From what I understand, you can buy up to a 4 plex on FHA if you are going to reside in one of the units. This will help you take advantage of the lower rates and you'll live almost free, as your investment will pay your portion of the mortgage payment. The big bonus for you is you can manage your investment and possible realize some tax benefits. Be sure to hire a quality CPA to help you with this typeof purchase and snswer you tax questions! Good luck and let me know if I can be of service.
Your answer both TRUE and FALSE. Like all the other answers, it depends on the number of units the property has. California Department of Real Estate states that any property with 1 - 4 units are considered Residential, and if it is 5 units or higher, than it's considered commercial so it really depends on number of units your multi-family home has.
Now there are a plethora of government programs on loans and insurance backed loans such as FHA. But your best bet is obtain a Fannie Mae home. Typically if it's a 1 to 4 unit home, you qualify for FHA if you plan on living in one of the four units. A Fannie Mae home is a tad different. If there is a Fannie Mae REO home for sale that is a Multi unit property, if it's equal to or less than 4 units, you only need >>>>>3.0%<<<<< with no Mortgage Insurance and no appraisal. If the property is an investment purchase and it's a Fannie Mae home, you will only need 10% down, and again no M.I. and appraisal needed. If it's a property with 5 or more units, than it depends on the lender. Some lender requires 25% down, some as high as 40% down, so it really depends on the lender you're getting the loan from.
There are a slieu of really experienced loan officers and Realtors in this website, you can check out their resume and given them a call. My suggestion is consult with a loan offiicer first and see what all of your options are...
Hope this helps!
Jonah Marc Properties