Tips on Buying a Galveston Island Vacation Home

Itís a familiar story. After spending a fun-filled week or weekend on sunny GalvestonIsland, you and your family agree, ďWouldnít it be great to buy a place here to enjoy year around?Ē So where do you start in that search?

The Galveston real estate market offers many options in beach and bay or canal homes. Does your family enjoy Gulf breezes, sand and romping in the surf? Or is fishing, boating, jet skiing and easy access to the bay more to their liking? The options donít have to be overwhelming if youíll allow a knowledgeable and competent Realty to help you through the process.

A good Realty will carefully listen to your needs and then arrange to show you available homes that meet your criteria. He or she can also help you with pre-qualification and loan information, if you are financing your purchase. Providing current comparable sales data will help make your offer a competitive oneóand keep you from paying too much for your investment.

Crucial information, including maintenance fees, association dues, any special assessments, property taxes and insurance premiums (homeowners, windstorm and flood) should also be provided to help you determine the total cost of owning the home.

Negotiating the contract down to coordinating inspections are all part of the service.

Where do you find a knowledgeable local Realty? Ask for recommendations from family and friends. Visit open houses. Check out their websites for experience and testimonials. Are they full or part-time agents? Call them on their listings. Do they return your phone calls promptly and with courtesy? Youíll be forming a very important relationship and mutual trust, honest and respect is vital.

If you wonít be using your vacation home every weekend, you may want to consider investing in a resort rental property. Available beach or bay side, the rental income can help defray the cost of ownership. Local management companies can handle all the details for an average fee of 20%.

A more economical way to enjoy West End ownership is a dry land or inland home. While it may not have the water view of a beach or canal home, a dry land home can still provide a quiet retreat from big city pressures. Neighborhoods like TerramarBeach, Sea Isle, Isla del Sol, Jamaica Beach and BayHarbor have many cute and cozy one and two bedroom cottages starting in the $90,000 range.

On the other hand, if itís the high end, luxury property youíve got in mind, the islandís West End has an excellent selection. Homes in communities like PiratesBeach, Pirates Beach West, Pirates Cove and Laffiteís Cove are priced from the $200ís to well over $1,000,000. and offer membership in Galveston Country Club with golfing, tennis, swimming pool and fine dining facilities.

Still canít find what youíre looking for? Home sites are available in nearly all West End neighborhoods and in all price ranges. Experienced local builders can custom build your ideal vacation home to current codes and deed restrictions. Your Realty can provide valuable suggestions which could make a difference in thousands of dollars when you sell your property in the future.

Owning a vacation home on GalvestonIsland can be the makings of wonderful memories for your family for many years to come. Enjoy your well-deserved place in the sun!