4 Key Factors to Consider When Buying a House on the Florida Gulf Coast

4 Key Factors to Consider When Buying a House on the Florida Gulf Coast

If you're considering a home on the Gulf Coast, there are several key factors that you should take into account when making your home purchase. By carefully evaluating those factors, you can choose the home that's right for you and ensure that you're more likely to be happy there long-term.

Waterfront Property

There are a lot of amazing things about having a waterfront property. Not only are you within walking distance of the beach, you can enjoy the sound of the waves as you fall asleep every night, host amazing parties, and enjoy many beautiful views on a regular basis. Unfortunately, waterfront property also comes with a number of risks--and solving those issues can help make you happier with your property long-term.

Are tourists and beachgoers a concern? Take the time to map out your route to and from work so that you'll know how much time you'll need in the height of summer, when tourists may clog the roads. It may also be helpful to find alternate routes you can use if the traffic is bad.

Know your natural disasters. Keep a weather eye out so that you can be prepared for evacuation if necessary. Keep a bag packed so that you can grab it and go if needed.

Love the beach with your kids. Small children must be supervised carefully on beachfront properties in order to keep them out of the water. Put strategies in place at your new home, including deadbolts that are out of reach and monitoring systems that will help you keep track of small children even when your eyes aren't on them, to make beachfront living fun and safe for everyone.

Insurance Costs

When you purchase property on the Gulf Coast, natural disasters are a serious consideration--and your insurance company knows it. Make sure that you carefully evaluate your policy to check for the coverage you genuinely need. Some insurers will try to get away with writing a policy that doesn't cover some of the key types of damage in your area. In order to make the most of your Gulf Coast property, your policy should include things like flood insurance, hurricane insurance, and wind insurance--all of which can prevent you from having to make expensive repairs on your own in the event of a natural disaster.

Taxes

Before you dive in and buy property on the Gulf Coast of Florida, take a careful look at the property taxes in the area where you're planning to buy. If you're in a town particularly close to the beach, you may find that your property taxes are higher than they would be if you were in a different area of Florida--and these are critical additions to your annual budget. These taxes aren't insurmountable, but you will need to budget accordingly to make sure that you aren't overspending.

HOA Restrictions

Life on the Gulf Coast is an amazing experience for many people--and there are many areas where homeowners associations do their best to keep it that way. Beachfront areas or gated communities, most likely are part of homeowners associations. Before choosing a residence, go over the restrictions in the HOA rules for the neighborhood so that you’re knowledgeable of where your fees are being applied. HOA rules often include things, such as:

  • House color requirements that keep the neighborhood looking its best
  • The number of pets you can have
  • Lawn maintenance
  • Whether or not you can rent out your property
  • Where you can park vehicles, including boats, on your propert

Note that these rules impact everyone in the association, not just you. In many cases, you'll find that those restrictions are beneficial: rules about lawn maintenance may prevent neighbors from allowing their property to get overgrown, which can reflect negatively on the overall community value. In many cases, finding a homeowner's association that fits with your lifestyle can make Gulf Coast living more pleasant.

Living on the Gulf Coast of Florida is like living in a dream. Beautiful beaches, blue skies, and a thriving community are all aspects of life that you want to embrace. Before jumping in, however, it's important to be sure that you've carefully considered the potential drawbacks of life in this area. If you're ready to start looking for the home of your dreams, contact us. We'll help you find an area where you can live out the life you've been imagining.Lend Smart Mortgage Checklist Blog CTA

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