Real Estate Investing Basics

How to Buy a Small Multifamily Property (A Step-by-Step Case Study for Newbies!)

Expertise: Landlording & Rental Properties, Personal Development, Real Estate News & Commentary, Business Management, Flipping Houses, Mortgages & Creative Financing, Real Estate Deal Analysis & Advice, Real Estate Wholesaling, Personal Finance, Real Estate Marketing, AskBP, Real Estate Investing Basics
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I really like small multifamily properties, and I talk about them an awful lot. Several months ago, I wrote a post called “How to Make a Million Dollars in Real Estate” which was designed to show the possibilities for building wealth through real estate – and the start of that plan was the purchase of a small multifamily property. I’ve explained many times that the goal isn’t to buy a property that fits exactly the description mentioned, but rather to teach the math behind the method. You could buy a triplex, a few duplexes, lots of single family homes, or whatever.

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It’s the cash flow that really matters.

Since that post came out, I’ve been asked by a number of people how they should buy such a property. So, to help with this, I wrote this post to show you step by step how I managed to buy my newest real estate investment, with almost nothing down and significant monthly cash flow. It’s often easy to get caught up in the “theoretical world” of how real estate investing works – so hopefully this post will give you an idea of how real estate investing can (and does) work in the real world. All the numbers in this are true and accurate, though I sometimes might round slightly for simplicity! This post is quite long, so be sure to fully understand each part before moving on, so you don’t get overwhelmed! If you have any questions at all, please leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to help answer them.



Step One: The 5 Minute Analysis

A lot of people struggle with math. It’s understandable because, although it isn’t terribly difficult, it can be overwhelming to get going. So, I had the idea that it would be neat to show the BiggerPockets community how I analyze an investment property in under five minutes. This isn’t the real in-depth analysis (which we’ll get to) but simply the first “filter” to decide if the property is worth pursuing.

I sat down at my computer and pulled up Realtor.com and picked a property pretty much at random to analyze. I made a quick video (it actually ended up being slightly longer than 5 minutes, but close enough!) and I looked at some of the important aspects of this property. Specifically, I looked at:

  • The location – the property is located in the town I do most of my investing in or around. I knew the location fairly well, because I own another property on the same street. I’d probably classify this as a “C+” area, maybe “B-” with mostly rentals. The property was listed at $120,000, but had originally been listed at $140,000.
  • The number of units– Four units total – three 1 bedroom and one 2 bedroom.
  • The rent it brings in– The listing stated a total monthly income of $1740 per month, and because I know the area well, I knew a typical one bedroom would rent for (at minimum) $400 in my area and a typical two bedroom would rent for about $500, bringing the total monthly conservative income to $1700.
  • The expenses based on the 50% rule– 50% of the income left $850 to pay the mortgage.
  • The cash-flow, based on the 50% rule– I looked at the total mortgage amount for a $100,000 loan (buying at $120k and putting roughly $20,000 down).
  • The seller

– I determined that this property was a bank repo, that had originally sold for $149,777 but the bank had foreclosed on it and was selling it at a steep discount.

If you wanna watch the video, you can check it out below:

The purpose of this 5 minute process is not to nail down the specifics on a property. I don’t drive out and look at it yet, I don’t make a lot of phone calls or even show my wife yet. I do this same process dozens of times every week, mostly in my head in under a minute. There are two prices to note about the properties I examine:

  • The List Price: For 99% of properties I find on the MLS, the price is far too high and not worth it.
  • The Ideal Price: For 99% of properties I find on the MLS – there IS a price that would make it worth it, and I like to find out what it is. That’s the point of the video above.

Some investors choose to offer the #2 price on every property they see, and while I don’t think this is necessarily a bad idea, I’d rather not waste the time on properties that I’m not a fan of. My personal strategy is to buy a few, amazing properties per year, rather than dozens or hundreds. I like the simplicity, and I’m not looking to be Donald Trump. However, when I find a property that excites me, and the listed value is somewhat in the ballpark of the ideal price, I will investigate a little closer.

Summary of the Quick Analysis
By the end of the video, I stated that “At $100,000 – this property starts getting very interesting to me.” Why? Because I like to see a MINIMUM of $100 per unit, per month on a property with nothing down using the 50% rule. If I’m putting down a large downpayment, I want to see $200 per month in income. At $100,000 with nothing down, the projected cash-flow would be right around $300, and purchasing it at $100,000 with 20% the cashflow would be around $200 per month. That would be an okay deal. However – if you know me – I don’t want an okay deal. I want a great deal. Don’t you?

Let me show you how this turned from okay to great…


Step Two: The Closer Look

After publishing the video on BiggerPockets, I kinda forgot about the property. I'm not exactly sure why, but I figured I'd take a look later and just kinda dropped it. A couple weeks later I was driving near the property and remembered it, so I took a drive by. (Silly, yes, I know!) I called my real estate agent and asked him to meet me over there to look at it. Because three of the units were currently rented, we could only get in the fourth unit to check it out without giving 24 hour notice (which I don't like to do unless I'm really really interested.) I was surprised by the overall cleanliness of the unit, though while the unit we were in was listed as the "two bedroom" unit – it was functionally only a one bedroom (one of the bedrooms was really more of a walk-in closet.) However – at this point the deal got a little better for me because I realized the units were not as ugly on the inside as they were on the outside. I could easily expect $450 per month in rent from these units, not the $400 previously thought.

The Game Changer
While looking at this property, my Agent told me something else exciting about it: this property was not a 4-plex, but actually a 5-plex. The bank had "decommissioned" the 5th unit in order to make the sale easier (4-plexes are MUCH easier to finance than 5-plexes, because a 4-unit is considered "residential" in the loan world where 5 units and up are considered "Commercial" and require a whole different set of standards and a much different approval process.) We walked to the third floor and I was shocked at what I found – a large, 3 bedroom apartment that was in decent shape. The sellers had locked all the bedroom doors and called them "storage" for the other four units.

Boom.

The numbers I had run before were based on 4 units and $1700 per month in income. Now, it seems, the potential for income was MUCH higher. This was the catalyst to turn this 4-plex from a good deal to a great deal.

A Quick Estimate of Repairs Needed
Overall, the property was in pretty good shape, it looked pretty ugly from the outside (my favorite, really! It drives away competition!) It definitely needs a new paint job on the outside, and some of the shingles from a fairly new roof had blown off in a freak windstorm we had several years back (missing shingles are very common in my area because of that storm, though most homes have been fixed since then. This place had not.) Additionally, the 5th unit needed some help to bring it into a rentable shape. I estimated about $10,000 worth of work to get the place fully finished, including finishing up the 5th unit.

Immediately, I recalculated my numbers based on the new unit that I could eventually get rented out. As it turned out, it looked like this:

  • Units 1-4 rent: $450 each x 4 = $1800
  • Unit 5: $600
  • Total Income: $2400
  • x 50% expenses: $1200
  • Mortgage at $100,000 = $550/month ($650/month cash-flow)
  • Mortgage at $90,000 = $470/month ($730/month cash flow)
  • Mortgage at $80,000 = $430/month ($770/month cash flow)

Remember, these numbers are based on having no money down – so they are far above my threshold.


The Offer and Negotiation

Before I let you know the details about my offer and negotiation – understand that this strategy worked for me, in my market, because I knew my market. The market has not exploded like the rest of the country seems to have, and there is not a mass amount of competition for this kind of property here (another benefit of small multifamily properties… often less competition.) Last week, Clay Huber wrote a great article about making your first offer your “highest and best” instead of worrying about negotiating up and down, so you don’t miss out on deals. I agree, this is generally the best way to go in a busy market, but since I figured I had time and no real pressing competition- I sent a low ball offer first: $80,000.

Before I get into negotiations – I want to share one more thing that I tested on this offer. Although this was a bank REO, I also know that this was a small, local community bank with a very small department (or one person, probably) in charge of approving or rejecting offers. As such, I added a touch of “personality” to my offer – something usually only done with private sellers:

I drafted up a one-page cover letter that briefly explained that my wife and I wanted to buy the property for our portfolio, and we are local investors and we want to improve the neighborhood. Then – we included a photo of us ON the paper. My theory was that the person in charge of accepting an offer would feel more inclined to sell to a local nice couple than some faceless investor. Before doing so, I actually went on to the BiggerPockets Forums and asked if anyone had done this – and received a mostly “Well, it wouldn’t hurt” response. So I tried it – and I think it kinda worked…

The official offer I had my agent draft up on the Realtor® form basically consisted of:

  • $80,000 Cash Offer
  • No Financing Contingency
  • 7 Day Inspection Contingency
  • Close in 45 days.
  • $1000 in earnest money

So I submitted the offer, via my agent, and surprisingly, the selling agent didn't laugh at us but actually said "well, that might work." The next day I got a call from my agent saying they verbally accepted but had to hand it upward to get signed off! I was super excited, but after several days of no response, I finally heard back that the deal was killed when the man in charge said "We will not take a $40,000 loss on this property!"

I said okay and let it go.

Several days later, the sellers called my agent and asked if I could do $100,000 and close in two weeks. I told them no (this is all verbal.) but if they sent something over in writing for $90,000 – I would accept it and close within two weeks. This kind of weird verbal negotiation went on for several days. Finally, after a week of negotiations, the bank signed off on $90,000 and they would do a few thousand worth of repairs that they had planned on doing – and I would close in two weeks. With that, I had a deal under contract. It might not be the $80,000 I really wanted, but it's still a killer deal at $90,000.

The takeaway from this section on negotiations: every single negotiation and deal I have ever done with a bank has been unique. No two deals have ever been the same for me. It’s always a little weird.


The Inspection

Because I had seven days to inspect the property, I immediately set out to arrange my inspection. After all – I had not even been inside 3 of the units because they had renters in them and I didn’t want to waste everyone’s time until I had time to get inside. This is why the “inspection contingency” in the offer was a non-debateable clause.

If you are just beginning – I highly recommend that you hire a professional home inspector to go through any property with a fine-tooth comb. On this property I hired my favorite contractor to go through the property with me, so we spent several hours running through every aspect of the property, and he gave me a bid at the same time. We crawled onto the roof, under the building, in each unit, every closet, every fridge, every nook and cranny. In the end – I saw nothing that surprised me which is always nice.

My early analysis of repairs needed were almost perfect – $10,000 to get it painted and get the 5th unit fixed up and ready to go.


A Deeper Analysis and the One-Hour Awkward Webinar

At this point, I had looked over every square inch of the property and had an accurate look at how much this would take to fix up. I also knew generally how much everything would cost. As I discussed earlier – I had already done my quick “5 minute” analysis of the property and decided it was worth pursuing. However, a quick analysis – and the 50% rule – are only “rules of thumb.” It was time to actually dig into the numbers and make sure this property would actually pencil out the way I think it would.

Since I started this project with the BiggerPockets Community, I thought I would continue it by doing my in-depth analysis with the BiggerPockets Community as well. So, I scheduled a Webinar and gathered all my numbers ahead of time and then live, in front of dozens of BiggerPockets Members, I spent a very awkward hour explaining the deal live on the internet via the first BiggerPockets Webinar. If you missed it – you can watch a replay below (though, it’s an hour long, so be prepared!)

The numbers looked even better than I had hoped. I entered all the numbers into my trusty spreadsheet and came up with the following spreadsheet:


 

According to my spreadsheet, in a perfect month when I had no repairs and no vacancies, I would be cash flowing a $1356.86 per month! This, however, is where most newbies screw up! This is also why the 50% rule is so important. I understand that in reality, I will have repairs, I will have vacancies, and I’ll need to plan for them. I don’t have a separate spot on the chart above for vacancies and repairs (I include it under “other monthly expenses”) but I typically assume around 10% of the monthly rent for vacancies/repairs and another 10% for long-term/big-ticket planning (new roofs, new parking, etc.)


Financing

I delayed talking about financing until this point, but understand that I had been working the financing angle from the beginning – even before I found the property. I always make sure I have several avenues to buy a property before I offer on one – or else I’m just wasting everyone’s time.

If you'll recall, I initially asked for 45 days to close – which would give me plenty of time to go with a conventional loan. However, when I agreed to a two-week close, I closed that option off to me. Instead, I made a call to a private lender that I had actually met through BiggerPockets (You probably know this lender – J Scott, from the

BiggerPockets Forums and 123Flip.com … I actually found out on “the air” that he was a private lender, when we interviewed him on the 10th Episode of the BiggerPockets Podcast! This is why building solid relationships on BiggerPockets is so important!)

I explained the deal, sent him all the paperwork, and requested the full purchase price – $90,000. He looked it over and agreed to fund the deal. I would cover the repairs and closing costs and he would cover the purchase price. I would be taking a one-year note (meaning, I’d have to pay the whole thing off in less than one year. More on that in a second.) Thus, I would need about $12,000 in cash to make this deal happen ($10,000 in repairs, $2000 in closing costs.)

