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Renovation reality shows have always been popular. But if you’re looking to buy, renovate and sell for a profit, remember that what you see on TV is make believe.

When buying a fixer-upper, you can often get a bargain on a damaged home. This is fine if the damage is superficial, such as burn marks or overgrown gardens, but make sure there’s no structural damage or your budget can blow out.

Next, meet the market demand. If everyone in the suburb is looking for a three-bedroom family house, there’s no point putting up a one bedroom villa. Ensure there are buyers that will want to purchase your finished product, or at least some potential tenants to pay rent until the time is right to sell.

Finally, prepare for nasty surprises along the way. Most first time renovators underestimate the costs and time their project will require.

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