Today Logan Ermovick shares his income suite house hacking story from Kansas City, Missouri.
House hacking is the way to eliminate your biggest expense. What are you waiting for? Learn more in our House Hacking Quick Start Guide.
House Hacking Case Study
When Airbnb first came about, Logan was intrigued by the idea of renting out an extra space to cover the costs of homeownership. However, he moved around too much to act on the idea until recently.
In May 2020, Logan was finally able to move forward with his house hacking goals.
The House Hack
When Logan started hunting for the right house, he kept the idea of rentable space in mind. In the end, he decided on a 1,350 single-family home with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms that he found through a FI-minded real estate agent.
In the upstairs portion of the home, there is a master suite space that included a bedroom and bathroom. Although it needed some updates, Logan thought it could be the right fit for his house hacking goals. Plus, his fiance and he could live on the lower level which included two bedrooms and one bathroom.
Originally, the upstairs space was used as a master suite. It included 400 square feet of living space, but it needed to be updated to create a separate space that would be attractive to tenants.
Logan had to do quite a bit of work to the property including:
- Creating a separate entryway.
- Building a staircase on the exterior of the house.
- Creating a deck area at the front door of the rental unit.
- Building in plumbing for a kitchenette.
- Adding some electrical lines for the kitchenette.
- Updating the flooring.
- Repainting the entire space.
- Adding a washer/dryer combo unit.
- Updating the HVAC system.
For the most part, Logan tackled these projects himself. However, he did hire a contractor to build the exterior staircase and install the HVAC system. In total, the renovations only took 6 weeks to complete.
Since he converted the unit into an Airbnb rental, he was able to repurpose some of his furniture to provide low-cost furnishings. Overall, he spent $8,500 to update the space for tenants.
Here's a look at the finished unit:
At first, Logan planned to find long-term tenants through local housing groups. However, he didn't have too much luck amidst the COVID crisis. So instead, he posted the unit to Airbnb and Furnished Finderas a long-term rental for stays of at least 28 days.
From June 10th to December 31st 2020, he only had 11 vacant nights!
The Numbers of the Deal
It’s time to find out exactly how profitable this house hacking strategy was!
Logan put down $3,500 on a $105,000 property. He used a conventional loan with some seller concessions and an interest rate of 2.625%. Overall, his monthly mortgage payment was $570.
Logan was able to rent out the unit for $825. Although the income varies a little based on the nature of the rental, the average has been $825.
- Gross Rent: $825
- Mortgage payment: $570
- Cashflow before maintenance and vacancies: $255
- Housing costs before house hacking: $690
- Total housing savings: $945
The cash flow of the property is positive. With that, Logan and his finance are able to live for free. Logan and his fiance plan to house hack again.
Want to live for free while someone else pays your mortgage? Dive into housing hacking with our House Hacking Quick Start Guide.
The Learning Curve
Looking back, Logan wouldn't change too much about the renovation process. Although he would have added more outdoor space and a dedicated parking space. But overall, he is very happy with his experience. Currently, he is able to tuck more money away towards his investments as he works towards FI.
If you are considering house hacking, Logan shares his experience, “Making a thorough plan and executing on a timeline has really help me make this a reality. I had quite a bit of DIY experience but also had to teach myself a number of things, so not being intimidated by the thought of ‘I have to renovate this entire space' and instead break it up into manageable pieces.
Try to get one thing done a day that you can see a tangible result from. An example: When I was adjusting the electrical lines for new lights fixtures extractor fans outlets etc. I tried to do a handful of them at the same time and began running into issues of dead wires, 3 way switches daisy chained together etc. So I essentially had to scrap all my work and start over. Any project can be overwhelming and if you don't have a plan you will be redoing work.”
With the right approach, any can dive into house hacking.
The Bottom Line
House hacking can help anyone achieve their financial goals. How would house hacking change your life?
If you are interested in creating your own house hacking story, check out our ultimate guide, listen to our house hacking podcast, or read more case studies for inspiration. You never know how dramatically your life can change through this one choice!
If you choose to pursue a house hack of your own, please share your story with us! We would love to showcase your success.
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