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Mission: Buy Affordable Vacation Home
It’s not just kids who wish summer vacation would never end.
Last year, some 920,000 American adults turned that dream into reality by buying a vacation home.
In locales where recreation depends on sunny, warm weather, most of the vacation home buying occurs from spring to early fall, says Adam DeSanctis, spokesperson for the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
Sales likely would have been higher last year if the supply of affordable vacation homes were greater, reports NAR economist Lawrence Yun.
This year, supply – at least at price levels most buyers seek – is also constrained, Yun says.
Of course, affordable is a relative term, “varying considerably by area and buyer,” says Susan Borochov, Coldwell Banker Properties in Hawaii.
For buyers hoping to land a property in an area crowded with other purchasers, some hard work will be required before enjoying vacation homes pleasures, say real estate professionals.
The first step: An intimate knowledge of the locale, and confidence that it will prove a practical place to getaway.
For most buyers, a second home should be located within a relatively short drive or flight, so the property will be used frequently.
For instance, buyers looking for a coastal property in Southern California usually have their primary home in California or nearby, says Tim Beckius of Smith Group, Newport Beach, California.
After pinpointing where, narrow down what – namely the home features you must have and price range limits.
An experienced real estate agent can provide a reality check on how feasible it is to find must-have features within a certain dollar range, Borochov says.
Any agent a buyer selects should engender confidence that he/she keeps a steady watch out for new listings.
“Getting in first is important to ensure that you find the right deal in the right place,” Beckius says.
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