Apartments for Low Income

Questions and Answers

Your Questions About Duplex

December 1, 2012

Ruth asks…

How do I sell a duplex in a down market?

I noticed the real estate market isn’t as good as it was and its now a buyers market. so how can I compete? I bought brand new a duplex last year and I owe 320K on it and it appraises for 350K. I have it listed for 335K so I can pay the relators commission. I am not behind on the payments so most investors are not interested in it since its not a distressed property. It needs no work or rehab. Eventaully, it will start hurting me financially because I had to kick the tenants out 2 months ago for non payment. I am looking for more tenants but it’s not easy. I have it listed with the agent, it’s advertised in the local newpaper, and on craigs list for almost 2 months and only 2 people have called about it. Is there anything I can do at this point? What about an auction?

Administrator answers:

Flat fee mls entry you will still have to pay the buyers agent a commission……why not rent it out?if its a problem finding tenants lower the price,the only reason places dont rent is people ask to much….give people a reason to want to live there…have decent credit charge a lower move in rate….price it to move if you dont want to go into foreclosure

Betty asks…

What do you think it would be like living next door to your landlord in a duplex?

We’re moving and looking at a nice duplex but the landlord lives on the other side. Do you think we would be able to have peace or would the landlord be snoopy and picky? Pros and cons?

Administrator answers:

Oh Hell no

William asks…

What’s the width and length requirements of a Lot in Calgary for building a Duplex?

Hey guys,

I am looking to build a Duplex in Calgary.
Right now, I am hunting for the right Lot.
Does anyone know the width and length requirements?
Serious answers plz!, Thanks you guys in advance.


Administrator answers:


The lot has to have a minimum width of 50 feet (15.2 m) to have the city consider the lot for an attached residence or duplex. The length is not generally a consideration as a lot with a 50 foot frontage should have a length of 160 feet or greater.

Also, each community is zoned differently. Be sure that the lot your looking at is zoned R2. Next, you need to find out whether the city will allow for more/any duplexes on that street or in that community. Just because it is R2, does not mean the city will approve a new duplex development. You need to get the legal description (A Realtor can provide this information) for the lot that your interested in and contact the City of Calgary land development branch to see if it’s possible obtain approval for the development.

Linda asks…

How to decorate my new duplex retro style?

im getting a duplex in a couple of months and i wanna decorate it with a retro vibe to it..only problem is im on a budget and alot of things retro and vintage are very expensive.I can’t paint the walls so im stuck with white walls. theres 3 bedrooms and 2 baths
50s 60s style…and incorporate music since ima musician

Administrator answers:

“Vintage” doesn’t have to mean expensive. Hit the thrift stores. Look for fabrics you can use to make pillows for the sofa, curtains, or table covers. Use table covers to make curtains. Mix it up.

As for being stuck with white walls, use poster frames from the dime stores to frame large blocks of fabric…colors limited only by the fabric or paper you find. You could frame a polka-dot in one, a solid of the same color in another, stripes in a third, and a paisley print in the fourth, then hang them all in a row for a color statement. Or do 4 blocks of solids, then use the prints for table covers, curtains, and pillows.

Retro means different things to different people. To some, it’s 50′s red and white and black, to others it might mean totally 70′s. Just let the fabrics you find lead you.

(An old chenille bed spread with panels on it was cut up on a “kids room” design show I saw recently. She used some of the panels for pillows and some of the spread to make a bed-skirt. It was cute, and very retro if your idea of retro was 1940!)

Paul asks…

What is the difference between a duplex and a townhouse?

Can anyone tell me the difference between a duplex and a townhouse?

Administrator answers:

They are essentially the same thing, except for one difference, and how many levels is not it (plenty of one story townhomes around):

A duplex is a building with two units next to each other, only, hence the term duplex. It could also be that one is on top of the other. More than two would be a triplex (3), fourplex (4 aka quadruplex).

A townhouse has more than two of these units next to each other. You will see townhomes as having three or more units side by side.

Each can have one level, two, three or more levels.

Duplex’s are often sold as one whole piece (investment/rental properties) where townhomes are sold as individual properties.

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