Tips for Buying a Florida Vacation Home

By:   Niki D'Angelo | Published:
Tips for Buying a Florida Vacation Home

Florida is a beautiful location for a second home. The Sunshine State has been a longtime magnet for people looking for warm weather and beautiful beaches. As one of the most popular states for tourists and retirees, Florida welcomes thousands of people every year.

The sunny weather and year-round attractions offer excitement and adventure for everyone looking for a place to live. However, finding the best location and making the moving process as seamless as possible requires understanding several things. Check out these things to know to buy a vacation house in Florida.

Table of Contents

Decide How You’re Going to Use the House

One of your first considerations is determining how you plan to use your Florida home. Essentially, you can make your property a primary residence, a vacation home or an investment. All three options offer excellent benefits, but your decision will affect how much you pay for the property.

For instance, if you’re buying a vacation home in Florida, you can ensure you always have a comfortable escape whenever you want to spend time in the sun. However, if you make your home an investment property, you can rent the space when you’re not using it. Your mortgage interest rate will be higher for an investment property than a second home, and you can expect to put more money toward a down payment compared to a primary residence, but you can also create a new income stream.

Coordinate Your House to Your Lifestyle

You should buy a vacation home in Florida that matches your needs. Though you may want to live in the city, this could clash with your desire for additional space. Finding an accommodating space within your budget will be more challenging as you get closer to more people and attractions. A large home a short distance from the city may be the better option for you, even if it is a longer commute to some of your favorite spots.

A large home a short distance from the city may be the better option for you, even if it is a longer commute to some of your favorite spots.

Establish the Property Location

Whether you want to move into the hustle and bustle of Tampa or historic St. Petersburg, many places around the state might be calling your name. Regardless of where you choose to go, you can find easy beach access, relief from daily stressors and many activities to enjoy. Here are some of the best places in Florida to buy a vacation home.

  • Tampa: Tampa is one of the best Florida cities for second homebuyers. Tampa and the surrounding area offer many fantastic things to do, such as a plethora of festivals celebrating food, drinks, the arts and music. Tampa is on the Gulf Coast, giving you plenty of job opportunities and ocean views.
  • Orlando: Orlando is one of the busiest tourist destinations in the U.S., so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to meet people from all walks of life. This location is also a hub for innovation, attracting tons of new talent. Establishing a home in Orlando can put you amid diversity and new ideas.
  • St. Petersburg: Sports fans, foodies, outdoor enthusiasts and art lovers can find a home in St. Petersburg. This city is a growing hub that calls to all walks of life. It’s a vibrant location with plenty of activities and welcoming people.
  • Sarasota: Sarasota has a thriving cultural and arts scene along with a vibrant tourism sector. Sarasota hosts many well-known celebrations, festivals and cultural events, and your new home will be the perfect place to relax before and after fun days or nights around the town. With two universities and various public and private schools, Sarasota also offers many educational opportunities, making it perfect for families, couples or individuals looking for advanced learning.
  • Clearwater: If you plan to spend most of your days at the beach, Clearwater may be the best location for your property. Clearwater offers many parks, musical performances and comedy shows. Whether you’re looking for hours on the water or some of the best seafood around, Clearwater is an excellent place for your Florida home.

Understand Your Budget and Owning Costs

Before buying vacation property in Florida, create a realistic budget to ensure you make a worthwhile investment that will benefit you for years to come.

Consider finding a lender to analyze the closing costs, reserves and down payment available. Calculate the ongoing costs of renting or owning your existing home, then factor in the monthly vacation home cost. You’ll need to account for personal items such as furniture, internet, electric, gas, cleaning or landscaping fees and additional maintenance and upkeep. You’ll also need to evaluate the travel cost to get to your vacation home to determine what will best fit into your budget.

Consider the Legal Processes

Learning how to buy a vacation home in Florida involves understanding the legal processes. Moving to Florida should be fun, but you must also adhere to the state’s regulations and take time to familiarize yourself with all the options to simplify your relocation process. Here are some variables you’ll need to consider.

  • Property taxes: Property tax amounts and due dates vary between counties, so research the areas you’re considering for your property to determine which locations offer the most convenient options for your lifestyle.
  • Financing options: Each county offers different financing options. If you’re looking to purchase your first home, you can seek resources to assist with your down payment or more favorable mortgage rates. Check which options you qualify for to find the best opportunities.
  • Consider insurance policies: You’ll need to consider weather conditions such as hurricanes when evaluating insurance policies. Many standard insurance plans don’t cover flooding, so you may need to buy separate flood insurance to minimize your losses during natural disasters.
  • Deed restrictions: Florida has many deed-restricted communities which have a homeowners association to enforce and create rules. This organization works to keep your neighborhood in excellent shape, but you’ll need to understand any requirements or restrictions before buying.
  • Oceanfront property laws: It’s essential to understand the laws regarding your property, including whether you can remove particular vegetation or use light during turtle nesting seasons. You may be able to restrict access to beach property under some conditions, but be sure to inquire about the property laws before buying.

Complete the Moving Process With Banko Overhead Doors

Complete the Moving Process With Banko Overhead Doors. Request an estimate!

It’s easy to see what people love about the Sunshine State. Banko Overhead Doors is proud to be an active part of Florida’s welcoming ambiance. We have strong ties with our vibrant community and continue helping new homeowners with garage door maintenance or replacements.

When it’s time to buy your new home, finding the perfect exterior look can be easy. Banko Overhead Doors provides residential and commercial services and products in Hernando, Hillsborough, Lake, Manatee, Orange, Osceola, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk and Sarasota counties. Our reliable guidance and expertise always reflect what’s best for you and your home. View our residential garage doors or request an estimate for your new home.

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