Vacation Homes: It’s a Buyer’s Market…For Now

Purchasing a vacation home may seem like the ultimate fantasy for many Canadians. But maybe it’s more likely than you’d think.

Currently, prices in many cottage areas are reasonable. According to an article in MoneySense, realtors who work in prime cottage locations say it’s a buyer’s market for Canadian vacation properties.

As the MoneySense article suggests, many Americans have been buying Canadian vacation properties for years; for example, in parts of Nova Scotia some 50% of cottage buyers were American. Then the recession sparked an American exodus, and prices for vacation properties dropped.

Now, thanks to the lower Canadian dollar, there may be a resurgence of interest on the part of Americans. So if you’re thinking of buying next summer, you may want to start looking now, and purchase in the off-season when prices are lower.

Consider whether you want to buy near a busy summer hub or are looking for a more isolated retreat. And get a good local real estate agent who knows the area and can source out potential properties before they’re advertised.

If purchasing a vacation property seems unaffordable, consider buying and renting it out for a few years. Canadian vacation rentals are winning fans worldwide, partly as a result of websites like Airbnb. As well, the popular HGTV Canada program Income Property recently raised the profile of cottage rentals, turning outdated properties into dream vacation rentals.

Who knows? Like some Income Property cottagers, you may find renting to be so worthwhile, you can eventually make your cottage your dream retirement home.