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apartments above shop3/5
We need a bigger shop. I have an opportunity to build a new shop in a downtown location. I'd like to build 4-5 apartments on the second level. Rentals are scarce around here right now and if apartments are rented it would more than cover the payment on what I'd need to borrow to build. Zoning is mixed use commercial /residential. Light industrial is allowed (up to 8,000 sq ft) and must have a walk-in showroom. It's a small town, downtown is well past its prime. Planning commission is in love with the idea. Talk me out of this.
Oh no... Don't do that....
I would not want to be responsible for the happiness of tenants above a woodworking shop- noise and fumes would not be apartment friendly at least not without a very expensive design & build. Even then the risk is not something I'd want. I can only see trouble in this. Very expensive trouble. Good luck with your decision.
I don't know, people live right next to the elevated trains in Chicago, but that is CHICAGO. What's the advantage of living in your downtown area that "is well past it's prime"? And as mentioned, wait till you kick on the dust cyclone outside their window, and then the thickness planer, and the finish booth fan! All that outside their windows? I'd say your insurance agent would be the first person I would talk to. I bet you have to sprinkle your shop and the apartments because of the fire risk. Personally, doesn't sound like a good idea to me.
Is there anything similiar in the city or nearby?
I don't know of any woodshop nearby but there's plenty of auto shops with similar. All the old buildings in the downtown have occupied apartments above
How is that working our for them, how is the occupancy rate?
Mind ye well the insurance implications.
I think there are a lot of variables that will come into play here that without knowing would be hard to say one way or the other. I mean having a small custom furniture shop with a couple people making beautiful one of a kind pieces of furniture is a whole different kind of shop than a shop with 15 guys slamming out kitchens. Are these "luxury" apartments or just inexpensive studios? How are tenants going to react when its busy so the dust collectors and heavy machines are kicking on at 8am on a Saturday morning?
Just way too many scenarios for anyone to offer any concrete advice. What I will say though is depending on your particular area you may do well with artist spaces. If it's a less than ideal part of a city it could be a perfect place for them to find inexpensive space. And in my experience artists, especially the young starting out type, will deal with just about anything to find good cheap space to live and work in. My first shop was in an old industrial building in the city and I had people living above me for years. We got along very well and really never had any problems. As a general stereotype artists that I had contact were just generally easy to deal with. Now fast forward a couple decades and I have tenants in an older home in middle class neighborhood. I dread young people just moving out on their own into there first apartment like the plague. You'll get calls for anything and everything. These people can't change their own lightbulbs! But I digress, I think you need to really sit and think through all the details off what's going to be involved. I'd also recommend finding a good real estate rental agent to talk to. These people know the rental scene in your area the best and if you find a good one can offer good advice on what type of people you'll get for the type of space your thinking of building. We found a good one several years ago and life had been a LOT easier since we started using her.
It could be a good long term investment.
After things go sideways...
You've got an apartment for yourself, one for your recently divorced wife, and one for each of your adult children when they move back home.
You are playing chess while the rest of us are playing checkers.
Be aware that you will most likely need a world class firewall separation (ready big $$) between the Industrial and Residential areas.