Real estate prices have been fluctuating over the last couple of years, and people have seen the advantage of investing in property with the hope that the values will go up and they can resell at a higher profit. If you are someone who also needs a place to stay, buying a duplex or triplex can work out for you. You can occupy one side of the house and rent out the other side. The additional rent money that you get from your tenants might help you pay off your mortgage faster.
Sharing a duplex with tenants who pay a monthly rent can help you pay off your mortgage loan quicker because of the extra amount you get from the money renters pay you will affect your credit rating in a positive light. Banks will look favorably on you when you are ready to buy a standalone house.
Drawbacks of buying and living in a duplex
Duplexes have their drawbacks. Being a landlord can be trying at times and the fact that you will only be separated by walls, it can be hard to have total privacy. It is important, therefore, to vet your prospective tenants so that you have a better understanding of the kind of people you will be harboring in your home.
A lot of people buy duplexes to share with family. This is a good thing, but you should expect difficulties in having family pay rent. You need to be prepared for this, but if you have a family that is trying to downgrade by selling their family home and opting to move into a smaller place, then a duplex could be and alternative that benefits everyone.
How to Buy a Duplex
There are a couple of steps that can help you find the right duplex that is affordable and meets your long-term plans:
1. Find as much information about Duplexes as you can.
It is important to educate yourself about duplexes and all the processes involved in purchasing one for yourself. You need to find information about real estate market trends, trends in a particular area. Understands too, what real estate investing is. Forewarned is forearmed, so you need to know what you should be looking for.
2. Get your finances right.
Make sure that you get the financial backing you need to purchase the property you have an eye for. Get pre-approval from a bank or mortgage provider. It helps to make the purchasing of the unit you want easy.
3. Define the kind of duplex you like.
It is important to define what you need and to be able to communicate that to your real estate agent. The information your real estate agents should know include:
- What you can afford to spend
- The town and neighborhoods you want to buy a duplex in
- The property type (whether it’s to be a duplex or a triplex or something else).
- The condition of the property you would be willing to spend money on
4. Find a good real estate agent
As a buyer, the services of a real estate agent should be free so that you can shop around for great apartment deals. Real estate agents usually have a list of clients and properties they may be looking to sell. Just because they are free and will not charge you does not mean you should settle for any agent that comes along. It is in every estate agent’s best interest to make a sale or connect homeowners with buyers and vice-versa. It would be in your best interest to find a real estate agent who has the following traits:
- Someone who has the knowledge and experience working with first-time buyers.
- Someone who has a good track record of selling and working out great apartment deals involving multifamily properties like duplexes.
- A tech-savvy agent
- An agent who is quick to respond to any questions you may have about duplexes and apartment deals
- A person who will be patient with you. An agent who treats every search and sale of duplexes as important, so much so that failure to find what a client is looking for is unacceptable
Make sure the agent you choose has the time to spend talking things through with you. Building a rapport with the chosen agent should be easy. Do not be afraid to ask for more, it is, after all, your money you will be spending and your life being planned.