The idyllic picture of the American family as we know it is evolving. You can forget the image of a happily married couple with a stay-at-home wife and two children – without mentioning the dog –, in their average home in planted in the middle of a quiet estate. Nowadays, the Millenials generation is changing things, and it’s difficult not to love it! They’re bold, they’re adventurous, and more importantly, they’re staying miles away from your typical American family. In fact, that’s probably why the creative profession has never been as alive as now: Everything changes and we constantly question existing designs – whether these are social, aesthetic, or commercial. And because of that, people gradually begin to see everyday things in a different light, from their choice of wardrobe to their choice of property. They think different, and they want different too. So, it’s easy to see how this social shift is encouraging a shift in purchase habits. Nothing is set in stone anymore, and especially not when it comes to your home sweet home. When in the past, your typical American family had one primary home, and the wealthiest families had a remote little home in the USA for their holiday breaks by a lake or in the woods, current families are looking to buy their holiday property abroad. This comes as a mix of a healthy economy and the desire to discover and fall in love with new horizons. Forgotten the little wooden house by the lake! We now want a villa in Greece or a cozy second home on a tropical island. And because of our newly found boldness and thirst of adventure, the world becomes an inspiration full of treasured properties. But there’s a big difference between buying a property abroad and creating a holiday home abroad. It takes passion and an eye for details to find your second home.
So you are ready for investing in the property market?
Before you head toward the joys of finding your perfect holiday home, there are a few things you need to consider. For a start, buying a second home is what is called a property investment. While you probably were aware of what it was called, you may not have known what it involved, namely being able to rent your second home when you are not using it. A profitable holiday rental is an art that is difficult to master if you don’t understand the subtleties of it. So you may be interested in checking out these free guides on the holiday rental market: From how to turn it into a profitable business – so that your second home doesn’t sit idly when you are not using it – to the kind of marketing strategies that you can use. In the end, the better you understand how to work with your holiday home, the cheaper it’ll be because it’ll end up paying for itself!
The basic administrative side of things
At the start of your search for the perfect holiday home, there’s an even more essential step that you need to take first: Planning an appointment with your banker! Indeed, it comes as no surprise that a home, even abroad, will not come for free. Consequently, you need to be looking for the best mortgage options for your situation. Beware: If you already have a mortgage agreement running on your primary home, it’s likely that you will need different conditions for your second home. For a start, you may not be in a position to repay the same amount every month. Then you need to consider your potential return from the holiday rental, and consequently to take it into consideration while applying for a second mortgage. Then when it comes to finding the perfect second home, you will find that it’s safer to look for a new house for sale as the property will comply with the latest regulations of safety and structural equipment. More importantly, new builds tend to come with a warranty, which can save you a lot of money if anything breaks during the first few years.
Trust your feelings
How do you fall in love with your second home, you ask? Because that’s what it is in the end, it’s about visiting a place and feeling attracted to it. There’s no way you can turn a holiday property that doesn’t drive any affection into a home. You need to feel deep inside that the place is calling you. Its smell, its colors, its light, or maybe simple details like the way the roof looks like it’s part of the sky, should attract you and make the house feel special. If it doesn’t feel special to you, you’re never going to be able to make it a second home. It will simply be a distant rental business, and while it can be profitable, there’s no room for a design love story!
Keep a basic but neutral decor
The one thing that you need to remember about holiday homes is that you’re likely to rent them to tourists throughout the years. While this doesn’t mean that you can’t create a homely decor, it’s important to remember that everyone is different. So your best bet is to work with basic and neutral decor elements to create an ambiance that will work for most people. Avoid bright colors and focus on earth tones and material, using cotton curtains, wood for furniture, and sturdy wicker chairs for the lounge. It’s both elegant and easy-going, and it will give your second home a trendy and relaxed personality.
One keyword: Appliances
Most homeowners wonder about their appliances. Should they match? Can they be different? There are two things to consider at this points. While appliances don’t need to match, if you rely on the same brand to fill your home, you’re likely to get a discount on large orders – and a washing machine, plus fridge, plus cooker, plus kettle, plus oven, plus dishwasher is what one would call a large order. If you opt for non-matching appliances, do make sure to keep a consistent style overall. A mismatched kitchen might not be noticeable for your holiday visitors, but it won’t be cared for or homely when you stay over.
Feeling at home when you’re there
It can be tricky to create a homely feeling if you can’t fully decorate your holiday house like a personal home. Unfortunately, this is the inconvenience of running a rental business in parallel. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t use simple and little decorative touches to make it work. Depending how comfortable you feel about it, you can consider personal portraits and pictures as part of your decor, but this is a tricky decision. If you’re a private person, you can rely on using your favorite scents to set the ambiance and relax in your home.
Your private decor stack
If you can keep a private storage within your holiday home – maybe by putting a lock on the attic door, for example – it’s a great way of bringing your personal belongings. You can have your favorite bedding and some of your locally-sourced holiday outfits in there. So that it feels like going back home. You don’t need to pack anymore when you travel: You’ve got everything you need in your second home. This can make a great difference to how you feel when you are staying over.
In short, your home sweet home abroad is the combination of carefully thought-through decisions – especially in terms of financing and renting business – and a touch of creativity and personal inspiration to bring your home to life.