7 Things to Consider When Buying a Vacation Home

This week we have a new guest blogger joining us! Cindy Aldridge from ourdogfriends.org has prepared an article for vacation home purchasing! Keep reading to find out the 7 Things to Consider when Buying a Vacation Home!


Vacation homes are hot right now, making up 30 percent of residential real estate business in 2017, according to the National Association of Realtors. It's easy to see why. A vacation home makes enjoying your leisure time much easier. There's no need to compare hotels, bother with RV hookups, or sink your funds into timeshares. As with any major purchase, however, buying a vacation home requires research. Here are seven things to consider before taking the plunge.

Question One: How Far Away?

Most people who buy a vacation home choose a location within driving distance of their permanent residence. This makes sense if you plan to use the home for shorter stays like three-day weekends.

On the other hand, those with ample free time may select a spot in another state or even another country. For example, people who migrate to Florida for the winter may spend their summers in places like Maine or New York State. What better way to avoid unpleasant weather?

Question Two: How Much Love?

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The purpose of a vacation home is to have easy access a place you enjoy visiting. But make sure you love the area enough to justify the cost. You may have a blast during your annual getaway to North Carolina's Outer Banks, for instance. But will you love the coast just as much if you're there more often? In addition to your love for the area, it helps to buy a property in an area that draws a lot of interest and that boasts a hot real estate market, especially if you plan to rent it out.

Question Three: How Much Effort?

A wise person once said, "Whatever you own also owns you." Nowhere is this more true than with vacation homes. You may end up spending much of your time performing routine maintenance tasks, according to Forbes. Every residence requires cleaning and upkeep. Of course, you may enjoy handyperson projects; many people do. If so, then consider them part of the appeal of owning a vacation home.

Question Four: How Much Will it Cost?

Mortgage payments may only be the beginning of the expenses you'll incur. Property taxes, insurance, association dues, and other fees can add up quickly. Contact the local chamber of commerce or courthouse to find out how much these charges will add to the tab. Don’t forget to factor in utilities and trash pickup.

Question Five: How Much Security?

Vacation homes make tempting targets for criminals. They're often unoccupied and located in remote areas. Fortunately, you can deter trespassers with affordable off-the-shelf products like wireless locks and web-based security cameras. Some communities employ private security forces that will keep an eye on your property for you.

Question Six: What About the Move

For many people, furnishing and decorating their vacation homes is easy to do with older items you have in your primary residence. But you still have to get those pieces to your new property. This means hiring packers and movers, which is another added expense. Though you can opt for the hybrid model of renting a truck yourself and paying someone to move. Regardless of which method you use, it’s a cost you’ll want to include in your budget when planning for a vacation home.

Question Seven: How Much Money?

How much vacation home can you afford? Will you need to rent it out during part of the year? If so, are you up to the challenge of being a landlord? Leasing the home to trusted acquaintances can help to address these concerns. The important thing is to work out a realistic budget for your vacation spot before you invest your hard-earned cash.

Buying a vacation property is a great way to enhance your quality of life. Use the information in here to guide you in the process, and you'll have a better plan for buying the vacation home of your dreams.