My wife and I found an 8 bedroom, 4 bath property that used to be an adult care facility that we were thinking about renting out the rooms to military personnel since it is located very close to a base.
My question is do you think this is a good strategy and that military personnel would be okay living in a dorm-style setting such as this?
Also, we were thinking of keeping one room as an Airbnb option if needed.
Is this a good idea or a terrible one? I'm not quite sure.
I appreciate everyone's time and responses in advance.
As a whole, military personnel tend to be flexible and make the best of all different types of living situations. I've seen quite a few instances when a group of military members who are friends get together and rent a home together. It seems to work well if you're close to a base that hosts a lengthy training program (for example, a year-long pilot training program or a year-long nuclear power training school). In those cases, you get a dedicated group of servicemembers (often young and without families) all arriving and departing from the area at a single time...which makes for easier leasing and turnover.
The way that you're proposing (renting out by the room) would be more management-intensive due to the offset PCS timelines, deployments, etc. The other complication is that as military personnel, we tend to be rank-conscious. In the situation I mentioned above, the group renting the home tends to all be friends about the same rank. In the model you propose, you could easily end up with junior enlisted sharing living spaces with SNCOs and officers. Based on the house type you've found (8 bedroom, 4 bath), that shared living space could include sharing a bathroom as well. I foresee this creating some uncomfortable situations for your tenants.
I love out-of-the-box thinking! That being said, I would say it depends on the breakdown of the military base and the amenities you have to offer. For example, Redstone Arsenal, where I am currently stationed, would not be a good location if you're trying to target military avatars. The base employs over 40K, and out of those, only two to three thousand are military personnel and are all mostly all senior ranks.
I love the idea, but determine if that would have demand in your market.
@Joel Allen Thanks for the insight! We didn't even consider this and will give it much more thought!
@Joshua McMillion Thanks for the advice! What are military avatars? I've read a few good things about Redstone as well. Thoughts on this being a good place to rent. We definitely need to do more research to understand what kind of personnel are there. Great call!
You need classroom bases where the instruction is recurrent and the base billeting is not adequate for the class sizes. Right now, that is mostly pilot training classes. There is a shortage of pilots and training is always ongoing. That's the goal anyway. There are many options to be found but watch for locations that are adverse to off-base lodging. You can find some avenues that will help like registration for emergency housing etc. Goodluck.
@Brian Simpson Awesome. That’s great advice and something we will research! Thanks so much!
@Ken Middleton I think its a fantastic idea whether or not you rent out to military folks. The rank complication is not your problem to deal with - I think you should just let applicants know the rank of others living there, and its up to them to decide to live there or not. You will be able to charge more renting out by individual rooms as well. One complication is how to handle the utilities: since you will have people rotating in and out regularly, I would recommend keeping the utilities in your name and renting it out as "utilities included". Just charge an extra $50-100 per month depending on how much you think the utilities will be.
Best of luck and keep us updated!
I used the term avatar to build the ideal tenant you are looking for essentially. It helps you determine the demands in the markets you are looking at and what amenities are important to your tenant base. For example, Redstone has a weird ratio of senior ranks Vs. junior ranks, given the significant acquisition presence here. That being said, this market tends to favor SFH's.
This is an interesting question and idea that you and your wife have come up with. I would be interested to know if you considered the following scenario where that one 8/4 property could be easily transformed into a multi unit with a few interior walls erected. I say this as most Veterans that we've ever worked with here in Indy appreciate the peace and quiet of having their own space, yet the feeling of comminatory in a close neighbor. With the VA paying between $500-$3500 a month to landlords renting to Veterans, it can become a situation where you're making assured income each month, but most importantly helping out some folks that need it- and are usually GREAT tenants. It might not be necessary to have these interior dividers up, but it might be more attractive for potential renters. Usually in Indy, around $1500/month on each side can be generated with a duplex rented to Veterans with VA funding- now you have the option to maybe make $6000/mo (depending on the VA range in GA). $6K a month could be more than 2% monthly rental yield easily it seems, and personally I would prefer to rent to Veterans over Airbnb; 1. Consistency in income, 2. Most of the Veterans we've worked with here in Indy are quiet and desire to keep to themselves (no wild parties/property damage) 3. Most of the Veterans we've worked with are accustomed to neat and orderly living and keep your property clean/in good as move in repair. Personally, I think your best strategy would be to get four Veterans in this property and maximize not only your VA backed monthly rental income, but help those who could use it and would likely be great tenants. Please reach out if you have further questions on this!
@Douglas Spence thanks, man. The utilities is something we were wondering avoid. We’ve seen other listings on Craiglist with this as included, so we figured as much. Thanks for the advice!
@Joshua McMillion Oh yeah...makes sense. Thanks, man! Will think through this some more.
@Anna Laud Thanks for verifying this, as we were thinking it might make more sense to make it a 4/4 instead of an 8/4. Okay. Lots to think about. I'll connect with you and let you know what other questions that may come up as things progress. Thanks for the idea!
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