Having trouble finding a multi

11 Replies

I'm looking to house hack in Maryland but none of the listings I'm getting in my target area are multis. There are some places that have in-law suites but with the prices around here, having two rents would be a huge plus and worth a lot of effort to me. Maybe someone has a suggestion for a good place to drive around? Unfortunately, Baltimore and DC are not viable places for me to commute from. Ideally, I'd like to live around the area of where 95 and 200 intersect. Any suggestions?

Hey @Lisa Hines . Unfortunately one of the downsides to our local market of Maryland, DC and Virginia is the lack of multifamily housing.  In the area you are describing 200 & 95 intersection which is basically Laurel/Burtonsville it is all but impossible to find a multi. Maybe once every three years one will come up in Laurel, and it is usually something with an illegal basement apartment and in very bad condition.

You have a few more options in Takoma Park....but those buildings are expensive, run down and subject to rent control.  In all of Montgomery, Prince Georges and Howard County there are currently only 8 multifamily properties on the market. Two are in Takoma Park,..one is a multimillion dollar apartment complex, one in Derwood which I suspect is not truly a multi, ..there is one in Hyattsville that I think doesnt look so bad.

If house hacking is your goal, and you want to be in your stated area, I would suggest maybe the roommate route.

Medium logo lf re cire box white bboxRussell Brazil, Associate Broker w/ Long & Foster | [email protected] | (301) 893‑4635 | http://www.RussellBrazil.com | MD Agent # 648402, DC Agent # SP98375353, VA Agent # 0225219736, MA Agent # 9052346 | Podcast Guest on Show #192

I know I have looked in these areas myself and you are right...there isn't really anything in the multi family arena.

I'm curious, anyone seen any good posts on turning SFRs into MFRs? What are the steps, laws, zoning issues etc? I've been interested in doing this a couple times and I'm not sure if it is worth the hassle and if there is a process to follow.

Originally posted by @Russell Brazil :

Hey @Lisa Hines . Unfortunately one of the downsides to our local market of Maryland, DC and Virginia is the lack of multifamily housing.  In the area you are describing 200 & 95 intersection which is basically Laurel/Burtonsville it is all but impossible to find a multi. Maybe once every three years one will come up in Laurel, and it is usually something with an illegal basement apartment and in very bad condition.

You have a few more options in Takoma Park....but those buildings are expensive, run down and subject to rent control.  In all of Montgomery, Prince Georges and Howard County there are currently only 8 multifamily properties on the market. Two are in Takoma Park,..one is a multimillion dollar apartment complex, one in Derwood which I suspect is not truly a multi, ..there is one in Hyattsville that I think doesnt look so bad.

If house hacking is your goal, and you want to be in your stated area, I would suggest maybe the roommate route.

 Thank you for this information. It is very helpful. I may need to rethink my plans. Unfortunately, the roommate route is am impossibility for me at the moment. 

I've driven through the area to work and seen a few places that had two doors in the front. However, I was driving and trying not to rear end the person in front of me :-) Is it possible there are some but they just don't come to market often?

Originally posted by @Mike Ohara :
I know I have looked in these areas myself and you are right...there isn't really anything in the multi family arena.

 Thanks for the input, Mike! Much obliged. 

Originally posted by @Gabriel G. :

I'm curious, anyone seen any good posts on turning SFRs into MFRs? What are the steps, laws, zoning issues etc? I've been interested in doing this a couple times and I'm not sure if it is worth the hassle and if there is a process to follow.

 That's a very interesting idea, Gabriel. I don't have the foggiest but I'm putting it on my list to research one of these days. Thanks!


I've driven through the area to work and seen a few places that had two doors in the front. However, I was driving and trying not to rear end the person in front of me :-) Is it possible there are some but they just don't come to market often?

The two doors on the same building are likely two separately deeded properties.

Medium logo lf re cire box white bboxRussell Brazil, Associate Broker w/ Long & Foster | [email protected] | (301) 893‑4635 | http://www.RussellBrazil.com | MD Agent # 648402, DC Agent # SP98375353, VA Agent # 0225219736, MA Agent # 9052346 | Podcast Guest on Show #192

@Lisa Hines it looks like loopnet has a property in Laurel(http://www.loopnet.com/xNet/MainSite/Listing/Profile/Profile.aspx?LID=19370024&SRID=6159482353&StepID=101), but I am guessing that it will be very expensive and it will probably not be worth house hacking. 

I am also struggling to find multi-family offerings preferably near the Anne Arundel County section of Laurel, MD. @Lisa Hines Let's connect and discuss a potential JV if we are able to locate something.

Originally posted by @Felipe Ocampo:

@Lisa Hines it looks like loopnet has a property in Laurel(http://www.loopnet.com/xNet/MainSite/Listing/Profile/Profile.aspx?LID=19370024&SRID=6159482353&StepID=101), but I am guessing that it will be very expensive and it will probably not be worth house hacking. 

 On Loopnet they have it listed as a 5% cap rate...and Im sure just like everything else on Loopnet they are not including repairs or vacancies in that number. You can get some very nice true cap rates in Laurel, but not in those kinds of houses.

Medium logo lf re cire box white bboxRussell Brazil, Associate Broker w/ Long & Foster | [email protected] | (301) 893‑4635 | http://www.RussellBrazil.com | MD Agent # 648402, DC Agent # SP98375353, VA Agent # 0225219736, MA Agent # 9052346 | Podcast Guest on Show #192

@Lisa Hines not sure what you mean by

"There are some places that have in-law suites but with the prices around here, having two rents would be a huge plus and worth a lot of effort to me."

Is this a positive or a negative? Also does this mean you aren't open to that type of property?

There a duplexes that come up in Charles county from time to time. I'm not sure if you are interested in that area (Waldorf, LaPlata).