The combination of pandemic restrictions easing in 2021 and many people working remotely has spurred more and more Americans to research buying vacation homes outside the U.S. And according to a new study, Mexico, for the second year in a row, got the most searches in the Americas over the past 12 months.
Point2 analysts examined the search volumes for more than 2,000 real estate-related keywords and found the 30 most popular homebuying location searches in the Americas. Mexico kept its crown as the top homebuying location, recording a 60% increase in searches in locations like Puerto Vallarta, Tulum, San Miguel de Allende or Cabo San Lucas.
Following Mexico in the top 10 are Canada, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Belize, Panama, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, U.S. Virgin Islands and Honduras.
Key highlights from the report:
- Canada maintained its position as the second-most desirable location despite a 13% drop in monthly searches; Vancouver and Toronto were joined by Montreal as the most sought-after locations.
- Despite its rising home prices, Costa Rica kept its spot as the third most popular location for American homebuyers, with Tamarindo, Santa Ana and San Rafael attracting the most interest.
- Haiti saw the most significant spike in interest from American homebuyers, with real estate-related searches climbing by 166% compared to the past 12 months.
- Chile and Aruba are the other two countries which saw an increased interest from prospective homebuyers, with the number of searches for these locations doubling in one year.
The major takeaway:
“Just like every action has an equal and opposite reaction in physics, it appears that similar laws govern the domain of vacation homes. For every island where there was a spike in interest, there was also an island or a country that fell from grace,” writes Andra Hopulele, content writer for Point2 and author of the report. “In particular, homebuyers’ interest dwindled in the last 12 months in places like Grenada, Guatemala, Ecuador, the U.S. Virgin Islands and even Canada. Clearly, Americans’ desire to find their dream vacation home or forever home just across the northern border is diminishing. Whether that has to do with climate or harsher conditions imposed on foreign buyers doesn’t really matter, because U.S. buyers have so many other options to choose from.” Commenting on the Costa Rica market in context of the report, Broker/Owner Scott Cutter of 2CostaRica Real Estate, commented:
“We are seeing more interest than ever in Costa Rica but, with that volume comes the responsibility to educate, invest and ensure that these foreign buyers are informed and guided towards investments that will be sustainable in all senses of the word. In hot destination markets, it is easy to sell the “wow factor,” which is the setting, and the beauty here is intoxicating,” Cutter said. “We have redoubled our efforts to ensure our clients, both buyers and sellers, are informed about global and regional market trends, and also about the great deal of diversity even within Costa Rica in regards to lifestyle, amenities, tourism flow and real estate values. Ensuring our agents are trained and educated on more than just the square footage of a listing, but on the market drivers of tourism, macro economics and how global trends are affecting our local markets is a crucial element of our business identity and an adaptation strategy in what is an increasingly global real estate marketplace.”
To view the full report, click here.