It seems like it’s everyone’s dream to own a holiday home these days, and it’s not just the older generation that’s getting in on the act. Many people from their late 30’s upwards are looking at investing abroad. There could be a few reasons for this, but for me, it’s the current housing market. There are some real bargains to be had, not just in the UK but in Europe as well.
Of course, we all think (and hope) the market will bounce back at some point, and I’m sure it will but, the purpose of my words today are to make sure you have an idea of what you should think about once you’ve made that all important purchase.
Owning somewhere in the sun for the most part is the perfect idea. You and your family don’t have to worry about booking hotels when you go on holiday, and you will already have all your creature comforts there when you arrive. Sure, it can be a long road before you finally get the keys to your dream holiday home but, even when you’re at this stage, you should consider what’s involved after everything has been finalised.
As an example, I’m going to use a property that’s located close to the seaside, and is in a Mediterranean climate. The reasons for this will soon become clear. Below are some points you should think about:
It’s likely you will only occupy your home for a couple of weeks a year, and at the most it will be used throughout the summer months by friends and family as well. For the rest of the year it will lie empty.
The Mediterranean climate although very hot in summer, does get winters, and they can be wet. Before you buy your home think about what sort of systems are in place to prevent damp forming on the inside (most houses in this part of the world are not damp proofed). This can be a huge problem if not addressed straight away.
Consider how much you will have to pay in community tax, just because you’re not there, it doesn’t mean you’re exempt.
Most of you will want a swimming pool which is great, but it will need maintaining, and this can cost in the region of £10 to £20 per week depending on what type of pool you have so, make sure you factor this into your running costs.
I touched on winter, and I return to this now. The Southern coastline of France and Spain that sits on the Mediterranean can get some pretty fearsome storms. This means high winds and driving rain. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does boy, it can do some damage. If you’re not there, your property could fall foul of this.
As a few final words, instead of worrying about everything mentioned here, consider employing a property management service, but choose wisely!
Author: Julie Coburn