Perhaps you have heard about the “65% ARV” number that most hard money lenders stick to when making deals, and perhaps you are wondering how I got the full purchase price covered? A few thoughts on that:

  • Funding the whole $90k was very generous. If you are just starting out, a private lender or hard money lender may not lend the full amount, even if you are under the 65% number. That's just the truth. However, there are MANY lenders out there -so get to know a lot of them. Their terms may differ quite a bit. Be sure to check out the BiggerPockets Hard Money Lender Directory for the most comprehensive list of lenders available.
  • The after-repair value of this 5-plex would be around $150k or more – so I am under the 65% so the lender was covered.
  • I have been building my reputation for many years on BiggerPockets, which helped the lender feel comfortable lending on this project.
  • The property was already rented – thus the cash-flow was there to pay the lender each month – meaning he had even less risk. With a typical flip, there is no income coming in at all, which means YOU have to pay the loan each month. Having tenants pay the bill definitely helps on this front.

But wait… a private loan is going to be short term!? What then?

Like I said, I asked for a one-year loan on this property.

Why one year?

It comes back, again, to my desire to have multiple exit strategies with everything I do. I cannot stress this point enough – you need to ALWAYS have multiple exit strategies. So, my strategies are as follows:

  • Refinance the Property Through a Bank– This is my first plan, and I am 99% confident this will happen. I was already pre-approved through a bank to buy this property in the first place, so unless something drastic changes in the lending world in the coming months – I can refinance this without a lot of problems. However, in order to refinance – the bank requires that it be “seasoned” for 6 months- meaning I have to wait six months before the refinance will go through. Knowing that my monthly payment will drop significantly once I refinance, you can bet on day 6 months and one day – I will be closing on that refinance. However, if that doesn’t work, there is always option 2:
  • Find a long-term private lender– If the lending environment changes and I cannot get a loan, I would look for a private lender who wanted a long-term investment. With the stability of the property, and the magnitude of the deal, I'm confident I could find a wealthy individual looking to earn a solid interest rate for 15 years or more.
  • Add a Partner on and Refinance– If I couldn't find a long-term private lender, I would bite the bullet and find a partner to add to the deal. I've talked about this strategy a number of times, and while I would be giving up a significant portion of equity, it would work to get me out of the deal. I have a partner who I've worked with on a few projects who makes great money, has excellent credit, and a stable job – so getting a loan is as easy as signing a piece of paper for him. I would simply add his name to the title on the loan, wait for the seasoning to end, and have him refinance the deal. Again, this isn't ideal – but it's an exit strategy (and would be excellent for him!)
  • Fix and Flip– Finally, if all other options were not possible, I would simply sell the property. With the $2400 per month in income this property produces, I know I could make a hefty profit by simply selling it. However, this is my last option because I don’t care about the $30,000-40,000 I would make – I care about the $800 per month I will be making if I can get exit strategy #1 to turn out!

But what If I don’t have any money!!?

Like I said earlier, the private lender will be funding the purchase price of $90k on this deal, and I will be funding about $12,000 in repairs/closing costs. But what if I didn’t have that money? Because I’m a big fan of learning how to invest in real estate with no money, let me share just a few ideas:

  • Credit Card– I could pay for all the repairs on credit. I don’t necessarily recommend doing this, but it is possible. For a good article on using credit cards to buy real estate, check out Ali Boone’s article “How to Buy Real Estate With a Credit Card.” **
  • Partnership– I’ve mentioned this before – but I could add a partner to the deal. I could find a friend with an extra $12,000 and offer him part of the deal.
  • Another Private Lender– Finally, I could use another private lender and borrow the $12,000 secured with a 2nd mortgage on the property. This would probably be the most difficult to do – but also plausible.

Remember – there are not a whole lot of “rules” when it comes to investing in real estate, and one of my goals of this epicly long post is to bring you inside my mind and share some of the ways I look at creative real estate investing. Before moving on, I want to share a tweet quote from one of my favorite author’s Ken McElroy, who wrote The ABC’s of Real Estate Investing (which, if you haven’t read – you need to pick up a copy right now… click here to find it on Amazon and order yourself a copy.)

See? Ken agrees.


The Closing

In my state, we close real estate transactions with Title Companies, though in some states you might use an attorney. Either way, the process is pretty much the same.

Let’s do a quick re-cap:

  • Found the property online
  • Did a quick, 5 minute analysis of it
  • Walked through the property quickly
  • Offered on the property
  • Negotiated on the property and finally agreed on terms
  • Inspected the property
  • Arranged financing

At this point, I was ready to proceed. My real estate agent sent over the "Purchase and Sale" agreement (the signed agreement between both parties) to the Title Company and the Title Company went to work. It took about a week or so to finish the process, where they did a title search and prepared all the documents, including the "Promissory Note" and "Deed of Trust" between myself and the private lender. I arranged for insurance (which was a little less than I thought!) and made an appointment to sign the documents.

So, last week I closed on the property. As an added bonus, the property management company who was looking after the place before closing actually found a tenant for the 4th unit before closing, so I inherited the property completely full (except for the 5th unit.)

Going forward – I will get the 5th unit repaired and in six months, I plan on refinancing the whole property into a 30-year fixed mortgage. Between now and then, I expect to pretty much break even, due to the higher loan payment and vacant 5th unit. You see, I can't completely finish the 5th unit before six months is over because I want to refinance this property as a "residential" property, not a "commercial" property. So, the 5th unit will stay "decommissioned" for the time.

Now comes the fun part – landlording. If you want to learn more about my landlording tips, definitely check out “How to Be a Landlord: Top Ten Tips for Success“.

Anyways, that’s the story! If you stuck through this whole time, I sure hope you take a second and leave me a comment below and let me know what you learned or what I forgot! Ask any question, I’ll do my best to help!

 

 

Brandon Turner is an active real estate investor, entrepreneur, writer, and co-host of the BiggerPockets Podcast. He began buying rental properties and flipping houses at age 21, discovering he didn’t need to work 40 years at a corporate job to have “the good life.” Today, with nearly 100 rental units and dozens of rehabs under his belt, he continues to invest in real estate while also showing others the power, and impact, of financial freedom. His writings have been featured on Forbes.com, Entrepreneur.com, FoxNews.com, Money Magazine, and numerous other publications across the web and in print media. He is the author of The Book on Investing in Real Estate with No (and Low) Money Down, The Book on Rental Property Investing, and co-author of The Book on Managing Rental Properties, which he wrote alongside his wife, Heather, and How to Invest in Real Estate, which he wrote alongside Joshua Dorkin. A life-long adventurer, Brandon (along with Heather and daughter Rosie) splits his time between his home in Washington State and various destinations around the globe.

