Florida Guide > Accommodation
One of the most essential expenses is the maintenance. Pool pumps wear out, washing machines, tumble dryers, fridges and dishwasher will all eventually breakdown and need replacing, after all, they take far more wear and tear than your own at home. The lawns have to be mown every week, the pool has to be cleaned weekly, air conditioning filters have to be changed regularly and being a tropical location, pest control has to be regularly paid for. The villa has to be cleaned and inspected before and after each occupation and carpets have to be cleaned twice a year, bed linen and pillows and towels will need replacing about every 2 years or so depending on the quality you buy in the first place. (That is another good tip; buy the best you can afford, it will save you money in the long run). Naturally, every few years you will need to re-decorate all the rooms, the outside and even the pool area will need re-painting periodically.
Plus of course if you are like us, you will want to make your own mark on your property by changing furniture and adding extras. We took over a villa that was really badly furnished so we completely re-furnished from scratch. Buying cheap kitchen utensils is also a bad economy, they will need replacing very quickly. On the whole, a well and tastefully furnished villa encourages people to take extra care of it.
A very rough estimate of what it costs to run a villa is of course dependant on the size, but a very rough guide for you if you buy a 4 bedroom villa up to 2000 square feet, somewhere between $15000 to $25000 per year and that is without allowing for contingencies for emergency expenses that are unexpected, like a pool leak or hurricane damage for example.
Do be really careful when you take out a mortgage to buy your villa. Do not take out a mortgage you can not afford to pay back without getting any bookings. This will leave you getting desperate if the bookings do not appear and this leads to panic when you may think if you reduce your prices you will start getting bookings, this very rarely works as there will always be someone more desperate than you who will still try to undercut you. All this leads to, is FORCLOSURE, the scariest word in the US housing market. They can and will just repossess your villa if you fall behind on your repayments OR do not pay your taxes in an effort to save money.
The GOOD news is in Part 3
Author: Vincent and Hazel Coates (Villa link: click here)
Other articles by this author: click here
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Page added on: 14 February 2011
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