How to Purchase a Vacation Home With Friends or Family

You want a cottage by the sea, a chalet by a ski run or a lodge in the woods. But vacation homes are quite expensive, and most of us don’t have the time to care for a second home in addition to our primary residence? So, here is an idea: Split the financial obligations with a family member or friend! This article covers most of the important steps to learning how to purchase a vacation home.

Partnering up sounds great on paper, but purchasing a vacation home with family and friends can be risky. After all, if things do not go well, it can spell the end of your friendship. Not to mention you may end up in a legal battle over the home. After all, you might already be commonly renting a vacation place with said friends or family. Or you could take turns using the house, so you don’t actually overlap.

Still, this approach can also turn into an express lane to disaster if you don’t navigate the relationship with care and really learn how to purchase a vacation home.

Do not panic! Before you sign on the dotted line, here are some important questions to protect your finances and also leave your ties of friendship or family intact.

TIC or LLC?

Ownership of property by 2 or more parties who are not married – friends, relatives (it makes no difference) can be setup as a limited liability corporation (LLC) or as a tenancy in common (TIC). And while setting up an LLC will entail hundred dollars in additional fees and a tad more paperwork. A limited liability corporation can make it easier to give away or sell an interest in the vacation home and you are treated like an individual for tax purposes, but with the extra protection of a corporate liability shield. An operating agreement will be drafted to establish the obligations and rights of the members in the LLC.

Why this is important when learning how to purchase a vacation home: Under a tenancy in common, somebody who’s injured while in your shared vacation home can sue you and the other co-owners for all you are worth. Additionally, due to the fact that you own a house with somebody else, you’ve less control over who can be allowed to enter the house. So if your nephew wants to celebrate his high school graduation with a blowout party on your vacation home, and somebody steps on a broken glass, it can come back to bite you. This is much less of a risk if you choose an LLC.

Who is responsible for what?

Another reason why you should set up a limited liability corporation instead of a tenancy in common: Limited liability corporations are normally required by law to have an operating agreement. You should have an attorney draft an agreement which clearly explains everybody’s ownership interest.

That ratio, be it 80:20 or 50:50, will determine how costs like real estate taxes and insurance are divided. The agreement should also clearly explain who the manager of the vacation home is, capital improvements and how the maintenance of the home is going to be paid for and performed. The agreement gives the owners a guideline so that everyone knows before they own the place, what the parameters are.

You can think of it as real-estate prenuptial agreement, it’s there to ensure that things run smoothly and head off resentment at the pass. Otherwise any under discussed issues- like who is supposed to close up for the season or even clean out the gutters – can quickly and easily turn emotional.

Who gets which holidays and weekends?

People purchasing a house together should ask themselves if the other owners plan on being at the house at the same time, or alternate in using it, since vacation homes normally have a prime-time of just a few months.

Normally, everyone wants to go to the vacation home at the same time of the year, during school breaks for example. If the owners do not talk about this in advance it can lead to everybody showing up at the home on the same day- which isn’t exactly the tranquil vacation home you have always dreamed about.

If you decide to split, you should work out an annual schedule in advance and also consider rotating who gets the major holiday weekends. You should also agree that swaps and changes can be made but only with the permission of all the parties involved.

To rent or not to rent? / How to purchase a vacation home

From time to time your vacation home is going to be unoccupied no matter how many co-owners you have. If you are a neat freak and do not like strangers sleeping in your bed, you’ll not want to rent your vacation home. However, your brother might want to make some cash by renting out your shared vacation home.

You should hammer out whether you are going to rent out the vacation home so that you can generate income when you are not there. If all the parties agree to rent the vacation home just ensure where you are purchasing will allow that. Some communities do not allow short-term rentals.

What happens if somebody wants out? / How to purchase a vacation home

You should have at least one discussion about how long everybody wants to be on-board and what happens if one of the co-owners wants to sell. Giving the other owners right of first refusal if you want to sell your share is a way to reduce conflict. You should think about if you can afford to buy out a co-owner or if you’ll be able to cover the extra maintenance costs and mortgage in the event somebody wants out.

How to Promote Your Vacation Home Rental

In the past, promotion of the availability of a vacation home rental was limited to a few local avenues – print advertising, flyers handed out or hung up around town, postcards left in local establishments, and word of mouth. With the advent of the Internet, a new option has been created for marketing vacation rentals. You can now promote your rental home across the globe relatively inexpensively and easily. You can create your own website or you can take advantage of listing sites that draw the traffic in for you.

