According to the National Association of Realtors, as many as 40 percent of current home sales are second homes. That includes houses and condominiums purchased as investment rentals, for short-term getaways and for future retirement use. Buying a Second Home begins by asking the reader: “What is your main reason for buying a second home?” It then explains the seven steps for a successful second-home purchase.
The author explains the details of finding and financing second homes, usually in different states. He cautions buyers about the possible pitfalls of renting far-away properties to tenants and why it is important to hire a professional management company to find short- or long-term quality tenants.
About a third of the book is devoted to the financial aspects of owning a second home. The author explains why mortgages can be difficult to obtain on a second home and why lenders usually charge higher interest rates on these higher-risk loans.
Much of the book is devoted to classic “how to buy a home” details, such as using a buyer’s agent to shop for a home, avoiding mortgage junk fees, and anticipating home-ownership costs for repairs – especially if the property will be rented to tenants. He expounds the benefits of working with realty agents, mortgage brokers, home inspectors, and real estate attorneys, rather than being a do-it-yourself buyer.
The chapter about “buying straight from the seller” is interesting because it warns of the pitfalls of dealing direct with a seller and he recommends using a buyer’s agent to negotiate with sellers.
“Buying a Second Home,” by Craig Venezia (Nolo Press, Berkeley, Calif.), 2007, $24.99.