Real Estate Deal Analysis & Advice

How to Find Multifamily Deals: 5 Tips for Beginners

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Diving into the world of property investing is exciting—especially when it provides you with multiple income streams every month. It is an excellent way to gain financial freedom and enjoy passive income.

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When looking for a multifamily property to invest in, there are some things to consider to ensure you make a smart addition to your real estate portfolio. There are also some potential missteps that should be avoided if possible. For best results, here are five pieces of advice.

5 Tips for Finding Your First Multifamily Deal

1. Choose your type of multifamily property and investment strategy.

There are several types of multifamily investment properties to choose from. Some investors like to keep things simple and choose a duplex as their first-time investment. This can be a good option if you’d like to manage two properties that exist side by side and share much of the same infrastructure. Tenants on both sides of the property typically pay the same amount in this case.

There is also the option to invest in an apartment complex that has a handful of apartments or dozens of apartments. The price for rent varies on square footage, bedroom count, etc. in this instance.

The type of multifamily dwelling you should invest in really comes down to your personal choice and your long-term goals. You can fix and flip the property, or hire a property manager to deal with the landlord tasks. Weigh out all the possibilities and decide what works best for you before you purchase your property.

Two vintage Georgian doors in yellow and blue

In any scenario, here are some key points to remember when deciphering the value of a property:

  • Rentals that are within commuting distance of major corporations, commercial hubs, or universities are more valuable than rentals located in remote areas.
  • Rentals located near public transportation can often go for more per month because tenants can commute without the cost of owning a car.
  • Highly rated schools can greatly increase rental values in a town.

2. Do your research and find quality leads.

You may already know what the property you want to invest in looks like and where it should be located. However, you may be unsure about how to actually go about finding your perfect investment property. MLS property listings are one of the most popular places to search. The problem with using the MLS, however, is that every other investor has access to that same information. 

You can often get an edge by browsing the listings for available rental units in the town or neighborhoods you’re focused on. Look for listings that are going for lower than expected per month or that have photos that appear shabby.

These could be signs that a landlord simply doesn’t have the time or resources to fix up a rental property and charge the maximum amount for rent. Further, it may imply that a landlord or property owner is ready to sell and unload the responsibility. This is an excellent way to find leads.

You can also use a digital service that displays listings for available multifamily properties without having to weed through single family residential properties. Online platforms such as LoopNet.com and Crexi.com are popular options used by property investors today for commercial multifamily properties.

In addition, mainstream platforms like Trulia, Zillow, and Redfin all offer apps that will essentially push available deals right to your phone in real-time for more traditional duplex, triplex, and quadplex homes.

3. Work with a Realtor.

Another option is to form a relationship with a local Realtor who handles multifamily properties. This could help you to be among the first to get in for a look when a property with multiple units goes on the market, as Realtor’s have developed networks.

Another benefit of working with a Realtor is you get a great opportunity and an open door to their contacts. This partnership can help you build the portfolio you strive for and potentially open up off-market deals that have less competition to purchase. (And it helps in our next point.)

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4. Network.

It’s also probably worth your time to join a landlord association in your local area and attend meetings if you already own or manage a rental property. These meetings can serve as great networking tools and could give you access to other property owners, some of whom will eventually want to sell their properties.

Another smart way to network is to utilize social media. Join Facebook groups, ask your followers if they have any leads, find other expert real estate investors you would like to emulate, and do your due diligence on understanding what the community around you looks like.

5. Get the funding.

Things move pretty quickly in the world of multifamily deals. That means it can feel like you need to obtain financing in half the time when a golden opportunity arises. And it is pretty devastating when you find the perfect investment property but it falls through because you don’t have the financing lined up already.

There are a lot of ways to get funding for a property whether that is through a hard money loan or a rental loan, a family member, a bank—whatever route you decide to take. So, make sure that this part of your investment strategy is in the works from the beginning.

Final Thoughts

Investing in a multifamily deal has rewarding benefits that will not only potentially rocket your real estate investment career but also help you find homes for families in need and build communities around you. To ensure your success when first starting out, align your strategy with these steps.

Do you have any deal-finding tips for newbies to add to this list. 

Share them in the comment section below. 

Fanya Robinson is a Director of Strategic Accounts at LendingHome. She graduated from Boise State University with a degree in Health Studies. After college, Fanya quickly got a job as a pharmaceutical sales representative. However, she quickly realized that she had a passion for the real estate industry. Fanya started flipping homes 20 years ago when she first moved to Colorado before the term "flipping" was mainstream. She began buying distressed properties as her primary residence, fixing them up, and then selling them after two years. Fanya continued this pattern for many years until she decided to follow her passion and make real estate her primary business. Fanya founded her own company Brinson Properties LTD, an organization that focused on the residential housing market. Through her company, she has been able to utilize her expertise and contacts to become very successful in the flipping business. She has become a real estate industry expert and has touched on all aspects of the real estate industry from holding her real estate license and mortgage brokers license, to being a real estate investor. Fanya has the passion and desire to share her knowledge as well as help individuals become more comfortable and have success within the industry.

    Nick Mallison Flipper/Rehabber from Youngstown, OH
    Replied about 1 month ago
    Great article!
    Fanya Robinson
    Replied about 1 month ago
    Thank you!
    William C. Kirsch Jr.
    Replied about 1 month ago
    Your strategy is sound. I enjoyed the article.
    Fanya Robinson
    Replied about 1 month ago
    Thank you!
    Evelyn Gross
    Replied 29 days ago
    Great information Fanya, thanks for your tips.
    Cassidy Eiermann Rental Property Investor from Grass Valley, CA
    Replied 29 days ago
    Great tips Fanya! Thank you.
    Ray Hodges
    Replied 24 days ago
    Thanks for sharing Fanya!!
    Janel York from Minneapolis, MN
    Replied 10 days ago
    Thank you for sharing this helpful information, Fanya.