The Village of Put-in-Bay on the northern side of South Bass Island, Ohio

A vacation home is a big investment. I own one and I can tell you first hand that it is well worth it, but you should be prepared for all aspects of owning a second home.

The Investment and Vacation Home Buyer’s 2018 Report from the National Association of Realtors reports that 72% of vacation property owners and 71% of investment property owners feel that now is a good time to buy.

The upsides are obvious. Some of my most cherished memories are of the summer days at my grandfather’s cabin on the northern shore of Manitoulin Island, in Ontario Canada. Time with friends, family, and making new friends. Getting time away from the “real world” and taking break can be priceless. Memories are priceless.

I tell my clients that “Ohio’s Lake Erie Islands are so close for Ohio’s residents, but they FEEL so far away.”

The market for second homes is strong for our team, and one reason could be that approximately a quarter of Americans with a mortgage would currently be able to use some of their home equity to put down a substantial down payment toward a vacation home.

Many of our clients are looking at Ohio Island homes, however we also have clients that prefer the mainland but want to be near amusement parks, boating, fishing, wineries, orchards and other mainland activities. They want the area but not the ferry ride.

Recently we have clients looking at rural homes as well. Often they are approaching retirement and have always dreamed of moving from the city or suburbs to the country.

Many homeowners who are close to retirement will use some of their equity to purchase vacation homes, which may eventually become their permanent homes post-retirement! They will return to Ohio to escape the south’s summer heat, or travel often in the winter and return home for Ohio’s beautiful spring, summer and fall months.

Remember that a new home, any new home, also comes with responsibility. Some factors to consider:

  • Taxes
  • Insurance Expenses. Is Flood Insurance Required?
  • Maintenance and Repairs
  • HOA Fees?
  • Travel Time and Expense
  • Rent to Help with Expenses? (make sure it can be rented)
  • House or Condo?
  • Existing Home or Pay-Off Land Now and Build Later?
  • Ferry Ride a Burden or Relaxing? Mental Separation or Stress?

If you are retiring and want a new experience, consider Ohio’s Vacation Land. It is still very affordable compared to comparable areas in other states!

Bottom Line

If you are considering a second home now or in your future contact us for more info, and to start your search. It’s never too early to start learning the market and become familiar with neighborhoods you are interested in. We may even have some suggestions you haven’t considered!

Lee Hisey, 440-315-6000 or [email protected]