Owning a vacation home is the aspiration of countless American homeowners. Doesn’t it sound nice to have your own home-away-from-home, set in a glamorous location that you can escape to whenever your schedule permits? Buying a vacation home can be an amazing experience, provided that you know what you’re getting into before you decide to do it. If you’re thinking about making such a purchase, try taking these into consideration first:

  • Rental income: One way to help offset costs is to purchase a rental home in an area that other vacationers will need lodgings. Local real estate agents and vacation rental companies should be consulted about the possibility of renting out the property while it’s uninhabited.
  • Be cognizant of the area’s “high” season: Depending on where your vacation home is located, there may be a certain time of the year when a large influx of travelers arrives. For example, most warm, sunny places see a rise in tourism during winter months, when those who dwell in frostier climes seek warmer surroundings. Scheduling your vacations during these “high” periods can significantly impact your rental income.
  • Maintenance can be problematic: Who is going to maintain your property while you’re away? Just because nobody is residing in the home full-time doesn’t mean that things won’t need to be done. Foliage around the property will need to be maintained, lest you return to an overgrown nightmare, and indoor cleaning and repair will need to be taken into account. Contacting a local property manager and making use of their service will cost more in the short-term, but it will likely be well-worth it.
  • Location, location, location: Last but not least, the location in which you purchase your rental home will have an immense impact on how often you can use it. Purchasing a secluded cabin in the mountains can sound like a dream getaway, but how accessible is the place really? The further you have to travel, the less likely you’ll be to make use of the property as time goes on. Often, the most fulfilling and oft-visited vacation homes are those that are purchased just a few hours’ drive from your permanent residence.