Recently, there were two articles posted about the increase in vacation home purchases across the US. Here are a few snippets from each of the articles:
"WASHINGTON, April 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Vacation home sales boomed in 2014 to above their most recent peak level in 2006, while investment purchases fell for the fourth straight year, according to an annual survey of residential homebuyers released today by the National Association of Realtors®.
NAR's 2015 Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey,* covering existing- and new-home transactions in 2014, shows vacation-home sales catapulted to an estimated 1.13 million last year, the highest amount since NAR began the survey in 2003. Vacation sales were up 57.4 percent from 717,000 in 2013.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says vacation sales in 2014 showed astonishing growth, nearly doubling the combined total of the previous two years. "Affluent households have greatly benefited from strong growth in the stock market in recent years, and the steady rise in home prices has likely given them reassurance that real estate remains an attractive long-term investment," he said. "Furthermore, last year's impressive increase also reflects long-term growth in the numbers of baby boomers moving closer to retirement and buying second homes to convert into their primary home in a few years."
Vacation-home sales accounted for 21 percent of all transactions in 2014, their highest market share since the survey was first conducted. The portion of investment sales fell to 19 percent (20 percent in 2013); owner-occupied purchases declined to 60 percent (67 percent in 2013)"
From the Wall Street Journal:
The National Association of Realtors estimates that vacation-home sales amounted to 1.13 million properties last year, up a robust 57.4% from 2013, which itself marked a 30% increase from 2012.
Last year’s estimated tally topped the previous high from 2006 to become the biggest year for vacation-home sales volume since the Realtor association started tracking the market in 2003. Vacation homes accounted for 21% of all sales last year, the highest share since the survey’s inception.
The small sample size of the Realtor group’s survey, which was based on responses by just 1,971 people who bought U.S. homes in 2014, led some economists to posit that the results might be exaggerated. Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics, suggested that the gains in the report might “overstate the strength” of that market.
Still, Mr. Zandi noted that vacation-home sales account for one-fifth of all home sales and “that should more or less rise over the next five to 10 years” as the income and number of vacation-home buyers increases.
The Realtor association’s survey found that buyers last year had median household income of $94,380, up from $85,600 in 2013.
The number of buyers is likely to grow in the years ahead as 76 million-plus baby boomers advance in age and buy vacation homes that eventually will become retirement homes.
Meanwhile, the prospect of rising prices has spurred buyers to act sooner than later. Rates on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages, which have hovered below 4% since November, are poised to rise later this year as the Federal Reserve increases short-term rates. And median resale prices on all homes, which increased by 7.5% from a year ago to $202,600 in February, are likely to rise further if the overall inventory of homes available for sale remains tight."
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