    Eric Hettena
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thank you for this. I love the video. If real estate investing gets boring for you, you can totally be an actor. I love how you simplify and break down each step. Well done and thought out. I would kiss you, but I’ll just give you a virtual high five…for now hehehe.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hahaha thanks Eric! I once wanted to be an actor… then I realized the sad truth that I can’t act. So I settled on real estate! And I’ll take the virtual high five … this is a family website! 😉 Thanks for the comment!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hahaha thanks Eric! I once wanted to be an actor… then I realized the sad truth that I can’t act. So I settled on real estate! And I’ll take the virtual high five … this is a family website! 😉 Thanks for the comment!
    Bruno
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome post. Lots of creative ways of financing in there. I’m a new investor and it’s good to see how you left yourself with a lot of exit strategies.
    Dan Campagna
    Replied 9 months ago
    Great post Brandon! Would like to read more of your experiences.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Bruno, glad it helped! I think Exit Strategies are SOOO important. They really mean the difference between long term success and failure.
    Shawn
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post!! I love the step by step walk through. I’m new and I learned quite a bit. I appreciate the time you put into this and the real life example. Thanks, Shawn
    Shawn
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post!! I love the step by step walk through. I’m new and I learned quite a bit. I appreciate the time you put into this and the real life example. Thanks, Shawn
    Shawn
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post!! I love the step by step walk through. I’m new and I learned quite a bit. I appreciate the time you put into this and the real life example. Thanks, Shawn
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Shawn, that is my goal! I’ll try to keep BP updated to this project and how it goes from this point on!
    Mehran
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Best post ever!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Mehran!
    Dan Crenshaw
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post Brandon!! I like how you broke it down and kept it simple.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    No problem, Dan! Thanks for taking the time to read that beast of a post!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    No problem, Dan! Thanks for taking the time to read that beast of a post!
    Chris Bounds
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post Brandon! That definitely covers a lot of the fine items that newer investors tend to not understand or overlook. It also illustrates the importance of follow up. A declined offer is only a temporary “No.” Question, why do you have to wait 6 months of seasoning for a refinance? I’ve been refinancing out of my hard money loans as soon as all repairs have been made, within 1-2 months usually. As long as you are not requesting cash out and the HUD was done correctly with the acquisition the you should be able to refi after repairs are done. Right now I’m working on my first (discounted) turn-key property. You can bet the refi application will be submitted the same week of closing!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Chris, Thanks for taking the time to read that thing! And as for refinancing, the local bank that I use require it. Now that you’ve said that, though, I’m going to do some serious calling around to different banks and see if I can’t make something happen faster! It would be nice to not just break even for the first six months but actually start making money! Thanks for the kick in the pants – I’m on it!
    Chris Bounds
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Yes, look around for an experienced loan agent/broker that knows how to do those type of refis. I’d imagine hard money lenders in your area should have some good referrals. That’s where I found mine. If you need a referral PM me. Cash flowing within 90 days is much better than 120!
    Angie Menegay
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great article, and the 5th unit is definitely a nice bonus :). By the way, do you have that awesome spreadsheet shared? ;-).
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Angie, Yes – the 5th unit is definitely an awesome bonus! It’s gonna look awesome too when I get through with it! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Angie, Yes – the 5th unit is definitely an awesome bonus! It’s gonna look awesome too when I get through with it!
    Aaron
    Replied almost 5 years ago
    Great article Brandon! On that spreadsheet are you sharing that? I would like to get a copy of it! Thanks and keep it up!
    Aaron
    Replied almost 5 years ago
    Great article Brandon! On that spreadsheet are you sharing that? I would like to get a copy of it! Thanks and keep it up!
    Mike Smith
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome post Brandon! Do you know of a site where I can download a similar property investment calculator?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Mike, Thanks so much! There are some really good ones in the BiggerPockets FilePlace, that you can download for free anytime! Also, I just made my own on Excel – which is also a great way to internalize the math and make it all make sense. It’s not the easiest – but it’s really important! Hope that helps. Thanks for reading that behemoth post!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Mike, Thanks so much! There are some really good ones in the BiggerPockets FilePlace, that you can download for free anytime! Also, I just made my own on Excel – which is also a great way to internalize the math and make it all make sense. It’s not the easiest – but it’s really important! Hope that helps. Thanks for reading that behemoth post!
    Seth
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Dude, Brandon… that was AWESOME! Great video walk through, I love seeing your approach to this process. Thanks for the epic content!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks so much, Seth! I’m just taking after you and your killer case study posts you’ve been doing!
    Jim Pratt
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, I really like your synopsis on the multi unit. We’re neighbors; I own one on Perry and two on Harding, small world! I’ve owned 4 different multi units calculated everything right and the best I could do is brake even, SFH is for me the ONLY WAY. Speaking of which, why didn’t you make an offer several years ago on the 8-plex that I had on Chehalis St.? Gave it away!!!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jim, Funny, I feel the same way about single family homes! It seems I can’t make good money on the SFHs here, cause no matter how much cash flow I get, the repairs when they move out end up being too much! I love real estate because of how different types appeal to different kinds of people. And too bad – I would have totally bought that 8-plex on Chehalis St from you! 🙂
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jim, Funny, I feel the same way about single family homes! It seems I can’t make good money on the SFHs here, cause no matter how much cash flow I get, the repairs when they move out end up being too much! I love real estate because of how different types appeal to different kinds of people. And too bad – I would have totally bought that 8-plex on Chehalis St from you! 🙂
    Steve Babiak
    Replied over 6 years ago
    A few things to watch for with that 5th unit. First is the zoning for this building. Either the building is zoned for 5 units or it’s not; if it’s not, then putting a fifth unit into service might be “illegal” (at least it violates the zoning); if it is zoned for 5 units, then the lender should pick up on that and refuse to do the loan as “residential”. Next thing that might happen is that this building maybe a “use” allowing 5 units that is grandfathered; but these sorts of things sometimes expire. I have seen cases near me where the multi-unit use that was allowed before a foreclosure was no longer allowed due to the change of ownership; I have also seen a case where the grandfathered use lapsed since the building had been vacant over a year. Just pointing out some possible gotchas. Good luck with your new building.
    Matt
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Its another great article from the master. Thanks Brandon. You are always writing articles on what I am currently working on. You have great timing. Thank you!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Good thoughts, Steve – thanks! I’ll have to check more on the Zoning info, and perhaps get it re-zoned if needed!
    George P.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    i tried to refi after 6 months but they would refi only 75% LTV of the PURCHASE PRICE, not what’s worth. they said i need to wait 1 yr, get a new appraisal and get 80% of the appraised value. Reply Report comment
    George P.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    i tried to refi after 6 months but they would refi only 75% LTV of the PURCHASE PRICE, not what’s worth. they said i need to wait 1 yr, get a new appraisal and get 80% of the appraised value.
    George P.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    i tried to refi after 6 months but they would refi only 75% LTV of the PURCHASE PRICE, not what’s worth. they said i need to wait 1 yr, get a new appraisal and get 80% of the appraised value. Reply Report comment
    George P.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    i tried to refi after 6 months but they would refi only 75% LTV of the PURCHASE PRICE, not what’s worth. they said i need to wait 1 yr, get a new appraisal and get 80% of the appraised value.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey George – According to the local banker, they will reappraise after 6 months and do 75% of the appraisal amount … but now I’m a little nervous so I better find out for sure! If I had to refi at 75% of purchase price, I could in a pinch… but I sure wouldn’t want to! Thanks for the heads up!
    Tevis Verrett
    Replied over 6 years ago
    B-man, you are the best and brightest of this world wide web medium of dissemination of sage wisdom! This is what makes BP special! Josh, give that man a raise! Thanks for your big heartedness! This helps us noobs more than you could ever know! Tevis
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Haha thanks so much Tevis! You are too kind 🙂
    Tevis Verrett
    Replied over 6 years ago
    B-man, you are the best and brightest of this world wide web medium of dissemination of sage wisdom! This is what makes BP special! Josh, give that man a raise! Thanks for your big heartedness! This helps us noobs more than you could ever know! Tevis Reply Report comment
    Bilgefisher
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Your best post so far. Very informative. It was nice to see you go in detail on the financing. Financing seems to be an Achilles heal for many investors. Jason
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks so much, Jason! I really appreciate the feedback!
    Bilgefisher
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Your best post so far. Very informative. It was nice to see you go in detail on the financing. Financing seems to be an Achilles heal for many investors. Jason Reply Report comment
    Rick
    Replied over 6 years ago
    As a newbie looking to get into the market, this article and video helps me avoid all the rookie mistakes we all read about. Great combination of teaching.
    Rick
    Replied over 6 years ago
    As a newbie looking to get into the market, this article and video helps me avoid all the rookie mistakes we all read about. Great combination of teaching.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Rick, thanks so much! There are a lot of rookie mistakes, and I’ve probably made them all! Hopefully others can learn from my experiences!
    Nick Johnson
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, After I read nearly every article you write, I find myself having less and less of an excuse not to get started! As always, thank you for the detailed post. BTW – Because of you I find myself 3 steps ahead of where I am, often thinking about how great my craigslist ad will look for a property before I even look at purchasing it 😉 Nick
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Nick… it’s kinda like a disease. Once you catch it, it’s hard to get rid of. So I’m glad I’m infectious! 🙂
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Nick… it’s kinda like a disease. Once you catch it, it’s hard to get rid of. So I’m glad I’m infectious! 🙂
    Thomas
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thank you for taking the time to write that out. It was informative and a good reading. I am very new to multi family investments but am excited to start.
    Thomas
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thank you for taking the time to write that out. It was informative and a good reading. I am very new to multi family investments but am excited to start.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Thomas! Let us know how we can help!
    unimax
    Replied over 6 years ago
    When you say finance via a bank or refinance, the loan would be investment loan which would have higher interest rate than the normal home loan. Right?
    unimax
    Replied over 6 years ago
    When you say finance via a bank or refinance, the loan would be investment loan which would have higher interest rate than the normal home loan. Right?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Correct. I’m guessing it will be around the 5% area. Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Correct. I’m guessing it will be around the 5% area.
    unimax
    Replied over 6 years ago
    When you say finance via a bank or refinance, the loan would be investment loan which would have higher interest rate than the normal home loan. Right? Reply Report comment
    unimax
    Replied over 6 years ago
    When you say finance via a bank or refinance, the loan would be investment loan which would have higher interest rate than the normal home loan. Right? Reply Report comment
    Jonathan McPhail
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Great article. I have spent the past few hours breaking it down a little. I am following all of your numbers except the the “ROI per year average” calculation. The closest I can get to your number is 136.22%. Little help? Sorry for such a nerdy comment!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jonathan, So, my ROI per year average is my total profit I would make over 5 years (95,179.93) divided by the total amount of cash I would have into the deal ($12,000, from directly above, which is a copy of “Down Payment (includes all contributions)” from the top of that column) divided by 5 (the number of years.) That was confusing, let me re-phrase: Average ROI = ( Down Payment / Total Profit ) / Years Because, I theoretically would make $95,179.93 over the next 5 years, which is all the cash flow and appreciation added together. I would divide that by 12,000 to determine my return on investment. Then divide that by 5 to get my average over 5 years. Hopefully one of those makes sense for ya! 🙂
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon- So the hard-lender cost was only $900? Is that a typical fee, 1%? Congrats on the property — looks like it fits your “awesome deal” criteria perfectly!
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon- So the hard-lender cost was only $900? Is that a typical fee, 1%? Congrats on the property — looks like it fits your “awesome deal” criteria perfectly! Reply Report comment
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon- So the hard-lender cost was only $900? Is that a typical fee, 1%? Congrats on the property — looks like it fits your “awesome deal” criteria perfectly!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Scott, Thanks! Yeah, the lender charged 1 point. I’ve paid as little as zero points and as much as 10 points (that was a crazy amount… I wouldn’t recommend 10!) I’d say average is 2-5%.
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks for the reply, Brandon! So, I’m trying to figure out why a hard money lender would tie up $90k for six months for such a low return of just 1%? And you mentioned you’ve even paid zero? Am I missing something here? lol
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Scott- the fee was on top of the mortgage interest, which is 12% annually. So the lender will get 12% on his money, plus the 1% fee. So, if we went for a whole year- he’d make 13% total return, which is better than they are likely to get elsewhere. That’s why! Hope that helps!
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Ah, ok.. thanks for the clarification Brandon =) I just watched the entire webinar and I just wanted to express my appreciation for being so transparent and open on the details. I actually preferred this live version as opposed to some scripted piece I’ve read or watched about real estate. Watching you take us through the thought process and numbers was incredibly insightful. You did an awesome job and look forward to any follow-up webinars on this property! Best, Scott
    Ken
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon. Nice article, and thank you for sharing with all of us. Related to Scott’s observation about the hard money lender tying up his $90k for a year, you mentioned that the lender will receive 12% in interest (or 1% per month), and also the 1 point for a total of 13% in one year. In your terrific spreadsheet, I cannot find where the interest cost was included. At 1% per month, that’s $900 per month in interest charges to the lender. I think the $900 per month would have a significant impact on your calculations. Maybe I’m missing something though. Thank you for any feedback.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Ken, Thanks for the comment! So yeah – the spreadsheet above is a little confusing because it has a few sections that make sense in my head but might not in everyone elses! So, section 2 (the bottom left) is the “Flip” Calculator, which let’s me know how the property would perform if I flipped it. The 1% fee is in there. The 3rd section (top right) is the long-term calculator – which let’s me know long-term how it will perform as a rental. So, right now, for the next several months, neither of these calculators adequately describe what I’m doing, because I’m using hard money until the refi. So section 3 is what it will be like, after the refi. Between now and then, though, I’ll be making nothing. To determine cash flow between now and then, I just changed the interest to 12% ($900 per month) and re-did the calculations, but didn’t post that one on this blog. However, I also didn’t include the 1% fee on the 2nd calculator because … well, I forgot! 🙂 However, I figured $500 for holding costs, which I’ll have none so I guess that covers most of it. The rest I’ll shave off in repairs – which should be far less than what I was thinking. So in reality, for the next 6 months: the mortgage payment will be $900, the insurance $100, the taxes $160, the other expenses $400 For total monthly expenses of $1560 per month (plus repairs/vacancies) It’s bringing in, with 4 units rented (can’t do the 5th yet) around $1800 per month. So on paper it cash flows, but I’m assuming I’ll break even each month until the refi goes through and I can get the 5th unit rented, at which point section 3 of the spreadsheet will kick in. Anyways I know that was clear as mud 🙂 Hope it helps some!
