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Shop Talk - The Real Estate Agent Podcast


Real Estate Agent Podcast Episode 78: Viktor Jiracek, Six-Figure House Flipper

Episode 78: Viktor Jiracek, Six-Figure House Flipper
October 26, 2021

Flipping homes can seem daunting, even to those with years of industry experience. However, if you keep your process simple and focus on the numbers like Viktor Jiracek, entering this niche can prove to be a lucrative investment.

 
It's okay to make mistakes; you get your mistakes out of the way and learn quickly.

Viktor Jiracek

About This Episode

Viktor Jiracek is an overnight success story when it comes to fixing and flipping homes. The founder of Sell Your Gainesville Home Today, he’s a real estate investor in Gainesville, FL. Now, in his third year of flipping houses, the company is on track to flip 30 homes.

He attributes his company’s success to its core philosophy: ”We are people that like to be treated with respect, honor, integrity, and understanding, and this is how you will be treated as well.”

Learn more about Viktor’s career and company at SellYourGainesvilleHomeToday.com, follow him on Instagram @ViktorJiracek, check out his YouTube channel, and gain an inside look at his process of flipping homes through his Facebook Group, Six-Figure House Flippers.

Episode Transcript

Brett: Hey there and welcome to Shoptalk, the real estate show. I’m Brett Van Alstine, and on today’s episode, we’re joined by Viktor Jiracek, founder of Sell Your Gainesville Home Today. Viktor has been involved in real estate investment and flipping homes for years and is making a name for himself within the industry in Florida. Last year his company flipped 20 homes, and this year they are on track to flip 30. Today we discuss how he got started in the business, making a transition out of the healthcare industry, his calculated process of acquiring and selling homes, and how he helps educate those looking to break into this lucrative business.

Brett:

Hey, Viktor, thanks for hopping on the podcast and taking the time to talk to us today.

Viktor:

Absolutely. Thanks for, thanks for having me.

Brett:

So for myself and for the listeners, can you give us a little bit of a background on you and how you ultimately started your company, and how you got interested in flipping homes?

Viktor:

Yeah, for sure. So before this, I flip houses full-time now, but before I got started, I was like, it was more like a corporate career is what I call, I was in health care, the home health administrator you know, kind of working nine to five and there's nothing wrong with that. But for me, there was always something more, I always felt like something was missing. I want to like earn more and I want to have a little more freedom, more independence. I didn't feel like I had that, just kind of stuck to that job. And then I also didn't really enjoy the job too much. So like all those three things. I said, “Hey, I gotta do something.” Always had the real estate bug in the back of my mind. I figured it was always like, let me do this one thing.

Viktor:

And then the next thing is going to be real estate. And I realized that at a certain point, let me just get into real estate, which is what I want to do. And, you know, just get started there. So I'm like, okay, cool. Let's make that happen. So basically that's what happened. So I kind of dabbled with real estate, started with wholesaling then I got into fix and flipping, and I've just continued to fix and flip since. And you know, here we are, here we are today.

Brett:

So when you first got started with fixing and flipping, was there a property that kind of struck you as, “Oh, I know I'm going to do this for the rest of my life” sort of thing? Was there an aha moment like that for you?

Viktor:

That was kind of it. So I was trying the wholesaling and just to loop in your listeners like wholesaling is like, you find a good deal, you put it on a contract, you don't actually buy or own it yourself. You basically sell the contract is essentially what you're doing. Professional deal finder type of thing. So, I tried that. And then I realized like, I didn't really like being that kind of middleman. Okay, got to find a deal, negotiate, negotiate. Then you go out and find the investor and then negotiate, negotiate, and they try to beat you up. And like, you got to represent both parties. And I was like, yeah, yeah, I don't know, fine. I just want to be able to take it down myself. So it was more of a realization through that process. I'm like, hey, if I really want to do this, like, this is not the position I want to be in. And also let me start to take down my own deal. So that's what I basically started to do is that like nice evolution, like, okay, cool. Let me start to take down these deals myself, but that's kinda how it started.

Brett:

Okay. Okay. And you know, today I think I had seen on your website, obviously, the success that your company has seen through flipping homes and, you know, the vast amount of sales volume that you guys are reporting. Is there, when you're scoping out an area or you are bought a potential property, is there something that you're looking for specifically? Is it the property that, you know, you guys kind of focus on, or are there external factors that play into your judgment on that?

