Ski Resort Real Estate Listings on the Rise

By: Ted Amenta

Every spring, as the snow melts and the chairlifts stop running, ski resort real estate markets experience a significant increase in the number of new listings coming on the market. This makes the season between Easter and Memorial Day the time of year when prospective real estate buyers have the greatest number of properties to choose from. The reasons for this are as follows:

Many ski resort property owners hold their ski homes and condos for occasional personal use while renting them out to vacationers for most of the year. Although most ski resorts are increasingly becoming year round destinations, the majority of real estate rental income is still being made during the winter months. Many owners put their properties up for sale after they have made their winter rental income with the hope of not having to pay the carrying costs of the property during that time of year when rental income is somewhat lower.

Also, ski resort property owners that have their resort homes and condos primarily for personal use, typically own for use during family ski vacations. As kids grow up, parents get older, and grandchildren become part of the family, vacation choices and residence needs change. After one last ski season in a particular residence, many families choose to put their property on the market with the intention of upgrading to something larger, downgrading to something smaller, or cashing out of the ski resort environment altogether.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, spring and summer is the time of year when the most potential real estate buyers are looking for something to purchase. This is true across the American real estate market in general but is especially true in ski resort markets for the following reasons:

While most people first visit a ski resort area during the wintertime, they need to experience that area during the spring and/or summer as well before making the decision to purchase something there.

Also, since a great deal of ski resort real estate is held for rental income purposes, and since the ski season is the time of year with the lowest vacancy rates, this is also the time of year that prospective buyers are the least likely to be able to gain access to a home or condo that might be of interest to them. If a property is being rented out to a vacationer, the rental management company handling the property will not allow access to anyone else as doing so would certainly generate complaints from the guests. Prospective buyers know this and therefore schedule their property viewing appointments during those times of year that they are most likely to gain access.

Finally, in addition to the simple matter of availability mentioned above, driving around looking at property in winter conditions is not always a particularly pleasant experience. Many people would much rather spend their vacation time on the ski slopes than in the car during this time of year.

And in the case of vacant land, snowshoes are often required to walk a property in the wintertime and engineering reports like wetland surveys and septic system studies need to be preformed in the spring and summer anyway.

For all of these reasons, on both the buying and selling side of the equation, the springtime and early summer is the time of year when most ski resort real estate listings come on the market with a corresponding increase in sales as well.

Copyright 2007 - All rights reserved by Ted Amenta

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