Top Tips for Buying a Vacation Home (Part 1)

  1. Be realistic with what you can afford.  New mortgage lending regulations over the last couple years have gotten strict about borrower qualification and approval.  You’ll need 20% down, and your total monthly payments on homes and cars combined cannot exceed 36% of your income.  Additionally, don’t count on any potential rental income to help you pay for a second home.
  2. Plan for extra expenses.  If your home away from home is FAR away from Edmond, Oklahoma (over an hour) you may need to consider using a property manager or caretaker.  But having a local eye to watch over your vacation home is not the only potential expense you should plan for.  Beach homes need to be painted as frequently as every two to three years because of sand, salt, and wind.  Mountain homes may require yearly deck repairs.  What hidden expenses should you plan for with your second home?  Speak with a full time resident to find out what true costs you can expect.
  3. Avoid Timeshares.  If timeshares really ever were such a great bargain, why are record numbers of people racing to sell theirs yet struggling even to get a showing?  One of the largest scams in Real Estate today continues to be the (unlicensed) agent promising to sell your time share.  In fact, he already has a buyer ready to go for you.  All he asks is for you to pay a $1000 fee (much less than a Realtor’s commission, he’ll tell you), and once you pay the fee, Mr. Unlicensed Agent is never to be heard from again…

More vacation home buying tips next time.

4 Quick Tips for Showing Your Home in the Summer

  1. 72°.  Keep the interior temperature of your home pleasant during the dog days of summer.  Homes that are too hot (or too cold, for that matter) make potential Edmond, Oklahoma home buyers uncomfortable, inevitably shortening their visit.
  2. Mitigate odors.  Summer heat can magnify animal odors inside the house as well as in the back yard.  Clean and deodorize interior surfaces and carpets, and if Fido uses the back yard as a rest room be sure to clean up doggie piles frequently.  Garbage cans normally kept in the garage or outside next to the house should be moved well away from any potential visitor foot traffic.
  3. Keep your lawn manicured.  Curb appeal is everything, and if your lawn is overgrown or has unsightly brown spots you may be chasing buyers away before they ever spend any time inside your home.  Take care of the lawn, put away children’s yard toys, fix the fence, and by all means get that beater car down off those cinder blocks and off your driveway!
  4. Clean your windows.  All home buyers prefer more natural lighting.  Make sure windows sparkle so buyers can discover all the wonderful features and benefits that make your home special.