New San Diego investor looking for Duplexes

4 Replies

Hey everyone,

I'm a first time home buyer, so I thought I'd ask for help from other more experienced investors/agents about real estate. I'm looking to buy a duplex in the areas of North Park, Normal Heights, or University Heights. I know those areas are pretty expensive, but I think it'll work if I can find the right deal. I'm currently in the Navy right now, so I can apply for the VA Loan. However, I think the VA loan may not be able to cover the full cost of a duplex in SD (700K ish). So that means I'll have to use an FHA loan, which has its own quirks that come with it.

The intent is to live in one unit, and rent out the other, to cover some of the mortgage costs. I'm not really trying to create any cash flow at this moment, and I know that is a tough thing to do in SD's current market. I know for sure I'll be in SD for the next 5 years, so I intend to hold the property for that long, and then maybe sell/rent it out more once/if I leave the area. The goal is to have the property purchased by March but sooner is better. 

Looking to connect with any real estate agent/investor in the area that can help me through this process. 

Thanks so much,


Hey @edward Zhang you should connect with @Kevin Fox, this is his area of expertise. Good Luck!


PM me, I think I can help and I’m local to the area you are looking to buy in.

- Matt

@Edward Zhang , you can use your VA loan and cap it out @ $649,750. if you go over, you are required to come up with the same down payment in which the VA covers you for (25%). This being the case, if you buy a $700k duplex, the VA will cover $650ish and you will need to provide a downpayment of 25% of $50k ($12,500). Not a bad deal for a house hack. Keep in min the VA has a 3% funding fee which gets rolled into the loan. 3% of $650,000 is $19,500 to this brings your actual buying power down.

Hope this helps. If you want to be a home owner in SD, Its either buy a house which makes no money, or buy one which has an income and can supplement your mortgage. Very low chance of finding a house hack that will completely cover your living expenses.


Hi @Edward Zhang

I am a local agent working with a firm that has over 30 years of Real Estate investing experience, both as brokers and principals. Send me a PM, I'd love to help you find a great duplex. You're so smart for even taking this route as it's always plus to have someone help pay the mortgage!



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