Hello and welcome to this site Nick! I am a little confused by you saying duple sand renting out four units from it. my first thought was to suggest looking for a 3 or 4 unit place which pay all or at least some of your rent and still be able to make the debt payment. One of the best ways to improve a unit by increasing the number of units or bathrooms without increasing the slab size. By doing that you should be able to raise the rent and possibly the sales price depending on the demand.
The best way to make more money is to be prepared to move to the hot areas and by buying small apartments and working your way up to make enough to be able to hire an experienced Property Manager or a Property Management Company to take care of the daily needs, both maintenance and occupancy, that is experienced in that area or type and will report you regularly on what you need to properly oversee their efforts and the properties financial status.
One good thing is that many smaller apartment complexes are owned by Mom and Pop. They are more likely to provide you with the financing. Just show them on paper how they would benefit by doing that like the more money and possibly their tax liability by spreading out their income. Be creative that benefits them too. One way would be to have 2 loans that gives them the cash they need and reduces your debt payment in a 3 or 5 year note to cover that down payment they need GIVES THEM THE CASH THEY NEED NOW AND A SHORTER PAY-OUT ON THAT
Sorry about but I hit the wrong button too early. There are other ways to increase your rent payments by on-site amenities, it's accessibility on it's frontage/or primary road, it's location that is close to a good accessibility to many businesses, and the parking that they get or have to use.' or any other value-add item.
I was also going to tell you why you should believe what I say. I'm 61 years old and I Have about 30 years of construction management experience as well as a broker license in Texas for about 30 years too. I'm also a college graduate with honors in business that emphasized real estate. I was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. Unfortunately, when I was 54 I suffered from 2 serious medical problems and I've bedridden ever sense but I have spent much of that time learning how to become a real estate investor while not working. I could tell you much more but, hopefully, you believe what I've said is believable.
If I can help you in anyway that you think is possible, please contact me through this site which I am on just about every day.
Good luck to you!
Ways to make more money through the property itself? Heard of the BRRR method? Buy, rehab, rent, refinance. Buy a property with potential for forced appreciation, rehab the units which brings up the value of the property while also allowing for you to increase rents, rent the property out at market rates, refinance the property and use the proceeds to roll into a new property.