New to Denver & looking for our first house hack

4 Replies

Hi, My girlfriend and I just moved to Denver & we are looking for our first house hack property with a FHA & possibly a CHAFA grant. Duplex - fourplex or even a 4dbr single family where we can rent out the other rooms. My question is does anyone have any advice on areas that are starting to show positive improvement & growth? I still need a little brush up on evaluating a owner occupied deal as well to make sure we don't simply go off how it looks, but since we will have to live there for a while would you recommend looking for a fixer upper. Anyway, look forward to any feedback thank you.

@Terrence Burwell

Welcome. There are alot of good spots in Denver. I'd have to ask your criteria. Do you want to live close to the city center? Do you have a price range you are qualified for?
I like that you guys are already considering financing options, and the CHFA is a good idea. 

I am a fan of many neighborhoods. I like the Cole/Clayton area. Westwood is a good affordable area with lots of upside. Part of it is an opportunity zone so development is incentivized. 

@Terrence Burwell

Multis are very tough right now for house hacks in Denver. There is limited inventory and most have defferred maintanence. You'll have a very tough time buying one with an FHA loan since FHA has strict requirements (no peeling paint, handrails, etc for other safety items.) Many multis won't even quality for an FHA loan. The ones that do, many sellers don't want an FHA offer. Most multis get multiple bids, so they'll take a conventional (less strick appraisal requirements) or a cash offer over an FHA.

There is a program from Freddie Mac that allows a 5% down on multis, but they have to be in certain areas. It's an awesome loan program because they don't have the strict FHA appraisal requirements and PMI drops off (it doens't with FHA.)

My advice, don't get tunnel visioned on multis. Almost every house hacking client that I work with initially wants a multi, but after seeing the inventory, running numbers and looking at properties, many just buy a 4bedroom home. Those are generally the sweet spot right now for house hacking.

I have a spreadsheet that analzes house hacking deals. I'll send it over BP's private message.

Areas - I like the west side of town (Lakewood, Arvada, Wheat Ridge,) and Thorton. I like the Fitzsimons area as well. There is a lot going on near the hospitals, on Colfax, plus it's an opp zone. Personally, I wouldn't get too worried about buying in an ozone. All the areas around Denver have great potential for the long term.

@Terrence Burwell On July 17 at 6PM, I'm teaching a house hacking class. Feel free to join us! We usually have a great turn out, good discussion, and good networking. It is a very detailed class where we spend about 1.5 hours going through a model of buying four properties.