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Why Californians Buy a Second Home in Las Vegas

Many Californians own second homes in Las Vegas. And why wouldn’t they? The drive from Los Angeles to Las Vegas is only four hours. With reasonable housing prices and low property taxes, investing in property in Las Vegas makes a lot of sense.

California, the Golden State: It seems as though everyone who’s anyone on the West Coast is there or wants to be. Why, then, would a person who could proudly call California home want to buy a second home in Las Vegas? Wait a minute! Reverse that: Why wouldn’t any Californian who had the opportunity want to buy a second home in Las Vegas?

Vegas for Fun

Maybe it’s just a case of “the grass is always greener” mentality, even if you may see a bit less lawn per square mile in Southern Nevada’s dry climate. Las Vegas ranks as one of the top destinations for Californians who want a weekend (or longer) getaway. A 2012 California travel guide even vouches for the fact that “Californians continue to go to Las Vegas like crazy.” Nightlife, gaming, shows, and the general lure of the Strip entice plenty of beach dwellers from their native environs on a regular basis. It’s not a great leap for these devotees to envision the possibilities of investing in property around the Valley.

Having a condo, town home, or even a single-family residence holds distinctly appealing possibilities for Pacific Coast natives who prefer their own accommodations as opposed to the hassle and expense of recurring hotel stays. Keeping a vacation home in Vegas means having a place to leave belongings, so you can just get in the car and go with no bags. At approximately four hours from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, the trip can seem like little more than an extended commute for folks who already often have hour-plus rides to and from work each day. Many people also have plenty of friends and family coming through town, so the property rarely goes unused for long.

Vegas for Profit

Historically, California property values are higher than those in Las Vegas. A recent article in the Las Vegas Review Journal touted the benefits of employers recruiting staff to relocate to Las Vegas. The article remarked on the eminent affordability of real estate in Las Vegas compared to places such as California, which actually contains seven of the country’s ten least-affordable housing markets.

The upside from the Californian standpoint: Your California home can provide equity to buy a second home in the more affordable Las Vegas market. With California home values currently rising, obtaining a second mortgage or selling and downsizing can provide the required cash for a down payment for—or in some cases outright purchase of—a Las Vegas property.

The best part? With the thriving rental market around the Valley, you can secure a tenant and collect a nice passive income on your investment. Also, don’t forget that Las Vegas property taxes are virtually a fraction of those in California. So you won’t need a second mortgage on your second home in order to maintain yearly fixed expenses on it. While life in Las Vegas may not literally be a day at the beach, many California residents see the advantages in deciding to buy a second home here in Las Vegas.

Photo Credit: Gregory Moine http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregory-moine/4320736027/sizes/l/in/photolist-7zNUhK-7zSCHU-6EHvLS-53CYUM-4XYos2-9ujCe1-JLawz-7ihARp-7imwoh-aidW1c-8X8KG3/

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