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9 top tips for buying the beach house of your dreams


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Do you fantasize about getting a place on the water? A lot of people do, whether it’s a bungalow, cottage or luxury home.

Transforming that dream into reality requires the same skills as buying any other home — along with some specialized knowledge.

If it’s going to be a second home or vacation home rather than your primary residence, you’ll need a solid credit rating — and enough cash flow to comfortably make 2 mortgages, along with a nice cash cushion.

You also need to keep an eye out for issues that are beach specific:

  • Is the home in a flood plain?
  • Will you need additional insurance?
  • Do coastal laws allow you to rebuild if the house is lost to the forces of Mother Nature?

You might even be able to make a little money by renting to other vacationers who dream of a summer place at the beach. But this income may be offset by new expenses, such as hiring someone local, perhaps a caretaker, to look in on your property from time to time.

If you want to stop dreaming and start planning, consider these factors as you plan for that beach house.

RATE SEARCH: Ready to buy a vacation home? Find the best mortgage rates at Bankrate.

Written by
Dana Dratch
Personal Finance Writer
Dana Dratch is a personal finance and lifestyle writer who enjoys talking all things money and credit. With a degree in English and writing, she likes asking the questions everyone would ask if they could and sharing the answers — along with smart money management tips from the experts.