8 things you need to know before buying a vacation rental at the Jersey Shore
Things break. Dishwashers, refrigerators and other appliances will need replacing. Air conditioning and heating units need maintenance. Renters can and will damage property. Be prepared for the unexpected expenses that can come at any time when owning a vacation rental.
Check-in Check-out Days
Many owners rent Saturday to Saturday. This creates traffic Armageddon. Now owners are moving the check-in check-out days to Friday and even Sundays.
Vacation Rental values can fluctuate.
Markets fluctuate. Stocks go up and down. So, does real estate. There are many factors that can affect the value of a vacation rental. If you are buying a rental expecting equity growth you need to understand there is risk in very investment.
Home Owner or Condo Fees always go up
Be prepared for yearly increases in Home Owner Association fees or Condo fees. Expenses go up just like your primary home. Expect a yearly increase in your dues.
Get documented proof of a history. Many owners will have records of yearly rental income and expenses.
In Season- Off Season
Know what the rental season is. How many weeks can you expect to rent. Most shore homes rent during the summer season and that’s it. However, towns like Cape May have longer rental seasons.
Who will you call when your renters need help?
Every owner of a rental needs a backup person to handle emergency calls. Many owners live far away from their rental. Some own a Wildwood rental and live in Philadelphia. Be prepared for the unexpected calls.
You may not use your rental as much as expected
Many owners think they will be down the shore every weekend during the off season or slow rental period. Life can be busy. Taking time to visit your rental can be difficult.