Top things to consider when buying a vacation home

Top things to consider when buying a vacation home

  • Tamarack Realty
  • 06/27/22

Buying a vacation home at your favorite destination spot is a dream of many people. The concept of vacation home ownership has gained considerable traction in the last few years.

The economy has been quite favorable and many people have fared well enough to invest in 2nd homes and vacation homes. There are many advantages to investing in a 2nd home/vacation home. However, it is prudent to carefully consider the impact this will have in all areas of your life.

Owning a 2nd home is a considerable financial commitment for most people. In addition, time and other resources are also needed to maintain the property.

Let’s review the most important considerations when buying a 2nd home or vacation home.

What is your main reason for buying a vacation home?

Having a good idea of the purpose of such a purchase is a fundamental starting point. Are you looking for a frequent getaway to enjoy a particular activity you are passionate about? Will you be vacationing alone, as a couple, or with a family?

Being well grounded on your purpose is important as you select the destination and type of vacation property to buy. If you have a family it is imperative that there is consensus and agreement. It may be important to consider whether everyone will go to the same destination and enjoy their stay and not have to go on separate vacations.

Do you only vacation a couple of times a year? Perhaps you are considering using the vacation home as an additional source of income when it is not in use. There is plenty of opportunities to do that nowadays.

The Financial Impact

Owning a vacation home is a significant financial commitment for most people. Here are some of the key items that you want to keep in mind about keeping a vacation home:

Mortgage Payments

The vast majority of vacation homes are financed. Whether you are taking out a line of credit or refinancing your current home or getting a new loan for the new purchase - there is a financial commitment involved. Prudence dictates that you analyze the numbers carefully to avoid an unpleasant realization down the road.

Taxes and Insurance

In addition to the mortgage payments, you will need to pay taxes and insurance. If you buy a condo or PUD you may also have to pay Home Owners Association dues.

Management and Maintenance

Someone has to keep an eye on the property when you are not there. You will likely hire someone to perform some sort of management and upkeep of the home.


Where you buy your vacation home is of significant importance. Location is important for a number of reasons. Let’s review some of those elements that make location so important:

Proximity to your primary residence

Consider whether you want to use your vacation home more than a couple of times a year. You may benefit from using the property more often. Do you have a business which you may occasionally need a creative space for?

There are many areas in the United States where you can go from the mountains to the sea in less than two hours. The benefits of something like this are numerous. Use the vacation home as often as you can, and you can rent it out through Air BNB or VRBO. Many vacation homeowners actually create extra income by doing this, while also enjoying the home for getaways.


If you decide on a remote, secluded vacation home spot, consider how accessible it will be. In particular, if you are a winter vacation person, will you be able to easily access the home? If you are not familiar with the area, talk to locals about winter conditions if you plan to use the vacation home in winter.

Proximity to airports and major highways may also be important for you to take into account. Many areas of the continent may be shut down to flights and other transportation during severe winter storms.

Whether Related Upkeep

If you are buying a vacation home in the desert, it is vastly different than buying one in the mountains. Mountain homes may require winterization of plumbing and heating systems.

Desert properties require a specific landscape and can also benefit from specific paint colors, and building materials that are resistant to heat absorption.

Laws and Regulations

Check with the local county and city for restrictions that may hinder you from using the home for all its intended purposes.

If you are entertaining the idea of short-term rentals, this is a topic of big debate in some cities and communities. Make sure this is allowed if it's an important part of your decision for purchasing.

Local Real Estate Market Conditions

It would be safe to say that most buyers of vacation homes are concerned about the type of investment they are making. Doing some due diligence about the forecast of the market should be on your list of to-dos.

There are always the local Real Estate agents who know the area intimately. There is usually historical data you can access on your own online as well. Predicting the future is difficult at best. At the same time, there are tools at your disposal that can give you some indication of how solid your new investment may be.

We Invite You

Should you be considering investing in a vacation home in a growing and high-demand area, consider Tamarack Resort in Valley County Idaho. The resort is nestled in the heart of Idaho’s Long Valley. The resort  is conveniently located just 90 miles north of Boise and its international airport.

Tamarack resort is open year-round with activities for the whole family. During the winter season, you can enjoy exceptional skiing conditions and other winter sports. The season brings 2,800 feet of vertical on an expansive 2,000 acres for skiing and snowboarding along with Nordic and snowshoe trails.

The summers are filled with warm-weather activities which include mountain biking, hiking, ziplining, and watersports on Lake Cascade.

Your investment will be secured by Real Estate with exceptional amenities in an area of high demand and strong projected growth.

For more information on available properties at Tamarack Resort, visit our Tamarack Resort Properties page.

Work With Us

Tamarack Realty provides concierge-level attention every step of the way. Whether you are buying or selling a property at Tamarack Resort, our knowledge, expertise, and resources are unparalleled.

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