It's always good to start off with 2 hives, if one is stronger, you can take a frame of brood to give the weaker one a little boost.
I'm hoping to be able to do a couple of splits this year, so far all 3 of my hives are doing well. This weekend I am going into them to see how the queen is doing with her egg laying, and if possible to take some frames of brood and honey and put them in a Nuc or 2. My goal is to end up this year with at least 9 hives.
Our garage looks like an assembly line, we have 13 new medium supers and assorted bottoms and tops we assembled and are painting. We were lucky and got 5 gallons of a beautiful robins egg blue outdoor paint so the honey supers will be blue this year
Good luck with your hives!