This is a collaborative post.
Having a second home that can serve as a place to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life sounds glamorous, but purchasing it is a process that should be approached carefully. Making such a significant investment is not supposed to be taken lightly because if you want to make it worthwhile, the property will require plenty of attention and maintenance.
Before you make any decisions, you should first take some time to think about your budget and weigh all pros and cons of owning a vacation home. It’s also worth spending some time in the area of your choice so you can get the proper idea of how living there really looks like – don’t buy a whole house near the beach just because you went there two times in your life. You also might want to think about renting the place when you’re not there for an additional income source.
Here are six things you should consider before buying a home to spend your vacations in:
Determine What You Want
The first thing you should do when deciding on a vacation home is define what you want – is it the ocean or a mountain view that catches your eye? Do you prefer seclusion, or are you into socializing with your neighbors?
You also need to think about the amount of space you need. Do you plan on coming there with a large group of friends and family every time, or would you rather spend some time alone? You can find plenty of properties that can accommodate both types of overflow, but it’s better to know in advance, so you don’t end up with something way bigger than you need.
Don’t be afraid to be a little picky, but make sure to know when to compromise. For example, you might be planning to spend a lot of time in the garden, but the view is not that great. Or, you have found a home with a large pool and a spacious backyard, but the property is located in the middle of nowhere. Is your heart set on a retractable awning? According to retractableawnings.com, the installation cost can get quite high, so maybe it’s worth looking for a house with an already organized backyard or considering other solutions – non-retractable awnings, pergolas, or even a roof over the whole deck.
Get the Proper Insurance
Insurance is crucial for protecting your property. In case there’s a fire or some other disaster, insurance can cover the cost of repairs and help you get back on your feet with another place to stay. The coverage will vary depending on the place you want to purchase and what risks it poses, but in general, it is a good idea to consider insurance as a part of your budget, especially if you plan to rent the house to other people.
Check with a few insurance companies and compare prices before you make any decisions because if you’re going to spend thousands of dollars on a property, at least know you’re completely covered in case something happens.
Research the Local Market
A house’s value is determined by the local market, so if you want to make sure your investment is safe and you won’t have to sell it at a loss, make sure you know what other properties are selling for in the area.
You can find this information by visiting local real estate agencies or checking real estate websites. Additionally, joining Facebook groups or forums dedicated to the housing market in the area, you’re interested in will also provide you with a great insight into the situation.
Choose the Right Location
When you think of getting a vacation home, you may imagine yourself relaxing on a tropical beach or exploring the city in a new way. Before making any decisions, think about what kind of location would suit your needs best. If you want to go on vacations often, look for a house that’s not too far from where you live, so you don’t spend excessive amounts of time traveling there every time you want to relax.
Then, think about activities you find most relaxing. If you prefer staying in and enjoying your leisure time, a house with a swimming pool or one close to the water and beach might be a great idea. If you’re an active person, look for a place that will allow you to go for hikes and long walks.
Inspect the House Before Buying
If you want to get a good deal on your dream vacation home, you should inspect it thoroughly before making an offer. The property should be in good shape, and any problems should be documented in writing before anything gets signed and sealed. If it doesn’t meet your standards, don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal – nobody likes spending money on a bad investment.
Have an experienced home inspector take a close look at things like a home’s foundation, structural components, roof, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems, and then provide a written home inspection report with results.
Consider Renting Out Your House While You’re Not There
If you’re planning to spend a lot of your time there, buying a vacation home might be an excellent investment. But if you’re simply going to use it for a couple of weeks every year, it can be more practical to rent it out.
Most people looking for a holiday home aren’t planning to stay for months on end – they want to pop in for a weekend or a week and enjoy the place for a few days before heading back home. And renting out your house to those people is an excellent way to cover some of the costs and make some additional income.
Pay Attention to Utility Costs
If you want to get the most out of a second home, you should leave it in good hands when you’re not there. You can either hire somebody to take care of all maintenance or hire a property management company that will take care of everything while keeping your costs low at the same time.
Frozen pipes can burst in the winter, and a wild raccoon can make a hole in your roof and get into the house while it’s vacant, so if you don’t want to worry about having to attend to the matter while you’re miles away, a property manager will do that for you.
If you’re planning to buy a second home, remember that it’s not a decision you should take lightly. It might seem like a good investment, but in reality, it can also become an expensive mistake. Before making any decisions, weigh all pros and cons of owning a vacation home – if the place is too far away from your favorite locations or has other issues, maybe it’s not worth it. Do your research, and don’t be afraid to walk away if things don’t meet your expectations – the housing market is always busy, so you’ll surely be able to find something that suits your needs.