In this first part of a forthcoming series of articles, you will learn the basics of how to promote a vacation rental home. Each additional installment in this series will go into more detail about marketing vacation rentals in a variety of ways.

Marketing Vacation Rentals with Individual Websites

It has become very easy for anyone to buy a domain and hosting package and promote a vacation home rental online. Plus, you don’t have to know HTML or be an experienced web designer to take advantage of marketing vacation rentals in this way; there are many programs that have been created that make the creation of a slick-looking website easy. You want to make sure that your vacation home rental site looks as professional as possible and contains pictures of the inside and out as well as details about all of the amenities available. You can also include information about price and availability if you wish, or you can require that interested parties contact you for more information. And make sure that you have a way for visitors to contact you!

At its core, your vacation home rental site should serve as an online version of a glossy brochure that you might hand out to prospective renters. You will learn more about ways to create great sites for marketing vacation rentals and how to get them noticed in future articles in this series.

Vacation Home Rental Sites

Whether you want to create your own website for your vacation home rental property or just want an easy way to advertise your home, you may be interested in looking into the benefits of vacation rental websites. These sites make marketing vacation rentals easy by compiling listings of homes for rent by owners and/or companies to help bring the renters to your door. Many vacation home rental sites charge a small fee for your listing but allow you to incorporate photographs, text, and a link to your own site. These sites may also make it easy for renters to get in touch with the owners of homes. Future articles will teach you what to look for in a vacation home rental site and how to promote a vacation rental alongside the many listings that are available.

Marketing Vacation Rentals with Print Advertising – From Flyers to Newspaper Ads

While the Internet is an extremely important tool in marketing vacation rentals, traditional marketing venues still can make a difference if you are looking to attract renters. You can create flyers with pictures of your house, prices, and a list of amenities that you can post in the town where your vacation home rental is located. This is an extremely inexpensive way to get noticed, but it is important to design your flyers with eye-catching images and easy-to-read text. You can also create postcards with this information that can be mailed to local households or placed in local stores for visitors and residents to pick up.

Another option for marketing vacation rentals is to run advertisements in the classified section of any local newspaper. The downside to this is that you may wind up paying a lot for an ad that will only be seen by a limited number of people, but that same ad will be specifically targeted in the area for your vacation home rental and may get strong results.

Preparing Your Vacation Home Rental Property

No matter how you choose to go about marketing vacation rentals, you will need to have photographs of your home taken to put on the web, in the newspaper, or in a flyer. Make sure that you prepare your home so that it looks its best – that the lawn is trimmed, that the pool area is tidy, that the windows are clean, and so on. Then, take a series of pictures from several angles of the home so that a prospective renter knows exactly what he or she will find. If you can, add something to your home that will make it stand out. For example, use brightly colored curtains, or take your photograph at night. Above all, make sure to give people a reason to look more closely at what you have to offer in a vacation home rental.

Word of Mouth

The simplest and cheapest way for marketing vacation rentals is by word of mouth. Tell anyone and everyone that you have a home available. Tell your friends, tell your neighbors, tell the people at the bank and at the grocery store. While the person you tell may not be the next person to rent your home, he or she may have a friend or relative who is in the market for a vacation home rental.

Conclusion

Above is just a small sampling of options that you have for marketing vacation rentals so that they are booked around the year. Future articles will give you more in-depth information about these options as well as additional tips and ideas about how to promote a vacation rental successfully.

Things to Consider When Funding For Resort Properties and Vacation Homes

For people working hard, playing and vacationing harder seems to come naturally. Vacationing in a relaxed milieu surrounded by pristine nature rejuvenates the body and the mind. Therefore vacationing has become an essential activity pursued by most of the busy people in our country. After shuttling between office and home for months, busy executives and entrepreneurs look forward to the much needed vacation breaks and welcome those with joy.

A typical vacation requires a lot of advance preparations such as: bookings and reservations of plane tickets to the vacation destination and arranging accommodations. Enjoying a vacation involves smart planning. Owning a vacation home is definitely a part of that smart plan as it takes care of the most important item of a vacation plan – accommodations.
Vacation homes are preferred because:

o After all it’s a real estate investment and if done wisely can turn into an income yielding financial asset.
o It allows going on a vacation whenever the mood strikes, without waiting for reservation confirmations.
o There are a host of tax benefits that can accrue to a vacation home owner.
o Appreciation in the property value can result in a sound investment.
o Owning a vacation home means never having to perform major packing and unpacking chores interfering with the enjoyment.

Colorado Vacation Home Loans
A second home or a vacation home is not the topmost priority of an average American household. But still it enjoys an importance that is hard to ignore. The year 2005 witnessed a steep increase in the number of people buying second homes. The year proved to be hot for second homes with a 39% of all transactions accounting for second home purchases.

