Duplex to Single - Posted by Kyle

Posted by Rob on March 23, 2006 at 22:03:50:

Since the projects I’ve had were relatively simple (knock out an interior wall, enclose the second exterior door) I’ve have not had an issue. Mostly, the tax reflects a duplex unless I apply to have it changed. The bank doesn’t care as long as the appraiser verifies the property type.

Duplex to Single - Posted by Kyle

Posted by Kyle on March 23, 2006 at 09:29:08:

I am definitely a “Newbe” and I am moving to the Cleveland Oh area. I would like to start rehabbing right away and don’t know much about the area.
I noticed that some developers are turning old duplexes into upscale SFHs and wondered if this was a good idea.
I would think that remodeling old rentals into SFH’s might improve neighborhoods and make people want to move in and drive prices up.
Can anyone tell me if this is worth investigating? I was looking at Lakewood area and see a lot of duplexes.
How do you get the renters out? Do you have to let their leases run out first? Are their better neighborhoods than others to try this?
I would appreciate any input as I won’t have a job when I get there and will need to move fast. I would also appreciate any input from some Cleve. area rehabbers.

Re: Duplex to Single - Posted by David Krulac

Posted by David Krulac on March 24, 2006 at 06:07:44:

  1. I sold a 2 unit to a buyer that bought it for less than a SFH, and then converted it back to a SFH. It was a victorian house, it already had 2 baths, obviously, and there were no changes to the exterior. On the interior a door that was sealed was reopened.

  2. Another property that I looked at was a 3 unit, that a buyer got for under market and re-converted back to a single family and did very well.

  3. Several factors to consider:

a. the best conversions are the simplest ones where you change the property BACK to its original SFH use.

b. in the rapidly appreciating real estate market prices have risen faster than rents. making it advantegeous to convert a rental property into a SFH, probably owner occupied.

c. there are probably 20 times the buyers for a SFH than for a duplex. more buyers means you can get a higher price when you sell.

d. most people buy SFH based on sales comps NOT rental income. they are not buying based on the rental income possible but on the value and comps in the neighborhood.

e. this works best in the middle to upper price scales.

f. it can also work well in a neighborhood where the duplex/units are either a non-conforming grandfathered use or where almost all the neighboring properties are SFH.

Re: Duplex to Single - Posted by Rob

Posted by Rob on March 23, 2006 at 11:38:54:

I’m doing the same thing here in Ohio. The properties I have were built as single family homes and were converted in 1930’s and 50’s. One was a three unit and the other is a duplex, both were single family at one time. Sometimes the conversion is simple, just open a wall or enclose the second entrance. Others are very difficult because the whole interior structure could have been altered. Such as stairs being moved, several walls knocked out etc. The difference in value from a duplex to single family could be significant. I would concentrate in areas that are really appreciating. I wouldn’t convert a duplex into a single family in a low end or primarily rental area. I’ve increase my equity from 50K to 80K. However, my conversions were relatively simple. Be carefull and don’t move too fast. A lot of these homes are very old and anyone who has worked on older homes knows that most of the time you will go over budget and/or spend more time working on it.

Re: Duplex to Single - Posted by Luke Hoppel

Posted by Luke Hoppel on March 23, 2006 at 10:51:02:

Good question Kyle. This is something I have been interested in as well. I’m not sure if the whole process will leave much cash on the table though. I’m interested in seeing what others say though.

Re: Duplex to Single - Posted by ski

Posted by ski on March 23, 2006 at 20:18:31: