Many smart real estate investors who purchased second homes after 2008 have seen the value of their properties increase substantially in recent years. If you are the owner of a second home or are thinking about purchasing one in 2018, you need to protect your investment, particularly if it is a property that is occupied less than six months out of the year. Here are four things to consider when managing your second home.
Having Adequate Insurance Is Crucial
Aside from liability coverage, the homeowners insurance policy on your primary residence will not protect your second home, especially if it is located in another state. If you allowed a mortgage lender to choose an insurance company on your behalf as a closing requirement, the policy may not be comprehensive enough to cover your needs. The best course of action would be to talk to your insurance agent to figure out how to protect both properties with premiums you can afford. Standard Chula Vista homeowners insurance policies for second homes tend to be more expensive. However, extending the liability and personal property endorsements of your primary policy may be affordable ways to protect your vacation or investment property.
You May Want to Consider Smart Home Automation
From IP surveillance cameras you can monitor from your smartphone to sensors that shut off the water main when they detect flooding, you can take advantage of smart home devices to protect your second home. Automated lighting systems that turn lights on and off at random times of the night may make professional thieves think twice about breaking into your second home. Keep in mind insurance companies will likely give you a break on your policy premiums when you install smart home security and alarm systems.
You Should Get to Know Your Neighbors
If your second home’s neighbors occupy their residences permanently, it is a good idea to befriend them and establish a trust relationship so they can keep an eye on your property. If they agree to do this for the sake of being good neighbors, show your gratitude with nice gifts such as buying shopping certificates they can use at local supermarkets or paying for their landscaping.
Property Management May Be Necessary
If your second home is strictly a vacation property that is unoccupied most of the year, retaining the services of a property management company may be your best bet, and it may be more affordable than you think. Professional property management services tend to charge less when they are retained to look after vacation homes than for rental property management. Should you decide to turn your second home into an investment property in the future, you will already have a property manager assigned. In fact, you may want to talk to an accountant about ways to lower your tax liability and maximize your rental income if your property is rented on a seasonal basis.
If you need insurance for your first or second home, reach out to American Tri-Star today. We are also a leading provider of affordable auto insurance. For online auto insurance quotes, Chula Vista residents can check our website, and they can also call one of our friendly representatives at 619-827-0522.