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How to Decide on Whether to Buy a New or Pre-Owned Vacation Home

Are you thinking about buying a vacation home in the Summit County area? If so, you’re likely trying to decide between buying new or pre-owned. In this blog post we’ll share a few tips that will help you figure out whether new construction or a pre-owned vacation home better suits your needs and budget.

New Versus Pre-Owned Vacation Homes

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Deciding Where You Want to Live

The first consideration you’ll have to make is where in the area you want to live. If you’re thinking of living in a more established community, or if you have a particular ski hill or golf course that you want to live near, your choices may be a bit more limited than if you simply want to get a vacation home here in Summit County. Have a browse through our real estate listings page to see the types of homes that are available in your communities of choice.

Avoid Purchase Price ‘Tunnel Vision’

Some home buyers make the mistake of focusing too closely on the initial purchase price of a home, only to be blindsided by maintenance and repair costs a few years down the road. When you’re deciding between a new and pre-owned vacation property, you’ll want to factor in these costs:

Up-front Purchase Costs – the purchase price for houses and condos tends to be a bit higher for new construction when compared to a pre-owned home of equal size. However, pre-owned homes with very close access to lifestyle amenities – such as a home in Breckenridge or Copper Mountain with ski-in/ski-out access – may cost significantly more than a home without them.

Long-term Maintenance and Operating Costs – in the first five to ten years after you purchase the home, what costs will you have to pay? If you’re buying a house, will the roof need to be replaced or is there some other major renovation that will be required? If you’re buying a condo, will you be dealing with some sort of special assessment to upgrade the building?

A brand new vacation home may cost more up-front, but when looking at the long-term picture things may balance out. Be sure to consider both of the above costs when making your decision.

Condo Buyers: Be Sure to Check the HOA Fees

If you’re looking to purchase a condo, one additional aspect that you’ll want to check are any homeowners’ association fees that you’ll owe when you complete the purchase and on a monthly basis. HOA fees vary from building to building, and you may find that some newer developments have fees that are higher (or lower) than older ones. In the grand scheme of your property purchase HOA fees might seem like a minor cost, but if you plan on owning your condo for many years, any differences will add up over time.

Are you ready to start viewing available vacation homes in Summit County? The local real estate professionals here at The Smits Team are excited to welcome you to the area and to show you some incredible real estate bargains, both new and pre-owned. Contact us today at (970) 668-2121 or by email and we’ll be happy to show you around.

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