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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Real Estate and Landlording => Topic started by: blub on April 28, 2014, 09:06:26 PM

Title: Moving and buying first home
Post by: blub on April 28, 2014, 09:06:26 PM
My wife and I are planning to move and buy our first home. We'd like to buy a multifamily property and live in one of the units. I have some questions:

1. How can we evaluate the quality of real estate markets remotely, especially as novices? We have a big list of places (~30) we're interested in living in (TX, FL, SC, NC, VA, NJ, PA), but it's hard to compare them.

2. I find very few multi-family properties for sale. Is this just the way it is, or is it possible that I'm searching wrong, or is it a sensitive function of the neighborhood?

3. I've been using trulia and craigslist to investigate the properties in these places. Are there other sites I should be using?

We'd like to buy more property after this, so a promising real estate market will be a major factor in our decision of where to go. So far, none of the markets seem good. Of course, I haven't developed a good sense for it, yet, and I don't want to make a hasty judgment. Any advice is welcome.
Title: Re: Moving and buying first home
Post by: Thegoblinchief on April 29, 2014, 07:27:58 AM
Find the job first, rent for six months to a year, then buy once you know the area better.

Alternatively, narrow your search down. It's really difficult to give advice when real estate is hyper local.

Keep in mind that you will get the most advantageous financing in 2-4 unit buildings. Anything larger is treated as a commercial loan.
Title: Re: Moving and buying first home
Post by: arebelspy on April 29, 2014, 07:30:13 AM
IMO, your idea is the tail wagging the dog (http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/tail+wagging+the+dog).

Decide where you want to live, then decide if real estate there makes sense.  Buy out of the area if it doesn't.  But don't choose where to live based on that.

Unless you're planning on starting a real estate business around it (particularly a rehabbing business), then maybe (maybe) you should consider it.  Definitely not if you're just looking to do a little real estate investing (i.e. not starting a business, but just want to own some buy and holds).

/shrug

Just my opinion on the matter.