Ever wonder where you should buy a vacation home? That dream location may be closer than you think.
To help second-home shoppers find the best city for a seasonal home, we’ve analyzed the places near popular vacation areas to create a Second Home Index. Homes in cities with a high score are expected to see strong home value gains (making for a better investment) and also have good rental income potential.
Whether you’re seeking proximity to golf, the great outdoors, or the waterfront, you can customize your own best place list based on your preferred vacation type, price and location. Try out our tool below to find the perfect location for your vacation home.
Our goal in creating the Second Home Index is to highlight U.S. cities near popular vacation destinations that are also good locations to buy a second home for seasonal use.
- For those looking to expand their golf game, we identified places whose land areas, starting from the city center and radiating out to five miles, were at least five percent covered by golf courses. To ensure a fun and lively community in these golfing hot spots, we also required that the housing stock was composed of at least 15 percent of the housing stock being used seasonally or occasionally, as measured by the U.S. Census Bureau.
- For those seeking an oasis by the water, we identified cities with at least 15 percent vacation homes that are five miles or less from a large body of water. The surface area must be greater than 40 square miles.
- Suppose you’re a nature lover looking to vacation near the nation’s gorgeous national parks. We’ve got you covered. In order to identify the best areas for outdoor adventurers, we started with a set of cities that are within 20 miles (or a half-hour drive) of a national park visitor center. A place was considered a vacation area if 10 percent of the housing stock is vacation homes.
- For the thrill seekers and amusement park enthusiasts, we chose cities within 10 miles of amusement parks, zoos, or other attractions, and with at least five percent vacation homes in the area.
- For history buffs, we found U.S. cities within 20 miles of at least two nationally recognized historical sites, and with at least five percent vacation homes in the area.
- The 5-Step Plan for Buying a Vacation Home
- On the Market: 10 Tiny Vacation Homes
- Decorating Your Vacation Home
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