Rehab Duplex or Buy Single Family Home

5 Replies

I am a new investor and very much interested in learning as much as I can about buying and holding mult-family properties.  However as I am developing a clear organized plan for how to best position myself to make this a reality within the next year, I have a dilema.  I have growing family 2 adults 3 kids and we do not own a home - we are renters :)

 Would it be smarter to: 

1. Purchase a duplex or suitable property that can be transformed into a duplex AND rehab it as needed (so it will be comfortable for us for at least 2 years). 

2. Purchase a seperate single family home for us (using a VA LOAN) which will likely require a small or no down payment THEN set up an LLC and look into purchasing a multifamily unity such as a duplex for my 1st investment property.

Hello Miesha,

I don't think I'm alone when I say you should try to purchase a duplex as oppose to a single family home. Of course, this mainly depends on your market and your financial situation. In many markets, including my own, the cost of a multi-family home can be comparable to some single-family homes in several areas. If you are going to put down 3.5% on a multifamily home that costs about the same as a single family house, you can earn income from one of the units. If your family is growing (again, depending on your market), you may be able to find a duplex with a finished basement. In a case like this, your family can occupy the 1st floor & basement while renting out the 2nd floor. Just an idea.

Also, purchasing a live-in flip is a great idea. There are some excellent rehab deals that you could possibly live in while renovating. I personally love the house-hacking approach and will apply it to my next investment.

I hope this helped.

Best of luck,

Abel Curiel

@Miesha B. I havent bought my first property yet but ideally i would go into a multi family first but in your situation with being able to get a VA loan on a SFR that might be a better route to go since you do have a family. If that is the case could you afford taking out a conventional loan on a investment property? Since you cant use another VA or FHA. Just my two cents

Thanks for the suggestion. If I go the route of using the VA loan on a SFR, I would try to build up my company credit and cash reserve for the down payment to purchase my investment property in the company name and credit (which I'm thinking will require more money since it would be my first "business purchase").

It depends on your priorities. Owning a home is a financial drain that will limit your investing ability. Buying and investing at the same time in a multi plex, more units the better, will accomplish both goals while reducing the cost of home ownership.

Where are your priorities. Homeownership or growing your wealth.

Thanks for the idea...........in my area a multi-family will likely cost as much as a SFR and will definitely need rehabbing. I don't know much about purchasing a live in flip, but I will research it more. I will be attending today on the BRRR strategy, so I'll see if this is a viable option as well...thanks again.

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