Hello! So here is my situation, im currently in the military and I have a year left. I have been saving since I joined, I am almost at 50,000. Been looking at real estate recently and it has my attention. I want to get into rentals (multi family to be specific.) Not too sure if I should use all 50,000 for a down payment on a fourplex, or buy duplex and put 20-25% down. I will also have access to a VA loan so that is another thing to consider. Willing to take any recommendations! Thank you for your time!
If you don't mind sharing a space with others, you can get into a multifamily. Using the VA loan gets you started with very minimal out of pocket (Just because it is $0 for the down payment on a VA loan doesn't mean the property is free lol). With the leftover money, you can be aggressive and find another property if you fit all of the financing requirements as it will be a regular loan at that point since you have used the VA on your primary residence.
With that being said, you can easily have 1 or 2 or maybe even 3 properties within the first few months of getting started. I am unsure as to where you are located, so 50k can get you multiple down payments or one depending on where you live.
I would take advantage of the VA loan. House-hacking is a great strategy to get into real estate investing. Usually, house-hackers need to put down 3.5%, but you can house-hack for 0% down with a VA loan. Once you moved into the house-hack and located a tenant/tenants, you can use your $50k to acquire another 2-4 unit at 25% down.