I'm considering purchasing a large home that was converted into three living spaces, with the potential for a fourth. Being a home conversion, it has a few oddities. I'll list them from most concerning to least. Please let me know how you would look at these:
- The basement unit is a walk out and was listed as a 1b/1ba. However, the "bedroom" is fully interior, with no windows or egress doors. Additionally, to walk out of the basement unit, the occupant would need to cross through a common laundry room. They could also exit through the adjacent garage. One window in the living room does not meet the requirements for egress. Could I legally rent this unit as a studio? Do the laundry and garage doors count as egress?
- Separate utilities - There are three distinct units in this house. The top floor unit has its own set of everything. However, the main floor and basement share a meter, AC, furnace, and water heater. I believe that I would need to install heating/AC (likely a Daikan mini-split for the small space) for the basement unit and have it set on a separate meter. I estimate this cost around $8,500.
- Common space - The only shared space in the whole place would be a common laundry room on the edge of the basement. Would I need to meter this room separately for electricity?
Thanks in advance for any help/advice.
1. At least in CA that would not meet safety regulations, it should concern you very much, if using a property manager I would ask them because they will know your local laws much better than I do
2. As long as you are aware of the costs this should not be an issue. As far as the meter goes you could install sub-meters when you get the rest of the utilities and AC/ heating sorted out
3. It might be best to just pay for electricity and water for this area of the home and install coin laundry
Thanks @Aaron K. . I'll definitely be consulting with a local property management company and my inspector during due diligence. I'm not afraid of walking away if the basement will be a deal killer. Although, if the top two units are rented at a market rate, the property is still cash flow positive.