Viktor:

It's really, it really comes down to two things. That's ARV, like what you can sell a place for. What's the retail price? Once you fix it all up, what can you sell it for? Okay. The second thing is what you need to put into it to get it to that level, like repairs, renovation. So really honestly, it comes down to those two factors. If those numbers are there, then you know, it's a good deal. ‘Cause there are like a million variables to look at. There's what's the neighborhood? What's the bedroom and bathroom count? What's the school system? How big of acreage and land is it? So there are all these different variables when it comes to this sort of stuff. So I just look at the numbers. Okay. So just to give a nice extreme example, nice example for your folks. If someone were to give you property for free. “Hey, here's this house for free.” You wouldn't really be asking like, “Oh, what's, what's the bedrooms [and] bathrooms like, oh, what a, what month is, I don't know if I want to buy it ‘cause the slow season.” Right. So if it's when you're buying properties like I'm buying, it's such a discount, this is pretty, pretty close to free.

Brett:

So thinking about the numbers - that makes sense. Yeah. So when you're again, when you're presented with a property, what sort of discount would be an example of, you know, obviously when most people are getting into flipping themselves, it's I know if, what sort of discounts they're being presented with, or if they're just kind of finding a traditional home and then fixing that up. But on your end, what are the discounts that you guys typically see?

Viktor:

I just like the 70% rule is how I like to think about it. Look at it. 70% ARV minus repairs. So 70% of retail value minus repairs. So again, a quick example, let's say you can sell the thing for a hundred thousand, what, $10,000 into it? Like anything $60,000 and below would be a good deal. Just looking at the numbers and just makes it easier to run the analysis there. So that's how I typically think about it. The market is pretty hot, so you can kind of be a little bit flexible with it. You don't want to be too much because that can bite you in the butt. That's how I like to think about it.

Brett:

Okay. Okay. Well, how many, how many people work for your company?

Viktor:

Yeah, so it's actually, it's a pretty lean team, so it's me. I have an assistant and then a project manager and that's pretty much it. Lean. So we did about 20 flips last year, 30 flips this years ago, fix and flips. So it's not like it's a huge volume so we can just, you know, keep on top of it.

Brett:

But that's still enough to keep you busy. And I would assume that you know, not every project you're going into it, it's just smooth sailing the entire time. There's probably a lot of hiccups and I'm sure you have some great stories about things that you've, you know, been presented with on these properties.

Viktor:

So that definitely happens with, with regards to all this stuff. So we try to keep our flips as simple as possible. I've never added a bedroom, I've never added a bathroom. I don't think I've ever changed the layout of a house, tear out this wall, put up this wall. We try to keep it literally as simple as possible. That is typically how we like to do it so we can do that volume. We can do more. I'd rather do, you know, 10 flips a year and make $30k then do you know, five and make $40k. Like you make money through the volume you have.

Brett:

Yeah. Well, that makes sense. No, that definitely makes sense. And so in your company's name is Sell Your Gainesville home today. Do you guys venture outside of Gainesville at all? Or are you primarily focused on the Gainesville market?

Viktor:

Mostly do Alachua county. So just by like local area, we might go a little bit out of that if needed, but yeah, that's typically the market we operate in.

Brett:

Okay. And with all the buzz surrounding Florida's real estate market on your end, have you seen that, have you kind of had to change up your business at all due to that? Or has it really just accelerated your success this year?

Viktor:

I mean, we did have the record year 2020, and then 2021 should be even better, which is exciting. I think what it is most exciting, so my theory of especially flipping, cause you're on both sides of the transaction, you're buying the property, and then you're selling it. My theory is the same amount of difficulty. So it's either really hard to buy a property and easy to sell it or vice versa. So I think that's where we're at now. Like if we can get a good deal just get it cause you're going to have an easy time selling it.

Brett:

Yeah, no, definitely. And on your average flip, how long would you say that usually takes you?

Viktor:

So we're typically like four months in and out. Yeah. Try to keep it as quick as possible. About 30-45 days for the renovation, then about a week to list it and get it under contract. And then closing is like 30-45 days.

Brett:

Okay. So in my next question, I was going to ask the kind of characteristics that you're looking for in these properties, but you had said earlier that you're more focused on the numbers. So outside of your 70% rule, are there any other kinds of data points that you specifically look for when assessing a property? Just thought I'd ask.

Viktor:

I mean, there's, there are things. I mean, give me a second here.

