Prepared. Aware. Ready.
February 2020 Issue
By Beverly Serral
Think that owning a second home or vacation rental property on Hilton Head Island and your new, 2020 stress-free life are mutually exclusive? Honestly, they aren’t. Owning a home or villa on Hilton Head can be a hugely rewarding experience, a great long-term investment, and a lot of fun. But, as with most things in life, you will need a trusted guide and great support system in order to achieve peace with purchase and ongoing good nights of sleep.
Students, here’s your course syllabus:
Objective: To find and secure the best possible fit in a Hilton Head Island vacation or second home or villa, at the best price/investment, with best potential for return and enjoyment. (And honestly, this advice works well in any locale.)
Evaluation: A great way to start your search is to rent a vacation property in a community or neighborhood you like. Be sure to evaluate the management firm/rental company while you also research the geography and amenities. Is the bike path convenient or bothersome? Is the property clean and well outfitted? Carefully cared for? Have you received detailed and courteous communication from the rental agency? Negative and positive experiences are both of value here. This step may require repeating.
Instructor: This is the person you will choose to be your guide and counselor; be sure to look and ask for recommendations of agents who are knowledgeable in the community and experienced in buyer representation. If you are pondering offering your home or villa for vacation rental, you will want to explore options and advice here, as well. Most real estate agents are not rental experts, and vice versa, but each one can usually recommend the other. Ask friends to ask their friends and go online and search every term you can think of as relates to property ownership. You are bound to stumble onto something you didn’t know that you didn’t know.
Required Reading: Once you have selected your “guide,” ask for loads of documents to include sample contracts, seller disclosures and expenses, customary buyer and seller closing costs, tax calculations, insurance information, needed capital improvements/ball park pricing, necessary furnishings, outfitting and equipping for rental, as well as rental agent services, fees and commissions. Then ask follow up questions!
Conclusion: Want to skip the chaos and move straight to order and calm? It is possible when you choose an experienced agent/brokerage/rental manager with your same goals in mind. To pull this off with ease, look for an agent who is expert at buyer representation and property selection. If you plan to rent, you will want an expert in renting for maximum return, while caring for your investment. You may also need someone well-versed in renovation design and oversight, and furnishing, outfitting and equipping your new home or villa. While there are generally few companies that provide start to finish representation, and do it well, these firms do exist and can make all the difference. Order, rather than chaos, makes owning a vacation home truly feel like vacation.
Beverly Serral is the founder, CEO and Broker-in-Charge at Beveral Serral Properties & BestNest by Beverly Serral. For more information, please call 843-341-3600.