    noel
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thank you, this was very well laid out for all to understand. I am new to real estate investing, so there is great value in this post for me. I am very great full i found the bigger pockets website.
    Scott
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon- So the hard-lender cost was only $900? Is that a typical fee, 1%? Congrats on the property — looks like it fits your “awesome deal” criteria perfectly!
    Shackrock
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Can you share the spreadsheet with us? This looks like a wonderful tool. Thanks.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Here ya go! https://www.biggerpockets.com/files/user/brandonatbp/file/brandon-turners-spreadsheet—rental-flip-hybrid-calculator
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Here ya go! https://www.biggerpockets.com/files/user/brandonatbp/file/brandon-turners-spreadsheet—rental-flip-hybrid-calculator
    Dan Campagna
    Replied 9 months ago
    Government employees to boot. Teaching students to be government employees as well, not entrepreneurs. I happen to be an educator/entrepreneur and teach entrepreneurship in my classroom.
    Dominic Green
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great article Brandon especially on the walk through analysis and the different exit strategies use considered. I’ve been considering using a hard money lender to acquire my first investment property to which I’m aiming for duplexes and refinancing into a long term loan. I know I have been pre-approved for a FHA loan to which I would use as another option if I had to move into one side of the property.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome Dominic, that’s not a bad way to go. That said, a HML probably won’t let you live in it (depending on which state you are in) but if you ask around enough, you might find one. Or you can wait to move in until the refi is done. Let us know how it goes!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome Dominic, that’s not a bad way to go. That said, a HML probably won’t let you live in it (depending on which state you are in) but if you ask around enough, you might find one. Or you can wait to move in until the refi is done. Let us know how it goes! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome Dominic, that’s not a bad way to go. That said, a HML probably won’t let you live in it (depending on which state you are in) but if you ask around enough, you might find one. Or you can wait to move in until the refi is done. Let us know how it goes!
    Paul
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Thank you for this case study that chronicles the various steps and phases in this purchase. Hope that after several months you’ll update the case study. Especially appreciated you sharing the cash for keys strategy. Thanks!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Paul, I’ll definitely keep people updated on this property. I’d like to re-visit every couple months with a post to talk about how it’s going, with the real numbers. Thanks for reading!
    Paul
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Thank you for this case study that chronicles the various steps and phases in this purchase. Hope that after several months you’ll update the case study. Especially appreciated you sharing the cash for keys strategy. Thanks! Reply Report comment
    Paul
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Thank you for this case study that chronicles the various steps and phases in this purchase. Hope that after several months you’ll update the case study. Especially appreciated you sharing the cash for keys strategy. Thanks!
    Giovanni Isaksen
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Good stuff Brandon, thanks for posting the webinar. A couple questions, what points, fees and interest is your hard money lender charging? Is it interest only or amortizing? It looks like your hard lender is rolling the fees into the loan, is that correct? How did you handle the fact that to get under the 65% ARV you were modeling all five units cash flowing yet your plan is to leave the fifth ‘decommissioned’ until you refi and take out the hard money guy?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Giovanni, thanks for reading (and watching!) My lender is charging just 1% for this loan, which is lower than most hard money but a little more than I usually pay “private money” – where this is sorta in-between (it’s hard money, but a friend… so it’s like both…?) I actually paid the 1% at closing, which I don’t think I mentioned above. The rents from April covered all the closing costs, so my earnest money covered the lender fee. I think I brought like $50 to closing. As for the ARV question – it worked because the lender understood the property and the situation. Having 5 units is still the result of the repair, thus the ARV is still based on 5, but I’ll just be paying him off before the repairs are 100% done. He knows that the value is there. I guess that’s the nice thing with private/hard money – you can actually talk this stuff out, unlike a bank who would have ridged rules. I hope that helps answer your questions! Let me know if not!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Giovanni, thanks for reading (and watching!) My lender is charging just 1% for this loan, which is lower than most hard money but a little more than I usually pay “private money” – where this is sorta in-between (it’s hard money, but a friend… so it’s like both…?) I actually paid the 1% at closing, which I don’t think I mentioned above. The rents from April covered all the closing costs, so my earnest money covered the lender fee. I think I brought like $50 to closing. As for the ARV question – it worked because the lender understood the property and the situation. Having 5 units is still the result of the repair, thus the ARV is still based on 5, but I’ll just be paying him off before the repairs are 100% done. He knows that the value is there. I guess that’s the nice thing with private/hard money – you can actually talk this stuff out, unlike a bank who would have ridged rules. I hope that helps answer your questions! Let me know if not!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Giovanni, thanks for reading (and watching!) My lender is charging just 1% for this loan, which is lower than most hard money but a little more than I usually pay “private money” – where this is sorta in-between (it’s hard money, but a friend… so it’s like both…?) I actually paid the 1% at closing, which I don’t think I mentioned above. The rents from April covered all the closing costs, so my earnest money covered the lender fee. I think I brought like $50 to closing. As for the ARV question – it worked because the lender understood the property and the situation. Having 5 units is still the result of the repair, thus the ARV is still based on 5, but I’ll just be paying him off before the repairs are 100% done. He knows that the value is there. I guess that’s the nice thing with private/hard money – you can actually talk this stuff out, unlike a bank who would have ridged rules. I hope that helps answer your questions! Let me know if not! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Giovanni, thanks for reading (and watching!) My lender is charging just 1% for this loan, which is lower than most hard money but a little more than I usually pay “private money” – where this is sorta in-between (it’s hard money, but a friend… so it’s like both…?) I actually paid the 1% at closing, which I don’t think I mentioned above. The rents from April covered all the closing costs, so my earnest money covered the lender fee. I think I brought like $50 to closing. As for the ARV question – it worked because the lender understood the property and the situation. Having 5 units is still the result of the repair, thus the ARV is still based on 5, but I’ll just be paying him off before the repairs are 100% done. He knows that the value is there. I guess that’s the nice thing with private/hard money – you can actually talk this stuff out, unlike a bank who would have ridged rules. I hope that helps answer your questions! Let me know if not!
    Nik Parks
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, this is awesome! You know, if my school had taught math this way (using dollar sings and practical application) I would have done math for fun as well. Oh well, I do math for fun now-a-days 🙂
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Ha thanks Nik! I also wonder why they didn’t connect the dots between wealth and math back in the day. I think kids would be a little more attentive (maybe not though!)
    Nik Parks
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Ahem, I just realized I used that joke on BP the other day :p You are right, sir. I think kids would definitely benefit from that. But as we know, our education system is comprised of employees—not entrepreneurs.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Haha I didn’t notice – but I know now!
    Dan Campagna
    Replied 9 months ago
    Government employees to boot. Teaching students to be government employees as well, not entrepreneurs. I happen to be an educator/entrepreneur and teach entrepreneurship in my classroom.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Haha I didn’t notice – but I know now!
    Geoffrey Murray
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great post Brandon, it’s really helpful to see it all laid out like that! Thanks!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Geoffrey! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Geoffrey! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Geoffrey!
    Jason Carter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks for sharing all of this and being so transparent Brandon. I’m itching to get into multi’s so very informative and helpful. Webinar was great. Just curious if you ever looked into the zoning on it (as an earlier commentor asked)?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jason – thanks! I did find out that it was zoned as a 4-plex – so I should be good with the refi and such now. After I refi it, I’ll be able to convert it to a 5th. Zoning isn’t a huge issue in my town (it’s a small area, so not as much red tape as some areas.) Thanks for reading!
    Jason Carter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Cool. Yeah, you didn’t seem too concerned about it. Another question for you – When the bank rejected your initial offer at 80K, why didn’t you go back and offer 90? Think you mentioned you thought it was a good deal at 90 or even 100k. Did life just get in the way before you made your decision and then next thing you know a week has passed and they came back with the counteroffer? I admire your restraint. I would’ve gotten emotional and really excited (too excited) about it, and countered immediately.
    Jason Carter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Cool. Yeah, you didn’t seem too concerned about it. Another question for you – When the bank rejected your initial offer at 80K, why didn’t you go back and offer 90? Think you mentioned you thought it was a good deal at 90 or even 100k. Did life just get in the way before you made your decision and then next thing you know a week has passed and they came back with the counteroffer? I admire your restraint. I would’ve gotten emotional and really excited (too excited) about it, and countered immediately.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Good question 🙂 I think you hit the nail on the head – life got in the way. I tried to keep it as non-emotional as possible, though that is tough! I really wanted it at $80k though, so I didn’t rush anything with it. Thanks Jason!
    Shelby
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, thank you so much for this post! You completely walked through the ENTIRE process in a very open and honest style. You didn’t leave one step out-thank you! I am new to BP, but after reding ths post I am even more encouraged to keep doing what I’m doing and keep digging for those deals.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    No problem, Shelby! I’m just glad you weren’t bored to death reading that super long post! I figure – I’d rather be too detailed than not detailed enough. I know that’s what I would have wanted when I started (and still do today.) Thanks for reading and commenting! Definitely jump into this community- it’s awesome. The forums especially are a really great way to meet other investors and learn. Check it out! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    No problem, Shelby! I’m just glad you weren’t bored to death reading that super long post! I figure – I’d rather be too detailed than not detailed enough. I know that’s what I would have wanted when I started (and still do today.) Thanks for reading and commenting! Definitely jump into this community- it’s awesome. The forums especially are a really great way to meet other investors and learn. Check it out!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    No problem, Shelby! I’m just glad you weren’t bored to death reading that super long post! I figure – I’d rather be too detailed than not detailed enough. I know that’s what I would have wanted when I started (and still do today.) Thanks for reading and commenting! Definitely jump into this community- it’s awesome. The forums especially are a really great way to meet other investors and learn. Check it out!
    jeff
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Brandon, Really great article. Thanks for taking the time to do this. Like a couple other posters I was wondering why you had to wait 6 months to refi out of your hard money loan. I work with a mortgage broker who writes all over the country (including Washington) and sells Notes directly to Fannie, so there are no overlays. On a multifamily you can refi at 70% LTV of the appraised value and start your refi as soon as the Deed gets recorded in your name. Not sure its kosher to just throw his contact info out in this forum, but ping me and I’ll give it to you if you like. He’s based in Seattle.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Jeff, Thanks for the message! Yeah, the main bank I’ve worked with in the past requires 6 months – but I’ll connect with you and see what I can get done through your guy. Obviously faster would be better! Thanks 🙂 I sure like BiggerPockets!
    Brian Smith
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Excellent insight. You mentioned you can refinance before 1 year as long as you are not pulling cash out – but how do you pay back the hard money loan if you don’t pull the cash out? I am looking for a rental property and have a partner willing to purchase with cash provided I can refinance in a decent amount of time to pay him back. This is the problem I am running into, finding a lender who can cash-out refi within 6 months.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Brian! So, “pulling cash out” means extra cash above and beyond any loans on the property. The lender has a lein on the property, so he will be paid back by the refinance. I borrowed $90,000 from the lender, so when I go to get the refinance, I can get a $90,000 loan without “pulling cash out.” However, if I wanted to refinance it for $100,000 – and get the money I spent fixing it up back out – then it would be a “cash out refi” and I’d have to find a lender willing to do that. Hope that helps!
    jeff
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Brian, Brandon’s description of “cash out” is dead on. In your all cash purchase example, you can immediately finance (delayed financing) based on the appraised value and pull out a sum of money up to the cash amount you put in for purchase (not rehab) and can also roll the closing costs of the new loan into the refi. Lets say you paid $90k cash, did $20k in rehab, have $5k in closing costs on the new loan, and the place appraised for $150k after rehab. At 70% LTV you could get a loan for $105k. However, since your purchase price was $90k and closing costs are $5k you can only get a loan for $95k. The other $10k would have to remain in the property as equity. But if you hold the property for 6 months and 1 day you can do cash out refi and pull that extra $10k out as well. It should be noted that the 70% LTV can actually be between 65% – 75% depending on how many loans you have (less than 4 or more than 4) and how many doors the property has (4 or less, vs more than 4)
    Brian Smith
    Replied over 6 years ago
    So then my lender either doesn’t understand exactly what I am trying to do, or doesn’t know there is a difference. He referred to it as being the same as cash-out refi. Definitely need to find a new lender. Thanks for your responses, very helpful.
    Shaun
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Originally you you referred to the money guy as a partner. If you are guys are doing some kind of equity split partnership then that could be the problem. Even if you guys are planning on being partners long-term there needs to be a recorded lien on the property that is being paid off or it will be considered a cash out refi. Lenders will vary on specifics but this the rule of thumb that I have been told by several brokers and direct lenders.
    Aaron Powell
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, That was very informative and I hope that you continue to do more webinars in the future. I like the “awkward” rambling, because you are able to elaborate on every detail along the way, even if it doesn’t necessarily fit in with the main topic. I learned more by hearing you make those connections, then by reading an isolated blog post with a narrower scope. I just spent this week struggling to effectively analyze a couple of local 4-plexes for the first time, and that experience plus the content you just provided will make the next listings I come across way easier to sift through.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey thanks Aaron, that makes me feel a little better! 🙂 I cut out the beginning 10 minutes when it was REALLY awkward! Keep in mind, always feel free to post the numbers to deals you find over in the forums. There are some really smart guys on there totally willing to help out and offer advice and analyze with you. You can even hide the address and such so no one sees it 🙂 Keep in touch!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey thanks Aaron, that makes me feel a little better! 🙂 I cut out the beginning 10 minutes when it was REALLY awkward! Keep in mind, always feel free to post the numbers to deals you find over in the forums. There are some really smart guys on there totally willing to help out and offer advice and analyze with you. You can even hide the address and such so no one sees it 🙂 Keep in touch!
