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Duplex Vs Condo All Locations : Nationwide Real Estate Advice

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Showing results for Duplex Vs Condo [Clear search]
Tue Jul 26, 2011
Holbrook Andrew answered:
By far a purchase would be the prudent decision. Interest rates are low, prices are low - a rare combination. I know condo market very well in Austin. Email me at if you need my assistance. ... more
0 votes 26 answers Share Flag
Mon Jun 20, 2011
Darrell Hess answered:
Although you have a decent idea there is a little bit more to it. This is an area our team specializes in and are currently working with several seasoned and green investors like yourself. If I started to write a simple guide here on this Q&A window I would run out of characters and it would be a wall of text for everyone else. I'll touch on a few questions to ask yourself, but feel free to email me or call and we can set up a time to go over your "game plan."

1. Since you stated "pay it off" have you spoken to a loan officer about what type of investment loan options he/she offers.

2. Who is going to do the repairs? (those homes under 50k will almost certainly need them if not major updating to attract good tenants).

3. How do you plan, or rather what systems do you have in place to keep your goals streamlined?

There are a lot of variables here, but in the end you need to find a good real estate agent to work with. They are there to help you decide what it is you want to accomplish and what properties will help or hurt your goals.
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0 votes 14 answers Share Flag
Wed Jan 17, 2018
Ron Thomas answered:
A lot of people are in your shoes, unfortunately.
My suggestion would be to find a place where you are dealing with the owner. Go out and meet them, tell them what happened and where you stand. Be open and honest and you may find that there are a lot of compassionate people out there. good luck and God bless. ... more
0 votes 38 answers Share Flag
Sun Sep 25, 2011
Brian Rayl answered:

We have been doing exactly this in the Dallas, TX area for some time. Condos are certainly not the way to go. HOAs chew into your profit margin and do not appreciate nearly as fast as single family homes. Cash sitting in your bank account is making a measley 1% interest... IF YOU ARE LUCKY.

Fill out the form here for a PDF on exactly what I am talking about and exactly what I do in Dallas:
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0 votes 19 answers Share Flag
Tue Mar 8, 2011
Mati Rosa Morphis answered:
Folsom has many various areas and some great deals. Two of my Investors have purchased in Folsom - their strategy was to purchase 3+/2+ at least 1800 square feet and 10 years or newer. They did put enough money down to make it cash flow with the loans options available to them. Understanding 'your' Loan Options are a critical step for all purchases. For example - there is Self-Directed IRA with loan option most people don't know anything about, but the wealthy have been using since 1974.
My clients are very familiar with Folsom and know it has maintained it's value fairly well compared to other communities. Roseville and El Dorado Hills are two other areas my Investors like - but they buy a little higher than normal Investor and also intend to get a higher return on their investments in the future. That being said every Investor has a different strategy and set of numbers that has to make sense for 'them'.
For all your specific questions you listed, your best source of data will come from a great Property Management Company. For additional fees - I would add property management fees about 8% of the monthly rent . Get their professional opinion on the rental market and expectations. Renters have many rights, I HIGHLY recommend using a great property management company! For the purchase - It's easy to get an estimated Net Sheet to see what your costs will be from a title company.
With all good plans you want to include an "Exit Strategy" - understand all your risks and how to mitigate them. Best thing is to get educated by professionals who can meet 'YOUR' requirements.
It's a great time to buy! Yes the market may still go down or it could start going back up - no doubt change will happen, but don't let it paralyze you! Hope that helps - feel free to contact me to discuss further.
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0 votes 10 answers Share Flag
Tue Feb 22, 2011
Spirit Messingham answered:
Talk with your lender FIRST before submitting an offer. If you are not pre-approved, see a local lender. If you dont know of any, start with your local bank as you already have a professional relationship with one.

I close on a condo next week, and it was approved for conventional only, could not get FHA. Majority can not be approved on FHA and speak with your lender as to why but it would be prudent to make sure you can get a loan on it before even submitting an offer. Good luck.

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0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Thu Jan 27, 2011
Sharon Molnar answered:

Typically, here in Florida, we don't sell "apartments". We call them Condos, Duplex, single family homes, Town Homes.

