As Texas temperatures begin their annual ascent to triple-digit numbers, Dallas residents begin to fantasize about summer escapes. “Owning a home in Colorado sure would be nice…”

Ranch houses, urban condos, mountain retreats, beachfront bungalows – second homes appeal to all tastes and lifestyles. Despite the diversity of options, however, there is now a common thread uniting them all: exceptionally low prices. If you desire a second home, I encourage you to take advantage of today’s real estate market conditions. There are several factors that make the current circumstances incredibly attractive.

First, home prices in many vacation spots have dipped drastically – Napa, California prices are down 47-percent from their 2006 peak, for example. Prices in several spots are beginning to climb, however, leading most economists to believe that the bottom is behind us.

Second, owners often rent out their residences to vacationers, which provides extra income and greatly increases the home’s resale value. As you shop, consider each property’s “rentability” and check to ensure that homeowner association regulations do not prohibit renting.

Also, keep in mind that maintenance and insurance fees offset the rental income. Management companies can analyze comparables and help you determine how much profit to expect.

Third, many homebuyers do not realize the tax perks that accompany vacation homes. According to Sarah Max of, “Rent the house out for two weeks or less and you won’t have to report a cent of income to the IRS – and you can still deduct property taxes and mortgage interest.” While there are significant tax benefits to seize, there are also some tricky qualifications and clauses to work around. Thus, always talk to a tax expert before you decide to buy the home.

Dallas offers a wonderful way of life – that’s no doubt – but sometimes its necessary to slip away for a while. Whether you’re searching for a second home near or far, Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International’s global presence makes it easy to find the perfect fit. We are closely connected with brokerages in every area, which smooths the purchase process and guarantees extraordinary service.