A SHM Architects-designed lakehouse in Long Cove, Texas

Architects — well, good architects — think about interior and exterior space to a degree that most lay people would never think of. That’s why when you hear Mark Hoesterey, principal architect at SHM Architects in Dallas, talk about Costco closets and other things you never think of when building a second home, you nod your head vigorously in agreement, wondering why you never noticed these things before. We tapped into Hoesterey’s brilliant mind to share the most sought-after features that homeowners want (and need) in a vacation home. (more…)

Four Seasons Caye Chapel Resort, Caye Chapel, Belize

Trend alert: now more than ever, high-end developments are offering exclusive getaways and glamping retreats to qualified luxury home buyers. If you’re in the market for a vacation home or place to retire, there’s no better way to experience the lifestyle than with try before you buy.

Not sure where to start? No problem! We’ve done all the work for you in our list of top “try before you buy” vacation spots. Pick a place that speaks to you and indulge in a brief (and sometimes free) house hunting expedition for the second home of your dreams. Disclaimer: You’ll want to pack your bags immediately.

Learn more on SecondShelters.com

 

2-park-city

Recently former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert sold his $6.2 million ski-in, ski-out house, right near the Dreamcatcher Lift in Park City Utah. It was sold at auction to another Dallas family who bought it for their grandchildren. Now here is the best part of the story: the family already owns a home in Deer Valley. They just wanted a place for the grandchildren to ski where snowboarding was allowed. So of course, they bought a house in Park City. Got a good deal, too: $4.2 million. The auction was conducted by the good folks at Heritage Auction here in Dallas.

The vacation home market is estimated to be at $100 billion worldwide, and a lot of it is because of grandparents wanting fun for their grandkids. In New Orleans at NAREE this month, I gathered five top vacation home experts, including Bill Furlong of HomeAway, Jackie Doak of Dart Enterprises Ltd., the developer of Camana Bay on Grand Cayman Island, Hunter Harman, Broker/Owner of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida, Tina Necrason of Montage Hotels & Resorts, and Tyler Niess of Crescent Communities.

Vacation home sales are robust but not as furious as they were in 2014. Still, 920,000 vacation homes were sold in the U.S. in 2015, the 4th highest number in NAR survey’s 13-years. In 20015, 16 percent of all US home sales were vacation homes. In 2014, 21 percent of all were vacation homes, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The median price vacation home is now up to $210,000 in 2015 from $197,200 in 2014. To find out where the hottest markets are — surprising! —  and see the entire panel in full video, click on over to our sweet sister blog, SecondShelters.com.