Viktor:

So there are definitely things we look at when it comes to these types of deals and these types of transactions that are, that are important. There are things that are going to help sell the property. Like everyone loves 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. So it gets a three-two, it's going to sell a little bit quicker if it's in that sweet spot in terms of square footage, like a 1000 to 1500 square foot, it's going to sell quicker. If it's in that price range, affordability, price range, you know, it's going to depend on your area where FHA buyers can get approved. It's going to sell quicker. Okay. All these different factors like mentally like it's all about the numbers. So I'll do a deal no matter what, but just like all these different factors go into it with regards to like, hey how quick it's going to sell and how easy it is going to be to sell it. How much renovation does it need if it's only something easy, like paint and flooring, you're just gonna be easier versus everything has to go and everything has to be new because there are only different considerations, but that's just kinda how I think about it.

Brett:

Okay. No, and that, and I'm sure again, over time I'm sure you've had times where you've learned that the hard way on what you're assessing and what you're not assessing. So is there a time that you can think of when you thought, “That was a mistake that I really should have paid attention to?” That was a big red flag sort of moment

Viktor:

Like today? No. I mean, that's, that's a part of it too. And then I'll, I'll answer your question directly here in a second, but I always like to think of flipping and like set yourself up for success. And like Warren Buffet talks about this margin of error, right? I'd like to think of it for flipping like Warren Buffet. So let's say you intend to make a $30k net profit on a flip, which would be great. And you make a mistake as a $5,000 mistake. You're still gonna make $25,000, which is great. You're still going to be profitable, but that's why you need that profit buffer. Like if things go wrong, if you make those mistakes, it's going to chip away at that. Okay. I've had that happen a lot where you, like you underestimate something especially in today's market, two years ago roof would be like $8,000, well it's such a hot market.

Viktor:

You know, it's $10,000, it's $9,000 more. But again, these mistakes kind of roll off you as long as you have the right mindset about it. And again, if it's true, if you think of it, like, hey, I have, you know, X amount for reserves just in case something goes wrong, and then you're good to go. So that's how I like to think about it. So yeah, you make mistakes even on property sales. I still make mistakes. There was one property we listed recently and I wanted to do the bare minimum just cause the market's so hot, what can I get away with? What do I have to do I need to do is I always want to test out where that box is, where do we need to put the property? Where does the property beat?

Viktor:

‘Cause if we don't have to put that much into it, then we can do more deals, you know, it's quicker that way. So on this one, we kept the kitchen as is, so we did new flooring, new paint, and a roof. Kept the kitchen as is, and then basically learn, hey, the kitchen has to be in good shape. Cause nobody wants to see it. No showings, anything like that. Okay. It's that sort of thing that we look at. So you're making mistakes constantly and again, that's fine just because, you know, at the end of the day, worst case, we'll just make a little bit less.

Brett:

Sure, sure. So it's a very it seems like as you're approaching these and assessing this, it's very calculated once you're entering it. Even as far as that margin of error, like you had just said as kind of calculating what that might be and making sure that you're still gonna walk away with a good return.

Viktor:

Yeah. So I've never lost money on a deal. I think the worst deal I had was breakeven. So again, that's not terrible, I guess you kind of lose some time and lose some effort, but just breakeven. And then some deals like I wanted to make $30,000 [rather] than making $10 or $12 or $15, and that's not the end of the world, but you still get a deal done. Like you still are able to get them this. So, you know, I'd rather take a check for, I've never had anyone turned down a check for $10,000, you know like that's still good money.

Brett:

Yeah. I think anyone would take that. So beyond flipping homes, you also care a great deal about helping to educate others about the process of flipping homes and how people can kind of get started on their own path towards that. What are some ways that you try and connect with people to present this, more information, and kind of what would be your most high-level summary of, you know, trying to educate someone who's interested in flipping homes?

Viktor:

Yeah. So for sure. So I mentor people, so I flip and then I mentor people nationwide on how to get started. Flipping, what's really cool about real estate is competition. So me doing deals in Gainesville doesn't affect anyone trying to do deals in Texas or Miami or anything like that. Everyone can help each other out. So that's, that's pretty exciting on that. With regards to getting started, I think the biggest thing, a lot of people kind of get in their head with regards to “Hey, I want to do a deal, but is it a good deal? Is it for me?” Like all these different factors into it. The biggest thing to think about when it comes to that sort of stuff is just, just the value of getting started, knowing your first deal. It's not going to be a home run if it is great, but likely not going to be a home run, you're going to learn over time. But your first deal is your hardest and it's going to definitely open you up for the next one. I've seen it so many times on myself and students, they do that first one, then everything clicks and I'm like, okay, number two, number three, quickly comes after. And it just, it just becomes real for them. So I think the biggest thing is just, you know, the value of getting started.

