What to Know Before Buying a Vacation Home

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As you pack up your car and kids again to head to your favorite spot in up north Wisconsin, have you asked yourself, is it time for a vacation home? Do you find yourself heading to the same area, year after year to beat the crowds and mark out your favorite spot? This may be a sign that it would be in your best interest to buy a vacation home!shutterstock_60493105Of course there are things that you must consider before buying a vacation home. It is not a decision to enter into lightly and must make sense logistically and financially. Here are some questions to ask yourself before talking to your Shorewest, REALTOR®:

What can you afford? Not only will you need to pay for the home itself but take into account the other costs of owning a vacation property, including property tax, insurance, furniture, utilities, water, trash, winterization/de-winterization, security systems, exterior maintenance, caretaking services, homeowners associations, etc. Make sure your budget allows for these extra costs.

What are the rules surrounding the area? Not all homes can be used as rental property. Homeowner or condo associations may have set rules for rentals. Some places will require you to use their programs, which may have strict standards on furnishings and amenities. It is a good idea to research your area to see if there are any rules in place.

Are you renting it out when not in use? Renting out your vacation property is a great way to make a return on your investment. This is a question you will need to have answered right away. If you will be renting it out, will you hire a management company to take care of the property or will you do it yourself? Have a rental business plan in place to combat all issues before they arise.

Are you close to area attractions? A home away from local attractions might sound attractive to you, but that doesn’t mean that it will appeal to your renting audience. When you’re looking for a vacation home, always keep resale value and rental potential in the back of your mind.

What measures will you take to keep your property safe when vacant? Empty homes attract trouble. Consider buying lights with timers built in or asking neighbors to occasionally park in your driveway. Ask a neighbor or hire a kid from your neighborhood to pick up mail and fliers that pile up so it is not obvious when you are not there.

How much time will I be able to spend here? If you are buying a vacation home, make sure to invest your time! Spend more than a few weekends there. It will become your relaxation oasis, remember to enjoy!

Many Wisconsin cities and towns are perfect for vacation homes. Your Shorewest, REALTOR® can help you find something local or nationally! Contact yours today and enjoy your own private sanctuary.

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Categories: First Time Home Buyers, Home Buying, Homeowner, How to, Monday Motivation

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