More Americans these days are struggling to keep up with a vacation home. Taylor Marr, deputy chief economist at Redfin, says, “A combination of sustainable remote-work policies and record-low mortgage rates is contributing to an uptick in demand, with buyers snagging holiday homes before interest rates rise further.” raced for.” In fact, mortgage rates are still near record lows – 30 year fixed rates now average 3.4% and 15 year rates around 2.5% — but most pros predict they will rise. And although home prices are rising, many affluent buyers are still interested in second homes: “Given recent trends, we expect second home purchases to continue throughout the winter months,” says Realtor.com. says senior economist George Ratio.
Another reason second home sales are rising is because current homeowners have accumulated a lot of home equity and that equity can be tapped to make a down payment on a second home, said senior economist at Housing and Commercial Research. According to the director of Gay Coratan. National Association of Realtors. A report by Black Knight found that American homeowners now have record levels of tappable home equity. “A homeowner who bought a home at the average sale price 10 years ago and still sold it at the average sale price today would have about $200,000 in net equity,” Corraton says.
So where are second home buyers buying homes? In some surprising places that aren’t the sunny resort areas you might expect. To determine the top markets in each state, Pacso, a second home property platform, analyzes mortgage-rate-lock data — an indicator of buying activity.
Here are some of the top markets disclosed.
Franklin County in Florida
The top location, according to Pacso’s data, is Franklin County, Fla., 70 miles southwest of Tallahassee, known as the “Forgotten Coast.” Here the share of second-home mortgage-rate locks was 11.5% from January to October this year compared to last year, the Pacso analysis found.
Sevier County in Tennessee
This spot, located 30 miles outside of Knoxville, is the birthplace of country star Kenny Chesney. The average second home price for 2021 was $574,000, and mortgage-rate locks increased by 9.7%, the report said.
Trigg County in Kentucky
The report showed that second-home mortgage-rate locks saw an increase of 9.3%. Its claim to fame? This National Recreation Area is home to the Land Between the Lakes.
Oktibeha County in Mississippi
The location is home to the Tombigbee National Forest, with the average second home costing just $188,000, the report said.
Hardy County in West Virginia
Located in the heart of Appalachia, Hardy County lies in the wide valley of the South Branch of the Potomac River. The average second home price is $281,000.
Pacific County in Washington
The area responsible for a large portion of the country’s oyster harvest, centered on Wilpa Bay, Pacific County’s second home value averaged $385,000.
Garrett County in Maryland
The westernmost county in Maryland, Garrett County is home to the highest free-falling waterfall in the state, the largest freshwater lake, and the highest point. The average second home price here is $587,000.
Saunders County in Nebraska
Bounded to the north and east by the Platte River, the county has an area of 760 square miles and 9.6 square miles of water. The report found that the average second home price here is $572,000.
Windham County in Vermonte
The home of the famed Stratton Mountain, Windham County average second home price is $503,000, and second-home mortgage-rate locks have increased the area by 50% over the past year.
Grand County in Colorado
Located in the north-central Rocky Mountains, Grand County is known for the cities of Winter Park and Granby. The average second-home price is $750,000, and last year the county saw a 61.6% increase in second-home rate locks.
Why are so many people flocking to these lesser-known places? Sean Greer, vice president of sales and marketing at Vacasa, a vacation rental management platform, says there has been an increase in interest in more remote destinations, because people are working remotely or feel they won’t need as much in the office, And looking for interesting places for investment properties. “According to our 2021 Vacation Rental Buyer Report, more people are looking to capitalize on the opportunity, with 70% of current buyers looking to invest in their first rental property – a significant jump from the 46% who were first-time buyers in 2019,” Greer it is said.
While people conjure up images of idyllic beaches when buying vacation homes, people are now buying homes where they can enjoy mountain hiking, camping, trekking or fishing. “Geographic proximity, cost, and personal preferences of how people want to enjoy their leisure time are all factors that go into the decision of where to buy a vacation home,” says Corraton.
In addition to remote workers buying homes in places where they can work and play, Lewis says others are buying a second home from the big city as a pandemic retreat. “Many people feel bothered by travel restrictions, and it’s a relief to have another place to call home,” Lewis says.
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Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story stated that Trigg County, Ky., was home to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is actually home to the Lands Between the Lakes National Recreation Area. The story has been corrected.