Many families fortunate enough to call Fairfield County home are even more fortunate: They own second homes. From Vermont and Cape Cod to the Hamptons, Florida, and points in between and beyond, properties beyond our borders offer hard-working homeowners a chance to ski, surf, relax and get away without the hassles of booking hotels, finding restaurants and taking chances.
Of course, there are plenty of hassles involved with owning a second home. Everything from maintenance and security to crabgrass and ants is multiplied -- without even factoring in managing a second home from the first.
So how do you determine if owning a second home is the right option for you?
Many potential second home buyers rent first.
There are a number of reasons why:
• Becoming familiar with an area. You may have always dreamed of living in a certain place – but you never know what it’s really like until you spend time there. • No fixed costs. You don’t have to worry about a mortgage, property taxes, heating, garbage, lawn care – all of which you’ll pay for, whether you’re there or not. • More bang for your buck. With the money you save on fixed costs, you might be able to pay for a property you might not otherwise afford to buy.
Still, there are a number of reasons why renting might not work:
You’re at the mercy of the property owner. Many vacation homes are not available on the most desirable weeks or weekends.
You’re not building any equity. Every rent check you write is money out the window.
You’re in someone else’s house. You’re not just controlled by their schedule; you’re also at the mercy of their taste and style.
So why might you decide to buy a second home?
It’s yours. You can use it whenever you want. You can decorate it however you wish. It’s your (second) home sweet home.
You can enjoy intangible benefits too, like providing memories for your children and grandchildren.
There might be tax benefits too.
On the other hand, why might you decide against buying?
You’re taking out another mortgage. Enough said.
You’ll have to also pay property insurance, maintenance costs, perhaps even homeowner fees.
You’ll have to manage it all from afar.
The choice is yours. Every family is different.
But here’s another idea: Buy a second home. Then rent it out.
The possibilities are endless.
KMS Partners is happy to talk with you at any time about the pros and cons of buying a second home – or a first one. Contact us at 203-295-4375 or firstname.lastname@example.org.