A Guide to Buying Ski Properties

A Guide to Buying Ski Properties

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More and more winter sport tourists decide to invest their money in a ski property. It makes sense to stay in your own second home when you are away from home as you can indulge in your own space. On the other hand, ski rentals provide an excellent way to earn some extra income through rentals.

The best options are those that allow for turnkey and maintenance-free upkeep of the property. This is best done with one of the three most popular type of ski properties covered later in this article.

It is also of interest to owners to look for ski properties that don’t gobble up a ton of money in extras. While extra costs can hardly be avoided, there are better and worse choices.

The biggest question most buyers have is most likely WHERE to buy.

Ski Property Selling Points

The biggest seller is always location and demand. If you are a regular at a popular ski destination then you are most likely in the right place to buy a ski property.

One drawback to that could be ever increasing prices that put many buyers out of the market. However, in a recession such as right now, many opportunities for bargains exist if you only look closely enough.

The following are strong selling points for ski property ownership:

  • Ease of rental
  • Not having to worry about dealing with renters yourself
  • Ready services
  • Close by amenities
  • Great location

The Three Popular Types of Ski Ownership Properties

Most of the strong selling points are usually serviced by the three top ski property types, namely:

  1. Hotel residences
  2. Condominium hotels
  3. Fractional clubs/Timeshare

Hotel Residences

Hotel residences are by far the most expensive ski properties as they usually come with the works. It isn’t rare to have your own butler, limousine services and personal chef. Naturally the price tag of these properties is generally up there.

chaletTo give you an idea, you can buy an apartment in the new Four Seasons Hotel in Vail, Colorado for a cool $16 million. If that’s not quite your budget, then perhaps you would like to wait for the opening of the Ritz-Carlton Highlands, at Lake Tahoe’s Northstar ski resort in California. There you only have to part with $3-$7 million to buy your own ski property.

Condominium Hotels

Condominiums are very popular because they are run like hotels but each individual room belongs to a different owner. They are run by a body corporate who is responsible for cleaning, reception, etc.

These type of properties are also affordable to most buyers. It helps to look for something a little more sophisticated though as some of these rooms do not include a kitchen.

Fractional Clubs/Timeshare

Timeshare or fractional clubs offer investors a certain number of nights each year in their jointly owned properties. The good thing about these are that you are often free to chop and change your destination if availabilities exist within the hotel group.

On the bad side you are limited to a number of nights which could be a negative for some. These ski properties are cheap though and you wouldn’t need to worry about services either.

Other properties: Besides the classical three there are of course your typical ski chalet, a brick home or a simple apartment in one of the resorts. While these all offer their own advantages, they do require a lot of extra work from the owner itself as there are usually no extra services.

What To Do Before You Buy

Before you can even think of buying your own ski property it might be wise to settle on a specific location. Whether you crave to ski in Aspen, Steamboat Springs or Lake Tahoe, chances are that unless you love the area you probably won’t buy.

Enquire about the amenities, services and costs associated with the property, then go talk to a lawyer to finalize the paper work.

Who knows, next season you might already be carving the snow in front of your own home.