Trying to find a Four plex in the Bay Area, CA

4 Replies

Recently moved to Walnut Creek, CA from Jacksonville Beach, FL.

I am currently looking to buy my first property, this will also be my primary residence. I am looking to build equity in the property as well as specifically looking to purchase a Four-Plex. Since I work in Downtown San Francisco and intend on living the in one of the units I want my max commute to be 50miles. I have no debt, no car payment, and my income is alright. I am prequalified for a decent amount all things considered not making that much in this market.

As I am starting to become more efficient at analyzing properties rent control seems to always be the deal breaker. Cash flow is a but a dream out here so I am just trying to cut down on my rent payment as much as possible.

I feel like using the public MLS platforms are just helping with actual market value and trends. That being said I believe searching for off market deals seams to be the way to go in the Bay Area for my situation. I am trying to dive into real estate investing and believe creating a mailing list and searching for current lackadaisical landlords on Craigslist might be the golden ticket.

Perhaps buying a single family residence and renting out rooms would be more feasible. Then I could focus on buying multi-family units out of start or back in Jacksonville.   

Thank you for your time,

@Paul Burrowes

There are a lot of sub-markets all around the Bay Area that are within your 50-mile distance criteria - you might look into those: Richmond, Oakland, Alameda etc.... Although, 50 miles is long way to commute into the city when you take into account traffic and the like. 

I am by not means an expert, but I have seen a lot of forum traffic around the new Ferry that is going into Richmond, this could be a good time to buy and you might be able to find a 4-plex that works. Make sure to connect with someone that really knows the area though (maybe a good agent) because there are some bad areas.

Best of luck. 

Look for 2-3 plexes as they are more investor friendly, especially if you OMI.  Also, learn the rent control laws and you should be able to make it work.  You'll find plenty on this forum who are cash flowing in the Bay Area and making the 1% rule. 

Originally posted by @Jonathan Pflueger :

@Paul Burrowes

There are a lot of sub-markets all around the Bay Area that are within your 50-mile distance criteria - you might look into those: Richmond, Oakland, Alameda etc.... Although, 50 miles is long way to commute into the city when you take into account traffic and the like. 

I am by not means an expert, but I have seen a lot of forum traffic around the new Ferry that is going into Richmond, this could be a good time to buy and you might be able to find a 4-plex that works. Make sure to connect with someone that really knows the area though (maybe a good agent) because there are some bad areas. 

Best of luck. 

 Would have to agree on this - tons of investors I work with are pouring into Richmond due to its close proximity to Berkeley and also since it's not as far to SF as Antioch or Concord. There's also great margins on uninhabitable commercial buildings (such as those with chemical spills, fires, etc). 

@Paul Hutcherson Welcome to the Bay Area! It honestly depends on what your actual budget is and how much you can afford. You said you are prequalified for a "decent amount" but how much exactly is that? Knowing that will help us determine which areas you should search in.