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Condo Purchase in Palm Springs?
Old 03-16-2014, 09:58 PM   #1
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Condo Purchase in Palm Springs?

I actually just posted this in a thread, but since I respect the opinions of this forum, I would like to get your input. Thanks in advance. I'll forward this to my wife when we return.

My wife and I are going to Palm Springs to look at a few condos.

We'll pay cash if we buy, but I'm torn on purchasing.

Here are a few pros and cons for me:

Pros:

We can bring our dog to stay with us.
There are tennis courts and swimming pools.
Of course golf.
We like visiting Palm Springs and could easily hang out a week or 2 at a time.
Use for a Home Exchange to travel world more cheaply.
Rent out condo.
I'm handy, can do most repairs.

Cons:
Don't like spending $100K and incurring more bills instead of growing wealth.
Don't like owning property that's not within 50 miles.
Usually try to maintain simplicity rather than complicate life.

BTW, we live in SoCal, around 100 miles away.
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Old 03-16-2014, 10:04 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by mikefixac View Post
I actually just posted this in a thread, but since I respect the opinions of this forum, I would like to get your input. Thanks in advance. I'll forward this to my wife when we return.

My wife and I are going to Palm Springs to look at a few condos.

We'll pay cash if we buy, but I'm torn on purchasing.

Here are a few pros and cons for me:

Pros:

We can bring our dog to stay with us.
There are tennis courts and swimming pools.
Of course golf.
We like visiting Palm Springs and could easily hang out a week or 2 at a time.
Use for a Home Exchange to travel world more cheaply.
Rent out condo.
I'm handy, can do most repairs.

Cons:
Don't like spending $100K and incurring more bills instead of growing wealth.
Don't like owning property that's not within 50 miles.
Usually try to maintain simplicity rather than complicate life.
How much does an adequate condo in Palm Springs cost? How about the taxes, dues and assessments?

A lot of older people from up here leave after Thanksgiving and spend all winter in palm Strings. No doubt about it, Palm Springs is very nice!
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:55 PM   #3
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Condos we're looking at ~110-125K.

Does seem like it would be easy to rent out in the winter and possible cover all costs for whole year.
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:11 AM   #4
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Do you plan on using this as a 2nd retirement home or just a place to spend a week or two during the year? If the later it seems like an expensive way to go not to mention the hassle of owning and managing a condo rental. It probably would be easy to rent out during the winter months but isn't that the time of year you would want to be there? It's not the place you want to be from May thru September unless you like temperatures above 100. I usually visit Palm Springs for a couple weeks during the fall and early winter (October-December) and have no problem getting a nice 1BR unit at one of the Marriott or Starwood resorts for under $500/week.
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:12 AM   #5
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He wants to travel with his dog, like we do -- we have 3. We usually get a place on VRBO and have pretty good luck with that.
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Old 03-17-2014, 10:05 AM   #6
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I love Palm Springs. It's one of our favorite places to get away, being only about 100 miles from our home. Our friends have a condo there that we stay at all the time.

We spent quite a bit of time looking at condos in Palm Springs last year. Prices are going up rapidly, but they are still quite a bit lower than before the housing crash.

There are two main issues with Palm Springs condos that you need to be aware of. First, the condo fees can be very high, especially if they have a lot of common area grass and shrubs, because the cost to irrigate is so high. The condos we looked at had monthly fees of $500-$600.

Second, the best deals are for condos on leased land (Indian owned). A condo will appear to have a good price on it because it may only have 20 years left on the lease. Banks won't finance these so only cash buyers can buy them. While this may not be an issue for you if you plan to pay cash, you still have to consider the resale value should you decide to sell it, as there are only so many cash buyers out there, and the closer you get to the lease expiration, the less desirable the property becomes.

Eventually the leases do get renegotiated, but often at substantially higher prices. So the uncertainty causes a bit of unpredictability in the markets for these homes.

Finally, there are many communities surrounding Palm Springs (Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, La Quinta) that are generally less expensive than the classic downtown Palm Springs area.

While financially I'm sure it would be cheaper to rent a condo through VRBO, I do know many people who bought condos in Palm Springs and seem to enjoy them. Good luck with your search.
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Old 03-17-2014, 02:09 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for the advice. Leased land was something I never thought of. Wow, that's good to know.

Honestly, I'm gravitating toward not buying. I don't want to be burdened with an extra property and all that comes with it. Along with the monthly expenses and who knows what headaches might come along.

Got rid of a place in Big Bear, we just didn't use it that much.

Plus, I'm so dang cheap. I was going to go to the Indian Wells BNP Paribas tennis tournament and sleep in my car, shower at the 24 hour fitness. But then I didn't want to fork over the $50 daily entrance fee when I could just watch it on TV.
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Old 03-17-2014, 04:06 PM   #8
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My single SIL who retired early and bought a small home in Palm Springs a few years ago just recently sold it and moved back to the Bay area. Her reasons were 1.) it's too darn hot there in the long summer, and 2.) the lifestyle was not for her with the large number of gays that populate the town. Not that she has anything against gays and lesbians, it just wasn't a fun place for her as there were low numbers of available men to date, etc.

She actually took a fairly big hit in the recent sale of her house, but made a good deal in one near SF.
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Old 03-17-2014, 05:12 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mikefixac View Post
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Plus, I'm so dang cheap. I was going to go to the Indian Wells BNP Paribas tennis tournament and sleep in my car, shower at the 24 hour fitness. But then I didn't want to fork over the $50 daily entrance fee when I could just watch it on TV.
We are up in the LQ cove a couple miles from the tennis gardens - last several years a few of my gal's friends fly in and housesit and attend the tennis tournament and take care of our cat while we go wander in AZ for a week Works out pretty well, as I'm always eager to get back to our own home and quit paying for inferior housing on the road..
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Old 03-17-2014, 07:28 PM   #10
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Palm Springs certainly has the weather. The airport's main waiting area near the gates is just a big, fancy tent over park like grounds. I believe they have some big swamp coolers that blow cool air over the Summer travelers as they wait in the shade of the tent.
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Old 03-17-2014, 07:37 PM   #11
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For any purchase... Condo, Time Share, Retirement Community etc...
anywhere.
At the top of the check list...
Prospectus
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Old 03-17-2014, 09:57 PM   #12
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Plus, I'm so dang cheap. I was going to go to the Indian Wells BNP Paribas tennis tournament and sleep in my car, shower at the 24 hour fitness. But then I didn't want to fork over the $50 daily entrance fee when I could just watch it on TV.
Attended the tournament last year and tickets for the stadium court matches aren't cheap, I think for $50 you would be in the nose bleed section at best. It was OK but I'm with you, TV and a cold beer is the way to go.
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