Would you buy a holiday home and sacrifice holidays abroad?

(88 Posts)
WhereIsTheSaladDoris Fri 07-Aug-20 15:04:53

Definitely not a stealth boost but I’m in conflict right now in what to do. I can’t talk to family / friends due to their personal situations and it would be unwise and unfair.

We’ve been saving for years, for a “rainy day” and our investments mean we now have enough to purchase a decent caravan or put a deposit down in an apartment.

DH wants to buy a place and I’d prefer that over a caravan. If we do that, it’s a commitment.

We wouldn’t rent out (perhaps to family/close friends) and would have all holidays in that location (looking at Devon). It would mean no holidays abroad (normally once a year) but more time spent in that location (one of us in education so half term and summer holidays could be at the holiday place). The area we like we know fairly well.

These are the types of places we’re looking at:


www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-71549115.html listed building so I’m a bit put off


Then in the next breath, the panic sets in and I think about risk of being out of a job / how others are less fortunate to not even have one house let alone too (guilt) / the pressure to keep a second home.

Anyone made a decision like this and regretted it? Do the benefits outweigh the potential risks?

OP’s posts: |
titchy Fri 07-Aug-20 15:12:03

I wouldn't personally. I like to holiday abroad though, see the world, visit new places, experience new food/culture, sun etc. The idea of going to the same flat every holiday fills me with horror! The ones you've linked to don't even have a garden!

I would only consider if I had very young children and would be holidaying in the UK anyway, and I could air bnb it and make enough from that to afford a foreign hol.

Xyzzzzz Fri 07-Aug-20 15:18:20

I wouldn’t. I like going abroad (usually). for me the pressure to ‘rent’ to friends and family would be quite heavy, so that’s something I’m not personally interested in.

tankflybos Fri 07-Aug-20 15:20:09

No, I wouldn't and I have more than one property.

It's just not relaxing like a holiday is and to be honest, if you've only enough for a deposit then it's a massive commitment for little return.

I also wouldn't bother with a caravan. Am tempted towards a motor home to tide us over holiday wise for a couple of years though

zafferana Fri 07-Aug-20 15:21:19

We've gone back and forth on the idea of buying a holiday home for several years now, but we always come back to the same few issues, namely:

1) It's such a tie! You really need to use it a lot for it to be worth the investment and we like to travel to other places.

2) The cost. It's two sets of mortgage, water, gas, electricity, council tax, etc.

3) If you don't rent it out then it's a money pit, but if you do, you have a whole other set of shit to deal with.

My DPs have had a place in France for years and they go there for six weeks a year (though not this year), and they never go anywhere else. They don't rent it out and so it stands empty for 46 weeks a year. When they do go, they spend half the holiday cleaning, gardening, painting and doing maintenance. And there is always the risk of an empty house being broken into ...

tankflybos Fri 07-Aug-20 15:22:04

Also, those flats have no outside space. Do you want to go on holiday to sit in a flat that you also need to maintain, clean and do all the upkeep and admin for?

Not my idea of fun

Dobbieslovechild Fri 07-Aug-20 15:24:05

We bought a static caravan years ago and it’s the best thing we ever did. Much prefer to go there than go abroad


Dinosauraddict Fri 07-Aug-20 15:26:37

We have a holiday home, and when I was growing up my parents had a holiday home, as did my DGPs before that. I have always loved it. However none of us have ever bought before we could afford to buy in cash with no mortgages involved. We also still go abroad every year (usually twice - one short haul, one long haul), so don't feel restricted. We intend to use it for one weekend a month, and then longer periods over NY/Easter/summer etc. For us it's something we worked towards for years and was always a part of our plan. We don't rent it out.

NailsNeedDoing Fri 07-Aug-20 15:26:44

I wouldn’t, I’d rather have less financial commitment and holidays abroad. I think there’s much more benefit in being able to travel to other countries, even if only one or two weeks a year than there is to spending more time in another place in the same country where not much except the scenery is different.

For places like Devon,I’d also be very mindful of how unwelcome second home owners are by the locals. I wouldn’t want to spend time and invest somewhere where I was so actively unwanted.

Darkestseasonofall Fri 07-Aug-20 15:29:03

No way, I'd think you're just taking everyday life with you, all the wife work, plus the challenges of admin for 2 properties.

Dinosauraddict Fri 07-Aug-20 15:30:12

Oh and re Dawlish as I know the area - you have to be careful. Areas by the front are prone to flooding, whilst areas further out are quite undesirable imo

VictoriaBun Fri 07-Aug-20 15:32:27

Factor having to heat during the winter to stop pipes freezing / getting damp. Ideally you would also have someone close who can call in now and again to ensure boiler working ok, no damage to building, post sticking out of letterbox etc.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Fri 07-Aug-20 15:33:04

I've never been tempted, I like travel and 'new' too much. But that said, I'm now coming out of the other end of having to travel in school holidays and delighted by the thought that in two years I can go off-peak. If you work in education as you say, and are always going to be restricted by cost of going away in school hols, then I can see the value of having a place that you can just pop to whenever.

bigbluebus Fri 07-Aug-20 15:35:12

Depends how far away you live from the holiday house. Friends of ours live in a city. They have a holiday home on a popular but rural coast but it is only 45 mins - 1hr drive from their home. They spend lots of weekends there and can even commute to work from there if they want to. They used to rent it out but don't any more as they want to use it more. They also have a holiday abroad most years too. Their DCs are adults now and get to use it with their friends. If you are a significant distance away from your chosen destination and will only get to use it for a few holidays then i wouldn't bother - like others I'd rather see more of the world - in normal times!

