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Are Duplexes Hard to Sell?

Are duplexes hard to sell?

It seems like every other day we get a call from a disgruntled duplex owner looking to get out of their ownership. That may come as a surprise to some of you reading this, but it’s true. Because, while most people think it would be an awesome arrangement–owning, managing and even selling a duplex–we see so much of the contrary. Our article here will shed some light on this matter and take an intimate look into the issues of duplex ownership and what makes them such headaches to manage and sell. Here we go!

The quick answer is: yes, duplexes are notoriously hard to sell on the traditional real estate market, and here is why:

For starters, duplexes are often considered to be “less than” single-family homes. This is because they’re usually smaller, have less yard space, aren’t as private and typically don’t have the same level of finishes and amenities. Duplexes are also used mostly as rentals–and renters aren’t exactly known for keeping a place as nice as an owner would. As a result, buyers are often reluctant to pay top dollar for a duplex and would rather just go for a single-family home setup. 

Duplexes are also more difficult to finance, which can make them a turn-off for potential buyers. There are a number of reasons for this, but the most common one is that duplexes are considered to be high-risk investments. They are often sold as investment properties and typically have higher vacancy rates and lower rental prices than single-family homes. And finally, they are also more likely to be located in areas with higher crime and lower property values. For these reasons, lenders have a hard time justifying offering loans for these properties and therefore can make them a little more difficult to finance. For instance, the down payments are typically around a steep 25%. So for a duplex with a $500,000 selling price, that is a whopping $125,000. That does not include your closing costs.

And then there’s the fact that duplexes often come with a lot of baggage – think noisy neighbors, parking issues, higher crime rates and maintenance headaches. All of the above makes you wonder how duplexes ever sell to begin with!

Can you sell half a duplex?

Since a duplex has two units to it you might wonder if you can sell just half of the duplex (this is called a half-plex). While it’s possible to sell one unit of a duplex, it’s not often done and here’s why.

When someone buys a duplex, they’re usually looking to live in one unit and rent out the other, or to help their ROI make sense they may plan to rent both units out to cover the mortgage. So if they see a listing for just half of a duplex they won’t waste any time or interest on it. 

Buying a property is already risky, let alone buying a half-plex. When you buy one side of a duplex, you know there are going to be people living on the other side; people who may or may not be pleasant neighbors to you. That’s what a blind commitment looks like. Yikes.


So, can you sell half a duplex? Well, while it’s not impossible to find a buyer for a half-plex, it might take a long time and you will likely get a low offer. Just be prepared for a long and possibly difficult journey.

Selling a duplex with tenants

Selling a clean and empty, move-in-ready duplex can be a challenge. Selling a duplex with tenants occupying it makes it a truly herculean task. After all, now you not only have to deal with the property itself but also with the people living in it. However, there are some things you can do to make the process go more smoothly. 

For one, it’s important to be upfront with your tenants about your plans to sell. This will give them time to adjust and make any necessary arrangements. You’ll also want to take good care of the property, keeping it appealing to potential buyers and helping you get a higher price. Next, you’ll need to find a buyer who is willing to work with existing tenants. This may take some time, but you need to find someone who is willing to respect the rights of your tenants. Finally, once you’ve found a willing and able buyer, it’s important to communicate with them regularly during the sale process. This way, everyone will be on the same page and the transition will go as smoothly as possible. 
Selling a duplex with tenants can be tricky but it’s definitely doable. With some careful planning and communication, and a little knowledge and preparation, you can navigate the process of selling a duplex with tenants without too much drama.

Is there an EASY way to sell a duplex?

All of the factors mentioned above can make it tough to find a buyer for a duplex on the traditional real estate market. If you are a duplex owner who needs to sell FAST and with little to no hassle, is there even any hope? The answer is a resounding, YES! There IS an easy way to sell your duplex! Get ready for it…

The absolute easiest way to get your duplex sold is by selling it to us here at Osborne Homes. We would love to buy it from you–in any condition, and we will pay ALL CASH. 

How does Osborne make selling your duplex easy?

We won’t need a listing agreement or any fancy pictures to post on the MLS. We are buying the house from you, as your buyer. So we won’t be listing your house the traditional way and that is usually half the battle of selling a home.

Another way Osborne makes selling a duplex easy is that there won’t be any agent commissions to pay, saving you money. Also, no home inspections to order or appraisals or bank loans to process. Sound dreamy? Read on.

If your duplex is in need of repairs, you do not need to do any work on your home prior to us buying it–we buy houses in as-is condition. We will even take care of all the move-out cleaning for you if you want to just leave things behind.

We use our own cash to buy your property. This eliminates the need for a loan or any approval from outside sources.

Having the power to make decisions, we are able to close quickly–and you walk away with cash in your pocket.We can get started even if both of your duplex units are currently occupied. Your tenants can stay in their homes all the way through the closing of escrow. We will handle everything from there.

In fact, here is what one of our clients said about our help in selling his occupied unit:

“The tenants that I had in my house were just out of control. This became super stressful and I was done with them and the house. A friend told me about Osborne Homes, and after a few phone calls and an appointment, I was able to sell my home with tenants included.” – Stephen S.

Selling a duplex doesn’t get any easier than this

So are duplexes hard to sell? Only if you try doing it the traditional way. Now, if you’re looking to sell a duplex without adding another wrinkle, Osborne can help. We buy duplexes all over California and have the experience and expertise to get this done fast and with zero hassle. Contact us today to get started!

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