Vacation Homes | Small Is Beautiful for You & Your Heirs
Small and basic vacation homes can be better than big and elaborate ones. They’re easy to open in spring and close in fall, clean, pack up, and care for. If you are a second home owner, you know what I’m getting at. If you need to have a cleaning service to enjoy your place, and you like it that way, terrific. But if you struggle with the cost of maintenance, think twice before buying such a home or continuing another season.
Check out the Washington Post’s 4 Rules for a Stress-Free Vacation Home. The authors make good points regarding how small homes can be a better choice for many families.
While you’re at it, think about your heirs, and how they will deal with the property if suddenly faced with it. A big, expensive property may be more difficult to sell than a small one.
Here are some questions for you to consider:
1. Why should the property stay in the family? Having a purpose is important.
2. How long should your heirs own it together?
3. How will they pay for it?
4. Who’s in charge?
5. To whom can they leave it when they die?
6. Are they protected from break-ups due to divorces and debt of individual family members?
7. Are they going to be protected from personal liability for accidents on the property?
Planning can address all these matters.