MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Some house flippers were hoping to make some money fixing up homes in what they thought was an up-and-coming neighborhood near Crosstown but say criminals are eating into their profits.
On Saturday, burglars were caught on camera removing items from one house under renovation on Garland Street in North Memphis.
The property owners said it’s the second time someone has broken into their house. They said the crooks have stolen appliances, tools, lumber, sheet rock and even tried to rip out a toilet.
“Anything they think is worth money, they will take it,” said one of the owners who did not want to be identified.
He said his cameras captured one of the burglars breaking into a window and then removing items through the front door. The surveillance cameras also showed the suspects leaving in a U-haul truck.
“We just installed a home security system yesterday. We are hoping the alarm will scare them off,” he said. “We constantly have to buy new tools, new supplies. We constantly have to board up the windows and all the doors.”
Another house flipper across the street said he was also forced to beef up security after his property was burglarized twice in October.
Said Adem Mohammed said the thieves took kitchen cabinets, an air conditioning unit, paint, a ladder, tools, and other items, all valued at around $12,000.
“We lost a lot. After that, we put a security system in the house,” said Mohammed.
Data from the Memphis police department shows over the last month, there have been at least nine residential burglaries within a half mile of the Garland Street houses.
“It’s got to be someone here because they must be kind of scouting houses undergoing renovations,” said Van Preston, who is also renovating a house on Garland.
Preston is concerned about the crime but has taken extra precautions to protect her property.
“Generally, if they are liveable, I put someone in them right away, and that helps,” said Preston. “Someone is at the house all the time.”
Mohammed said he is just hoping he makes some money off his flip. The other house flipper on Garland, who did not want to be identified, said he’s done with the neighborhood.
“There’s money to be made there, but that is going to be our last house for sure.”
If you recognize the suspect in the video or know anything about the burglaries on Garland Street, call CrimeStoppers at (901)528-CASH.