flipping properties for over 20 years. In 2018, Turner took her talents to HGTV to star in “Flip or Flop Nashville” with her ex, former NFL player DeRon Jenkins. Together, they took fans by storm, and Turner became a fan favorite.
Now in her second season of “Fix My Flip,” Turner continues to show off those entrepreneurial skills that are not only making her money but also helping others. Home & Texture talked to HGTV’s Page Turner about her real estate career, how she survives an unpredictable economic market, and what advice she has for Black Millennials who want a piece of the house-flipping pie, too.
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Page Turner Shares How Black Millennials Can Start House Flipping
Home & Texture: Can you please share tips on how aspiring black Millennials can get into home flipping?
Page Turner: One tip would be [to] first find a mentor in your immediate city. [Find] an area you desire to flip [and] shadow an established professional. [Sometimes] we need to pull ourselves away from getting all of our research online and getting back out there to shaking hands. Find flipping associations so you can get your feet wet before you risk an enormous amount of money. Once you do that, you want to ensure you always pad your budget with at least a 10% contingency for the unknowns. A lot of people think that flipping is easy and they want to get into the flipping game. However, once you are in this business, it’s important that you run your flip as a business and you are prepared for those surprises that happen in just about every flip with a contingency plan.
H&T: How do you prepare for emergencies like economic uncertainties or a stagnant buyer’s market?
PT: Keep researching online. Read your association emails and keep going to meetings so you can find out the economic state and the housing market in your immediate area. I am very proud to say that I made a lot of money through our last housing crash and recession back in 2007. Following that, over the next 10 years, I kept my ears to the pavement by figuring out how I was going to make it through a recession. I would say you want to become recession-proof by saving. We can continue to work because even in the last housing crash, the market was awful. The foreclosure market was good at the expense of other people, but it was still a way to keep eating so you just want to stay ahead of that curve. Also, watch successful people who have made it through other downtimes.
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Here’s What You Shouldn’t Renovate When Flipping Homes
H&T: What are some of the things you would suggest that aspiring home flippers renovate first and what do you think they should not renovate?
PT: Well, first, I would say, know the market that you’re renovating in and what that market calls for because every neighborhood is different. You don’t want to over-renovate your property because you’re pricing yourself outside of that market. You also can’t compare apples to oranges when it comes to getting an appraisal. Just stick with the basics. If the neighborhood is an average of 1,500 square feet, which is a starter home with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, there’s no need to add on an extra bedroom or a bathroom, even though those add-ons typically add value. Renovate the bathrooms, the kitchen, and those places where people spend the most time. Work on the primary bedroom, and if there’s space to add a bigger closet, do that after knowing the footprint of the home.
Favorite Design Trends From a Pro
H&T: What are some of your favorite home design trends for 2023?
PT: We are in a place where we can express ourselves and we can mix textiles. You can get a patterned rug and mix it with wood accents. You can find an accent wall, or what I like to call a feature wall, now instead of just painting a solid exit wall. Find removable wallpapers that are not expensive so you don’t have to be stuck with them. Have fun with bright colors and shapes. I love that we’re able to create classic looks by adding more of our personality into our house. The buyer is savvy and is looking for a more custom look. I’m going back to that classic color tile, like a nice pink blush, glass tile, the light blues—you know those really pretty hues that we can recreate.
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H&T: Are there any trends in home design you do not like? What would you not recommend for people who are interested in home flipping or renovations?
PT: Buyers nowadays are savvy. They are looking where they put their money and they want to make it feel like they are buying a home that’s of value. A lot of these flippers are stubborn and they just [add] white tiles. I have to really work away from that because that’s the anti-way right now. You don’t want to be super basic. You want to have that look and feel of custom work. So stay away from what is safe and find a way to create a look and feel of having a custom flip.
H&T: How would you describe your personal design style?
PT: My personal design style is classic, classy, long-lasting, and rich! I love straight lines. I love the jewel tones that offer a pop but don’t overwhelm a room. The very wealthy feeling tiles, tones, and textures.
Understand Permits and Renovations
H&T: Is there anything that is the most time-consuming and taxing when renovating and house flipping?
PT: The most time-consuming and taxing are probably the permitting. Permitting is when you want to renovate a property. It can get taxing because of the time it takes. You never know what the city is going to approve or not approve. Depending on where you live in the country, you know you also have to time your flips because, in the colder areas of the country, you can’t pour concrete. You have to wait until the freeze is over.
H&T: Is there a ballpark figure you have in your head that you would advise aspiring home flippers to have?
PT: Your first purchase should be what you can afford to pay monthly. So if you’re getting a hard money loan they’re expensive, and you have to be very savvy. Be prepared to pay that high monthly mortgage amount. I would work backward with what I can afford. What can I afford to spend monthly in case the house [is on the market] longer than I thought? Prepare for a three or four-month flip to turn into six or seven months. Regardless, you have to make sure you can afford that monthly payment.
Understanding the Real Estate Market
H&T: What’s your favorite real estate market to flip in?
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PT: Los Angeles. It’s the most expensive market I flip them but I’ll tell you why. There are so many different pockets and suburbs in L.A. and within 10 square miles there are like 10 million people. We’re at an inflated market, but there’s still room to flip because people have owned homes for so long. You know that there’s so much equity built up in this property. Even though the dollar amount is a lot higher, sometimes three times higher than in other parts of the country. It’s risky on the high dollar side but there’s less risk for me because I know that I’ll be able to sell it easier for higher profit.
H&T: What advice do you wish someone told you about house flipping and home buying?
PT: I wish somebody would have told me how to house hack before I purchased my first home. House hacking means buying a multi-unit property while living in one unit. Allow the other units to pay for my unit through rent or Airbnb. That will pay the entire mortgage for me while I’m living there. I would have renovated that one and lived there for a few years and then gone to my next house hack. Then I would have done two or three house hacks before marriage and children in that part of my life. Millennials: your first piece of property you’re going to live in if you don’t have a family. Get a house hack and grow your portfolio that way.
This article has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.
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