Vacation Home Finances
Dolores Kong

Tempted by your summer vacation to buy that
beachside cottage on the Cape, or that mountaintop
camp in Maine? Before you take the plunge and buy a
second home, you should review the personal finance
issues, from the tax implications to the cash flow

For instance, depending upon whether you decide to
rent the home out when you're not using it, and for
how long, the tax treatment can differ. See this
article for more tax details:

Also, can you afford the monthly mortgage payment
for the second home, without giving up all your
other needs, from funding retirement to college
education for the kids? What if you can't rent out
the home as expected? The following worksheet can
help answer how much of a vacation home you can

Finally, check out the July 2004 issue of SmartMoney
magazine for the "Permanent Vacation" article that
shows you four ways to make it work.