Author Topic: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga  (Read 8922 times)

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #100 on: December 09, 2020, 08:25:13 AM »
Original post now has pictures of the exterior of the property. More pics soon to come!

PMJL34

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 166
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #101 on: December 09, 2020, 10:15:06 AM »
Valley,

Looks good! How big is the lot?

My imagination was way off, I just imagined it was completely rural home with an acre.

Did you close!?

couponvan

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7258
  • Location: VA
    • My journal
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #102 on: December 10, 2020, 12:27:45 AM »
Itís really cute looking-you can tell where the water issues in the corners will be, so make sure to get extra ice dam prevention under your new roof.


Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #103 on: December 10, 2020, 06:34:40 AM »
Valley,

Looks good! How big is the lot?

My imagination was way off, I just imagined it was completely rural home with an acre.

Did you close!?

The lot is 16,770 sq feet (so a little more than 1/3 of an acre), with 3,400 sq feet of GLA. There's also a detached single car garage that is 384 sq feet.

Closing is today at 2PM!

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #104 on: December 10, 2020, 07:18:24 AM »
Hereís some interior pictures of the one bedroom unit. (Some photos are panoramic, which causes some weird distortion)
« Last Edit: December 10, 2020, 07:20:59 AM by Valley of Plenty »

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #105 on: December 10, 2020, 07:23:20 AM »
Living room & bedroom on the 1 bedroom unit

PMJL34

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 166
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #106 on: December 10, 2020, 11:54:33 AM »
Nice! Looks good. 1/3 of an acre huh? I love it. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but i'm assuming it's a rectangular lot. Does that mean you have a huge back yard? I would kill for a huge back yard!

I have no idea what the rental comps are in your area, but simple new flooring and paint will make your rentals shine for very cheap!

Hope your closing goes smoothly today!


 

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #107 on: December 11, 2020, 04:29:33 AM »
Nice! Looks good. 1/3 of an acre huh? I love it. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but i'm assuming it's a rectangular lot. Does that mean you have a huge back yard? I would kill for a huge back yard!

I have no idea what the rental comps are in your area, but simple new flooring and paint will make your rentals shine for very cheap!

Hope your closing goes smoothly today!

Closing went off without a hitch! Got all the borough utilities switched over, and today Iíll be going out and changing the locks. Then Iíll work on knocking out all the renovations over the next couple months.

As for the yard, I wouldnít consider it ďhugeĒ but I guess that depends on your definition. It is a rectangular lot, and the yard extends back to a stairway leading to a riverside walking trail. Itís a pretty sweet location!

sammybiker

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 433
    • Making 200k in equity in 6mo - Back down the rabbit hole, long distance RE
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #108 on: December 11, 2020, 05:30:00 AM »
@Valley of Plenty Congrats on the close and thanks for the pictures.


waltworks

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4720
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #109 on: December 11, 2020, 08:17:37 AM »
High five!!

-W

couponvan

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7258
  • Location: VA
    • My journal
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #110 on: December 13, 2020, 07:33:12 PM »
Congratulations!!! Let the FIRE building continue!!

former player

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6153
  • Location: Avalon
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #111 on: December 14, 2020, 02:15:49 AM »
That looks like a basically good building and with a little care and attention will make a great home for you and your tenants and a good profit for you.  Congratulations on the closing: the period of hard work starts now!

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #112 on: December 14, 2020, 08:00:53 AM »
The first hiccup occurred this morning. Went out to the property to drop something off and discovered that there was water leaking down through the ceiling of the downstairs bathroom. It had collapsed one of the ceiling tiles (the cheap drop ceiling type, so nothing costly) and made a bit of a puddle on the bathroom floor.

Got ahold of the upstairs tenant, who investigated and found that the valve beneath his kitchen sink had blown a seal. I was on my way into work so all I could do to address the issue was shut off the water to the upstairs. Fortunately, the tenant (who is turning out to be quite handy) got a new valve and installed it. He said he's also going to clean up the mess in the bathroom. Guess I'll have to add a drop ceiling tile to the shopping list, otherwise than that no real harm done.

In other news, I got the locks changed out on my unit over the weekend, and am thinking I may end up replacing a couple of the exterior doors (there are 4 in total, 2 leading into an enclosed porch and 2 leading into the house itself), as some of them are looking pretty rough. Measured them out it looks like I should be able to buy pre-hung doors to replace them. Going to call in a friend who is more experienced than me to confirm that this plan will work.

Will be hopefully tackling the bathroom flooring in my unit this week; need to tear out the existing tiles and underlayment (which looks to be OSB or something similar), install new underlayment and the LVT I picked up over the weekend, then add trim around the bathtub. Doesn't seem too tricky. After that my unit will be move-in ready. I've got until the end of January left on my lease, so no rush there.

BabyShark

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 279
  • Location: Virginia
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #113 on: December 14, 2020, 09:03:24 AM »
I assume this means you got the non-rent paying tenant out without issue?  Maybe I missed that.

