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How to Buy a Duplex

This morning I received a Skype video message from my little brother Chris.

He asked, “I want to buy a duplex, what is the first step? Do I get a real estate agent? Get pre-approved? What should I do?

Of course, I gave him a few resources to read that I had previously written, like How to Buy a Rental Property in the Next 90 Days and How to Hack Your Housing and Get Paid to Live For Free but then said to myself “self – (that’s what I call myself)… it’s my brother and I really want him to succeed. So why not make a blog post directly for him that helps him get from A-Z?

After all, my first rental property was a duplex and I’ve purchased several since that day.  I love duplexes and I’m super passionate about helping others get started with duplex investing as well. So that’s what I’m going to do today, for the benefit of Chris and the BiggerPockets audience.  In this post, I’ll talk about:

  • Why Buy a Duplex?
  • What’s the First Step?
  • How to Find a Duplex
  • How to Analyze a Duplex?
  • How to Finance a Duplex
  • And a lot more.

Keep in mind, while the focus of this article is on a “duplex” – the exact same information can be used to buy a single family house, a duplex, a triplex, or a 4-plex: so don’t limit yourself to just a duplex. In fact, if you are going to go through all the work of finding a duplex, you might as well consider the larger properties (3 or 4 unit) in case a better deal can be found this way.

Furthermore, I’ll be approaching this article from two places:

  1. Someone looking to buy a duplex and live in one-half of it
  2. Someone looking to just buy a duplex as a full rental.

Whichever of these two positions you find yourself in, I believe this article can help.

With that, let’s get to the article. The following is “How to Buy a Duplex.”

Why Buy a Duplex?

(click to continue reading on BiggerPockets)

Elevator Pitch

(The following is an excerpt from the soon-to-be-released BiggerPockets book we keep talking about… it’s almost here!)

THEM: “Hey Brandon… So what is it you actually do?”

ME: “Well, I, uh… I invest in real estate… and… um… so… what about you, what do you do?”

Ugh. It’s embarrassing just to type that, yet for years that was my answer to the dreaded, “what do you do?” question. I mean, how do I explain what it is I do, and open the door for people to invest with me, without sounding like I’m bragging and begging?

It wasn’t until I sat down and spent some time working on my answer that it began getting easier. In fact, it didn’t take long at all. When I really sat down to work on it, I crafted a pretty-darn-good pitch in just 10 minutes.

So let me turn the tables… how do YOU answer that question?

Let’s find out.

ME: “Hey… [insert your name here]… so, what do YOU do, anyways?”

YOU: ________________________ …

Does this question make you a little uncomfortable? Rather than stumbling through an answer, this is your moment to shine. In fact, not only is this a great time to share what you do, this is perhaps the best place for you to actually raise money.

This is your elevator pitch.

What is an Elevator Pitch?

(Click to read on BiggerPockets…)

Passive real estate investing

I want to apologize.

You see, BiggerPockets has a LOT of information. Like, more than you could ever hope to read in your lifetime, and that’s growing every day.  Now, while that seems like a great thing (and it is) it does have a negative: shiny object syndrome.  And I’m part of the problem, with my blog posts, podcast contributions, and forum posts.


But I know the same thing happens to me. I hear a Podcast guest chatting about their strategy for doing this or that and suddenly I’m intrigued and want to do it also. From flipping to wholesaling to turn key rentals to direct mail and more, I just love learning these new strategies. I love the hustle that these real estate investors have and their commitment to building a big business through real estate.

It’s SO exciting, isn’t it?

But what about those strategies that no one talks about? The not-so-exciting ones? The old-fashioned, simple buy and hold real estate for building wealth?

That’s what I want to focus on today: simplicity. What would happen if you just invested in real estate, simply?

Well, let’s find out!

(Click to read on BiggerPockets…)

1. Don’t blindly listen to me or anyone else. What works for me isn’t always going to work for you. You are in a different market, with different skills, and have different resources. Do what works for you.

2. If you don’t know what works for you, keep reading and listening to podcasts until you figure it out. We have 83 episodes of the BiggerPockets Podcast, and they are all free. Listen to all of them and I guarantee a plan will start to form in your mind.

3. Remember: You don’t need to know everything about everything. You just need to know enough about the one niche and strategy you are going to get into. Don’t get overwhelmed with knowledge. Focus on what matters.

4. (Click to read on BiggerPockets…)

Life Hacks for Landlords

Everyone loves a good “life hack,” right?

Well, let’s first get on the same page about what a life hack is, for those born before 1985. A life hack is simply a tip, technique, or strategy designed to simplify or manage your time and resources more effectively.

Life hacks can be found all across the internet, offering tips on everything from house organization, food preparation, travel, and more. (For example – when you go to the beach, store your money and keys inside an empty sunscreen bottle that has been cut in half. No one steals sunscreen!)

So… I started thinking, why don’t we compile a list of “life hacks” just for real estate investors?  After all, life can get especially busy for real estate investors who are trying to juggle their investments, their family, and often their full time job.

Therefore, I reached out to the BiggerPockets community in the Forums and asked everyone “What is Your Favorite Landlord Hack?” and the response was overwhelming!  Below are a few of those tips (I couldn’t fit them all!) designed to make your life just a little better!

One last thing before we get to the tips: Although I am offering 23 landlord hacks here, I’d love to make this list longer, so please add your favorite landlord hack in the comments at the bottom of this post!

RelatedHow to Hack Your Housing and Get Paid to Live For Free

23 Totally Awesome Life Hacks for Landlords

1. Never Forget a  (Click to read on BiggerPockets…)







Keyword Alerts

Have you ever missed out on an important event because someone forgot to tell you about it?

It sucks.

Sure, when it’s dirty Uncle Harry’s birthday party, it’s not such a big deal. However, when it’s an incredible real estate deal that perfectly matched what you were looking for or a local meetup of real estate entrepreneurs willing to fund your next deal.. it can be a much bigger loss!

For this reason, BiggerPockets created the Keyword Alert System to help you stay connected with the important events that could affect your business and today we’re excited to announce some new updates to this system… so stay tuned!

This post is designed to be the ultimate guide to using and managing the BiggerPockets Keyword Alert System to get notified of the events and conversations that matter to you!

What is the Keyword Alert System

(click to continue reading on BiggerPockets)