4 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Finalize Your Vacation Home

Here’s the great thing about a vacation home: Enjoying it as a vacation home is only the beginning of its benefits. A vacation home is not only fun for your family and a place to take off for a relaxing respite, but a vacation home is an investment property – both monetarily and in terms of retirement. Vacation homes can be used to generate extra income. In the end, buying a vacation home can be one of the smartest decisions (financially and otherwise) that you ever make. Upper Delaware Real Estate shares some questions to ask yourself when you’re searching for the perfect one.

Do I want to rent it out when I’m not there?

Unless the idea of strangers staying at your home really creeps you out, the answer to this question should be an emphatic “yes.” If you don’t rent out your vacation home to other vacationers when you’re not using it, you’re simply throwing money away. The income generated from a second property via rentals can not only cover the mortgage on the property itself, but in many cases can even begin to provide significant supplemental income. As US News notes, you should make sure that the property you buy is rentable. Some areas have restrictions on online rental sites (peer-to-peer rentals), and some condos have rules against using properties for this purpose.

Do I want to retire here?

If your goal is to eventually retire to your beach, mountain, or lakeside vacation home, there are some special considerations you need to make when choosing what to buy. Think about aging. Even the most healthy people suffer some sort of loss in mobility as they get older, and if you happen to develop an illness or condition later in life, you may be stuck with a vacation home that is simply too hard to navigate and maintain. While searching, consider what kind of home design will suit you in your golden years. If you don’t want to go that far, you can make life easier in the future by buying a single-story vacation home or at least one that has all necessary home functionality on a single floor.

Can I really afford it?

It’s not that hard to figure out how much you can afford when it comes to the base mortgage payments; you can just use a home affordability calculator. But all homeownership comes with hidden costs. These include utilities, insurance, repair and renovation costs, and more. Many vacation homes (especially ones near beaches) experience more wear and tear (due to climate) and are more prone to catastrophic damage from weather events. This may bump your insurance and repair budget. So before you sign on the dotted line, take a good, hard look at all the costs of your new home.

How do I want to spend my vacations?

You’re buying a place to take vacations, which means you’ll be spending a significant amount of your vacation time there. So, you must ask yourself how you want to spend your time. If you only like going to the beach a couple times a year, do you really want to sink a large amount of your capital into a beach home? Hate the cold? Is a cold-weather mountain home really right for you? Do you want to be close to activities, or do you value solitude? This isn’t rocket science, but it’s surprising how many people purchase vacation homes that aren’t perfectly suited to their family’s interests.

In the end, a good vacation home is one that you want to visit multiple times a year because it checks off all your fun boxes, is affordable and rentable, and can accommodate you well into retirement. It’s a big purchase, so you want to get it right. Take your time and find the perfect home for you and your family.

Interested in purchasing a vacation home in the Upper Delaware River Valley? Talk to a skilled real estate professional from Upper Delaware Real Estate today! 607-637-5588

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