PMJL34

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 166
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #114 on: December 14, 2020, 10:49:40 AM »
In the future, just tell the tenant to limit the use of the kitchen and put a bucket/bowl under the sink where the leak is. Don't cut off someone's entire water access.

Don't take the tenant's word for it, when you get home, make sure you check it out and confirm it's repaired to your desire. I wouldn't downplay this leak. It could have been going on for years and may be further damage. For sink water waste to get to your floor, it must get around...kitchen cabinet base, 2nd floor flooring, subfloor, floor joists, insulation, then your ceiling tile). This was no small leak. Make sure all of those items aren't damaged.

While the ceiling tile is off, examine the space between the 1st and 2nd floor. Look for any rodent waste, wood rot etc.

What is wrong with the doors? Doors are very tricky to replace in older homes and generally very expensive (especially exterior doors). A little bit of sanding and paint can make them look brand new. Perhaps a picture could help me understand your concerns. This would be much lower on my to do list.

So what is the living situation? Is the tenant who didn't pay now in the 2bedroom and you are taking over the 3 bedroom? 1 bedroom is still vacant?
« Last Edit: December 14, 2020, 10:51:28 AM by PMJL34 »

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #115 on: December 14, 2020, 03:18:05 PM »
In the future, just tell the tenant to limit the use of the kitchen and put a bucket/bowl under the sink where the leak is. Don't cut off someone's entire water access.

Don't take the tenant's word for it, when you get home, make sure you check it out and confirm it's repaired to your desire. I wouldn't downplay this leak. It could have been going on for years and may be further damage. For sink water waste to get to your floor, it must get around...kitchen cabinet base, 2nd floor flooring, subfloor, floor joists, insulation, then your ceiling tile). This was no small leak. Make sure all of those items aren't damaged.

While the ceiling tile is off, examine the space between the 1st and 2nd floor. Look for any rodent waste, wood rot etc.

What is wrong with the doors? Doors are very tricky to replace in older homes and generally very expensive (especially exterior doors). A little bit of sanding and paint can make them look brand new. Perhaps a picture could help me understand your concerns. This would be much lower on my to do list.

So what is the living situation? Is the tenant who didn't pay now in the 2bedroom and you are taking over the 3 bedroom? 1 bedroom is still vacant?

At the time that I noticed the leak I had no idea where it was coming from, and I was on my way into work for a 12 hour shift. The water has been off to both of those apartments for the past several months; I only just got it turned back on Friday. The tenant understands that he's living in an apartment that is in many ways a project in progress. In truth he's only half living out of the unit for the time being; he's been staying with parents most nights due to aforementioned lack of water. And he was outside working in the garage when I found the leak, so it wasn't as if I just turned his water off out of the blue; I went over and told him "hey, there's water leaking from your apartment into the downstairs bathroom, I disconnected the water until we can figure out where it's coming from". He has access to both apartments, so he was able to turn the water back on himself after fixing the leak.

As for the damage, I haven't seen the upstairs unit yet (though replacing that kitchen flooring was already on the to do list, so further damage to it is largely irrelevant), and there is no insulation between the two floors, at least not in that area. As for the joists, they were definitely wet but did not appear rotted. As I said, the water has been turned off to both of those apartments for several months, so nothing has been leaking anywhere recently, not until I turned the water back on Friday, which is likely when it started.

As for the exterior doors, they're mostly just in bad shape. They don't close easily, and the portion of the frame where the strike plates are mounted is really chewed up on most of them, to the point that I didn't even bother replacing the strike plates because I wasn't confident I'd be able to get the new ones to screw into the existing holes. I used a 4 foot level to see how level the frames are, and they're all surprisingly close to even. I *think* that with a bit of shimming pre-hung doors should work. I'll take some pictures and post them, would love to get some more experienced opinions on my options.

The living situation at present is:

1 bedroom unit - Vacant
2 bedroom unit - Occupied by the tenant formerly known as "deadbeat" (who turns out to actually be a pretty swell guy, time will tell if he pays his rent when he has a good landlord)
3 bedroom unit - Vacant, soon to be occupied by yours truly, yours truly's SO, and roommate who is renting 1 room for $300/mo
1 car garage - Being rented by tenant for an additional $200/mo
« Last Edit: December 14, 2020, 03:20:55 PM by Valley of Plenty »

PMJL34

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 166
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #116 on: December 14, 2020, 05:13:46 PM »
Valley,

Got it, that makes more sense about the water situation. Just know that water is your worst enemy. You have to declare full on war against water problems should they arise :)

You and the tenant appear to be developing a good working relationship. I hope it continues to be a win-win situation.  How much is he paying to rent the 2 bedroom? That's amazing that you can charge $200 for a garage! That's like half your mortgage!

