Whether you’re a local or an out of towner, Encinitas would be a beautiful place to call your home away-from-home. Maybe you’re thinking about buying a vacation property here, or somewhere else entirely. Either way, a vacation home is a major decision and investment.
There are a lot of things to consider, and in this article, Zillow.com has them spot-on. This is what you should think about before buying a vacation home:
1. How far?
If you want to be able to get away fast to your piece of paradise, you should consider properties that are affordable and quick to get to. Too far and you might not visit often, but too close and it might not feel like an escape. So what’s the perfect distance? According to the national average, that’s about 180 miles from your main residence. To decide, think about your schedule, your transportation, your sense of adventure and your patience.
2. How often?
Will you be there every weekend? Once a month? Seasonally? The more often you’ll be there, the more a vacation home will be worth your investment. And, the more you use it, the more practical and comfortable you will want it to be. With more frequent use, you might want more conveniences like a dishwasher, A/C laundry, etc.
3. How much?
Above all, pick a price range before you start seeing properties and stick to it. With these types of homes, spending a little extra can get especially tempting. A good real estate agent can help you with this.
If you’ll be financing your dream vacation home, keep in mind that most banks typically want 20 percent down; lenders also want to see that new debt added to your old debt doesn’t exceed 36 percent of your income.
Monthly costs on a vacation property are basically the same as any home: taxes, utilities, insurance and maintenance. Some might have additional resort fees and homeowner association dues. The point of a vacation home is to help you relax, not add to stress; so make sure it fits your budget.
4. To rent or not to rent?
If you buy a property in a popular vacation or tourist destination (like Encinitas), you have the option to get some extra money and use out of your vacation house by renting it though Airbnb.com for example, or to friends and family.
- Rental incomes helps you cover the cost of your vacations
- Renting out a vacation home for more than 14 days a year creates a tax shelter for deductions
- Renting a vacation home that you eventually want to sell can help you wait out a bad market
- Dealing with responsibilities of reservations, housekeeping and demands of guests
- You’ll need to clean (or hire cleaners) after guests leave
- Tax regulations are complicated, and the more you actually use your vacation home, the less of a tax shelter it becomes
Check out the original article on Zillow: