Vacation Home Market Surges In 2013

The vacation home market was hot last year with 717,000 vacation-home sales during the year in the U.S., an increase of 29.7% from the year before, according to the National Association of REALTOR’s (NAR) 2014 Vacation Home Buyers Survey.   In spite of the large increase last year, vacation home sales are still down about one-third from the peak of vacation home sales activity seen in 2006.

What did vacation homes sell for in 2013?

The median price paid for a vacation home in 2013 was $168,700, an increase of 12.5% from 2012 when the median price was $150,000.  In 2013, vacation home sales were responsible for 13% of all home sales, the highest share of the market seen by vacation homes since 2006, according to the NAR survey.  Not surprising is the fact that 38% of the vacation home buyers paid cash for the homes with the remainder financing the purchase with a median downpayment of 30%.

Who is buying vacation homes?

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According to the NAR survey, the typical buyer of a vacation home in 2013 was 43 years old, has a median household income of $92,100 and bought a property 180 miles from their primary home.

Why people are buying vacation homes.

Of the reasons listed by buyers for why they purchased a vacation home, 87% of the buyers said they bought a vacation home for the obvious reason, for vacations or a family retreat.  Thirty-one percent said they plan to use the vacation home as their primary home at some point in the future, 28% thought a vacation home was a good way to diversify their investments or that the vacation home was a good investment, 23% bought to rent out the home to rent to others and finally, 22% intend for the home to be used by friends and family members.

Where people are buying vacation homes.

The South is by far the most popular region for vacation home buyers with forty-one percent of vacation homes purchased in during 2013 were in the South, followed by 28% of the vacation homes purchased being in the West, 18% in the Northeast and 14% in the Midwest.  There is definitely a theme to the most popular locations….warmth!

Thinking of Buying a Vacation Home And Want Market Info?

Our firm, MORE, REALTORS, has current, real-time, market information available for every major market throughout the U.S. and presents it in clear, easy to read and understand charts.  If you are considering buying a vacation home and want to find out more about the vacation home market, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.  Since so many people from St. Louis find Florida an attractive vacation destination, I’ve included charts for several popular gulf-coast Florida cities below showing both price and inventory for single-family detached homes as well as condos.

Home Prices

Home Inventory

Condo Prices

Condo Inventory

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