Forty Percent of Homes Purchased are Second Homes

Before you buy vacation property, learn the facts.

Vacation home

According to statistics recently released by the National Association of Realtors, four out of every ten homes sold are purchased either as investment properties or as a second home. As today’s baby boomer generation enters their peak income earning years, as well as comes into inherited money from previous generations, this trend is expected to escalate.

The vacation home market it thriving and with it comes new options for ownership beyond the traditional cabin in the woods or condo on the beach. Fractionals and private residence clubs are choices for people looking to buy deeded property to use on a part time basis. Destination clubs are another option in which owners do not acquire a deed to a specific property but instead gain the right to use a portfolio of homes.

Condo hotels or condotels are actual operating hotel properties that offer some or all of their suites for sale to individuals. While the hotel units may be privately owned, the condo hotel management assumes responsibility for running the hotel and providing contracted management of the units to be rented like regular hotel rooms. Owners can schedule the units at any time for their personal use.

And of course, there are timeshares and vacation club memberships which offer a variety of products from deeded ownerships, to right-to-use, to points-based programs. Timeshares enable you to buy vacation property yet pay for only the days and nights you actually schedule to use. While new timeshare in 2005 sold for an average price of more than $17,000 per week or interval, resale timeshare is available at much lower prices. If you are among the many people who are looking for vacation ownership, ARDA, the American Resort Development Association, has developed the following questionnaire to help you decide which option is best for your lifestyle and your budget:

  1. How much time will we be using the vacation home?
  2. Is the destination choice difficult to purchase in, or seem over-valued due to location popularity?
  3. Are we looking at this second home as an investment and/or family legacy, or perhaps primarily as an annual ‘go to’ vacation spot?
  4. How much time and money are we willing to invest in home maintenance or decor?
  5. Is it important to be in the same vacation home every time we visit the area, or do we prefer variety?
  6. What level of luxury are we seeking, and are we realistically able to achieve it in a second home?
  7. Is it important for the vacation home to be deeded?
  8. What is our annual vacation budget?

Here’s one more important addition to the list: Before you buy any vacation property, visit and look into your opportunity to buy resale timeshare at excellent prices.