    Aaron Powell
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Yup, did that with one of the properties I was looking at. The other BP members brought many things to light that I had not considered.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Nice!
    rich
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Bravo! just got through it. I am looking at a property here in pasadena ca. wow, plugging even the best case numbers into your formulas, its embarrasing how our returns are from a cash flow stand point down here. This is why i started looking out of state. 50% rule and 2% rent to price ratios work in places like memphis. problem is that i do also believe in the idea of investing in things you have control over. there in lies my conundrum. invest where the numbers make sense and what i can control is what i want, but its difficult to find down here.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Rich! Yeah, prices can be crazy elsewhere. Keep in mind, however, that I am buying this almost entirely for cash flow, and any “forced appreciation” I can get… but I don’t expect prices to rise here. We keep pretty steady. That said, I think multifamily will rise faster when my area becomes the only area to get cash flow in the country – so I’m hoping that might help! I also believe in investing where you have control, generally. However, if I were in your shoes, I’d probably sacrifice that as long as the numbers were solid.
    Charly
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, this case study is more that a wake up call to some of us on the fence in doing multifamily projects. Thanks for the posting. Very informative
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Charly! I love multifamily. It definitely is more management intense but you can’t beat the cash flow!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Charly! I love multifamily. It definitely is more management intense but you can’t beat the cash flow!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Charly! I love multifamily. It definitely is more management intense but you can’t beat the cash flow!
    Ben Leybovich
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Brandon, I think you might have a future in RE…
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Naaaah. It’s too hard. I think I’ll just become a flipper. Much easier. 😉
    Ben Leybovich
    Replied over 6 years ago
    You an me both LOL 🙂 BTW – I know without a trace of doubt that you and I were cut out of the same piece of cloth. I am sure you are somewhere to be found in my family tree – I should look into this 🙂
    Eric Rohver
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I really liked how you showed multiple exit strategies and flip analysis on your spreadsheet.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Eric! I think exit strategies are SUPER important – and I’ve learned from experience. When I first got started, I didn’t and it caused a lot of stress. I’m just hoping to help others avoid that! Thanks for reading and commenting!
    Carlos De Jesus
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great Article Brandon!!! I had already seen the video and believe me, it was both entertaining and informative. The Spreadsheet, wow!!! How can someone with little or no Excel experience get their hands on an exact copy of it? Other than the videos and the Heavenly Spreadheet, my other favorite part was the Quick recap in 7 easy steps, it really brought it home for me as a Real Estate Agent; I could do this!!! BIGGERPOCKETS should do one of these Case Studies for every scenario possible. I expect this one to recieve a lot more comments, it’s Sensational, Great Work!!! Thank You!!!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Carlos 🙂 You can get that spreadsheet here: https://www.biggerpockets.com/files/user/brandonatbp/file/brandon-turners-spreadsheet—rental-flip-hybrid-calculator And yes – you can do it! I always say – just start doing it, and when you hit a wall, ask for help. But you’ll learn so much by just doing it! Thanks so much for the nice comment!
    dale slater
    Replied over 6 years ago
    This is a very well done article. I find it very good that the seller turned down your first offer. I think this is critical because now you know as an investor you are not paying to much for the property. If the seller says yes to your initial offer, would they have taken 5k or 10k less? It would make me wonder. Depending on what your goals are I believe you need to be small or large as an investor and try to get as many units under one roof as possible and no boiler system (boilers are cash flow eaters). Never in the middle. Depending what you pay per unit the middle is roughly (9-59 units). Example: say you have 20 units (5 quads) and we will say they are all located together. (If they are spread out all over the area now you have to consider more gas, wear and tear on your vehicle and travel time to your properties) say you are getting 100 dollars per unit and we will even say they are 100 percent occupied which multi’s rarely are. So you will cash 2000 dollars per month. Not bad but is it? You could try to run 20 units by yourself, but do you know what kind of headache that is, I sure do. Your renters complaining about water leaks, toliet issues, furnace not working, fighting with other renters, you name it. All your time will be sucked from investing in other properties to now the headaches of landlording for less than 2k per month. Still worth it? Not to me. Been there. So what do you do? You, in my opinion buy 60 or more units at a time as cheap as possible so you can afford to hire a full time manager and maintenance man. And you manage your help instead of trying to be an investor, the leasing agent, the maintenance man, etc. Cause as the above states at 2k per month left over or less or even a bit more, who are you gonna find to work for you and do a decent job at that price plus you the investor make enough per month to make it worth your time.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Dale – great comment! I think you and I are largely on the same page! I love the larger properties and plan on doing more and more of them, for the very reasons you stated!
    Sherry Williams
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great Post! I really like your 50% calculation for Cashflow. I’m going to start using this. Thanks for sharing.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Sherry – thanks! I love the 50% rule, and find it very accurate!
    kevin young
    Replied over 6 years ago
    that is an awesome deal brandon. tks for sharing. i stumbled upon a little while ago BP and really like the level of sharing … good stuff.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Kevin! I hope you are also taking part in the conversations over on the Forums – there is so much more going on there to help people! Thanks for reading this and commenting!
    kevin young
    Replied over 6 years ago
    that is an awesome deal brandon. tks for sharing. i stumbled upon a little while ago BP and really like the level of sharing … good stuff.
    John Fedro
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great disarming video. You’re hilarious to watch too… in a great way. 🙂 Amazing video and wonderful display of your transparency and willingness to help others. Great deal and congratulations Brandon! Sincerely, John FEdro
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks John- I’m just trying to be more like you and your videos! 🙂
    Lora Hish
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great article. Love examples and real data. Thanks for sharing. So you recommend following the same guidelines when analyzing single family homes such as 50/50 rule and the property investment calculate spreadsheet you included? Or maybe a better question is what would you change in determining a good value for single family home vs multi-family? I have one home I rent out and I thought I got incredible income from it but when I take 50% of my mortgage pymt, I’m sitting at almost exactly 50% mortgage pymt = rental income. I get $2,600 in rental income and my mortgage pymt is roughly $1350 so using your analysis I’m not making enough for “cash flow”; perhaps I don’t understand the 50/50 rule well enough. Thoughts? lora
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Lora, I’m not as big of a stickler on single family homes with the 50% rule as I am multifamily. I think a lot of that depends on the neighborhood (which affects vacancy) and how nice the house is (which affects repairs) so if you have a nice house in a good area with a good rental market -your costs are going to be waaay less than 50% – especially if the renter pays all the utilities. So when it comes to houses, yes – I’ll look at the 50% rule but I look more carefully at the actual spreadsheet numbers, and add monthly allowances for repairs/vacancies/etc Hope that helps!
    Heather
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, I’m a huge fan of the Bigger Pockets Blog – it’s hard to find decent real estate resources online, and your site is my go-to guide. In 2011, I made my first real estate investment in 2 SFRs in Las Vegas, and have done very well in terms of both rental yield and capital appreciation. However, now that they’ve doubled in value (and houses in Vegas have gotten to expensive to buy more), I’m considering selling them to get into multi-family. I’m comfortable with your how-to guide, and thanks so much for all that information! I just have a basic question – In your opinion, what are the best cities in the US for multi-family investment right now? I’m happy to look at the neighborhoods & numbers myself, but it would be great to get a starting point from you. Thanks so much!
    Giovanni Isaksen
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I would say the best market to start in is the one you know best; the one you live in and drive around every day. Good apartment investors (or good real estate investors in any sector) know their market block by block and they know the history of most of the properties in their market. How does someone from somewhere else compete successfully against this information dissymmetry? One of the things that Brandon mentioned in his piece is that he felt comfortable with the neighborhood because he owned a property down the street. I think that is a very important tip. He knows the neighborhood. If Brandon invested in CA or AZ would he have made the deal in WA? I won’t answer for Brandon but I wouldn’t have unless some one on my team had that block by block, property by property knowledge that I could rely on. Start with a neighborhood in your hometown that you feel comfortable with. Go to your Assessor’s website with the address of every apartment building in that neighborhood and look up the contact info for the property owners. Reach out to them and invite them to coffee. Tell them you are looking for an apartment and would like to get their take on the local market. Pick their brains while asking for their advice. Who knows, one of them may be ready to sell. In the process you’ll also learn about the good lenders, property managers and brokers in that market. Have coffee with the lenders and property managers too. While you’re at the Assessor’s site check the sales history of the properties, How often did they turn over? What have prices done? Are there certain names that pop up over and over? Track the per unit prices that buildings traded at over time. Try to correlate those prices by year of sale across the neighborhood to build an understanding of the market cycle. Having this knowledge when you sit down with an owner will help you fit their story to the larger history of the area and give you some perspective on how things have gone while they’ve owned the property. Once you’ve met a couple dozen of the owners, lenders and property managers in the neighborhood and looked at the history of the properties there you will begin to get a feel for what apartments there should sell for. With that knowledge you will be able to spot a good deal when it comes along and be able to act quickly on opportunities when they arise. This is the kind of knowledge good investors have and all it takes is shoe leather, as they say. You could jump on a plane and fly to another city to ride around in a bus looking at some gurus’ deals but how do you know if it’s the right neighborhood? How do you know what the issues are? How do you find out what all the local investors know?
    Giovanni Isaksen
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I would say the best market to start in is the one you know best; the one you live in and drive around every day. Good apartment investors (or good real estate investors in any sector) know their market block by block and they know the history of most of the properties in their market. How does someone from somewhere else compete successfully against this information dissymmetry? One of the things that Brandon mentioned in his piece is that he felt comfortable with the neighborhood because he owned a property down the street. I think that is a very important tip. He knows the neighborhood. If Brandon invested in CA or AZ would he have made the deal in WA? I won’t answer for Brandon but I wouldn’t have unless some one on my team had that block by block, property by property knowledge that I could rely on. Start with a neighborhood in your hometown that you feel comfortable with. Go to your Assessor’s website with the address of every apartment building in that neighborhood and look up the contact info for the property owners. Reach out to them and invite them to coffee. Tell them you are looking for an apartment and would like to get their take on the local market. Pick their brains while asking for their advice. Who knows, one of them may be ready to sell. In the process you’ll also learn about the good lenders, property managers and brokers in that market. Have coffee with the lenders and property managers too. While you’re at the Assessor’s site check the sales history of the properties, How often did they turn over? What have prices done? Are there certain names that pop up over and over? Track the per unit prices that buildings traded at over time. Try to correlate those prices by year of sale across the neighborhood to build an understanding of the market cycle. Having this knowledge when you sit down with an owner will help you fit their story to the larger history of the area and give you some perspective on how things have gone while they’ve owned the property. Once you’ve met a couple dozen of the owners, lenders and property managers in the neighborhood and looked at the history of the properties there you will begin to get a feel for what apartments there should sell for. With that knowledge you will be able to spot a good deal when it comes along and be able to act quickly on opportunities when they arise. This is the kind of knowledge good investors have and all it takes is shoe leather, as they say. You could jump on a plane and fly to another city to ride around in a bus looking at some gurus’ deals but how do you know if it’s the right neighborhood? How do you know what the issues are? How do you find out what all the local investors know?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Heather, thanks for the comment and glad you liked it! I’m not real great on where the best locations are – because I don’t think the multifamily world is the same as single family. I think there are good deals with multifamily anywhere, but probably outside major cities. That said, there was a post a few weeks ago about the top 20 Cities, and Memphis led the list – perhaps that’s a good place to look? Sorry – this isn’t probably a great answer, but hopefully it will at least help some!
    Daniel B Bennett from Jonesboro, Arkansas
    Replied over 2 years ago
    Hi Brandon. I live near Memphis and I used to dream about owning multifamily rentals there. When I had a real estate license there 30 years ago I could have found some good deals but my career went in a totally different direction. Now I am getting into rental properties very slowly and cautiously. I have always thought, like you, that multi-family residential like an apartment building would be the way to go but my lawyer/CPA/MBA adviser tells me to look at single family 3-bedroom/2-baths only and use a property manager who does background checks and drafts the rent straight from the tenant’s bank account on the 1st of the month. I like the property manager (he does everything) but I can’t understand what he has against apartments and multi-family properties. His parents owned about 50 rental properties so I assumed he knew what he was talking about. I would really like to buy a 4-to-10 unit building where my niece lives but it seems like a huge leap.
    Giovanni Isaksen
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I would say the best market to start in is the one you know best; the one you live in and drive around every day. Good apartment investors (or good real estate investors in any sector) know their market block by block and they know the history of most of the properties in their market. How does someone from somewhere else compete successfully against this information dissymmetry? One of the things that Brandon mentioned in his piece is that he felt comfortable with the neighborhood because he owned a property down the street. I think that is a very important tip. He knows the neighborhood. If Brandon invested in CA or AZ would he have made the deal in WA? I won’t answer for Brandon but I wouldn’t have unless some one on my team had that block by block, property by property knowledge that I could rely on. Start with a neighborhood in your hometown that you feel comfortable with. Go to your Assessor’s website with the address of every apartment building in that neighborhood and look up the contact info for the property owners. Reach out to them and invite them to coffee. Tell them you are looking for an apartment and would like to get their take on the local market. Pick their brains while asking for their advice. Who knows, one of them may be ready to sell. In the process you’ll also learn about the good lenders, property managers and brokers in that market. Have coffee with the lenders and property managers too. While you’re at the Assessor’s site check the sales history of the properties, How often did they turn over? What have prices done? Are there certain names that pop up over and over? Track the per unit prices that buildings traded at over time. Try to correlate those prices by year of sale across the neighborhood to build an understanding of the market cycle. Having this knowledge when you sit down with an owner will help you fit their story to the larger history of the area and give you some perspective on how things have gone while they’ve owned the property. Once you’ve met a couple dozen of the owners, lenders and property managers in the neighborhood and looked at the history of the properties there you will begin to get a feel for what apartments there should sell for. With that knowledge you will be able to spot a good deal when it comes along and be able to act quickly on opportunities when they arise. This is the kind of knowledge good investors have and all it takes is shoe leather, as they say. You could jump on a plane and fly to another city to ride around in a bus looking at some gurus’ deals but how do you know if it’s the right neighborhood? How do you know what the issues are? How do you find out what all the local investors know?
