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The Typical Vacation Home Buyer Has Changed

We know the vacation home market has slowed considerably since the boom times, but more importantly, the composition of the buyers has changed signficantly.  Let’s drill down into the numbers using data found in the “2009 National Association of Realtors Investment and Vacation Home Buyer Survey” which reports on 2008 data.  A similar survey was prepared in 2006 (2005 data).  So what has changed?

While sales of primary homes dropped 26 percent since the peak, sales of vacation homes dropped 52 percent.  Vacation homes represent 9 percent of all home sales, down from 12 percent in 2005.

Interestingly, the household composition of the typical vacation home buyer has changed to become more family-oriented.  Buyers are now younger, with the median age dropping from 59 to 46 years old and nearly half of the households have children, compared to 25 percent in the boom times.  These statistics suggest seniors are no longer a dominant market for vacation homes which they would then use as their retirement home. 

Buyers are less affluent, earning 19 percent less than they did in the boom times and 17 percent more are apt to use a mortgage to finance their home. 

This transformation of the typical vacation home buyer is likely a return to the long-term trend.

One Response to “The Typical Vacation Home Buyer Has Changed”

  1. This is a big time demographic shift with long term implications. Thanks for passing this along Dan, I may be commenting on this later this week on our blog,

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