Despite the appreciation in the prices, an increasing number of people are buying second homes for vacation or retirement. According to a survey conducted by the National Realtor’s Association nearly seven million vacation homes now exist in the USA and it is projected that more than 30 million people will buy vacation homes in the next decade. The easy availability of home loans is the reason why owning a vacation getaway is not an impossible dream that is just meant for the wealthy. Funding of resort properties and vacation homes has become easier than they were a decade ago.

Ideally, vacation homes should be situated within 2-3 hours drive from a major metropolitan area as longer drives could be tiresome and take the fun out of vacation. They should be situated near a lake, overlooking an ocean, or providing a vista of the mountains. The benefit of buying vacation homes around these natural beauties is that as their rates are likely to appreciate in the future or at least very unlikely to depreciate if not appreciate greatly. Of course, most of these resorts feature amenities such as Ski Mountains, golf courses, bicycle and hiking trails, and other outdoor sports.

And when it comes to buying resort property or vacation homes nothing beats the states of Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado. Moreover Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado construction home loans are easy to secure with a down payment as little as 5%. The interest rates are the same as first home loans, in most cases.

Colorado offers an amazing variety of vacation ideas. From watching bald eagles in one of the national forests to motor cycling across the state – the idea of a vacation in Colorado is exciting and refreshing. Therefore Colorado figures as one of the most preferred states for vacation home buying. Forbes magazine reports that Eagle, Colorado is becoming popular with vacation home buyers. Eagle, Colorado is preferred by people who love to ski but do not wish to be in a skiing town such as nearby Vail or Aspen. The property prices here range from $350,000 for townhouses to $1.5 million for single family homes.

Fixed rate mortgage, adjustable rate mortgage, and interest only programs – Colorado condominium loans are available in various forms. Keeping pace with the latest trends in real estate market Colorado also offers condotel home loans where the owner can earn rental income when not using the luxury hotel suite property. Other vacation home buyers unwilling to own a home solely can consider Colorado fractional loans. Constructions loans in Colorado come loaded with so many options that a vacation home buyer really has a plethora of choices.

The Top 7 Reasons Celebrities Are Flocking to Private Vacation Homes

It used to be that when celebrities went on vacation, they’d check into the biggest, fanciest hotel in town. But these days, the rich and famous are skipping the big, public hotels in favor of a more exclusive, more private vacation option. From Brad and Angelina, to Madonna, President Barack Obama, movie, music and TV stars are spending their vacation time away from the crowds and the cameras, and hiding away in luxurious, private vacation homes. Read on for the top 7 reasons why!

1. Privacy

A vacation isn’t much of a vacation when you’re surrounded by adoring fans screaming for your autograph, or ducking paparazzi around every corner. Which is why you don’t see major movie and TV stars spending their vacation time at hotels. Instead, famous faces know that in order to really get away from it all, the key is to check in to a private vacation home. Unlike hotels that cater to the public, a vacation home offers guests a real escape from the outside world, with a level of total privacy a hotel just can’t match. So they can bare all by the pool without worrying about winding up on the cover of a tabloid next week.

2. Space for their stuff

The rich and famous don’t typically travel light. They may be heading out of town to get away from it all, but at the same time, they need to make sure they’re ready for anything – from lunch with the big-name director who happens to be in town to a formal dinner party on a yacht. That’s why the stars tend to bring MORE than what they need, just in case. Which is why they’re bypassing the big hotels and settling in to roomy vacation homes – where they have plenty of space for the tuxedo, the ball gown AND the scuba gear.

3. Room for an Entourage

Just as they don’t travel light, celebs also don’t travel alone. There’s the personal assistant, the personal trainer, the hair and makeup guy (or gal), plus family, friends, acquaintances and hangers on…in other words, more people than you can possibly fit in even the largest hotel suite. And that’s why the stars are bringing the whole entourage to roomy vacation homes – where everyone can spread out and enjoy their time together.

4. Exclusivity

Celebrities like to stay on the cutting edge of trends – they don’t follow the herd and do what everybody else is doing. Why should they, when they can afford to set the trends and set themselves apart from the crowd? So instead of following the masses to whatever resort is popular each season, the stars prefer to create a vacation that is uniquely, exclusively theirs by escaping to a luxury vacation home. After all, what could be more exclusive than your own, private paradise, reserved only for you and the people you want around you?

