buy 2 family & live in 1 side

Has anyone ever bought a 2 family house and lived in one side? I’d be interesting in hearing about any success or horror stories you may have about doing this. I’m thinking about doing this to get my first rental property while also getting my first place.

I know a guy who did that. He bought a duplex, and rented one side to a family and kept the other for himself. There only downfall of living near your tenant(s) is that if they have an issue they may be tempted to come and knock on your door in the middle of the night with a maintenance request, or you might get your car keyed if you have to evict them…they do know where you live.

But if the people are good, follow the rules and pay their rent on time … it might be a real deal for both of you.

plenty of people start out that way…

My exact situation right now and it has worked great. Make sure to use a demanding screening process for some of the reasons mentioned above. But overall, for me anyways, it has been great. I don’t have to drive across town for maintenance issues (which if you rent a quality unit out shouldn’t have to many, I’ve only had 2 minor problems in the past 10 months).

I see my tenants regularly so they know they can’t hide from me when rent comes due. It allows me to keep a closer watch on my property to ensure they’re not having parties, fights, etc causing damage. Having a free place to live is pretty sweet as well.

Overall, like all properties, the key is to get good tenants. Mine have been fantastic, basically the model tenants. When you get those kind it makes land-lording very, very easy.

It is a good way to start buying rental properties. Yes the only downside would be living close to your tennats, but it will be a good first lesson in how important it is to have good tennants!

I am doing that now. I found it to work pretty well. I would agree that proper tenant selection is important. I try to do extra stuff to make it nice for the tenant too. I am not obligated to, but his yard is tiny and takes me five minutes, so I mow it for him. I know he appreciates it. I shoveled his driveway a few times this winter too. He called me last night to tell me I left my car door open.

I would also advise against being too chummy with them. It’s easy to be friends with your neighbors, but they are tenants. I always act professional in front of them, ask about their lives and be friendly, but not too personal. I don’t volunteer much information about myself.