House Hacking in Chicago

3 Replies

Hello,

I wanted to introduce myself to the BP community. My wife and I are new to the world of real estate investing. We have been learning about real estate investing by listening to podcasts, reading books, doing research etc. We want to purchase our first place in about 10 months, however after learning about different options to build more financial freedom we are mainly interested in house hacking our first property. Our goal would be to purchase a 2 unit multifamily place. We plan to live in one unit and rent out the other. To do so we want to finance this with a FHA loan which we want to get pre-approved in the next two months to see our financial potential. Since we have to live in this property we are a little limited to location in Chicago because of work. We were looking into the northside of Chicago (Humboldt Park, Logan square, Irving Park, Irving Park etc.) I ran the numbers and I could not really find a place with enough cash flow to make sense to buy this property. Do you have similar experiences or any help what we could do?

Thank you for your help.
Stefan 

In my experience, it is currently difficult to find something that will meet the numbers you are looking for in my opinion.  With 100 year old homes, many need a significant amount of work with the foundation, siding/tuck pointing, roof, etc. In my opinion your best bet is in the Irving Park area or Humboldt Park (but even that area has started appreciating quite a bit). Finding a 3-4 flat may help your numbers out as well, but then there is usually a decent amount of capital necessary to fix up the units and get them rented out. Good luck in the process, it is fun, but just be patient and find something that works for you and allows you to live for free or close to it. 

Stefan, welcome also be sure to check out the Chicago specific sub group on biggerpockets. Logan and Humboldt are awesome markets seeing a ton of growth. 3 and 4 units will have better returns then 2 units. For house hacking you can find deals that work it may take a bit of searching but they are out there often times it's with you raising old mom and pop landlord rents up to market and also doing some updates. Avondale is good too and been doing a lot in Albany Park lately. 

Originally posted by @Stefan Karner :

Hello,

I wanted to introduce myself to the BP community. My wife and I are new to the world of real estate investing. We have been learning about real estate investing by listening to podcasts, reading books, doing research etc. We want to purchase our first place in about 10 months, however after learning about different options to build more financial freedom we are mainly interested in house hacking our first property. Our goal would be to purchase a 2 unit multifamily place. We plan to live in one unit and rent out the other. To do so we want to finance this with a FHA loan which we want to get pre-approved in the next two months to see our financial potential. Since we have to live in this property we are a little limited to location in Chicago because of work. We were looking into the northside of Chicago (Humboldt Park, Logan square, Irving Park, Irving Park etc.) I ran the numbers and I could not really find a place with enough cash flow to make sense to buy this property. Do you have similar experiences or any help what we could do?

Thank you for your help.
Stefan 

Have you run your cash flow numbers with both units occupied or are you expecting cash flow with just one unit occupied while you occupy the other?   In the locations your currently looking at the 2nd unit just offsets your payment and will usually cash flow after you move and rent out your unit.  

Another strategy to consider is purchasing a 3 to 4 unit multi family.  Those May cash flow right away with 3 units rented and you living in the fourth.

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