Everyone knows that warm-weather climates attract vacation homes, but not every broker is located in a sunny situation. Each area of the United States has its own popular vacation destination, and knowing this can help you get a leg up on the competition and guide second-home purchasers in the right direction.


According to the National Association of Realtors, 18 percent of all homes bought in the Northeast are purchased with the intent of using them as a vacation home. Those in the Northeast tend to purchase homes on the shore whether in New Jersey or Maryland. Some from Massachusetts tend to look in Maine or New Hampshire; however, most go for the ocean.


Of all homes bought in the South, 41 percent are purchased with the intent of using them as a vacation home. Shoreline is what Southerners look for in a second home. Florida is a place people seem to flock to. Anywhere on the shore between Tampa and Miami is fair game. If the client is a Texan, chances are they are looking for something on the Gulf of Mexico.


Of all homes bought in the Midwest, 14 percent are purchased with the intent of using them as a vacation home — think cabin in the woods. Anywhere north is a popular spot for those in the Midwest. The Great Lakes shorelines are a popular hotspot for vacation homes that are on or anywhere near a lake. Luckily, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan are full of them and have plenty of shoreline. And if that doesn’t work, buyers from the Midwest begin going south, with many purchasing vacation homes on the shoreline in Florida, South Carolina or North Carolina.


Of all homes bought in the West, 28 percent are purchased with the intent of using them as a vacation home. Shockingly different from the rest of the country, those in the West tend to look for vacation homes inland. Lake Tahoe is a large attraction to many in Arizona or California. The Palm Springs area draws in vacationers from the entire Southwest, as well. Those in the Pacific Northwest tend to favor their own coast or venture even deeper into nature by purchasing properties in the wilderness of Washington or Oregon.

Knowing the hotspots for vacation homes means that you have an ear to the ground. People want a retreat but not somewhere so far off the map that they can’t find anything. Well-developed towns will have what most need while on vacation and provide entertainment when the weather isn’t quite right.

Researching the popular places in your region will give you a good stock of knowledge to discuss the possibilities with clients. Learn about popular private communities, as many look for amenities when purchasing a vacation home. Learn about the history of hotspots because it might give you the final push when it comes to a sale. Share all the information you find with your team of agents because a well-informed team means better sales.

Anna Horn takes care of online public relations for Haig Point Club, a private community on Daufuskie Island in South Carolina.

Email Anna Horn.

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