Flipping through new listings in East Van, I noticed this modern condo that has been recently updated, and though it could be a flip. Turns out I was right. This 1 bedroom unit in 2234 Prince Albert St was purchased as an ugly unit in May 2014 for $230,000 and is currently for sale as a clean, modern home with unique design details, for $315,000.
For more information on the completed unit for sale: #301 2234 Prince Albert St
This is not one of my renovations, so I don’t know the details of the renovation, but I will comment on what I think of the reno and how the reno has increased it’s value to Buyers. You’ll also see the value in good photos, and staging vacant units when they’re for sale.
The maintenance status of the building is very important when deciding on a unit to do a condo flip. Prospective Buyers in Vancouver are considering both the unit and the building, so no matter how nice you re-vamp the unit, if the building isn’t in good repair and has some major costs upcoming, Buyers won’t be willing to take on the risk or live through the maintenance. Ensuring a building has many of it’s major updates completed in the last few years, a rainscreen system (if applicable) and a big contingency fund to pay for upcoming expenses will ensure that the unit will not only be desirable for prospective Buyers, but will give you some peace of mind that no large building expenses will come up while you own it. As a condo flipper, you want to make money on the unit, not spend it.
The Building: 2234 Prince Albert St.
“Oasis” at 2234 Prince Albert is a 1978 built 3 storey building, with 24 units. The exterior is wood. There is storage and underground parking. Thanks to the location, North facing units have great views of the mountains and the city. All units have balconies. There is shared laundry in the building, but no other amenities. Two pets are allowed and rentals are allowed without restriction. The building has the following updates: new roof (2010), new water main (2012), new lobby (2014), and they are in the process of upgrading the balconies.
No rental restrictions is a great feature for potential condo flippers – in case the unit does’t sell, you can earn some money through a rental.
Condo Renovation – Before and After
The old kitchen was horrendous – cheap dark “wood” cabinets, laminate floor, and a small closed in space. The new kitchen was achieved by knocking down the wall between the kitchen and living area (this requires a city permit) to create a usable kitchen work space/bar. In what was a very smart decision, the Sellers decided to leave the wall separating the kitchen from the front door, which now contains a coat closet and more counter space and storage (these are the small things Buyers look for). The appliances were updated, and the upper cabinets were removed on one wall to give the kitchen an open feel. The stove now has a modern hood fan in front of a subway tile backsplash as a focal point. Pot lights were added to give the kitchen some light, along with new light fixtures above the bar.
The front hall area has the aforementioned coat closet, as well as a focal wood panelled wall as well as extra storage space. A long shelf extends from the kitchen into the dining area as both a design detail and space for books and things.
The condo has new laminate wood flooring throughout the kitchen and living room. Not much was done to the living room, aside from a new coat of paint (including a focal wall) and lots of added pot lights to ensure this North facing unit is always bright. The mountain view is a great part of this suite, and thanks to the clean, bright design of the unit, they become a focal point. The patio has a custom wood bench and table making the space very usable to any new Buyer.
The bedroom also received a new coat of paint similar to the living room, new light fixture, the same laminate wood floors as the living space (making the entire unit flow really well), and a built in desk/vanity/closet space. The pot lights in the kitchen and living room also continued through the hallway to the bedroom.
The bathroom received a great update, with new everything: modern vanity with a butcher block top, new tiling, new toilet and new fixtures. None of the plumbing was moved around, which helps keep the reno costs low. Ensuring the bathroom has smart storage space, counter space, lightings and a good shower or tub is important in any bathroom reno.
All in all, this looks like a good reno that made smart decisions without going overboard on extras to drive up the price. I assume the strata does not allow in suite laundry, which is always a great addition to a space (thanks to the added value). It definitely shows the value of installing extra lighting, and modern finishings, without the need to break the bank on reno costs. The more deals you, as the renovator, can get on materials and work, the higher your profit will be. It’s always smart to keep in mind both your bottom line and the potential re-sale value of a renovated unit in an older building.