Found a duplex, what questions should i ask

5 Replies

hello BP world, my name is Comfort, i recently relocated to Atlanta about 6 months ago, besides the crazy humidity and horrible traffic situation here, i like it so far.. i joined BP just 2 months ago and i have been in the background just reading and digesting as much information as i could so this is my very first post :) .before i start i just want to give a shout out to each and everyone of you who often take time out of their very busy schedules to answer questions on here( that's what amazes me about BP) so kudos to you guys, i appreciate that!!

so, besides the formal training in REI i have, i attended 2 of @Brandon Turner 's webinars and just bought @JScott's book on flipping( i'm excited), i'm so ready to dive in with both legs cos i don't want to be a victim of analysis paralysis!!. today my agent sent me a nice duplex that i really like, (haven't seen it yet, but i l viewed it via virtual map), my plan is to house hack,(i'm currently paying $1200/month in rent at an apartment & i kick myself every month cos that could comfortably pay a mortgage lol so am in the process of analyzing this property and i will want to use FHA loans for it cos of the PRO's i read about it, you know lower DP and all.. i have a FT job, am also a home stager, and i plan to do a few flips as well.

My questions are:

1. what are the specific questions i need to ask( especially to my agent) about this to be sure its a good property?

2. how do i go about getting approved for this FHA loan? is it as simple as working into any bank and apply?

3. i would want to do a little rehab on it to my standard before i move in, say kitchen, floors etc( both units are currently rented on a month to month basis) so will FHA 203k loan work? if yes what does it entail?

4. my current lease wont expire till December!! how do i handle this?( i do not want to break my lease as i like to maintain an awesome rental record i have over the years lol) so what do i do? cos i know with FHA, it must be owner occupied, and i want to occupy it but not until my current lease is up, is there a way around it? any advice on this?

5. how do i know how much i should offer on this property (without an inspection?) i assume i wont be allowed to have it inspected except if i make an offer and it gets accepted? i may be wrong

i will also appreciate any and every tips/inputs on this. thanks so much in advance.

have an awesome Monday everyone!!


@Comfort S. congratulations on finding a potential property. I know you've been looking. I've responded below:

  1. The most important details are price (obviously), area, and condition of the property. The agent will be able to help you with the price and hopefully the area, but you'll need to schedule a visit yourself to look at the inside of each unit.
  2. I have a good recommendation for someone who could help you with an FHA loan. Feel free to PM me if you would like. It essentially is as simple as walking into a bank and applying.
  3. I really don't know anything about FHA 203k loans, but most loan officers who handle FHA should.
  4. I would check your lease. See what it says. There might be a 30 or 60 day notice clause that requires you to let them know in advance if you're moving.
  5. The offer will depend on the rental income and how comparable properties sell in the area. We wouldn't be able to tell you more without knowing more information. You can likely visit the property before agreeing on a price with the seller, but it is extremely unlikely that you will be able to schedule an inspection before having a signed agreement with the seller.

Good luck!

Motivated Leads
Marketing For Investors…By Investors
We Get Houses For Real Estate Investors
We help investors get more off market deals from distressed sellers.
Learn More

thanks so much for your detailed response @Paul Smythe , yeah i will need to get some info about the FHA 203k rehab loans, it might come handy if i will qualify for it. i have to schedule a visit cos i honestly cant even estimate the repair cost (which i must factor into my offer) before i can even make an offer. i will have my agent make that appointment happen.

@Comfort S. You can always screen the prospects that you get responses from. Again, it does depend a lot on the area and how easy it is to find sublets. You might not have the liberty to pass on someone if sublets are rare. Good luck