Increased Demand is a Good Thing for Owner-Occupant, Two-Flat Investors

Two Flat

We are currently in a period of increasing demand for rental housing. The DePaul Institute of Housing Study Shown Here  pointed out last May that “between 2011 and 2014, Cook County saw an increase of almost 39,000 renter households, and 43.7 percent of all households in 2014 were renters.” Two-flat pricing continues to rise in the Chicago market alongside increased demand, steering many private real estate investors towards higher-unit count buildings seeking higher cash flow per unit.  This migration of …
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Why You Should Check Water Pressure in Apartment Buildings

Water Service Line Repair Chicago

My wife and I bought a two-flat a few years back in the Mayfair neighborhood of Chicago. It’s been a pretty good investment so far, but we made a bit of a mistake in not checking the water pressure. This mistake may have cost us between $7,000 and $22,000 depending on what is required to repair the issue.  Let me tell you a story that I hope you’ll be able to learn from. We were excited because we were getting …
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City of Chicago Garbage Fee One to Four Units

City of Chicago Garbage Fee

This garbage fee smells like garbage. Gone are the days when you didn’t have to pay a garbage fee for one to four unit properties in Chicago! This fee will now be unified with the Chicago Water and Sewer bill and will come every 6 months just like the water bill used to when it was paid on it’s own. What does this mean for one-four unit property owners? Chicago Garbage Fee for One to Four Units: $9.50 per month …
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Chicago Property Management Tips

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Buying your first investment property can be exciting. The thought of being your own boss, retiring young enough to really enjoy it, and of course making money are all thoughts that come to mind. But we cannot forget that to achieve this level of success in buy and hold real estate, we must also do the work. This why Chicago Property Management Tips are so important to your investment. Just because you purchased an asset that is supposed to return …
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10 Useful Websites for Chicago Property Research

 Property Searches – www.chicagoREinvestment.com– Use this website to search all types of residential properties.   Chicago Crime Map – http://gis.chicagopolice.org/– Use this website to search for crime incidents in your neighborhood or others.  This information is provided directly from the Chicago Police Department.  Keep in mind that all areas of Chicago will have some level of crime, so be sure to compare one area to an area you are more familiar with.  This will help you develop an opinion as to …
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Reasons to Buy a Two Flat

 You want to earn passive income. You rent both units out and earn a cash flow.  Sounds easy, but there is more to it and most of the heavy lifting is done before someone moves in and pays you rent.  First, you must select a good property that will cash flow at market rents and in the future.  Then, you must market your property for rent effectively so as to attract the best tenants capable of taking care of your …
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What to Consider Before Buying a Two Flat

Before you buy a two flat, you should consider some of the various factors that will make it a stable long-term cash flowing property.  I have highlighted some of the more important ones for you below: Property Taxes – Your two biggest expenses every year will be property taxes and interest expense.  If you pay cash, then yes, you will not have to pay interest expense.  Property taxes will vary greatly depending on the area you purchase in.  So what …
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Live For Free in a Two Flat

In Chicago, a large amount of lots in the city are filled with multi-unit buildings including two-unit buildings called two-flats.  The standard two flat is made of a wood-frame, brick or greystone and will be two stories high with a basement and a 25 foot wide x 125 foot deep lot. These two flats in Chicago have been used for decades as a way for families to have friends or relatives live in the same building while providing separate places …
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Things to Consider When Purchasing a Two-Flat

In this post, I want to share with you the most important things to look for when buying your first Two-Flat. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer, or you have owned condos or single family homes in the past, it’s important to know these key factors that will affect the value of your two-flat.  Since I’m a numbers guy, let’s start there! THE NUMBERS: In my opinion, cash flow is the most important financial measure of the building you intend to …
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Reasons to Buy a Two Flat

Two flats are residential buildings with two dwelling units both used for the purpose of a home for the occupants. These buildings are very common in Chicago and are purchased for many reasons. As someone who has lived in, owned, managed and sold two flats for more than five years, I have a good handle on what makes them special and desirable. If you are like me, and you like stretching your dollars, then two flats may be a great …
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