First and formost, you need to like the area and property you'd like to purchase. Then, once an offer is presented to the owner, and accepted by the owner, they buyer has 10 consecutive days to have a Home Inspection done on the property in question. The home inspection is at the buyer's cost. If they home inspection reveals major problems, then the buyer, iin writing requests those items to be repaired. If the seller doesn't want to fix them or it's over the repair dollar requested, then we go back to neigioations.

I have worked with several "out of Country" buyers and would love to sit with you or discuss with you how the process is different. I am not sure where you are coming from, but every Country is a bit different. If you are in town, call me at 382-6792. If you are out of the US please remember the time difference and call me at 800-451-9098. I am happy to help you in anyway I can. If you are making a trip soon, please let me know.
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0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Sat Apr 23, 2016
Richard "RJ" Kas answered:
Hi Nikki,
Are you looking to be an investor/landlord or a happy homeowner? If you are capable of showing full docs for a loan, you may qualify for an FHA loan and that would only require 3.5% down and you could get the home you are looking for. Then, based on you income, credit, etc, I know of a lender that can do 25% down on investments. Its late right now, but I would be happy to discuss this further with you over the weekend or early next week. Hope to assist. Thanks. ... more
0 votes 22 answers Share Flag
Tue Oct 12, 2010
Helen Kwong answered:
Hi Oliver,

To be honest, in order to answer your question more thoroughly and in depth and to help you weigh out the pros and cons on each scenario. It will take more than the answer I am providing at this point.

I will do my best simplifying my answers:
If you are planning to purchase a SINGLE FAMILY HOUSE or CONDO:
- Most lenders require a minimum of 25% of down payment in order to get a good interest rate for a 30 yr. fixed loan. Recently I have closed a deal connected my buyer to one of the major bank loan specialist and closed at 4% interest rate. But if your down payment is under 25%, the interest rate will tend to go higher.
- In compare to a duplex or multi unit complex under 4 units, you will have an easier time getting the loan from most major lenders if your tax records and financial information get approval from them.
- If you are thinking of putting in up for sale in future, ratio wise you will have more potential buyers that will be interested and will qualify for a loan to purchase your single family home or condo.
- Additional note for you, and that is from passed 40 to 50 yrs real estate statistics, single family homes' equity goes up almost double than condos' equity in the Bay Area.

If you are planning to purchase MULTI-UNIT COMPLEX:
- Most major lenders are more strict with the qualifications. The minimum % of down payment is higher than single family and condo. Since the lenders see it as income properties. If they loan you the money, they are have more risk in not getting the loan back if you cannot rent out the units....etc.
- After you purchase the multi unit complex, if you can continue to have tenants occupied them, then you can show steady and/or good income. That will be good for future sale when you do put them on the market. But in general the ratio for buyers that can qualified for a loan to purchased multi unit complex are much lower in comparison to single family house or condo.

Lastly, you need an experienced realtor who have deal with many of this situation and have a wide network of professionals to help answer all your questions, so you have all the necessary information to weigh out what's best for your investment. Please check out my website:

Hope my answer help.

Have a good day!

Helen Kwong, Realtor@
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0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Fri Nov 12, 2010
Larry Sarlo answered:
For some people it doesn't matter whether they are close to the water or not. Usually the entertainment areas are less significant in the decision process to location and where to buy if it for personal use only.

Your needs, your affordability and desires are what you need to consider. Everything at the shore is great. But realistically the closer to the water the more valuable the property now and going forward. But for some it doesn't matter. Almost everyone buying further from water regrets it later.

Even "rentability" is greatly dependent upon the location. Most people want to rent as close to the beach as possible. Desire to get close to the entertainment is personal. If your intentions are to rent then close to water and entertainment is very important.

I would be more concerned whether its a condo or single home. Two different variables of living styles.

