As vacation rental owners we have different goals when purchasing a second home. Some just like the idea of having a second home that they can use and enjoy and rent it out to cover their costs. Others purchase vacation rental homes looking for a return on their investment. It really does not matter why you have purchased a vacation rental but we always err on the side of prudence when managing an investment. Preparing a budget will help you manage your property more efficiently and allow you to make reasonable financial decisions at a glance. Remember, knowledge is key to running your investment.
If you have not yet prepared your 2014 budget for your vacation rental don't be ashamed. This should not be an exercise in frustration and should only take you about an hour to do. Set up of your budget will take up the bulk of your time but once you have it going it will only take you a second to update every month. I have included a few quick ideas to get you going.
You will need:
-2014 planned capital improvements (for example a construction project, not maintenance)
Once you have collected all of the above information you can now get going on your budget. Please note that a budget is just a starting point that will grow and change so make assumptions and tweak it as you get more information throughout the year.
A starting point: