Buying a Holiday Home in Europe
Investing in a holiday home overseas is the ultimate dream for many Americans. Europe seems to be a particularly appealing concept, offering pristine beaches, sun-soaked coves, sparkling seas, year-round sunshine, and endless stunning vacation hotspots. However, Europe is a continent, after all, being home to over forty countries and even more unique regions and destinations. This can make the process of finding the ideal holiday home particularly difficult, so here is everything you need to know about buying property in Europe:
Properties are unique and diverse
While it might not be the largest continent, Europe has quite an interesting and colorful history. Diversity has always been present on this continent, and that reflects in the properties as well. Charming townhouses, old-town apartments, stunning villas, medieval stone houses, and even castles for quite low prices are all wonderful historic real estate you can find across Europe. Juxtaposing the days gone by, this continent is also home to some of the world’s most modern and luxurious properties located in elite destinations. Deciding on only one type of holiday home can be quite difficult when you’re presented with so many choices.
Prices can vary drastically
Similar to property types, the prices of real estate can vary drastically depending on the country and the region. For example, Luxembourg still remains the most expensive country (EUR 7 100/m²) and Paris the most expensive city (EUR 12 863/m²) in terms of real estate prices, while the most affordable country is Bulgaria (EUR 580/m²), along with many of its Balkan neighbors. It’s not uncommon for prices to differ this dramatically within single countries either. When purchasing a holiday home in Europe, the decision will likely come down to the best compromise between location and price.
Certain locations are always popular
When most Americans think of European destinations, what comes to mind are spots like Italy’s Tuscany and Lake Como, Nice, and Cannes on the French Riviera, the Balearic Islands in Spain, or Greece’s iconic islands of Santorini and Mykonos. This might be for a good reason, as these locations continue to be incredibly popular, and always represent a wise investment that’s bound to bring a good ROI in the future. However, that also means that property prices are quite high here as a result, and might not be the best choice for holiday home buyers on a budget.
Some areas are more investor-friendly
On the other hand, some lesser-known areas can prove to be quite favorable for foreign investors. For instance, you can find stunning real estate in Montenegro at quite affordable prices. Although often overlooked, this country offers a beautiful coastline, breathtaking natural surroundings, and a very pleasant and relaxed lifestyle. It’s also particularly investor-friendly, offering some of the lowest tax rates in Europe, great incentives, and even perks such as an accelerated citizenship process. Montenegro combines affordability with the best of the Mediterranean, which is why it truly pays to consider this and similar destinations as well.
Additional fees could be present
When buying a holiday home overseas, it’s easy to focus only on the initial price of the property. However, owning a home comes with a number of hidden considerations regardless of the circumstances. Upkeep, maintenance, repair, management fees, and fluctuating exchange rates are all important aspects to keep in mind, especially if your primary residence is in the US. In that case, maintenance and management services will always need to be outsourced, which can come with high costs as well. If your budget is tighter, more affordable countries like Hungary or Portugal might be best.
Renting will often be easy
One of the best things about holiday homes in Europe is the fact that they are easy to rent out in most cases. The need for rental properties on the continent is increasing, most European countries still remain among the world’s top tourist destinations, and local property agents tend to be quite experienced at managing lettings on someone else’s behalf, even if their clients are on the other side of the Atlantic. Clearly, the climate is quite favorable, and renting your holiday home during the months you don’t stay there can be a great solution for saving some money in the process.
Holiday homes offer many benefits
After all, owning a holiday home can come with numerous advantages, especially when selecting a European property. As already mentioned, it can be a great source of income. Similarly, it could provide peace and privacy in crowded tourist spots, representing a true oasis on a busy, well-traveled continent. If you’d like to immerse yourself in different cultures and communities without needing to relocate, a holiday home can provide that as well, a benefit you might not get when changing holiday destinations each year.
Overall, investing in a European “home away from home” is always a good decision. Just make sure to do your research and choose a property that perfectly fulfills your unique needs before buying real estate in Europe.