When it comes to family vacations, you get what you pay for. If you try to skimp and save in all aspects of your trip, you often end up staying in shabby hotels and eating cheap food while missing out on some really great experiences due to cost considerations.
On the other hand, if you invest some serious cash into the quality of your family vacations, you will not miss out on all of the memories you hope to create, and your entire adventure will be top quality, from start to finish. Here’s why investing in a vacation property for your family is a wise financial decision.
Vacation Costs Can Add Up
Making sure that your family has an amazing vacation can make a pretty good dent to your budget. According to VRBO.com, if you like to go to Disneyland with your family, renting a vacation home in the Anaheim area will set you back an average of $375-$600 a night. If you prefer a lakeside adventure with the kids, renting a cabin in Oregon near the water averages about $139 a night. And as Value Penguin notes, if you prefer to stay in a hotel rather than get a rental home, lodging costs around $150 a day, or about 26 percent of the total trip expenditures. Over the course of 20 years of family vacations, it is easy to spend tens of thousands of dollars on lodging that provides you a nice place to hang your hat, but no return on your investment.
Why Buying a Vacation Property Can Be a Wise Investment
Rather than plunk down tons of cash on hotels and rental homes and cabins, you might consider purchasing a vacation home instead. This decision can be great for your finances in a number of ways. For instance, as MoneyWise notes, having a vacation home means you will have your own kitchen so you can do the majority of the cooking and save even more money, and you can also work with online vacation rental services like Airbnb to rent out your vacation property when you are not using it. If you buy a vacation property in a popular region, you may find it’s a steady source of income and you can pay down your mortgage even faster.
How to Choose an Affordable Place
In a perfect world, you’d select a turnkey vacation property with plenty of bells and whistles. In reality, you might have to opt for a more budget-friendly fixer upper or buy a property in a very affordable part of the country. These can still be great financial decisions that will save you plenty of money on your vacation expenses. For instance, if you find a property out of the country that you love but it needs some work, you can skip the tedious process of working with the local banks and trying to get approved for a foreign loan by using your credit card to make the improvements. If you go with a card that offers a cash back incentive, you will earn back money as you improve your property.
For instance, USAA offers a number of credit card options, including those that include a cash back feature. If your family is a devoted group of DIY’ers, you can combine your love of projects with your vacations — at least until the major projects are all completed. Remember that your vacation home does not have to be perfect from the get-go, you can opt for a house that needs some work, get it for a great price, fix it up over time and then rent it out once the work is done. The whole time, your family can stay there and you can reap the financial benefits of owning your own property, instead of padding the profits of a hotel or vacation property company.
Take the Plunge and Purchase a Vacation Property
Going on vacation with your family is too important to you to skimp on the entire experience. By investing in a vacation property at one of your favorite locations, you can put the money you would normally spend on hotels or rentals towards other activities during your adventure. By choosing a fixer-upper or a property in a more affordable area, you won’t have to invest a ton of money up front; but then once the place is ready to rent, you can list it on rental property sites — which is definitely a solid financial decision.