Currently, there is a change jar on my shelf ambitiously labeled “Mount Toubkal Summiting Fund.” The loose plan is to save my tips and spend my next vacation in Morocco climbing the tallest mountain in North Africa.
But I am young, single, and have no children. Statistics tell us that when I’m about twenty years older and finished sowing my wild oats, I’ll almost definitely prefer renting a beach home to straining mind, body, and soul on a peak somewhere. When it is time for me to join my fellow middle aged professionals on my relax-and-do-nothing beach vacation, I’ll almost certainly be scouring the internet for vacation rental deals. Below are a few tips for what to look for in a vacation rental:
Research The Location Thoroughly
Don’t be seduced by the fatuous ad copy or the pictures of crystal clear water. Not all beaches are created equal, and renting a beach home should involve conscientious research into the surrounding scenery. Some good questions to ask the resort management company include:
1.What kind of wild life is common here? (Jelly fish, poisonous snakes, dangerous fish, spiders, etc)
2. Is this a popular spring break spot? (You don’t want the peaceful surge of the waves to be interrupted by the not so peaceable partying of drunken twenty-somethings).
3. What is it like off season? Are hurricanes, floods, and strong winds common?
4. What’s the local culture like?
Have A Good Idea Of What You Want Your Vacation Rental Property To Include
The greatest antidote to high pressure sales techniques is to have confidence in your vision. If you want a bungalow, hold out for the bungalow. If you want a condo, make sure you bargain hard for a good condo! Don’t let the realtor sugar coat the neighborhood or try to up-sell you on a feature you don’t need. Which brings me to the third and perhaps most important tip for renting a beach home…
Get Someone to Assess The Structural Soundness of Your Potential Rental
This would be a great time to call in that favor from your cousin who is a contractor. Before signing anything it is extremely important to make sure there are no structural deal-breakers, which can be really common in seaside properties due to the high humidity and flood risk characteristic of many beach climates. Keep an eye out for water damage, mold, termites, bed bugs, electrical problems, and any other issue that could turn your beach vacation into a nautical nightmare!