5. Peace and Quiet

Let’s face it – people are noisy. And people who have a lot of money to spend on fancy hotel rooms are no exception. Their kids fight and splash in the pool. They have parties at all hours of the night. They argue, they laugh, they basically live their lives. Which is fine for them. But if you’re on vacation trying to get away from it all, it’s not necessarily fine for you. No wonder so many celebrities are skipping noisy hotels altogether and opting to stay in peaceful, private vacation homes. That way, if a wild party keeps them up all night, at least it will be their wild party!

6. Freedom

A vacation is the time to do what you want to do when you want to do it – and no one knows that better than celebrities, who are used to getting their own way. But even the most luxurious hotel has limits. Hankering for a late-night swim after the pool has closed? No can do. Feel like spending the day in your bathrobe without getting dressed? You’ll not want to leave the privacy of your room if you stay in a hotel but a vacation home gives you the freedom to spend your vacation the way you like. And if that means eating a grilled cheese sandwich in the pool at 2:30am, go for it!

7. Luxury

In travel, as in their day-to-day lives, celebrities demand the best. And they’re finding the best in luxurious, comfortable vacation homes. Dining rooms where they can entertain friends. Spacious living rooms where they can spread out and enjoy all the comforts of home. Their own, private swimming pools and Jacuzzis. With so many options, there’s no longer any reason to settle for less than the best. Which probably explains why, when it comes to travel, vacation homes are topping the list of celebrity trends.

Pros and Cons of Owning a Vacation Home

A vacation home is a second home as a supplement to your permanent home. As an owner of two vacation houses I can introduce you to a number of aspects that will help you getting your dream vacation real estate with lasting pleasure for yourself and your family. In fact when you read this easy list you will also get an impression of the pros and cons of owning an extra home for vacation.

Some of the same aspects of buying a vacation home are exactly the same as for buying a permanent home.

Price and running expenses of the vacation home

For most of us the price when we buy a home and the costs through the year are obvious and important limitations to take into account. Make sure to think through what you can afford now and what you can afford when you retire if that is in the horizon.

The most important aspect of a vacation house

If you ask a real estate dealer about the three most important aspects when you are searching for a new house he will say: 1. Location, 2. Location and 3. Location.

Think through what will that mean for you. When you get a home for vacation you might be able to improve it and make it bigger and better. But you cannot change the location for the same house or vacation flat.

Many will summarise it in the way that it is smarter to buy a not so super vacation home in a super nice location – than the opposite.

The style of the vacation home

As we already have 9 grandchildren from our four children we gave a high priority to our vacation houses that could accommodate everybody. Not in a luxury way but in a functional way. Other couples might be more focussed on having a more luxurious living space for themselves and say two friends on overnight stay or the like.

Other families might be more focussed on finding a rather simple and basic accommodation that is not demanding in anyway but which might have a rustic appearance.

Facilities at the vacation home

If you go for a vacation house far away from other people the facilities in the house might be quite simple and primitive. You might not even have running water and toilet facilities.

In such a place it will also be a challenge to get help from professionals when you need repair and service. On the other hand such a house might be rather cheap to buy.

How often will you or family members use the vacation home?

Be realistic and calculate how often you and your family would actually be able to make use of it when you think of your checklist for reflections before you buy an extra home for your leasure time. A vacation house or other vacation home must not develop to be a burden in daily life. Difficulties and expenses going there should be a part of your calculation, but also your ideas of alternatives like going abroad on vacation.

Can you make use of the vacation home in the way you want?

Finally you should think over and discuss in the family which kind of activities you want to have as options when you search for a vacation house or flat. Some families are very focussed on skiing, others on swimming and sun bathing on a beach, others on wildlife experience and others again on hunting. If you have teenage children ask them what could attract them and expect to let them bring a classmate or other guest with them when staying on vacation.

Summing up the pros and cons of owning a vacation home

Pros of a vacation home

You will have the ability to escape from your daily duties and exchange your home environment with something different that might reduce stress and improve your feeling of being on vacation.

Often you will combine your trips to your sparetime home with social activities like inviting friends and family members. Your guests will often think back of such visits with much more satisfaction and pleasure compared to normal social gatherings in your permanent home.

Your children will get a wider horizon by being familiar with another location than their daily surroundings.

Cons of a vacation home

A vacation home is an extra burden in economy and daily management.

It might limit your access to travel to new places and to experience unfamiliar sightings and cultures.

It might generate some discussions in the family when to go and when not to go. You might experience clashes between your dreams of going to your vacation place and to fulfil expectations to stay home and be involved with other activities, e.g. birthday parties of friends etc.

And finally it will not be possible to be sure when you can sell your vacation home in time to a decent price.