Affluent U.S. Consumers Are Looking South of the Border For Second Homes in Record Numbers
In a report and survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors, more U.S. homeowners are interested in buying homes and property abroad, with Mexico topping their wish list.
Residential Real Estate reported that during the year ending in March 2016, they had a client seeking to purchase a home in another country, with Latin and Central America leading the list. The number more than doubled form the previous 12-month period, as a strong dollar gives Americans more purchasing power south of the border.
Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, attributes the uptick partly to baby boomers nearing retirement age, who will be more interested in a second destination. Owning a second home abroad also has the appeal of adventure and something very different that at home in the U.S..
Latin America garnered the most interest from potential second home buyers, with Mexico leading the way with Mexico, with 13% of inquiries; Costa Rica and Colombia, each with 4%, and places like Belize and other Caribbean countries on the list as well. The list coincides with some of the weakest world currencies against the U.S. dollar, making properties in those countries more affordable to U.S. buyers. The Mexican peso, for example, has depreciated 16% versus the dollar in the past year.
While there is no official data on where exactly in Mexico — or other countries — U.S. citizens are looking to buy, evidence points the beach, not of a surprise there, in places. This report and the information gathered from it does not suggest U.S. residents are looking to the leave the country all together, but 87% wish to buy a vacation home or a residential rental home.