Buy and hold in 55+ real estate

4 Replies

Hello, I am new to BiggerPockets and I am debating whether to get into rental real estate.  I recently started listening to the podcasts which I find very informative.  Currently I invest primarily in the markets (equities, bonds and REITs) and I'm very happy and comfortable with that, however I'm now at the point that I would like to further diversify my portfolio.  

I am considering buying a ~$350k house in Apex, NC and then renting that back to my parents for ~$3000 per month.  It is in a 55+ community where the properties are valued between $350k and $450k.  

This is my general thought process:

1) Have my parents buy the house in cash and negotiate a discount given that we would buy direct, pay cash, and be flexible on timing.  My parents are 70+ and really don't want to own a home anymore.

2) I would immediately buy the house from them with a mortgage (20% down and then a 15 year mortgage).  I could do a 30 year mortgage, but given where interest rates are I believe it would be good to do a 15 year if possible to build equity quicker.  Also I would prefer not to carry a mortgage on this for the next 30 years.  I could always do the 30 year and make extra monthly payments if I wanted to to pay it down quicker.

3) I would then rent the house to them for the foreseeable future.  I know they will not have any financial liquidity issues, this is a situation where they simply don't want the hassles of home ownership at their age.

I'm assuming interest rates for a 15 year would be in the 3.4% range, similar to what I would get on a primary residence. There is an HOA which is ~$300 per month. Property taxes here are about 1%.

This would allow me to dip my toe into real estate investing, it would be a buy and hold, take advantage of historically low interest rates, and buy in a good market.  Raleigh, specifically Apex, NC, is one of the fastest growing markets in the country.  

Any thoughts from experienced buy and hold investors are much appreciated, specifically what major gaps/concerns they see with this strategy (which I'm sure there are many).  At this point I believe I'm probably best suited for a single family buy and hold situation.  Thank you.  Greg

55+ especially at that price point is a questionable idea in my opinion.  You already are severely limiting your future tenant pool with age, and on top of that you limit it further with a $3k rental in NC.  Most seniors are on a fixed income and can't afford that or if they can they'd rather just buy.  If you go forward I'd consider it more of an annuity for however long your parents live there rather than a good RE investment.  If you want to take advantage of low interest rates buy something else.

Hi Greg, Aaron makes good points. My husband and I were in a similar situation. His mom wanted to move closer to us so we purchased a home for her to live in and she pays us rent.   This is not an investment we would have made otherwise, but our primary goal was to help my mother in law move closer, and  this was the best solution.  It all depends on what you’re trying to accomplish.  

Also, did you run rental comps for the area? Homes in most 55+ communities I’ve worked in rent around $1800-$2200 on average.   

 Good luck and feel free to let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks Sophia for your feedback.  Basically that's a similar situation to what we're in.  The one they are looking at is The Orchard Villas in Apex.  I believe everyone in there owns, but I agree I need to recheck some comps.  They could buy, and maybe that's the way to go, but I know in an idea world they would prefer to rent given that they are both 74.  At some point in the future I may reach out for some additional thoughts from you.  Thanks again.  Greg