Second homes market booming

Baby boomers fueling second home market

When Chip Lubeck started selling real estate on Singer Island in 1988, he worked with your typical older snowbird. “Northeasterners would buy a vacation home, stay one to four months in the winter, then close up the home until next year,” says Lubeck broker/owner of Lubeck Real Estate on Singer Island near Palm Beach.

“What used to sell for $150,000 to $160,000 now sells for $500,000 or more, and the typical older buyer can’t afford it,” he says. “There’s a new, younger jet-set crowd, and they’re paying cash for $450,000 to $650,000 homes that aren’t even on the water. In Singer Island, if you want a waterfront home, you’re paying upwards of $1 million,” he says.

"As the baby boomers begin to age, they’re using the wealth built by their parents to invest in second homes,” says industry consultant John Tuccillo. “This is compounded by the April 2000 stock market downtrend and the tech bubble bursting. Money has flooded into housing ever since,” he says.

“There’s been a shift in the last 10 years,” says Tom Bringardner, general manager of Premier Properties in Naples. “Many times these buyers are younger. They’re current corporate executives who are pre-retirement. They want to establish themselves in retirement and plan for their future. Buyers in our area are baby boomers who are the beneficiaries of wealth transfer. They’re entrepreneurs who are operating their own companies or have sold to a larger public company,” says Bringardner.

Although Florida tends to draw buyers from all over the country, according to a study by the University of Florida’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research, most second-home buyers are coming from New York, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Canada, Illinois, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Jersey and California.

Second-Home Market: Booming [Florida Realtor Magazine]

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