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A holiday home can be a viable investment but researching the market first is critical in making the right choice.

Buying a coastal property can be a worthwhile investment option, provided the decision is given the due diligence it deserves.

In South Africa, popular coastal areas can be found in the Western Cape or Kwa Zulu region. Coastal properties offer closer proximity to tourist attractions and higher home values, but you need to be prepared for higher insurance premiums, the threat of severe weather and more expensive upfront cost.

There are many factors to consider searching for the perfect coastal home for you and your family. You probably already have an idea of where you want to be, but after that you’re not quite sure how to proceed with finding the beach house that best suits your needs and wants.

At PropertyFox, we take you through what you should do before investing in a home along the coast.

How to Buy the Perfect Beach House for You

Rent before you buy. One of the best ways to get to know an area before you commit to it full-time is by spending time in different places near to where you are considering investing your time and money.

Get to know what it’s like to stay on the ocean side as well as a few blocks in from the beach. From there, you may want to extend your stay by considering a long-term rental to get a better feel for what it’s like to live there beyond just a week or two during your summer holidays.

Get to know the community you want to invest in. A beautiful beach is one thing, but that’s only part of what you’re buying into. It’s worth your while to get to know the local communities and neighborhoods so you can make an informed decision.

Scoping out the development plans, ecological and environmental issues, and other pertinent information is well worth your time and research.

Make sure it fits your needs. Of course, you don’t want to break your budget, but you do need to know how many bedrooms and bathrooms you require for your family to be comfortable. Will you have family visiting and can you accommodate them? Exactly how much beach house can you reasonably afford?

Once you know that, you’re off to a good start. You’ll also need to be realistic about the maintenance and upkeep costs of a beach home and any renovations or special insurances you may need.

Stay realistic about maintenance costs. As any homeowner knows, the costs don’t end with the purchase of the property. As mentioned above, there are insurance and upkeep costs to maintain your coastal home, just as with any other home. Coastal homes are most susceptible to flooding and storm damage given their location, so special insurances are often required.

And then there are other considerations like storm shutters, generators, and other protective and proactive features that will be part of the expenses of owning a beach house. Don’t be caught off-guard by these costs, but instead research and be prepared to factor them into your budget.

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