Buy a run-down building in a nice area. Gut the rooms and rebuild state-of-the-art kitchens and bathrooms. Then sell the home for hundreds of thousands of dollars in profit.

The idea of "flipping" homes appeals to Americans. But for many aspiring flippers, reality does not live up to the expectations created by reality television and get-rich books.

Flippers buy distressed properties in nice neighborhoods. They often run into trouble with contractors to stay on budget for the home repairs or improvements. People attempt to make lavish improvements and don't realize how much time and money the ambitious renovations will really cost. By the time they sell their real estate project, many flippers barely break even. In some cases, flippers lose money. Sometimes people create a dream property, put it on the market, then watch the home sit for months without exciting buyers' interests. In the meantime, mortgage costs eat into flippers' profits.

When it comes to flipping homes, profits depend on quick sales. Before buying properties, people should learn how to sell them. Californian real-estate professionals have created a step-by-step system for homeowners looking to quickly sell properties.

The "Fast Action Homes Sales System" teaches homeowners how to create bidding wars with or without a real estate agent. Homeowners using the guide learn how to attract buyers' interest with signs, printed ads and custom-built Web sites. The advertisements lead to a frenzied weekend bidding war, giving sellers the advantage.

For more information visit The Flip Side of Foreclosure.

The whole process, from first step to exit, takes two or three weeks. Before potential real estate moguls invest in a property, they should start planning its final sale -; selling a newly renovated home quickly is key to making a profit-earning flip.