Here is my advice look for something in your market now run the numbers if anything ever is acceptable once you run the numbers then come on here and ask for someone to check the numbers( we will do that). If you do not have enough for the down payment and its a great deal you could wholesale it or double close on it and make some money. IF you don't like that option you might be able to get a angel investor or an equity partner.
The one and only thing that will assure you of failure is not doing anything.
Practicing the numbers on multiple homes/properties is what will make you great at investing latter on.
If you have any questions just tag me and I will try to help.
@Jackson Kellogg Welcome! Whether this year's market or next, trust your numbers - there are deals no matter what, but it might take time to find something that works for you.
My first multi (JP three-decker) was also a house hack with FHA lending, and it took 18 months to find and win the right combination of condition (FHA has stricter rules on condition, no matter your trade experience), existing tenants, area rents, and location we wanted to live; be patient, be thorough, start looking soon, and trust your numbers. Find a lender and an agent who understand what you're trying to do and will be willing to work with your from square one to keep you moving in the right direction.
In the Boston area, for house hacking especially, cap rates and cash flow will look a bit different than other markets - but our rental market is also more expensive and more stable than elsewhere. For multis, the numbers of colleges and hospitals here really helps cushion from contraction for buy and hold investors, because demand for rentals is always high.
FHA in the Boston area IS possible, and your trade network will serve you well as an investor. Be patient, trust your numbers, find a team you trust as well. Good luck!
Welcome @Jackson Kellogg !
I'm in a very similar situation - 22 and looking to purchase a 2-4 unit on the Northshore this winter. Even though you're just getting started, it seems like you're definitely on the right track.
I agree with Kate, there are deals in any market - don't let the current hot market delay you for years until something changes. Establish what numbers you're looking to get from a property, tell everyone that's what you're looking for, and don't stop until you find the property that works!
Get involved with local REIA groups, network on BP, and get FHA pre-approval to improve your odds!