It all started with a Kansas City home inspector who had simply had enough of local flippers doing sub-par “improvements” on properties and decided to take that frustration out via posting videos on social media platform TikTok.
Of course it went viral. Now, he’s started a trend that he claims he did not intend to, with agents and investors alike posting their own properties with taglines like, “This is what $349,000 will get you in [insert city, state]” and then plenty of TikTok-star-wannabes following right along behind them roasting the flipper’s taste or, in other cases, treating the entire property like an episode of MTV’s vintage real estate-porn show Cribs.
One agent in Austin, Texas, gained more than 300,000 followers in just a few months posting videos on her TikTok profile giving home tours, offering advice about down payments and financing, and walking viewers through the entire home-buying process. And, of course, there are the people who go to the opposite extreme, like the guy who likes to “roast McMansions” or the lady who has dedicated an entire series to making fun of Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice’s house, which is currently on the market.
Of course, if you’re a savvy home flipper, you want to know what the negative videos are saying. After all, your property could end up “starring” in one of these things next! Here are a few of the TikTok crowd’s favorite things to laugh at:
- Mismatched windows
- Staircases in odd places (for example, in the middle of a room, or with a superfluous turn)
- Loose screws
- Uninstalled appliances (i.e. present in the appropriate space, but not hooked up)
- Mismatched wood floors
- Floors that do not match up with the comps in a neighborhood (i.e. they make a lot of noise when the TikTok-er stomps on them when the comps appear to have hardwood or higher-quality luxury vinyl plank(LVP) installed)
- Interior wrought iron
If you’re thinking, “Well, none of this applies to me because first, I don’t do those things and second, no one is buying houses off TikTok,” well, think again. A third of TikTok users are 30 or older, and median home-buying age for first-time homebuyers is, at present, 32. That means even if they’re not buying off TikTok, they are watching it and treating it as a tastemaker. So watch those loose screws!
Charles Sells is the founder and CEO of South Carolina-based boutique investment firm Platinum Investment Properties (PIP) Group. He has been investing in the southeast and in other attractive markets around the country for more than two decades. If you want to be sure your properties get only the highest marks when it comes to beautiful flips, you need PIP Group. Get more market insights and trend updates or request a free consultation at PIPGroup.com.