Get’em While They’re Hot!

Real estate drops but second home market may see increase

WASHINGTON – Feb. 6, 2012 – Despite the fact that 30-year mortgage rates are under 4 percent and home prices have remained low, many people can’t take advantage of increased housing affordability.

Recovery will be slow, according to Karl Case, co-founder of the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, with many homeowners struggling not to lose their property. Rather than relocate, many homeowners are improving their existing residences, with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry expecting $113.6 billion to be spent on remodeling through the third quarter.

However, experts predict a growing number of baby boomers will snap up vacation and rental properties in the coming years, with many planning to retire in these homes.

Second-home buyers tend to purchase distressed properties at a discount, but experts say the dwellings are vacant for 90 percent of the year and that buyers could be earning rental income. Second-home buyers should work with a professional to learn the opportunities available to them with regard to renting, as those who use the property for no more than 14 days per year can deduct as much as $25,000 for maintenance and other expenses.