This might be a bit of a stretch but im sure someone in the forums can probably answer this.
I know that in order to get residential loans the multi family must be 1-4 units. So my question, is it possible to convert a 5 unit into a 4 unit by combining 2 of the units together and then qualify for residential lending??
For example can you get a hard money loan to buy the building, convert the 5 into a 4 for personal use and then refi out of the HML with a residential loan??
Why? You're almost certainly reducing your income and removing the ability to drive value through income. Plus you may have to get the building rezoned.
Thing big, not small :)
I could be wrong, but I'm guessing that your intention is to live in one unit, that's why you're thinking a residential loan.
As @Taylor L. state think big, don't try to move a property down from commercial to residential. Find a residential property instead and do both.
As an investor, you should always be seeking "highest and best." Taking that property from a 5 to a 4 unit is not using it as its "highest and best" use
just my $.02