Quick, how many real estate “flipping property” shows are there on cable TV right now? Three? Five? Fifty? Who knows the exact count but they all attempt to be entertaining as well as dramatic.

A real estate investor buys aflipping real estate house, begins the remodel then suddenly finds there’s more work that needs to be done than originally planned. Oh, no! What to do! Of course, at the end of the show, everything works out and the investor’s flip is another successful one. Are they all like that?

While these shows are indeed “reality” cable TV productions, it’s easy to figure out that lousy flips will never make it on air and anything that makes the stars look bad will be cut. You however, the “real world” real estate investor don’t have the benefit of editing out a major mistake. Your mistakes won’t be on a television show but they’re more real than anything you see on a program.

Can you avoid mistakes? Of course not. But successful real estate investors who have flipped properties over the last 10 years know that there are things you can do to ward off costly oversights. And the best thing to have is patience.

When evaluating a flip for the first time and you see that it’s way underpriced and with a bit of touch up here and there you see yourself making a quick $40,000. It’s easy to get excited about the prospective investment and while there’s nothing wrong with being excited, if it affects your judgment and you act too quickly, you may in fact discover something regarding the property that you’d like to edit out of your own reality show if you could.

As you run across an ideal project, be patient. Be methodical. Take the steps you’ve taken over and over again in the exact same order. No shortcuts. Keep your emotions in check while evaluating your next project. There’s no editing software that can fix a mistake in the real world.