A recent survey by Royal LePage found that members of Generation X – those between the ages of 36 and 51 – are the most active buyers
of recreational real estate in Canada, exceeding the number of transactions made by all other segments by at least two times over.
The real estate franchise said in its June 23 statement that, according to recreational property experts across the country, Gen X buyers are purchasing twice as many Canadian cottages as the next most active group, Baby Boomers. Retirement plans and vacations are the most frequently cited reasons for the purchases, Royal LePage said.
“This cohort, having reached a place of stability, and often owners of primary residences in the country’s city centres, is making recreational property purchases for family enjoyment in the near-term and as a key strategy for retirement,” said Royal LePage president and CEO Phil Soper.
Soper said the profile of the typical Gen X buyer is a couple with offspring who are looking for a place to settle down as the children begin their education.
The Royal LePage survey also revealed that, despite the trends observed in residential real estate markets, foreign nationals comprise a
relatively minute fraction of deals in the recreational segment in Canada – only 10% or fewer of cottage purchases. The report revealed that
most of the overseas buyers hail from the US.
“We Canadians enjoy a wonderful recreational real estate reciprocity with our American cousins,” Soper said. “Like flocks of happy geese, we fly south in the winter, and in return, Americans head to the beautiful north country when summer arrives. Canadians have been, for years, the principal foreign buyers of sunbelt property in states like Florida and Arizona, while a lower Canadian dollar has encouraged a new wave of US buyers here.”
Among Canada’s most enticing features for foreign buyers are its quality of life, its geography and the generous exchange rate, all of which are major factors for cottage buyers.
“Canada’s extended low-interest-rate environment has clearly provided buyers with the confidence they need to invest in a cottage or cabin,” Soper said. “Buying a property on a lakefront or mountainside is much less about interest rates and more about enhancing lifestyle. Cash savings trump mortgage financing when it comes to how people are acquiring recreational property.”