    Brandon Levi
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Brandon thanks for sharing, i really enjoyed reading this post. Im currently studying real estate and hoping to make some good investments in the near future. Also any advice you can think of for a new investor would be greatly appreciated.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Brandon! Definitely read through … well, pretty much everything I’ve ever written! 🙂
    Jan
    Replied over 6 years ago
    It took me a while to finish the whole article (I read it in 3 days – in separate parts), but I did learn some new things. Too bad, you couldn’t somehow extend the closing to get the conventional financing from your local bank right away – that would make your return on investment better and you could try to get the fifth unit rented sooner. By the way – I own a multifamily property as well. Right now it has 5 units, but just 4 units are in rentable condition. I have sellers financing on it with balloon payment in the end of next year. So you are saying, that if I “decomission” the property to just 4-plex for a short term, I can go to the bank and tell them it’s residential? However in all the county documents, it is already described as commercial property.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jan – yeah, I tend to write long articles 🙂 I agree- that would have been great to extend it – but I think the short close date was the reason I got the great deal. And I’m honestly not sure what makes a unit “decommissioned” but for this one, the sellers removed the front door, put locks on the other interior doors, and called it storage. It seems to work … but we’ll see I guess!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jan – yeah, I tend to write long articles 🙂 I agree- that would have been great to extend it – but I think the short close date was the reason I got the great deal. And I’m honestly not sure what makes a unit “decommissioned” but for this one, the sellers removed the front door, put locks on the other interior doors, and called it storage. It seems to work … but we’ll see I guess! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jan – yeah, I tend to write long articles 🙂 I agree- that would have been great to extend it – but I think the short close date was the reason I got the great deal. And I’m honestly not sure what makes a unit “decommissioned” but for this one, the sellers removed the front door, put locks on the other interior doors, and called it storage. It seems to work … but we’ll see I guess!
    Lou
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon Turner, Thanks for a awesome article. It came in handy since I found a 6 unit property that supposedly brings in $1,600.00/month rent and the sale price is below $50,000. I’ll be looking in it some more and run the numbers to see what pops up. Thanks again for a super article.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Interesting Lou! let us know in the forums how it pans out and if we can help at all!
    Jim Hess
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great deal on that property…thanks for taking the time and sharing. Also, nice spreadsheet.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jim!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jim! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jim! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Jim!
    Jim Hess
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great deal on that property…thanks for taking the time and sharing. Also, nice spreadsheet.
    Austin
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon – I can’t thank you enough for this post and the videos. This was a great step-by-step guide for helping me to connect all the dots. I did have a few questions about your financing however. You mentioned that you received $90K private money to purchase the home. What kind of fee did J-Scott charge you to lend this, or is he making a percentage of your cash flow profits? Am I understanding correctly that you then used hard money to repay him the $90K and to fund your rehab expenses and closing costs ($12K)? Or did you have your own cash to cover the $12K. Sorry if you explained it somewhere and I missed it.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Austin, Thanks! So, J charged 1% fee, which I paid at closing (well… technically, the rent that came in during the month paid it at closing, because we were given the rent at closing but the first payment wasn’t until the following month. Does that make sense?) So, I’ll hold the loan with J until the property is refinanced. I plan on using my own funds to fix the place up – though I could use a credit card, line of credit, or just borrow a 2nd mortgage from a friend if I didn’t want to use my own cash. Hope that helps! Reach out anytime if you have any questions! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Austin, Thanks! So, J charged 1% fee, which I paid at closing (well… technically, the rent that came in during the month paid it at closing, because we were given the rent at closing but the first payment wasn’t until the following month. Does that make sense?) So, I’ll hold the loan with J until the property is refinanced. I plan on using my own funds to fix the place up – though I could use a credit card, line of credit, or just borrow a 2nd mortgage from a friend if I didn’t want to use my own cash. Hope that helps! Reach out anytime if you have any questions!
    Austin
    Replied over 6 years ago
    That clears everything up! Thanks Brandon
    Ned Carey
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Very cool Brandon, I’m jealous. There is a big message here that I hope is not missed by new investors. You didn’t “find” a 5 unit deal for 90K no money down. That isn’t what was listed. That was what you uncovered and negotiated.
    Ned Carey
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Very cool Brandon, I’m jealous. There is a big message here that I hope is not missed by new investors. You didn’t “find” a 5 unit deal for 90K no money down. That isn’t what was listed. That was what you uncovered and negotiated. Reply Report comment
    Ned Carey
    Replied over 6 years ago
    PS Do you have a 9-5 w-2 job? If not have you been able to refinance deals like this, in the past?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Ha Thanks Ned! And excellent point. This property was originally listed like $50,000 more than I got it for, plus I took the time to look and find out it was 5 units, not 4 which helps. And yeah, I now have a W-2 job, which made this possible (BiggerPockets!) If I didn’t, I would have sought out private lending to make it work, or partnered up and split it 50/50. Thanks Ned!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Ha Thanks Ned! And excellent point. This property was originally listed like $50,000 more than I got it for, plus I took the time to look and find out it was 5 units, not 4 which helps. And yeah, I now have a W-2 job, which made this possible (BiggerPockets!) If I didn’t, I would have sought out private lending to make it work, or partnered up and split it 50/50. Thanks Ned!
    Ned Carey
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Very cool Brandon, I’m jealous. There is a big message here that I hope is not missed by new investors. You didn’t “find” a 5 unit deal for 90K no money down. That isn’t what was listed. That was what you uncovered and negotiated.
    David Wellington
    Replied over 6 years ago
    My quick math using your assumptions provides an All Cash IRR of ~25% and a Leveraged IRR of ~133% for a 5-year hold to exit. I’m working in a pretty lively CBD market but an exit cap of 13.5% is pretty hard to imagine. Is that market norm for you there?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey David, this was a REALLY good deal, so I wouldn’t say normal. However, this property was sitting on the MLS for 6 months before I got it, so it’s not unheard of here either. My market is pretty low income and I don’t plan on getting any natural appreciation other than maybe inflation. Thanks for reading!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey David, this was a REALLY good deal, so I wouldn’t say normal. However, this property was sitting on the MLS for 6 months before I got it, so it’s not unheard of here either. My market is pretty low income and I don’t plan on getting any natural appreciation other than maybe inflation. Thanks for reading! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey David, this was a REALLY good deal, so I wouldn’t say normal. However, this property was sitting on the MLS for 6 months before I got it, so it’s not unheard of here either. My market is pretty low income and I don’t plan on getting any natural appreciation other than maybe inflation. Thanks for reading!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey David, this was a REALLY good deal, so I wouldn’t say normal. However, this property was sitting on the MLS for 6 months before I got it, so it’s not unheard of here either. My market is pretty low income and I don’t plan on getting any natural appreciation other than maybe inflation. Thanks for reading!
    RB Blackshear
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great Article. I just found this site on a random google site as I want to get into real estate investing in the next few years. I am in Puyallup, and will most definately follow you more closely as I get in a better position to make this happen. RB
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Nice RB! Let us know how we can help you get there. Definitely jump into the forums and introduce yourself!
    Wanda
    Replied over 6 years ago
    First, great article for us beginners to really get a look at what can be expected! Thank you! Second, Ned touched on what I was going to ask, I’m a student and don’t have that established w-2 job required to refi these deals. So, are you saying that the private lenders are not necessarily looking at your ability to pay back this loan based on a 9-5 but rather just based off the numbers you put together on paper? And lastly, what are we looking for when searching for a good/legit private lender? ~Wanda~
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Wanda, thanks! Without the W-2 Income, yes – a bank won’t do the refi. So you’d have to have another backup plan. 1.) long-term private lenders (some people would be thrilled with 8-10% interest, secured by a mortgage, for 30 years.) 2.) Partner with someone who CAN get the loan. And I think my private lender lent based on my 5 different exit strategies and my history of successful investments. If my only plan was to refi it, and I wasn’t sure it would happen… he wouldn’t have lent the money. And when looking for a private lender – obviously you want someone with money. And I would look for someone with a LOT of money (Not Uncle Joe who has $50k in the bank and will lend his life savings to you.) Preferably someone with a lot more than they are lending you, and someone who isn’t going to micromanage. Hope that helps! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Wanda, thanks! Without the W-2 Income, yes – a bank won’t do the refi. So you’d have to have another backup plan. 1.) long-term private lenders (some people would be thrilled with 8-10% interest, secured by a mortgage, for 30 years.) 2.) Partner with someone who CAN get the loan. And I think my private lender lent based on my 5 different exit strategies and my history of successful investments. If my only plan was to refi it, and I wasn’t sure it would happen… he wouldn’t have lent the money. And when looking for a private lender – obviously you want someone with money. And I would look for someone with a LOT of money (Not Uncle Joe who has $50k in the bank and will lend his life savings to you.) Preferably someone with a lot more than they are lending you, and someone who isn’t going to micromanage. Hope that helps!
    Aly L
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, thank you so much for the amazing article and for sharing your spreadsheet – and knowledge! I plan to watch your video as well, and follow along on the spreadsheet. My husband and I own rental properties – SFRs in NJ, and condos in FL. The FL condos cash flow nicely and have appreciated quite a bit in the last year or two as the south FL market has done quite a turnaround. We’re now looking at a 3plex and your article was very helpful. Still trying to find a way to finance though, as we are tapped out on HELOCs and conventional financing per Fannie Mae. We found a private lender but of course the terms aren’t great – there is a minimum loan amount we must hit (~$150k), regardless of the purchase price of the property. The minimum down payment is 35%, so essentially their requirement is to pay about $231K for a property for them to finance it. And finding the 35% down, without using our own money, is the new challenge. Any insight you have would be greatly appreciated, thank you!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Aly, thanks for the comment! I bet if the deal you are looking at is great- you should be able to find private money with much easier terms. There are rich people everywhere (and not even rich – someone with a hundred grand or a HELOC of their own would do the trick) could easily finance this and get more interest than the stock market and with better security. Good luck and let us know how it goes! (P.S. You may wanna advertise for a lender in BiggerPockets Marketplace!)
    Aly L
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Brandon! At the moment, the seller (also a realtor) is not quite motivated. We’ll keep an eye on it while we arrange better financing. Reply Report comment
    Aly L
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Brandon! At the moment, the seller (also a realtor) is not quite motivated. We’ll keep an eye on it while we arrange better financing.
    Mike Webb
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Outstanding article and videos. I can’t believe there is no catch to buy a program…awesome.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Mike! If you wanted to send me $97 a month, I’d take it 😉
    JM Enage
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Brandon, that was an awesome case study! For a newbie you gave me a very clear picture of the dynamics of a real deal from beginning, middle, end and on-wards. You make a great ambassador for BP. I think you should have more of these. Question though, 1) why did you opt to keep it as a 4plex in the interim for loan purposes. Are there less restrictions as a SFH versus commercial? I heard it was the opposite. It was easier to get a commercial loan than a SFH loan. In fact that’s the reason I want to go multifamily like you because the rules are less rigid. Kindly clarify. 2) should I focus first on finding a great deal or contacting HMLs, private lenders, etc. or both? I have been doing a lot of training, readings in the meantime.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey JM, thanks so much! I’d love to do more of these. I’m working on a “duplex” one right now! 1.) If I tried to refinance it as a commercial property, my interest rate would be higher, and typically a commercial loan has a balloon payment after 3-10 years. I don’t want that- I want 30 years, fixed payments. I think the “ease” of getting a commercial vs. residential depends on a persons situation and company – but I know that it costs a lot more to get commercial (appraisals = $5,000 vs. $500, and other charges) plus the worse terms were enough to make me wanna go residential for now. 2.) I think I’d do both. Make connections with lenders and stuff, but the deal is the most important. I’d really focus on that 90% of the time. Hope that helps!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey JM, thanks so much! I’d love to do more of these. I’m working on a “duplex” one right now! 1.) If I tried to refinance it as a commercial property, my interest rate would be higher, and typically a commercial loan has a balloon payment after 3-10 years. I don’t want that- I want 30 years, fixed payments. I think the “ease” of getting a commercial vs. residential depends on a persons situation and company – but I know that it costs a lot more to get commercial (appraisals = $5,000 vs. $500, and other charges) plus the worse terms were enough to make me wanna go residential for now. 2.) I think I’d do both. Make connections with lenders and stuff, but the deal is the most important. I’d really focus on that 90% of the time. Hope that helps!
    Horizon
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon! I learned sooooo much with your video. I’m practicing by crunching number on my own, but don’t understand where the “Value based on cap rate” for $ 169846.15 came from. Please explain. Also why do you include the total purchase price as total investment when you only took only $ 24,000 out of your pocket when you got the property? Everything else was very clear to me. Thanks again Brandon for helping us and enlightening us!!!!!!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hello and thanks! So, with commercial property and larger multifamily, the value is based on a cap rate (Cause it’s too hard to compare apples to oranges when it comes to such diverse properties.) So instead, the return on investment is compared. The equation is: Value = Net Operating Income / Cap Rate So, with the above property, the NOI was $22,080 and the Cap Rate I used was 13% (this number differs by area and property, but generally lies between 5-13%). It’s basically a way of saying “if you were to pay all cash for a property, what would your cash on cash return on investment be.” So $22,080 / .13 = $169,846.15. Secondly, I didn’t know what else to call it, so I called it “Total Investment.” What that means, on the spreadsheet and in my head, is the total amount of money this property has into it. Hope that helps! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hello and thanks! So, with commercial property and larger multifamily, the value is based on a cap rate (Cause it’s too hard to compare apples to oranges when it comes to such diverse properties.) So instead, the return on investment is compared. The equation is: Value = Net Operating Income / Cap Rate So, with the above property, the NOI was $22,080 and the Cap Rate I used was 13% (this number differs by area and property, but generally lies between 5-13%). It’s basically a way of saying “if you were to pay all cash for a property, what would your cash on cash return on investment be.” So $22,080 / .13 = $169,846.15. Secondly, I didn’t know what else to call it, so I called it “Total Investment.” What that means, on the spreadsheet and in my head, is the total amount of money this property has into it. Hope that helps! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hello and thanks! So, with commercial property and larger multifamily, the value is based on a cap rate (Cause it’s too hard to compare apples to oranges when it comes to such diverse properties.) So instead, the return on investment is compared. The equation is: Value = Net Operating Income / Cap Rate So, with the above property, the NOI was $22,080 and the Cap Rate I used was 13% (this number differs by area and property, but generally lies between 5-13%). It’s basically a way of saying “if you were to pay all cash for a property, what would your cash on cash return on investment be.” So $22,080 / .13 = $169,846.15. Secondly, I didn’t know what else to call it, so I called it “Total Investment.” What that means, on the spreadsheet and in my head, is the total amount of money this property has into it. Hope that helps!