Brett:

Okay. And I'm sure for you on your end, after, you know, putting in the time to educate people when they get back to you and say, “Oh, the first one I, I learned X, Y, Z.” And then they come back and the second and the third one, they're saying how much easier it is. That's gotta be very rewarding.

Viktor:

Exactly. Yeah. So it does get easier over time and then it gets easier, and easier. So my, you know, 30th flip or whatever 50th flip is even easier than the 49th, which makes life easier. So the value of getting started, the value of getting started early too. So I was recommended by a mentor like five years ago, six years ago, I was told you should get started flipping starting in real estate. Like, I don't know about that, what about my other path? And I ended up getting started, you know, three years ago. So it's just one of those things I did two homes my first year. Then eight and then 20, and I want to do 30 this year. So if I got started, you know, five, six years ago, like, who knows, where I would have been today? So it's that exponential growth. People think very linearly, but when it comes to this like you can grow exponentially, which is exciting.

Brett:

Okay. And earlier you had touched on how you yourself had gotten started in real estate before getting involved in the actual flipping process for our listeners. How do you think real estate agents’ skill sets, would transition into flipping homes?

Viktor:

Well, what's really good about a REALTOR®, a real estate background. Is that they already have a lot of the good framework. There's definitely stuff to fill in like renovation, buying hard money, how to source deals, all that sort of stuff. Cause it's a little bit different than traditional real estate. But you have a good background in terms of knowing how fast houses sell, knowing how much houses sell for and how to show houses. The selling process is going to be a lot easier for those folks, but there's a lot of those differences, those key steps that are missing in flipping, but at least you have the basics.

Brett:

Okay. Yeah. And did you notice at all, coming from real estate and getting started and flipping as far as the kind of having your network of professionals around you? I assume when you're flipping homes and you have projects that you're outsourcing this to local contractors or companies like that - did you have any prior connections coming into flipping that you were able to lean on or was that all new for you once you got started?

Viktor:

No, we just got started and tried to figure it out. That's pretty much it there's no, there's no secret sauce. There was no magic, you know, fortunately, or unfortunately, cause I was working for the healthcare job that I was mentioning. I was living in Chicago for that. And then I moved down to Gainesville, moved down to Florida. So I was a brand new start from scratch type of network.

Viktor:

So we just, we just figured it out. So I was like, “Oh, we have a project. Okay. Let's get this person in there, this person, this person.”

Brett:

For, so obviously starting in a new market, everything's new for you. What were some ways that you networked? This is a question that I think we frequently get is just networking in general. Some people feel overwhelmed with it. They're not a hundred percent sure how to approach it or how to approach certain individuals. What was your mindset when you realized, “I have a whole new market that I don't have any resources plugged into? How do I get started with this?”

Viktor:

I think what was really helpful, local RIO's, local real estate investor meetups, those types of things are a great start. You know, if you're a REALTOR® like you're already doing similar stuff, the real estate investor specific thing is really important. And what's really important is as you start to get into starting to understand the lingo and the language surrounding it. So I mentioned terms like ARV. I was like, that's important. The repair budget knowing what hard money is, a lot of the basics terms is gonna help out a ton.

Brett:

Okay. And on your website for those that are seeking more information, what are some good resources that you might have for people to read up on or even videos to watch? I know I saw that you have a YouTube channel that you talk about flipping houses and that whole process. And you'd like to educate people. Are there any other resources that you would recommend for people to look up?

Viktor:

So I actually have a Facebook group. It's called Six-Figure House Flippers. So it's a free Facebook group. I cover a ton of resources. I have a repair estimate guide. It’s seven pages break everything down. How much is the flooring? How much is the painting? How much is a roof, how much is, you know, septic? So it breaks it all down. So that's, there. And then, yeah, I do have that free YouTube channel as well, but the Six-Figure House Flipper Facebook group is honestly the best place for all of that.

Brett:

Okay, awesome. We'll make sure to include a link to that on our webpage when we publish this episode. That's awesome though. And then on your website, as I was doing my digging you highlight the importance of respect honor, integrity, understanding, and treating clients fairly. How was this company philosophy crafted, or are these values something that you've carried with you your entire life?

Viktor:

Yeah, I think the biggest thing is just thinking in terms of relationships. So it's not just for the most part like you're not just going to like a contractor, for example, you're not going to transact with them once if they're good, you're going to use them over and over again. So sort of thinking like, “Hey, how do I get the most out of this specific transactional, just this one invoice or bill, or all that stuff? How do I get the most out of a relationship?” I think that applies to everything, maximizing for the long-term relationship and not maximizing for just this one interaction. So just applying that throughout the entire business, just trying to, put people in a good position, put them in a better position than what they were, at least you put them in a better position having to interact with them.

