What to consider when buying a home elsewhere

How to get local info on a faraway real estate market

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Aging Baby Boomers are buying second homes at a record pace. Last year alone, 377,000 single-family second homes were sold, according to the National Association of Realtors. Buying a second home for retirement, vacation or rental may be a great idea. But if you're buying outside of the area you're accustomed to, plan on ramping up your due diligence investigations. The first thing to be aware of is that real estate law, custom and practice varies from one location to the next. For example, in New Jersey, you need to hire an attorney to help you buy and sell residential real estate. In California, you usually don't need an attorney. In some states, title and escrow companies handle the closing, and in other states attorneys are in charge of closing transactions. Property surveys are required in some states and not in others. The point is that there's a lot of diversity. You can't assume that the way homes are bought and sold in another area is the same as it is where you live. Findi...