Larry Sarlo
Weichert Realtors
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0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Sun Dec 12, 2010
Julie Reddington answered:
Check out this link and see for yourself. You can search away .... see here how to do it

If you send me your email, I will set you up on a FREE search
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0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Wed Feb 16, 2011
Mark LeMenager answered:
Hi Puffy,

If this is a pure investment, then consider Central Florida. You will find the insurance cost alone to be thousands less than the cost not far from the ocean. We got thousands of houses on the market for under $175,000 and hundreds of those would make fine long term investments.

Contract me if you are interested.

Good luck,
Mark LeMenager
Find your next house with the click of a mouse.
Search the MLS without obligation or registration from my website.
... more
0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Wed Jun 30, 2010
Now. I believe home prices have hit bottom and there are some deals to be had with foreclosures. The biggest risk to waiting is that interest rates will surely go up. Did you know they are at 4.5% right now? ... more
0 votes 30 answers Share Flag
Fri Jun 18, 2010
Bill Eckler answered:
Hi Larry,

Purchasing property as an investment should include consideration of the following:

1. Price of property and deposit size

2. Desirability of the snowbirds find it attractive?

3. Rentability, does the home meet the needs of a common renter: safety, amenities, convenience, etc.

4. Expense associated with ownership: HOA fees, taxes, maintenance, insurance etc.
... more
0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Thu Mar 4, 2010
Natalia Hunter answered:
Debrah, the best thing to do is find an agent who works in the area and has the knowledge. You have a lot of questions, I will be glad to talk to you and help you as much as possible. I work with few buyers like yourself and help them find wright properties. Please give me a call if you choose to do so.
Thank you in advance,
Natalia Hunter
RE/MAX realty Group
... more
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Sat Mar 6, 2010
Steve Kappre answered:
Cpunkin -

That rate is fair. You can buy down the rate with points, and hopefully your loan officer went over this option with you. You will be fine regarding credit score. Any checks by mortgage lenders should keep the score the same now that it has been pulled. (This is a common misconception and even less-than-honest loan officers will tell people NOT to shop because it will pull their credit down. If you have 740 credit scores just tell the other lenders. Any lender will have to assume some things, so don't write their quotes in stone.

Steve Kappre
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0 votes 27 answers Share Flag
Tue Apr 18, 2017
Dale Warfel answered:
Duplexes are considered residential income property, as opposed to a single family home. These properties are typically driven more by rental income. Since rents typically don't fluctuate all that much, the prices for income properties is typically more stable. To determine value/offer price, do a comparative analysis of other active pending, and sold 2-4 unit properties. Compare attributes such as the property condition, garage vs. carport, square footage, proximity, zip code, school district, age, etc. to come up with an estimate of the properties value. Another question is if the property is a legal duplex, or if it was a single family property divided without permits. That could create some big problems if the property was not a legal multi-unit property.

Another factor to consider is planned use. Are you considering living in one unit and renting the 2nd? From a pure investment, I like to use the 0.8% rule, that is, the collected rents should equal 0.8% of the purchase price each month, assuming 100% occupancy, to be considered a viable investment. There aren't many places in this county that will give that type of return.

I hope this helps. If I can answer any questions, please feel free to e-mail me at

Good luck,

Dale Warfel
Real Estate Consultant
Keller Williams Realty
M: 408-624-6202
... more
0 votes 10 answers Share Flag
Tue Nov 29, 2011
The Medford Team answered:


The sad truth is this: in the current market, “cash is king” followed by conventional loans. Because of the extreme shortage of inventory right now (especially at the bottom of the market) and resulting multiple offers on almost everything, sellers are being choosy about which offers they accept. Add in (1) problems with appraisals (HVCC), (2) FHA spot approvals expiring in a few days and (3) strict FHA guidelines about property condition – sellers want to avoid FHA loans and accept offers with conventional loans.
... more
0 votes 12 answers Share Flag
Thu Apr 29, 2010
Duplexes, for the most part, are treated like a house (vs a condo). That said, non-owner occupied properties require a minimum DP of 25%. The required credit score will most likely be over 700 (under that, points will change your mind to move forward). Preferably you should have scores above 720. The rate depends on your score, but typically it can have as much as 3 discount points added in fees which in turn affect the rate (unless you prefer to pay the fees out of pocket. The seller can only pay up to 2% in closing costs. ... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
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