    Rane
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, Great read! My partner and I are just north of you in Tacoma and are actually working on a very similar deal. We are looking at a triplex in the area and our plan is to originally purchase the property with cash through a private lender and refinance with a traditional loan later on. I’m curious about the process when you go to refinance, I think I’m understanding your plan but correct me if I’m wrong. When you refinance, is your goal to have the property appraise for a high enough value ($120,000 or higher) so that you can qualify for a $90,000 loan and still achieve an LTV of 75%? That way there is still no cash out of your pocket in the form of a down payment correct? What if, even though this doesn’t sound like it will be the case, the property only appraised for $100,000, then would you be stuck having to cover the rest of the down payment? Again, awesome post and thanks for your help!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Rane, thanks for reading and the comment! Congrats on your upcoming purchase! We’ll have to get together someday and talk NW real estate 😉 Are you over on the forums? If so – be sure to have “Washington” set up as a keyword alert so you’ll be notified if we have another meetup soon. In answer to your question – yes, that’s exactly my plan – to hope it appraises for at least $120k – which I believe it easily should (since it had some stuff to fix on it). However, there is always the possibility that it won’t, and so I’ll just take what I can get and use my own cash (or a partner, if I decide to add one on) to cover that part. Thoughts?
    Rane
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, Great read! My partner and I are just north of you in Tacoma and are actually working on a very similar deal. We are looking at a triplex in the area and our plan is to originally purchase the property with cash through a private lender and refinance with a traditional loan later on. I’m curious about the process when you go to refinance, I think I’m understanding your plan but correct me if I’m wrong. When you refinance, is your goal to have the property appraise for a high enough value ($120,000 or higher) so that you can qualify for a $90,000 loan and still achieve an LTV of 75%? That way there is still no cash out of your pocket in the form of a down payment correct? What if, even though this doesn’t sound like it will be the case, the property only appraised for $100,000, then would you be stuck having to cover the rest of the down payment? Again, awesome post and thanks for your help! Reply Report comment
    iris
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I’m new to the BP community, but I have from time to time stumbled upon some great articles. Since joining 2 days ago, i have read a ridiculous amount of great articles–this is one. and I’m surprised that the conversation is still going on, months later–but I’m sure that’s just how the BP community rolls. This article was great–and to be honest, i have to watch the videos next, but the words alone were very detailed and connected with me. It tells me I need to learn more because I don’t quite understand all the jargon yet like LTV. And I’m a person who always has questions–but once I watch the videos, i’ll write them down and post all my questions here. Until then, thank you Brandon for reaching out to the world. You’re just one person but have influenced many.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Iris, thanks so much for your awesome comment. I really appreciate the kind words. And yes- that’s just how this community rolls. BiggerPockets is amazing because of the many investors who get together to help each other succeed. It’s awesome. The jargon can be a little overwhelming, so just keep reading and learning. If you haven’t yet, I’d recommend reading through the “Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Real Estate Investing” that we provide for free. (and Fyi – LTV is loan-to-value, which is a percentage that tells the bank how much loan they are giving out compared to how much the property is worth. So if they are loaning $70,000 on a $100,000 property – it’s a 70% LTV.) Definitely come join us over in the forums as well and start connecting there as well! Seeya around the site!
    Jason
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Seriously? You pretty much wrote a book here! I’d bet this is something you probably could have charged good money for. You are the man for writing something like this and giving it out for free. Good vibes will return to you. It’s a law of the universe.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hahaha hanks Jason, I’m glad you enjoyed it!
    Jason
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Seriously? You pretty much wrote a book here! I’d bet this is something you probably could have charged good money for. You are the man for writing something like this and giving it out for free. Good vibes will return to you. It’s a law of the universe.
    Verni Franklin
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Very good and clear. Could you send me a copy of your evaluation spread sheet software? Also include a copy of your private Lenders list. What part of the country is this deal in? I am California and that price for a 4 plex is found in dreams. Thanks
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Verni, the spreadsheet is in the FilePlace here on BiggerPockets -but you’ll have to build your own private lender list or check out the Hard Money Directory here on BiggerPockets!
    Peter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon I’m sure this has come up before, but would it be possible to get a copy of the excel sheet you use to analyze properties in this video. Awesome stuff by the way, am new to the site just recently
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Peter – no problem, I uploaded it to the BiggerPockets File Place! Here ya go!
    Peter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon I’m sure this has come up before, but would it be possible to get a copy of the excel sheet you use to analyze properties in this video. Awesome stuff by the way, am new to the site just recently
    Peter
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon I’m sure this has come up before, but would it be possible to get a copy of the excel sheet you use to analyze properties in this video. Awesome stuff by the way, am new to the site just recently Reply Report comment
    Adam
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks for this post. Interesting stuff. I wish I could find quads with hidden apartments in them here for 90K. Apartments here are going for around 100K per unit. My personal philosopy, though, is to buy buildings that are younger than I am. I am trying to get my family to exchange out of their stuff that was built between the World Wars, let alone before the first one. I wonder if “updated” electrical systems and plumbing systems have been updated enough, and by someone who knew what they were doing. Will your 10% savings be enough to keep this building in shape? Finally, my little nugget would be this. A bank’s rigid rules would not be spelled ridged. Just BTdubs. 🙂 Thanks for the post.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Adam, thanks for the comment! Yeah, prices sure differ quite a bit -though I’ve found that even in expensive cities, there are cheaper price pockets within a few hours drive. For example, I’m only 1.5 hours from Seattle, where prices are ridiculous. As for the 10% savings – I hope so! That’s always a concern with these older buildings, but from what I could tell, everything looked good. Obviously, things will come up – but ironically – in the past six months of owning this thing… I haven’t had a single maintenance problem yet. It’s odd. And Rigid … Ridged… 🙂 Oops! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey Adam, thanks for the comment! Yeah, prices sure differ quite a bit -though I’ve found that even in expensive cities, there are cheaper price pockets within a few hours drive. For example, I’m only 1.5 hours from Seattle, where prices are ridiculous. As for the 10% savings – I hope so! That’s always a concern with these older buildings, but from what I could tell, everything looked good. Obviously, things will come up – but ironically – in the past six months of owning this thing… I haven’t had a single maintenance problem yet. It’s odd. And Rigid … Ridged… 🙂 Oops!
    Kevin
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great stuff as usual Brandon! Learned a lot about how you spell it out simply and conservatively..Hopefully will jump into the game soon as I have been tip toeing for too long now, thanks for the insights!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Thanks Kevin – good luck! Jump in!
    Abbott Mary
    Replied over 6 years ago
    This is the best thing i’ve ever read in my life.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hahaha Abbott- this was the best comment I’ve ever read in my life! 🙂 Thanks! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hahaha Abbott- this was the best comment I’ve ever read in my life! 🙂 Thanks!
    John
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I always read about buying income property with little or no money down. If a property sells for $100,000 and I have the money from a previous sale, is it a good idea to just pay the whole amount in cash and have no mortgage thus a higher cash flow? Reply Report comment
    John
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I always read about buying income property with little or no money down. If a property sells for $100,000 and I have the money from a previous sale, is it a good idea to just pay the whole amount in cash and have no mortgage thus a higher cash flow?
    John
    Replied over 6 years ago
    I always read about buying income property with little or no money down. If a property sells for $100,000 and I have the money from a previous sale, is it a good idea to just pay the whole amount in cash and have no mortgage thus a higher cash flow?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hey John, I suppose it just comes down to your personal risk tolerance. The more debt you use, the higher “ROI” you’ll make. But also the higher risk of losing it all. So it’s kinda a balancing act that depends on a lot of factors in your personal life, like your timeline, budget, and location. Hope that helps a little!
    Robert Bourassa from Vista, California
    Replied 7 months ago
    Thank you Brandon. I am starting to get a feel for the thought process. Now to put it to practice.
    Ivan
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Awesome post Brandon! Case studies like these are great for new investors as well as for investors interested in another niche in REI. I hate I’m just reading 4 months after its been posted. The prices and rents in your area are not much different from mine, and I’m intrigued by your investing style as I also want to build my portfolio with small multifamilies as you are. Great analysis as well! Thanks for sharing!
    Tadd Hale
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Great post! Really informative for a newbie like myself. I know I may be a little away from making my first deal but I’m definitely learning more and more each day. Thanks again! Reply Report comment
    Tadd Hale
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Great post! Really informative for a newbie like myself. I know I may be a little away from making my first deal but I’m definitely learning more and more each day. Thanks again!
    Tadd Hale
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Brandon, Great post! Really informative for a newbie like myself. I know I may be a little away from making my first deal but I’m definitely learning more and more each day. Thanks again!
    Dria Conyers
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Great article. I love all the details. The opportunity to follow your thought and research process is so helpful. This is the kind of case study I always wish I would find in books and never do. I am so glad I found Bigger Pockets! I know I have at least 6 months before I can really get started on investing so I have plenty of reading to do now.
    Andrew M.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    That was exactly what I had been looking for. Thanks Brandon!
    Andrew M.
    Replied over 6 years ago
    That was exactly what I had been looking for. Thanks Brandon!
    Wendy
    Replied over 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon. While not a total novice to investing, I am new to BP and wanting to move from SF to MF properties. I found this article very interesting and useful. Can you identify what you include in your ‘holding costs’ for me? I’m not getting the W/S/G/PUD/etc. I apologize in advance if you answered this already as I didn’t read all the comments posted … a lot, but not all. 🙂 Thanks!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Wendy, thanks for the question! So, the typical holding costs are: Water, Sewer, Garbage, Electricity (PUD) are the main ones for me, which is why I included them, but really anything else that might be a typical cost for that property. Every property is unique, with different expenses. Some areas have Home Owner Association fees, others have natural gas or street assessments. It’s really any of those things! Hope that helps!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Wendy, thanks for the question! So, the typical holding costs are: Water, Sewer, Garbage, Electricity (PUD) are the main ones for me, which is why I included them, but really anything else that might be a typical cost for that property. Every property is unique, with different expenses. Some areas have Home Owner Association fees, others have natural gas or street assessments. It’s really any of those things! Hope that helps!
    kim bunn
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Brandon for this article and videos ….I was so lost in it that I neglected my kids (they are ok though) 😉 and thanks for sharing your spreadsheet. I’m trying to get a multi Unit too….so I’m bookmarking your article for future ref!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Kim! I’m glad it helped! Reach out and jump into the Forums for more tips/advice/help!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Kim! I’m glad it helped! Reach out and jump into the Forums for more tips/advice/help!
    Abdul Rasheed
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, Awesome blog article, I thoroughly enjoyed it and it benefited me a lot. I have a question for you about the quick “5-minute” analysis. I was wondering along with the 2%-50% rule are there any other analysis can we do. Do we need to do it? I was reading Larry Loftis’s book on residential multi families and he seems to be in favor of GRMs. Your thoughts? Abdul
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Abdul, Honestly, I’m not a huge fan of the GRM (I’m not really sure why – I just think it’s too simple with too many variables.) Other than the 50% and 2% – I just run all the numbers in a nice spreadsheet. I try to cover every single possible scenario. Hope that helps!
    Jen
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, Thanks so much for this post. I just read it and re-read it to make sure I completely understand. In my area (North Bay of SF) there is some great money to be made in multi-family investments, but it’s a really tight market with very little inventory. So many properties are transacted purely behind closed doors. What advice might you have for a new investor in this area on how to get behind those closed doors? Or, alternatively, are there other ways to handle this situation besides just moving on? Thanks for any help! Best, Jenny
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Jen, thanks! The best advice I have is to start building relationships with those in the business. People love to talk about themselves – so ask a lot of questions and you’ll get behind those doors in a heartbeat! Attending Real estate clubs and engaging on BP are great ways to get to meet investors also!
    Harry Hylan
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Great deal, Great play by play. Looking forward to the next.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Harry! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Harry! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Harry!
    Tia
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Awesome awesome awesome read and video. i’ve been searching for someone to just break things down and finally found it here! It was very easy to understand. Many thanks for taking the time out to share with all of us.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Tia! Glad I could help!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Tia! Glad I could help!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks Tia! Glad I could help!
    Bruce Michaud
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Looks like the question Wendy asked above didn’t get answered – I’m not getting the W/S/G/PUD/etc So I’ll take a stab at it 🙂 I think it’s for Water/Sewer/Gas/ ?? and maybe public utilities ??? Thanks for the article it was very informative. Bruce
