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Seller financing great for disposing of second home

'Playing the bank' ensures tax benefits, favorable terms

Memorial Day weekend is the traditional opening of the summer season. Cabins are aired-out for the first time in months, and boats, recently serviced, are trailed to public and private launches en route to their seasonal homes in cozy marinas or weathered docks. But not all second-home owners are expecting the summer rush. Our elderly friends had just returned from the holiday weekend at their waterfront getaway and realized a long-awaited European vacation -- coupled with no trips by the grandkids -- will leave the once-popular cottage mostly vacant during the most favorable periods of the year -- including the Fourth of July. "I darn near sold it five years ago," said homeowner Robert Shelton. "But the kids talked me out of it -- said they wanted to come back. But they've used it less and less and it's one of the few real assets we have. "I could use some cash, but I don't need it all right now." Not all property sellers want cash. The monthly payment income from the sale of a family...

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