Multi-Family in Brooklyn

Asked by gorkmonkey, Brooklyn, NY Mon Jan 21, 2013

I have a dream of owning a two family home in Brooklyn, where I live in one unit and I rent out the other. In the dream, the rental income less mortgage expense nets me out to somewhere between breaking even (hence earning my equity for free) or paying very little out of pocket.

The neighborhoods I prefer are Greenpoint, Williamsburg, Park Slope, Greenwood, Gowanus, Sunset Park, Windsor Terrace. Greenpoint is my fave.

In reality, I have about $200k to put down and would like to find something under $600k. Can this be possible and would it be worth it, at least financially? What are my risks?

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Mitchell Fel…, Agent, Brooklyn, NY
Tue Jan 22, 2013
Dear gorkmonkey:

Yes it is possible. Just speak to a mortgage banker to make sure you are qualified and see how much you can borrow and how much the loan will cost you each month. Then you should look at everything in those areas within your budget and buy the one that is the best deal. In the price range you are in you may have to sacrifice on size and/or condition, but if the house meets your specifications, you will be living rent free and then some.

Mitchell S. Feldman
Associate Broker/ Director of Sales
Madison Estates & Properties, Inc.
Office: (718) 645-1665/ Cell: (917) 805-0783
0 votes
, ,
Mon Jan 28, 2013
Good morning gorkmonkey,

It's all about monthly payment and market rentals. Since you have a potentially large down payment, you can set your monthly payment to a level where, once you factor in the market rental for the second unit, you'll achieve your goal of breaking even.

You have mentioned several neighborhoods in your post/question.

What I'd recommend you do is determine both pricing ranges for 2FAM homes in those neighborhoods AND market rentals.

Armed with this information, when you meet with your Mortgage Banker to get Prequalified, you can do a thorough analysis to compare your total monthly mortgage expense (including Principal & Interest, Taxes, Insurance and Mortgage Insurance if required) with the potential rental in any given neighborhood.

By the way, I advise that you take the conservative approach. Qualify your mortgage payment at a rate slightly higher than market, this way you can take your time shopping, and you're prepared in case interest rates go up. Use a lower rental number than what your market research has told you.

Since your goal is to break even on your housing expense, you should use that to guide you in selecting the neighborhood. In other words, while you favor Greenpoint, when you analzye the numbers you may find that Sunset Park is more in line with achieving your goal. Don't get off track; Buyers often stray from their original intent once they've been Prequalified. Your goal is smart and an admirable one---not to mention financially prudent. Adhere to that goal with accurate information from your Mortgage Banker and an understanding of your market rentals.

Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
Mobile: 516-582-9181
Office: 516-829-2900
Fax: 516-829-2944
PowerHouse Solutions, Inc.
185 Great Neck Rd, Suite 240
Great Neck NY 11021
Licensed Mortgage Banker – NYS Dept. of Financial Services

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3 votes
, ,
Sun Jan 27, 2013
My name is Chris Miceli and I am a Mortgage Loan Officer with PNC Mortgage. I have over 15 years of experience in the mortgage industry. I was born and raised in Brooklyn NY and I am very familiar with the areas you are looking to buy in. I would like to go over your options and let you know what it will take to make your Dream come true! Please call me when you can. Thanks!
Sometimes what you do before you sign a contract can be more important then what you do after you sing the contract!

Chris Miceli
Mortgage Loan Officer
Phone- 646-623-2492
PNC Mortgage is a division of PNC Bank
0 votes
Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Tue Jan 22, 2013
Be aware that a mortgage pre-approval letter is required in order to determine your price range and for any offers to be taken seriously, therefore you really should begin by visiting with any licensed loan officer, and then determine your next step....
0 votes
Leonard Murp…, , Brooklyn, NY
Mon Jan 21, 2013
Hi My name is Leonard Murphy and I am a Renovation Mortgage Specialist with Wells Fargo Home Mortgage in Brooklyn. I have a great deal of experience financing homes in most of the areas you named. I would be happy to discuss getting you pre-approved for a mortgage before you start your search. Also if you are interested in purchasing a property that needs work I specialize in Renovation Financing so we will definitely be able to help on that end. Please feel free to call me at 718-780-9110 or email me at
0 votes
Fajardo Dela…, Agent, Flushing, NY
Mon Jan 21, 2013
I would ask for you to speak with a loan officer, to see what would be the best move for you.
0 votes
Madeline Pad…, Agent, Brooklyn, NY
Mon Jan 21, 2013
in today's marketplace possibly sunset park and it will need some TLC but if you send me your
direct email I will be happy to do some research for you.
0 votes
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