There has to be good news somewhere in the real estate galaxy if you look hard enough. Finally we found some. Vacation home sales moved up 4.7% in 2006, as reported by NAR. The sector now consists of 14% of all home sales, improving from 12% in 2005.
The nation's demographics are driving the market. The buyer usually is in his mid 40s or over, with a median household income a little better than $100,000. This is generally considered the prime buying age. Besides using the property as a vacation home, there were other practical reasons to the acquisition. Some 28% said they would use it as a primary residence after retirement, others saw tax benefits in it and 18% had plans to rent the property out.
Some other numbers stand out from the survey and are worth commenting on. Almost a third of the homes were in the country and 24% were in resorts. I wonder what percentage goes to Las Vegas? We do have quite a few of them here. And this comes as a surprise to me. A full 67% were single-family houses. I thought we were already living in the high-rise condo age and the segment would be in the lead. Well, with 21% it's still way behind.