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Ah Bruce- looks like I missed some questions here! 🙂 And it’s water, sewer, garbage 🙂 Though in a lot of parts of the country, Gas would be included also. And we call our electric company the PUD – so you are correct! Thanks for jumping in! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Ah Bruce- looks like I missed some questions here! 🙂 And it’s water, sewer, garbage 🙂 Though in a lot of parts of the country, Gas would be included also. And we call our electric company the PUD – so you are correct! Thanks for jumping in! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Ah Bruce- looks like I missed some questions here! 🙂 And it’s water, sewer, garbage 🙂 Though in a lot of parts of the country, Gas would be included also. And we call our electric company the PUD – so you are correct! Thanks for jumping in!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Ah Bruce- looks like I missed some questions here! 🙂 And it’s water, sewer, garbage 🙂 Though in a lot of parts of the country, Gas would be included also. And we call our electric company the PUD – so you are correct! Thanks for jumping in!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Ah Bruce- looks like I missed some questions here! 🙂 And it’s water, sewer, garbage 🙂 Though in a lot of parts of the country, Gas would be included also. And we call our electric company the PUD – so you are correct! Thanks for jumping in!
    A. Darnell Marion
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon, This was just want I needed to read. So much so that I read it twice. Some 14+ years ago, I purchased my first property. A side by side 3br 1.5 bathroom townhouse. It was supposed to be an investment property. But I put my mom in the other unit due to a death in the family. And other things in life derailing my goals and dreams. Well that property is finally being used as a total rental. With positive cash flow of $500 a month (thank God). My goal is in Multi family properties. I will would like to follow you and learn more from you. And every successful MF investor on BP. Thanks in advance:) Darnell
    Rajib Miah
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Brandon, Thanks so much for such an informative post. You are a natural at explaining such difficult concepts. Really appreciate the effort you put into this post.
    Julia Lugo
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Great details! I currently work for a national leading REIT (8 yrs) and for years wanted to get started in investing. My credit is ok due to a recent hit and i have no money but my parents are very interested in being silent partners. I’m looking for suggestions to get educated. Will definitely join your commits and read the book suggested above.
    Adam Briggs
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Aloha BT, I’m glad I came across your blog and video. I have been a site manager at HUD and Tax-Credit properties for years and am also a general contractor so I’ve got the landlord and property maintenance side down, but want to start investing for myself. I have a question regarding purchasing a multifamily property with no money down from a bank. Is it conceivable that if a seller wanted no less than 100k for their real estate, and the bank is willing to loan up to 70% LTV, that the buyer could negotiate with the seller to move into second position behind the bank for the remaining 30k to be paid at some specified future point in time? Is this something that underwriters will typically allow or not? The assumption is that the property is going to be a good investment meeting the criteria you have already stated. Thanks, Adam
    Adam Briggs
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Aloha BT, I’m glad I came across your blog and video. I have been a site manager at HUD and Tax-Credit properties for years and am also a general contractor so I’ve got the landlord and property maintenance side down, but want to start investing for myself. I have a question regarding purchasing a multifamily property with no money down from a bank. Is it conceivable that if a seller wanted no less than 100k for their real estate, and the bank is willing to loan up to 70% LTV, that the buyer could negotiate with the seller to move into second position behind the bank for the remaining 30k to be paid at some specified future point in time? Is this something that underwriters will typically allow or not? The assumption is that the property is going to be a good investment meeting the criteria you have already stated. Thanks, Adam
    Giovanni
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Adam, while in the past and possibly again in the future it was/might be possible to do 100% financed deals with a bank lender the financial meltdown made them much more conservative (once again). Today most banks want you to have skin in the game and even if you can get a seller to take back a 2nd, the bank will include that in their LTV underwriting at least for apartments which is what we focus on. I would say that when banks become willing to do 100% financed deals again it will be a sign that the market is nearing a top… or in another bubble. Good hunting-
    Kendra Gaines
    Replied about 6 years ago
    All this looks really good and I have 2 questions 1) Is it bad to just want to fix and sell the property after a year or so to get the 30 or 40k? Or are you just saying you don’t do that because you enjoy the more passive income? 2) I’m so confused about Partnerships and Lenders. How much are they making off deals like this? What’s the benefit? The guy who gave the $90k…what does he get? Monthly payments on the deal? How much interest? 3) Sorry I added another. The 12k…so you have to pay your contractor all at once? No monthly payments?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Kendra, 1.) Not bad at all! I could do this, and have thought about it a lot. However, I would be able to make about $30,000 – which sounds great, but I’d rather have the money coming in each month. I would probably spend the $30,000 on a new car, and then be broke again. However, if I keep the property, I’ll have income for the rest of my life. $800 per month is almost $10,000 per year in profit. Over the next 40 years, that’s going to be $400,000 in profit. So which is better: $30,000 now or $400,000 spread out? This is a personal choice, but for me, it’s going to be holding onto it. 2.) The lender in this deal (which is different than the other one) is getting 12% interest, but no equity. (The other deal I talked about is an equity partnership. This one is just lending.) So each month, I send a check for $900 to my lender. That’s what he gets. He also received a $900 one time fee at the beginning. 3.) And when you pay a contractor, nope- you cant usually make monthly payments. However, you can do just small tasks each month, and pay for just a little bit at a time, which is what I did. Thanks!
    William
    Replied over 5 years ago
    When hiring a contractor the payment terms are stipulated in the contract as to how much and when they get paid for the job. There is always an initial payment that amount can very and is usually placed in an escrow account to cover initials material costs and labor.
    Jonathan Scott
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Thanks @Brandon Turner for sending the link – there is so much valuable information. Can you explain (or provide a link that describes) how you came up with a minimum of the $200 per unit per month rule? Does the rule exclusively apply to UNDER four unit deals? If so (i.e. it’s only a rule for under four units), I can understand the logic that it might not be worth your time to make less than $10K per year on a property, even if it’s a great cash-on-cash return. But, if it’s more than four units and also a great cash-on-cash return, what’s the rationale to exclude it from your portfolio? Thanks.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Jonathan, no problem. So, the $200 I kinda made up. 🙂 Honestly, I looked at my area, what I could get, what would be an AMAZING deal, and defined $200 as that amount. If I were investing in areas like Manhattan, $200 per unit would be pretty crappy, for the amount of money I had to put down. In reality, Return on Investment is really the only number that matters, but the $200 per month guarantees a great ROI for me, without having to do that calculation. And I’m not dead set on $200. If I can only get $100, that’s not aweful, but I’d like more. A lot of that depends on the financing. If I can get $100 per unit, per month, for having $0 into the deal, then great! But if I’m putting in 20% down, I’m going to want more like $200. And it doesn’t really apply to just small multis – I value apartment complexes the exact same way. Hope that helps some! Thoughts?
    Jonathan Scott
    Replied about 6 years ago
    @Brandon Turner agreed on all points. Side note: I’m fairly new to the site, and have been loving what you guys put together. I have been pounding the podcasts; not only are the guests fantastic, but your follow-up questions are money! Keep up the great work.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Hey Jonathan, thanks! That’s great to hear!
    Taber
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Great article! Thanks for the info and insight! Since I just read it I wondered if the 6 months have passed yet and what exit strategy were you able to go with?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hey Taber – the 6 months are up and I’m working on a Refi right now … should be done in a month or so!
    Taber
    Replied about 6 years ago
    Great article! Thanks for the info and insight! Since I just read it I wondered if the 6 months have passed yet and what exit strategy were you able to go with?
    Matt
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Great info! Thanks for taking the time to write all that out and explain it simply for newbie investors!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Matt!
    Matt
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Great info! Thanks for taking the time to write all that out and explain it simply for newbie investors! Reply Report comment
    Wave
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Great article. I have read it several times. Decided to put forth a serious effort in 2014 to invest in multi-units after having been talking about it for the past 10 years. When I make my first purchase, should I purchase the property and transfer it over to an LLC or should I create the LLC first? Should I create a separate LLC for each property that I purchase?
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thats a tough question Wave, cause it totally depends on your situation and what your tax people advise. For me, though, I did the property first and transfer it in after (carefully, with my CPA and lawyers help.) It’s tough to buy property in an LLC – they only want to lend to a person, not a company. Hope that helps!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thats a tough question Wave, cause it totally depends on your situation and what your tax people advise. For me, though, I did the property first and transfer it in after (carefully, with my CPA and lawyers help.) It’s tough to buy property in an LLC – they only want to lend to a person, not a company. Hope that helps!
    Giovanni
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    The interesting thing is that with 5+ units most lenders will require you to have a stand alone LLC (or other entity) to hold the property in. That’s S.O.P. with us but it was interesting that the lender on our last deal made it a requirement so we used it as a negotiating point… even though we were going to do it anyway. Good hunting-
    Giovanni
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    The interesting thing is that with 5+ units most lenders will require you to have a stand alone LLC (or other entity) to hold the property in. That’s S.O.P. with us but it was interesting that the lender on our last deal made it a requirement so we used it as a negotiating point… even though we were going to do it anyway. Good hunting-
    Liz
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    I thought this was very helpful. I like the multiple exit strategies. The breakdown of the numbers gave me a general understanding of what costs go into purchasing a property like this one. Thanks again.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Liz!
    Winston Risser
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks for sharing. I don’t know if other people do this ,but i know different ways that are possible to get a property and sometimes it is hard to know which step to take first. So that being said the way you wrote this post is clear and informative. I know what i want to do it is just getting specific and repeating the process that is challenging for me. Your success is encouraging!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Winston! I appreciate the comment! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Winston! I appreciate the comment!
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Winston! I appreciate the comment!
    Craig
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    A fantastic and very informative article Brandon. More than anything for me it highlighted the importance of hunting out that deal and not just settling on the list price and having pre finance prepared and ready to go. Im interested to know how its all going several months down the track
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Craig! It’s so true – hunting is key 🙂 And it’s going well – I’m working on a Refi right now. Once that happens, I’ll finish the 5th unit and be clearing almost $1,000 a month. I can’t wait 🙂 Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Craig! It’s so true – hunting is key 🙂 And it’s going well – I’m working on a Refi right now. Once that happens, I’ll finish the 5th unit and be clearing almost $1,000 a month. I can’t wait 🙂
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Craig! It’s so true – hunting is key 🙂 And it’s going well – I’m working on a Refi right now. Once that happens, I’ll finish the 5th unit and be clearing almost $1,000 a month. I can’t wait 🙂
    Michael Sadler
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Great step-by-step post. Virtual high-five! 🙂
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Michael! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks Michael!
    Michael Sadler
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Great step-by-step post. Virtual high-five! 🙂
    Rick B
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon – Well done and timeless information. Is there an update on your refi and actuals? I’m curious how you’re refi went.
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hey Rick, Still working on it right now – but I think it’s gonna go okay. I need to go through a portfolio loan, since I have my limit of 4, but they don’t think there will be a problem. I should know for sure in the next month or so!
    Rick B
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Will you do a Blog … How to Get a Portfolio Loan: A Step by Step Case Study? I’m interested (and in need).
    Rick B
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hi Brandon – Well done and timeless information. Is there an update on your refi and actuals? I’m curious how you’re refi went. Reply Report comment
    Tom
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    I really appreciate this post. This is exactly the kind of analysis – with numbers!! – I’ve been looking for. well done, and congrats on what looks like a great deal.
    Fulton
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Brandon, Great write-up. Thank you. I’m going to pass it on to one of my foreign investors in order to reinforce things I have already tried to explain – sometimes language is a barrier to understanding, so I’m hoping he understands the written word a bit better. Our customs are sometimes hard for him to fathom, also! This really is a fantastic article. You follow the process, you offer subsequent informational links…you really seem to know your stuff! Again, congrats and thank you. I’m currently not doing any investing but rather working on building a cadre of investors I can help build their portfolios – after one recent and very painful tenant eviction experience, the boss lady has said enough ’till we’re in a better position (and then, this past year+ I’ve been out of commission – literally, cause of double back surgeries). I’m signing up for your up-dates. Keep it goin’ and thanks for the encouragement!
    Deblin McKnight
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Thanks for the great article. My fiancee and I are currently purchasing our first home (single family residential) and are looking to buy a multifamily rental unit shortly afterwards. We are very excited and these articles have been very helpful, especially this one. Wish we could get those numbers here in Portland, Oregon!
    michael
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Bradon, how are you going to get 30 yr fixed rate mortgage? Every time I even consider that, the mortgage folks tell me I own too many properties…
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hey Michael, I also am facing that when going to a traditional bank, but I have been using a portfolio lender lately which has worked fine, as they don’t have the 4-property (or 10 property) max. I haven’t had too much of a problem with my portfolio lender. Also, on some of my properties, I use a partner to get the loan in their name but keep title in both names – which gets around the limit issue as well. Hope that helps! Reply Report comment
    Brandon Turner
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    Hey Michael, I also am facing that when going to a traditional bank, but I have been using a portfolio lender lately which has worked fine, as they don’t have the 4-property (or 10 property) max. I haven’t had too much of a problem with my portfolio lender. Also, on some of my properties, I use a partner to get the loan in their name but keep title in both names – which gets around the limit issue as well. Hope that helps!
    Mike E
    Replied almost 6 years ago
    brand new to investing and still reading everything, thank you for this detailed look at the thought process, it is very informative. Now on to read the other linked article. Thanks, ME
    Quincy Fellows
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Wow I just want to thank you for clarifying a whole bunch of strategies for me that I didn’t understand at first glance. The time you took to write this out shows me as a newbie on this site and in investing how dedicated you really are. I myself am a young adult (20 years) and want to move out into the real world and start out with a multifamily residence. so this was perfect for me on many different levels. My only question is in the finance section you have a bullet about $1000 earnest money and I don’t think you mention it again can you please clarify. Thanks a bunch Brandon.
    Cameron Benz
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great read Brandon! I think I need to look further out in the areas like you’re in. Prices are amazingly low compared to Tacoma area.
    Pierenzo
    Replied over 5 years ago
    Great article brandon,so great that i would love to have the spreadsheet of your property invest calc so that i can see better how you get the numbers and apply it to my multi unit research. Thank you
    Stephen Yiu Real Estate Investor from San Ramon, California
    Replied over 4 years ago
    use liink: https://www.biggerpockets.com/files/user/brandonatbp/file/brandon-turners-spreadsheet—rental-flip-hybrid-calculator