Bloomberg — The US housing market may be cooling, but so far that hasn’t dented the appeal of buying vacation homes in cheaper destinations outside the country.
Google activity in the past 12 months reveals a particular interest in Mexican real estate, with searches by US residents jumping 60% year-over-year, according to research by real estate site Point2. Canada maintained its second-place position, although monthly searches fell 13% from the year prior, and Costa Rica came in third.
While Mexico, Canada and Costa Rica have long been priority destinations for second-home seekers from the US, places like Panama and the Bahamas are gaining traction as more Americans consider relocating abroad.
Haiti, Chile and Aruba also saw a surge in interest, with searches more than doubling year-over-year, although they didn’t make the top 10.
The interest in international locations like Costa Rica has been driven by the “incredible price increases” for homes in US vacation spots, Scott Cutter, broker at 2Costa Rica Real Estate, said in the report. “American buyers view their investments as more than just a lifestyle play, but also as strategic parts of a financial diversification plan,” he said.
New cities are also emerging as hot spots: Puerto Vallarta, Tulum and San Miguel de Allende were the top destinations in Mexico this past year, with Tulum replacing Cabo San Lucas on the list. In Canada, Montreal moved into the top three alongside Vancouver and Toronto, replacing Hamilton, Ontario. In Costa Rica, San Rafael replaced Jaco in the top three most-searched destinations.
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