WhereIsTheSaladDoris Fri 07-Aug-20 15:58:45

Wow, a lot of responses.

Everything the “against” have cited are my fears. I worry it won’t be a holiday for me as I’m one for being busy, doing stuff in the house and generally pottering. Whereas abroad, I’m kind of forced to relax.

When I posted those links, I know that a lack of garden isn’t for some. It’s on the wish list (or at least a balcony) but it isn’t a big thing for us. That area of the world means you can just go out down the beach or for a walk, and don’t need a garden (plus maintenance to think about too!)

@zafferana we’ve been back and forth for years too. I don’t feel it’ll be a money pit though, mainly because I see it as an investment for our retirement. We’d relocate down there at some point for sure (if our elderly parents weren’t here, we’d probably move there) but I definitely agree that it’ll be a tie in to that one place. Depending on variable income (I’m bonused), we may be able to afford a cheap week away abroad in the half term.

@Dinosauraddict interesting pov, thank you. We’re in a good position to be honest, and just looking at the best way to finance it. Even I was surprised at our savings as I perhaps (wrongly) don’t keep an eye on it, DH does. We just squirrel away money and invest and it’s now like 8 years later. I love that it’s something you’ve worked towards as that is the goal we set and now we’re here, decision time, I’m nervous! We do know the area too. They’ve just had all the front done to prevent the problems with flooding they’ve had in the past.

OP’s posts: |
Laburnam Fri 07-Aug-20 16:01:19

Holidays abroad and new countries to explore, wins hands down to me!!

notheragain4 Fri 07-Aug-20 16:01:36

Doesn't appeal to me in the slightest, I wouldn't even want to be limited to one place in the UK, never mind also missing out on everything outside of the UK! There's so much I want to see of the world. Also, I think holiday homes are ethically challenged.

Not my style but I'd pick a camper over a static home/caravan.

LordOftheRingz Fri 07-Aug-20 16:03:22

No, because I disagree with them on principle. People only need one home.

Coffeeandbeans Fri 07-Aug-20 16:09:13

No outside space is an issue. As a result of Covid my 75 year old MIL has had to stay in her beachside flat for 12 weeks. She doesn’t have a balcony. It has become a prison to her. Her biggest regret Now is not buying a flat with a balcony or patio. Our lives going forward are going to be different. We might have local lockdowns for years etc.

WhereIsTheSaladDoris Fri 07-Aug-20 16:11:08


No, because I disagree with them on principle. People only need one home.

This is one of my biggest inner conflicts sad

OP’s posts: |
ThisIsNotARealAvo Fri 07-Aug-20 16:13:33

We have a holiday home in the area I am from, about 100 miles from London where we live. We come up for all holidays and lots of weekends, and we have used it lots. It's much bigger than our London house so we can also have lots of people to stay, which has been lively. Hoping to have it ready for letting by October and if it's successful we will still be able to travel abroad once or twice a year, assuming travel goes back to normal at some stage.

You should consider letting it if you can because even if you only do a few weeks a year you will get some of the money back, it is an expense otherwise.

KnobChops Fri 07-Aug-20 16:16:38

If it was a lovely cottage in a fab area then I would say go for it. But those flats don’t look lovely, or holiday-ish.

I’d rather get a 20-30k static caravan (but they are not an investment) and have some overseas trips with the remainder than spend all that money on something that is a bit...meh.

Mintjulia Fri 07-Aug-20 16:16:42

No, on principle. People need first homes, not second ones.
I might get a BTL that I rented out, but not somewhere that would sit empty 25 weeks a year.

CurlyhairedAssassin Fri 07-Aug-20 16:24:55

We’ve had the same thoughts after an inheritance including the having to stick to school holidays. It’s usually after a nice break away somewhere where you think “wouldn’t it be lovely to live here eventually when we retire, and come for holidays before that.”

And then we think about everything that people have already said. My main one is that I wouldn’t want to be tied to one place that is a long journey away, it’s not like you can just nip there for the weekend for lots of places.

We’ve just come back from Dorset for the first time after thinking we preferred Cornwall/Devon over anywhere else. And now we think we like Dorset best and I think I could live there too! There are so many lovely places to visit so why tie yourself down to one place with all the hassle that home ownership brings.

For us we both work FT and can just about keep on top of our own house with weekends spent catching up in housework and gardening and food shopping so it’s not as if we could even use a static caravan somewhere each weekend an hour away as our weekends are too busy. Then there are site fees for those.....

The idea of it is very appealing. But the reality for ordinary people is very different. All our holiday homes we’e rented have been owned by wealthy people who have had management companies and housekeepers dealing with the hassle of them.

AngelsWithSilverWings Fri 07-Aug-20 16:24:59

I dream of buying a holiday home somewhere like that but I wouldn't consider anything that didn't have private outside space.

I already live by the sea and can walk to the beach in 10 mins but am looking for somewhere where I can just jump in the car and feel I'm on holiday when I get there. Away from the normal house work and commitments of home and near to nice places in interest or a lovely quiet beach. A property like the ones you linked wouldn't do that for me. I'd possibly consider a flat with a large balcony if it overlooked a nice beach.

I also wouldn't consider a caravan either as a lot of mobile home parks have rules about how old your caravan can be before you have to buy a new one - plus the site fees are often quite high.

I'm currently on the waiting list for a beach hut an hour and half away from where I live - one that you are permitted to sleep in. I could be in for a long wait though. They are very popular and don't come up very often.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in