New potential investor from NJ

17 Replies

Good morning, I am a new member looking to start investing in RE.  Looking to purchase a home in PA to rent.  I currently live in NJ about 10 minutes away from PA.  I had a question if I purchase a home in PA for the sole purpose of renting can I self manage it?  I am looking at properties about 10-15 minutes away from where I currently reside in NJ.  But some realtors from NJ are telling me that I may not be able to self manage a property since I reside in another state.  Any insight into this would be great.

Any owner can self manage their own property under state law.  some municipalities do have restrictions that the manager must live within a certain milage from the property often 25 to 35 miles.

@David Krulac - is correct. In general, as an owner you can self manage. Some of the local municipal districts do have rules that insist you live within a certain distance of the property, but they are fairly rare on my side of the state (west).  You can always check with local code enforcement to see if such a requirement exists BEFORE you buy. 

You can easily self manage from across the river, many people currently do. I am a Real Estate broker in the Bucks and Montgomery County areas and also self manage a quad in Doylestown. Both Doylestown and New Hope are pricey to get into but will provide nice cash flow and low vacancy rates. Inventory is always low and moves very quickly, Happy to help and answer any questions you may have along the way. 

Hey Alex !  I'm an agent/investor.  I actually grew up in Newtown and have worked with many clients in Bucks county, if you have any questions feel free to reach out.  

@Alex Dimeglio If the township has a mandatory landlord registration it should spell out if any restrictions apply. Reach out to the township construction office (that's who handles this where I invest) and ask for the registration packet.

Hi @Alex Dimeglio - smart thinking. I wish I had known about househacking and general real estate investments 10 years ago.

I live in South Philly and I manage a duplex across the river in NJ. Tolls suck, so that's something to consider, especially if you're managing showings, repairs, rehab, etc.

Most important thing is to make sure you want to do this business, you're OK with the areas you are investing, and the property makes money today/on your buy. If any of those are a "meh" -- don't do it. Your first property is often your most painful in terms of your time, effort, and money, so be prepared for that.

I'd also -- with apologies to agents in this thread and on BP -- have found some agents have literally zero idea what they're talking about. The bar to get a RE license, as I understand it, has been relaxed. Just like doctors, lawyers, and police officers, there are great ones, and there are inexperienced ones. As others have said, check local ordinances to see if there any restrictions, but I'd be surprised if any actually existed.

Good luck to you, keep us posted.

@Joe P. I wish I could house hack.  However my budget doesn't allow it for PA.  Houses seem to be more expensive then NJ however taxes are slightly lower.  And I really have no interest in becoming a LL in NJ with the unfriendly laws so renting my current home doesn't seem like an option.  Where I live tolls aren't that expensive $1 and we also have the smaller free bridges. 

What are your overall RE goals? Fix and flip, appreciation, passive income...what's the end goal out of investing in real estate for you?

What's your budget like and do you have money saved for a downpayment?

Are you a Mr. Fixit or do you need something more turnkey?

@Joe P. My initial goal is passive income.  The end goal is to leave the corporate world and work for myself whether its with a rental portfolio and possibly fix and flips.

My down payment is coming from the equity in my primary residence plus cash on hand.

I don't mind fixing my homes.  But I'm currently not looking for an overpriced dump.  Which is all that I've found in the foreclosures that i've looked at.  

Originally posted by @Alex Dimeglio :

Good morning, I am a new member looking to start investing in RE.  Looking to purchase a home in PA to rent.  I currently live in NJ about 10 minutes away from PA.  I had a question if I purchase a home in PA for the sole purpose of renting can I self manage it?  I am looking at properties about 10-15 minutes away from where I currently reside in NJ.  But some realtors from NJ are telling me that I may not be able to self manage a property since I reside in another state.  Any insight into this would be great.

 Welcome to the site Alex.

Originally posted by @Alex Dimeglio :

@Joe P. My initial goal is passive income.  The end goal is to leave the corporate world and work for myself whether its with a rental portfolio and possibly fix and flips.

My down payment is coming from the equity in my primary residence plus cash on hand.

I don't mind fixing my homes.  But I'm currently not looking for an overpriced dump.  Which is all that I've found in the foreclosures that i've looked at.  

All fair points. Surprised foreclosures are overpriced, not surprised they are dumps. Sadly it seems the market is tight at the moment, you either need to find good value-add properties or drive for properties/work with wholesalers to find under-market deals. If you are looking in areas of PA/NJ and don't see anything, you might want to consider expanding your view or investing in other areas like mutual funds/stocks. If a deal doesn't look good on paper, it probably isn't.

@James Wise Thank You.


@Joe P. I purchased my primary home in 2012 and it was a forclosure. It needed a roof and bathroom. Which I did before I moved in. Now im looking at forclosures that are 3 times what I paid for mine. That need around 70-80k minimum in renovations. But the ARV is only slightly higher then the current list price. Now I know why certain listings don't have interior photos.

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