Many New Orleans residents dream of owning their own double one day. For the people new to town, a double here is what you would call a duplex elsewhere.
What is “a double”?
Doubles in New Orleans are homes that, generally, are split down the middle by a wall. Many of these houses are shotgun style and are mirror images of one another.
Some of these New Orleans doubles are not identical though. Maybe a previous owner carved out a small unit that the entrance is on the side of the house. Other times you might find a camelback added to the house, and not necessarily always on both sides of the home. There are many variations of the New Orleans double, but we also have versions that have one unit on top of the other. That’s when we New Orleanians call it a duplex.
If I see two front doors, then it is always a double?
Nope! Over the years, people have renovated their doubles into single-family homes. The aesthetic of two front doors is loved and people tend to keep them both.
Are doubles more expensive when buying real estate in New Orleans?
Yes and no.
Yes, because finding a double in New Orleans that isn’t in need of a lot of renovations can be hard to find. A lot of times these properties have been used as rentals for extended periods of time and they haven’t been well-maintained.
The times that doubles are not more expensive in New Orleans is when you find one that needs lots of repairs. It will cost less to purchase, but you will need money to make this property great again.
Why do people in New Orleans want a double home?
Because you can live in one side and rent out the other. It’s an easy way to have your tenant help pay your mortgage.
With the new Airbnb laws going in effect December 1, 2019, you must be an owner-occupant to rent out your home as a short term rental. Which means, you must live on the property full-time.
There are many homeowners who love making money on short term rentals and see this as a great opportunity to purchase a New Orleans double, live on one side, and rent out the other one for tourists. In these cases, you typically make more than renting it out to long term tenants. Your STR could possibly pay your whole mortgage.
Should I purchase a double instead of a single-family home?
It’s up to you! Becoming a landlord is not for everyone. Can you afford to go for a couple of months without rent? Are you prepared for the maintenance costs for two homes? There are pros and cons of buying a double in New Orleans and as your real estate agent, we can weigh them out for you.
If you’ve decided to buy a home in New Orleans, we are here and ready to assist you. As some of New Orleans’ top real estate agents, we are familiar with all of the home styles and types.
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