Zoning question in Omaha, Nebraska with 2 homes on one lot

14 Replies

Hi there.

I am looking into purchasing a lot that has a 3 bedroom house and a separate 1 bedroom house on it. This is in Omaha, Nebraska. It is zoned for R4 or single family residential district. I'm curious how you would go about renting these two homes out to different people and if it would even be legal. I'm not expecting to receive legal council here, just other investors experience from similar situations. The one bedroom house has separate meters, hvac, and everything that makes it a totally different home. I would love to rent these both out if I ended up getting this property. 

Thanks in advance for any advice, insight, or response.

I can't speak to your. area but we rent seperately even if it shows one plat for taxes. There is a decription in the lease of the included outdoor area. In our case there were seperate addresses but I think you can also apply for them. in our caae it is gradfathered because construction predated the zoning.

Thanks @Colleen F.

So you have two separate leases, one for each home? Also, does it change anything with your insurance having two separate leases for one property?


Our insurance is commercial for an llc so I cant answer that. Two seperate leases for us Do the taxes list both units? If it is an older set up and grandfathered here you can rent seperately. In some areas this is considered an acccessory dwelling unit (ADU). Some towns state those can only be occuppied by a relative or caregiver, some license additional uses. Some let you rent them by right.

Yes, both houses are listed on the assessors page with the taxes. 

@Kyle Godbout

You will have to have 2 separate leases due to different tenants and prices per unit.  Do they have separate addresses?  If they do then things are a lot easier and solves the utility billing issue.  Then you can treat it as a duplex or townhouse.  You will have a mailbox issue if you have one address.

Douglas county zoning info


thanks for responding @Jim Adrian

There is only one address. But, there are separate meters for both places. Not sure if that makes it easier or not. There are two mailboxes out front but nothing posted in them. 

@Kyle Godbout

I think you are getting into a grey area... Its clearing been divided but it may have been treated as a primary residents with and in-law suite.  Call MUD and play dumb and ask what the utility usage is for both the units.  See if they have 2 address or one.  I would think you would have no issues with renting the in-law suite if the landlord/property owner lived in the main house, but that's not what you want to do.   Are the taxes on one listing or two?  I think @Colleen F. right with the accessory dwelling but I  don't know where to look to verify this.  I would call the zoning dept or building permits but it may let the cat out of the bag.

Don"t call zoning. Go online and read thier regulations to see if it says what you can do in general terms with an ADU.

Utility companies say the smaller house address is 1/2 and both have been rented out to different  folks in the past. So I think I would be ok renting both out separately....

I had one in South O that had a back house and that had parking on back alley and it had a 1/2 added to address.   Same situation you are talking about.  No issues doing 2 leases. 

Thanks @David Neese

That’s the same situation and area. I think I’m going to go after it. 

Hi Kyle, it is my understanding that you are grandfathered in to rights on that property. The city wouldn’t let you build property like that today but I know there are a lot of houses with the same situation in south omaha and people rent out both houses separately, they used to be called mother in law houses. You should be able to rent them out separately with no issues. I have always wanted to find a property with that setup, sounds like a great investment, congrats!

I have a partner that owns a property like that. They are on the same parcel but have two separate addresses both with their own meters. He has had them rented separately for a number of years with out any problems. He just mentioned to me that he is thinking about selling it to trade up to something else. If anyone is interested let me know I can put you intouch with each other. They are located in NW Omaha.

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Create Lasting Wealth Through Real Estate

Join the millions of people achieving financial freedom through the power of real estate investing

Start here