Should You Invest in Turnkey Properties or Fixer-Uppers?
Here are the Pros and Cons of Each

Investing in real estate is a significant decision that requires careful consideration of various factors. One of the key decisions you’ll face as a real estate investor is whether to invest in turnkey properties or fixer-uppers. Both options have their own set of advantages and disadvantages, and understanding them can help you make an informed investment choice that aligns with your goals, resources, and risk tolerance.

Turnkey Properties: The Definition

Turnkey properties are essentially move-in-ready homes or properties that require little to no additional work before they can be rented out or sold. These properties are often renovated, updated, and sometimes even furnished, making them attractive options for investors who want to start generating income right away.

Factors like price and location will always be important when considering a new investment, but the property’s condition may or may not inhibit your decision. Some investors search for properties ready for immediate tenancy, also considered turnkey, while others prefer to repair, renovate and resell for a profit with the BRRRR method. Here is some advice from a seasoned real estate investor on choosing between a turnkey or fixer-upper investment property.

Pros of Turnkey Properties

  1. Immediate Income Generation: Since turnkey properties are ready for occupancy or rental upon purchase, you can start generating rental income or resale profits almost immediately.
  2. Less Hands-On Involvement: Turnkey properties require minimal hands-on involvement from the investor. Renovations and repairs have already been completed by the seller, saving you time and effort.
  3. Predictable Expenses: Renovation costs and potential issues are minimized, as the property is already in good condition. This can lead to more predictable financial outcomes.
  4. Attractive to Passive Investors: Turnkey properties are ideal for investors looking for a more passive income stream, as they require less ongoing management and oversight.

Cons of Turnkey Properties

  1. Higher Initial Cost: Turnkey properties often come with a higher upfront cost compared to fixer-uppers due to the added convenience and reduced workload.
  2. Limited Value Appreciation: Since these properties are already renovated, the potential for significant value appreciation might be lower compared to properties that undergo major renovations.
  3. Lower Control: Investors have limited control over the renovation and design choices made by the seller, potentially resulting in a property that doesn’t align perfectly with your vision.

Fix-N-Flip: The Definition

Fix-N-Flip or Fixer-uppers, on the other hand, are properties that require significant repairs, renovations, or improvements before they can be rented out or sold. These properties often come at a lower initial cost but require more investment of time, money, and effort to bring them up to a desirable standard.

Pros of Fix-N-Flip

  1. Lower Initial Cost: Fixer-uppers are typically priced lower than turnkey properties, providing investors with the opportunity to enter the market at a lower cost.
  2. Higher Potential Returns: By improving and renovating the property, you can significantly increase its value and potentially enjoy higher returns on your investment.
  3. Creative Control: Investors have the freedom to design and renovate the property according to their vision, potentially leading to a unique and personalized end result.

Cons of Fix-N-Flip

  1. Higher Risk and Uncertainty: The extent of repairs and renovations required might be underestimated, leading to unforeseen expenses and challenges.
  2. Time-Consuming: Renovations and repairs take time, which means delayed income generation and potential holding costs.
  3. Ongoing Management: After the initial renovations, ongoing property management might require more involvement than with turnkey properties.


Deciding between investing in turnkey properties or fix-n-flips depends on your investment goals, risk tolerance, available resources, and personal preferences. Turnkey properties offer convenience, immediate income, and lower hands-on involvement, making them attractive to passive investors. On the other hand, fixer-uppers can offer higher potential returns, creative control, and a lower initial investment, but they come with more risk, uncertainty, and time commitment.

Ultimately, the right choice for you depends on your financial situation, investment strategy, and willingness to take on the challenges and rewards that come with each type of property. Whichever path you choose, conducting thorough research and seeking advice from real estate professionals can help you make a well-informed decision that aligns with your investment objectives.

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