If you want to purchase a home for rental purposes, these are the additional steps that you need to take:
1. Make sure you get a mercantile license in the city of Philadelphia for rental purposes. You will need this for several reasons:
a. The city uses it to tax people who earn money in Philadelphia
b. You must have one if you have to go to court in Philadelphia to evict a tenant
c. If you try to skirt by without the license you will eventually be discovered and then will pay a lot of money in fines and fees for non-registration, etc.
2. Make sure you get a clear certificate of occupancy or U&O certificate. If it is more than one unit, it should say so. Sometimes people sell a 3 unit building, but only two of the units are legal. Also, you want to be sure that there are no outstanding violations or reasons why you could not rent the property out.
3. Keep all of your documents from purchase, closing, etc. When you file your taxes your accountant, or whoever helps you will need the information because you will also have to file with the city of Philadelphia. You probably will not owe any tax in the early years, however, I am not an accountant so I am only guesstimating. It will all have to do with your cash flow - expenses vs. income, etc.
If you have any other questions, please let me know. I have been a Phila. landlord for many years and have had experience with single family and multi-family rentals, as well as Section 8. I will be glad to help you all I can.
Carol Murray Cei