Multifamily properties in the DMV for house hack..?

3 Replies

I live and work in Northern Virginia area and I’m looking to purchase my first multifamily property to engage in a house hack. This will be my first property so I’m doing a ton of reseach, using the calculators to analyze deals and I will be attending a few meetups in my area in August. What I’m realizing is that there isn’t a plethora of multifamily properties in the Northern Va area, the ones in DC are either way too expensive or in SE, and NE and I’m not too familiar with which areas are good to buy, they’re in PG which I’ve heard isn’t really developing all that well and isn’t as good a buy as Montgomery Country, or they’re too far out in Montgomery Country that I worry about finding renters. I’ve got searches on the MLS setup to send me any multis in the DMV so I’m looking but I just want to know of there are any people in the area that can give me some advice. I’ve talked to an agent and he literally kept trying to stear me into the direction of getting a condo or a townhouse and I’m not 100% sold on going that route being that there is more risk with roommate tension and higher vacancy issues. Thanks

2-4 unit properties are incredibly rare in the DC area. In 2017 only 219 of these properties sold. This year 115 have sold year to date so far.  Thats compared to roughly 100,000 sales in the metro area.

Purchasing a multifamily in the area is possible, you just have to have realistic expectations and come in with incredibly aggressive offers.

Thanks for the reply. 

So say I had to go the townhouse route instead. How can I be just as successful at house hacking in a townhouse? Buy near a college? Metro? Closer to the city? Stay within a certain price point? My biggest stressor is having to share common areas such as the kitchen and living room with roommates I probably don’t know.

I want to be aggressive when it comes to the multifamily properties but I also want to be a little conservative being that its my first purchase. I make a lot of money and my debt to income ratio is around 7% so I can afford a lot of house but I want to keep my risk as low as possible. Maybe I’m not being realistic. 

You don't need a duplex or quadplex to house hack.

Get a home with 2 or 3 levels and you live in the basement. Rent out the upper floors to a single family if you want to live headache free. It will also be much easier to find tenants for vs room by room. Room by room will also have higher turnover. You could have another tenant in the basement with you if you choose but keep the upper levels in-tact as one residence.

Obviously when choosing a home choose one that has it's own private basement entrance/exit. Probably harder to find with a townhome.