Brett:

Sure. And I'm sure at least you're thinking that the other party would be savvy enough to have that same sort of mindset of, this is going to be a win-win this is going to be a long-term relationship. We like to work with each other. So let's make sure that this is cordial and let's make sure that we're helping each other out.

Viktor:

That's, that's the hope

Brett:

Exactly. Right. Right. Okay. and then this is a nice little question that we'd like to ask at the end of every interview, but, and it sounds like you'd probably have a few, looking back at your career, what is one thing that you wish you could go back and change and do differently?

Viktor:

I think there's kind of two parts to it. So the first part is just like I mentioned, I wish I would have gotten started earlier. ‘Cause again, I went full-time like three years ago and I wish I would have gotten started earlier. ‘Cause it does, you know, compound, I would have been where I'm at a lot quicker, which is great. So I think that's part of it. I think the other thing too, I'm also partly glad I did what I did. So at the same time, like that's what I would change. I wouldn't change anything because there is a lot of learning lessons from those mistakes. And as soon as you take away those mistakes, it's like, you don't get those lessons. And I think you would still learn that some other way.

Viktor:

If you keep doing what you're doing, you're going to keep getting what you're getting. So I would have hit those mistakes at some other time. Even if it wasn't that specific time. So that's just how I think about it. So I'm glad I went through all those mistakes. I'm glad I got those mistakes early. Then you can start early and you optimize at getting up and running early again, it's that exponential growth. So would you rather, I can't remember the math, if you get started compounding and you pay $500 a month towards a retirement fund and start at 25 versus someone who starts at 35 and puts in double the guy who started earlier, makes a ton more, it's something like that.

Brett:

I think I've seen that same graphic.

Viktor:

Exactly. So it's the same for real estate, the same for getting started here. It's okay to make mistakes; you get your mistakes out of the way and learn quickly. Cause then the rest is gonna really impact you quite heavily quite profitably in the future.

Brett:

Well, and I'm sure, I guess that kind of mindset can be applied to anything. The earlier you get started, you know, taking the time to make those mistakes and be able to learn from those mistakes is really crucial, but almost just kind of applying that 1% better mindset on a day-to-day basis.

Viktor:

So that's, that's really key.

Brett:

Awesome. Cool. Well, to wrap it up, is there anywhere you want to point our audience or listeners to, is there any sort of resources on your website that you would like to plug specifically, or what are some ways that people can kind of connect with you and learn more about a one your company, but to also get started and flipping homes?

Viktor:

I think the best place is really Facebook. So I'm really active there and like that Facebook group. I always post this is where this deal is. This is how this property's going. So I go in and I really just share all the details. I do deep dives. This is how much I made on this flip. And then I break it down like, “Okay, this is what I bought it for, put into it, this way right. This is what went wrong.”I'm really transparent, this is what it's really like. And then people from there can choose if this is something they want to do. People look at it and they learn from that. I want to do it because it is impactful. You can think of, you know, for doing a flip, my average flip is about $30k net profit, which is great. Adding $30k to your bank account, what sort of impact would that have for most people that's like, “Whoa, you have an emergency fund, you can take a vacation.” You're just in a much better place financially. So it's really cool that help people achieve that, especially on their first one. ‘Cause then it's kind of opens them up to do it more.

Brett:

Sure. Yeah. And yeah, like you had said, once that first one is done and it goes off well for them, that's just even more motivation and kind of creating that momentum to keep moving forward and keep pursuing more deals.

Viktor:

Yeah, for sure.

Brett:

Awesome. Well, thank you so much, Viktor, for hopping on the podcast and you know, enlightening us a little bit on flipping homes. We'd love to have you back on so we can get a little more in the weeds of flipping homes and hopefully educate our audience further on that.

Viktor:

Happy to absolutely. Awesome. Thanks again.

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After the break, we learn more about Viktor’s journey, his process and outlook for acquiring the right properties, and how he’s helped educate others throughout the country on entering the flipping business.

Creating goals and pursuing your professional passion with self-discipline and hard work takes significant time and energy. That’s why agents who value their time choose to learn online with The CE Shop. Our 100% online curriculum lets you learn what you need to succeed when it fits in your schedule. Enroll in our mobile-friendly courses today and save 25% with promo code SHOPTALK.

Brett: That’s it for this episode, thanks for listening! If you enjoyed the podcast, you can subscribe to us and leave a review on your podcast player of choice. Shop Talk is a production of The CE Shop.