Buying a duplex/Mother-in-law: living there and renting it.

1 Reply

Dear all,

I recently got a long-term job in Gainesville, Florida. I am an European Citizen on a H1b visa, applying now for Green Card, which I will get most likely in 2-3 years. I am not looking for starting a RE career, I do not have a time for that, but at the same time I am bored of spending money in rent. I am planning to buy either a duplex or a house with a mother in law. I am in my thirties, single, and I thought that would be the best way not to waste money in rent, and still get some money from renting out the other unit. Not really trying to have a positive cash flow, but mainly being able to deduct a part of property taxes, insurance, HOA, etc and pay part of my loan. And from what I have understood from this post, the deductible part is given by the percentage of the house which is rented, and I will compute that by computing the ratio of rented square feet over total square feet. Do you think I am doing the right thing with such a purchase? Should I be careful of zoning regulation when purchasing a duplex or mother in law? Here for example I read: :

"If a property owner loses homestead exception status, the kitchen and other facilities for the separate residence must be removed."

Which would be terrible. And looks like a non-US citizen on H1b visa like me cannot have homestead exception, in fact wikipedia says: "A person in the US under an E, H, L or R-class visa is not eligible for homestead, pursuant to Rule 12D-7.007(3), Florida Administrative Code". Myabe there is no issue about a duplex, but duplexes are not common here, while I already saw a couple of nice houses with mother-in-law. Any advice on this purchase would be appreciated.

Thank you 

@Alberto C. , just look for a property that's already a duplex (or triplex, or quadplex). 

Plenty of non-citizens buy property in the USA. All the best. Welcome to BP...

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