House flipper — ahem, real estate investor — Justin Pierce has flipped about 40 houses in the last seven years. But the 37-year-old former Marine almost bit off more than he could chew when he bought “the ugliest house on the block” in the Washington, D.C., suburb Temple Hills, Md.

Pierce paid only $63,000 for the home, and the median sales price for homes in Prince George’s County is $195,000. But Pierce wanted to do a “pop-up” on the tiny home, adding a second floor to double its size to 1,600 square feet. In six months, he “transformed the property,” which features hardwood floors, granite countertops and stainless steel appliances.

But Pierce — who figures he needs to pay no more than 70 percent of what a home is worth in order to flip it for a profit — went $20,000 over budget. All told, he spent $85,000 renovating the home, with financing from a private investor with whom he will split the profits.

No longer the ugliest house on the block, the home’s now on the market for $239,000. While Pierce may walk away from this flip with a nice profit, flipping activity in the Washington, D.C., metro area is down 13 percent from a year ago, and the average gross profit has declined from $114,991 to $71,832, the Washington Post reports, citing data from RealtyTrac. Source:

Show Comments Hide Comments


Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription