- Make a Plan. You and your family should decide what you enjoy doing most in the Deerfield Valley. Is it skiing, riding, hiking, snowshoeing, snow mobiling, eating out, shopping, photography, boating, swimming……? You get the idea.
- The home must fit your family. How many people will regularly be using the vacation home? Don’t forget that your 3 – 6 year olds will be teenagers in ten years and will have exponentially more friends. How close to your favorite activity do you want to be?
- Know you options. Condo? Single family home? Log Cabin? Camp? The choice is yours.
- Get to know the neighborhood and some of the neighbors. The condo unit or home next door could be full every weekend with college kids, really little kids or an older family. What do you want to live next to when you are trying to “get away from it all”?
- Do your homework. Is there a washer / dryer or hook-ups in the home? A lot of stairs that are going to be climbed every time you go skiing, hiking, shopping, hauling luggage or carrying the little ones too tired to walk? Fireplace? Hot tub or sauna?
- Set a budget. Ski resorts are not inexpensive places to live or vacation. Realistic expectations on cost of living are important. The people that live year round in the area also have the same expenses, so don’t expect cheap service calls, groceries, gas prices, cleaning or maintenance services, etc.
- Consider a ski on / ski off location if your primary reason to buy is skiing and riding. Sometimes not having the driving / shuttling headaches is worth the extra cost of owning “on the slopes”. Your limited vacation / recreation time is valuable.
- A nice kitchen can save $100’s by cooking most main meals in the home. Saving coin for hot cocoa and snacks.
- Plan on the real possibility of bad weather. Board games, wi-fi, other indoor recreational activities and knowing what’s going on locally can make a rainy stay a little less tedious.
Finally, want your vacation home for free??? Consider renting your place to like minded people by buying a “fixer upper” or a home that has a strong rental history in an area that you and your family want. Done right, renting your vacation home can offset your carrying cost and potential renters will scramble to book their vacations. Buying a home that needs work can keep the initial costs down and since you have to renovate anyway, give you the option of creating that perfect dream vacation home in the Deerfield Valley. We all know that no matter how much you plan on using the vacation home, the reality is that life at home can sometimes prevent you from visiting as often as you would like. There are plenty of dot com sites to help walk you through the renting process. They also help you set up accounts to accept payments, deposits, etc. Sit down with your local Realtor and do the math. You may be surprised to find that you can afford that “dream vacation home” and yes, you can “have it for free”.