I'm happy to post feedback on your doors. Sounds like they are pretty beat up and may need to be replaced (I would still hold off though most likely). As mentioned, just know that old doors and new doors are different enough to make replacements pretty hard (lock positions, thickness, plate positions can all be different). And as mentioned, good quality exterior doors are expensive. I myself have had luck with craigslist, but I warn you that I had to retrofit the entire door, opening, and jamb and it wasn't as straightforward as I would have liked. If you just want better weather stripping, your door frame (not the door itself) should have grooves and you can purchase weather strips for cheap at your local hardware store and it will make a huge difference and keep the water/wind/bugs out.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2020, 05:15:23 PM by PMJL34 »

Goldielocks

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6964
  • Location: BC
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #117 on: December 14, 2020, 05:18:24 PM »

What is wrong with the doors? Doors are very tricky to replace in older homes and generally very expensive (especially exterior doors). A little bit of sanding and paint can make them look brand new. Perhaps a picture could help me understand your concerns. This would be much lower on my to do list.


Re Doors.  It is amazing what sandable primer, and exterior paint can do to very rough exterior doors.  No, they won't look perfect, but will look "kept up" and "maintained" and hence, be not noticed.

I sanded and painted quite a few cheap 1970's (think veneer over wood core) doors that had been exposed to the rain for far too long.  This was on a community building, without much budget.   It turned out great and the $$ went into better roof flashing and roof demossing.

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #118 on: December 28, 2020, 12:23:06 PM »
Update!

Yesterday was a very productive day. Assisted the holdover tenant with moving the remainder of his things out of the unit I'm going to be moving into, so it's now completely empty and move-in ready for us. Also fixed the door to the basement that previously would not shut and had no knob or latch. I have a feeling by the time I finally move out of this place I'm going to be quite good at fixing/replacing doors!

The new bathroom floor and trim has been installed in the upstairs bathroom of my unit, courtesy of the holdover tenant. I'm paying him $200 for the job. He took longer than I would have liked to get it done, (about a week and a half from when he first said he would do it) but I know he's been busy with the holidays, so I'm being lenient. In the future I think I'll be setting more strict deadlines for work I commission him for.

Renting a U-Haul truck for Wednesday and Thursday to hopefully get most of my roommates' and I's things moved in. We still have all of January left on my lease, so there's no rush, but we're eager to get get it done.

The roof seems to be holding up well. I've monitored it closely over the course of several rainfalls and 18 inches of snow, and the only sign of leakage is a small leak in the corner of a dormer. I don't think it will give me any major problems before spring when I get it replaced. I'm now leaning more towards a shingled roof, simply because the complexity of the roof makes me nervous about getting a metal roof put on. From what I understand the margin for error with metal roofs is a lot smaller than it is with shingles, and I don't know any roofing companies well enough to have complete confidence in their ability to do the job right the first time. So I'll probably be spending $15,000 in the spring to have the old shingles taken off and new shingles put down.


sammybiker

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 433
    • Making 200k in equity in 6mo - Back down the rabbit hole, long distance RE
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #119 on: December 29, 2020, 06:13:14 AM »
@Valley of Plenty    Nice update, good work.

Can you use the time now to get more bids on the roof?  $15k is a lot, especially in your area where labor rates are lower.  Even a complex roof, I would expect could be had <$8k.

Valley of Plenty

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 132
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Pennsylvania
  • Toss a Coin to Your Net Worth
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #120 on: December 29, 2020, 06:38:26 AM »
@Valley of Plenty    Nice update, good work.

Can you use the time now to get more bids on the roof?  $15k is a lot, especially in your area where labor rates are lower.  Even a complex roof, I would expect could be had <$8k.

I can shop around for quotes, but it is highly unlikely that I'm going to find anyone able to beat the price offered to me by the amish crew. These guys are known for doing work for cheaper than anyone else. Still, it can't hurt to check. Thanks for reminding me of that!

PMJL34

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 166
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #121 on: December 29, 2020, 09:28:51 PM »
Awesome update!

What exactly did you do to fix the doors? You will become a DIY expert in no time. Youtube is your best friend.

lol I am so curious about the tenant's bathroom floor job. What exactly did he do and what type of flooring did he put down? Until I see the quality of his work, I'm not sure I would feel comfortable hiring him. I would hate for you to have to re-do his job and pay someone to remove his old work + the new work. With that said, hope he did a great job.

Tarp my friend! And yes, definitely get a couple of more quotes. I think 15K is about right considering shingle removal and dormer/complexity. If you are going to remove the shingles, you will most likely need new sheathing put down (OSB/plywood). Make sure this is included in the quote.

Best of luck and thanks for keeping us updated!


BicycleB

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2909
  • Location: Live Music Capital of the World
  • Older than the internet, but not wiser... yet
Re: The Great $55,000 Triplex Saga
« Reply #122 on: December 29, 2020, 10:13:31 PM »
Just found this thread today, reading out of curiosity.

Tarp sounds like a good idea, but don't take advice from me, just the people who know what they're talking about. @Valley of Plenty, good luck on your new home.

Liking the pictures.