So, you’ve decided to take the first steps in buying your first holiday home. This venture can be both financially and emotionally rewarding. However, as with any investment, there are several things you should be aware of to make sure everything runs smoothly.

We’ve pulled together a few top tips to assist new owners with the process of buying a holiday home…

Deciding on the Right Property

How do you decide on which is the right property for you? As obvious as it may sound, the first thing to consider is how much time and money do you want to invest. There is no point blowing all of your budget on the purchase of a Grade II listed building, only to discover you’ve used all your funds and there is little left for the renovation and furniture.

So many different styles of property can be turned into a successful holiday home. Of course, a traditional cottage with original features will always be popular. As will a stylish apartment in a prime location such as York. However, there are many other options that work equally as well. 

If you are looking to be up and running quickly, you may pick an existing holiday home. But remember the property needs to work as a business, so try not to get too emotionally involved along the way… we know this is easier said than done! 

Two-bedroom properties tend to prove a popular choice with a variety of different groups; romantic breaks for two, friends or couples holidaying together, as well as small families. A two-bedroom property with two en-suite bathrooms will tend to receive higher occupancy levels over a three-bedroom property offering only one family bathroom. 

Bigger houses can be a great investment. We have seen an increased demand for larger properties as groups of friends and extended families choose to holiday together. If you decide to purchase a larger house then try to create sociable spaces such as kitchen/diners, as well as offering separate quiet areas where individuals can break away and enjoy some downtime. Having some outside space is important, even if it’s just a small lawned area. It will allow a place guests to sit out and enjoy a lazy breakfast or an evening G&T. 

Barn conversions prove popular with guests, particularly if they contain original features, offer outside space, and are in a lovely rural location. If you are lucky enough to have unused farm buildings, these can be ripe for conversion and are a profitable way of diversifying. Read more…

If there is space to incorporate an en-suite bedroom on the ground floor then this is definitely worth considering. This will make the property much more appealing for guests with reduced mobility, and suitable for multi-generational groups. 

Location, Location, Location… 

Deciding on the perfect spot for buying a holiday home is a key factor to its success. There are many lovely villages and market towns across Yorkshire; ensure you choose wisely and select one with a good supply of foodie pubs, tea rooms, and independent shops.

If there are local attractions and scenic walks close by, you’ll also attract tourists. The more you can reference your property in the context of “well-known, well-loved” locations the better. If your property is within walking distance of a good pub or restaurant, it will make a significant difference to your bookings. Luckily, North Yorkshire is blessed with many good eateries!

You may well enjoy a remote location yourself, but consider if your guests will. Be aware that in a remote rural location you may find it more difficult to find a housekeeper to do the changeovers. Being miles away from a village or pub may deter a lot of guests. You may also struggle to get Wi-Fi if the property is off the beaten track.

Who is your target market? 

It is important to understand who your property will appeal to. Maximising your occupancy levels is about understanding your target market and doing everything you can to appeal to that particular market. Whatever the size of the property, with many guests coming to North Yorkshire from surrounding towns and cities, you may consider adding under-floor heating, a wood-burning stove, or an open fire in all reception rooms? 

If you are looking to buy a larger holiday home, consider how you might maximise its appeal to the family-friendly market. Can you include a specified outdoor area for children, perhaps incorporate a games room or include plenty of interesting games? It is important to consider the ratio of bathrooms to bedrooms, as mixed groups of friends and families will generally expect their own bathroom at a premium price point.

If you have decided upon a one-bedroom property think about why couples would choose your property over another; what makes it special? What is its USP? Perhaps you could add a free-standing bath to the master bedroom or maybe even a four-poster bed to make it stand out. 

Are you prepared to accept pets? We would highly recommend that you do, there are many families with at least one dog and they will want to bring the pooch along. If you do go down this route then ensure you provide a secure garden, add easy to clean flooring, provide food bowls, blankets, a spare lead, a few toys, and some dog treats to show you care… Read more.

Get expert advice 

So…it is time to get out and explore to find those little gems in the areas that you like!

We would always recommend getting a Letting Agent involved in the early stages of the process, their expert advice will be invaluable. It’s far easier to get the design and layout right from the outset than having to make expensive changes at a later date. 

If you are thinking of buying a holiday home, get in touch and we’d be delighted to help…  

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