The reasons for buying a second home go all the way from the need to find the perfect vacation spot or a place for retirement, to the desire to make an investment. So what location do you have in mind? If you find it hard to decide, take a cue from your neighbours: to get an idea about the destinations that Canadians prefer for their second home, the research team at Point2 Homes analyzed prospective buyers’ Google searches and discovered the top 30 most attractive locations for Canadians who are shopping for homes abroad.
But no matter what drives you, before you start thinking about tropical islands, clear blue water, and amazing coral reefs, there are more pragmatic aspects to be taken into consideration. Understanding the tax implications, being able to make the down payment, and meeting credit standards and debt-to-income requirements are only a few of the most important factors to think about when trying to buy a second home. Moreover, you need to make sure you qualify for a second-home mortgage, which will add extra strain to your budget. If these factors don’t set you back, take a look at the top three most sought-after destinations for Canadians and see if you can find your favourite.
#1 Mexico – 18,780 monthly searches from Canada
With 18,780 monthly searches from Canada, Mexico takes the number one spot in this ranking. This is actually a repeat, since Mexico came out on top three years ago as well. And judging by its amazing white sand beaches, turquoise water and stunning scenery, it’s no wonder Mexico remains Canadians’ favourite.
Known for its water sports and nightlife scene, Puerto Vallarta is the most looked-up destination in the country, followed by Playa del Carmen, which is the fastest growing real estate market in Latin America. The top three destinations in Mexico is completed by Cabo San Lucas, known for its spectacular arching stone cliffs and white-sand beaches.
Mexico is not only a great spot for dreamy vacations, but also a perfect place to invest in a second home: the Mexico real estate market is considerably more affordable than the Canadian market – the average home selling price in Canada (where the MLS® Home Price Index Benchmark Price hovers around 600,000 CAD) is 11 times more than it is here (52,325 CAD).
#2 United States – 11,300 monthly searches from Canada
Up two places since 2015 – maybe the convenience of its proximity is finally reaching its full effect – is the U.S. Sunny Florida, California, and Texas are the perfect destinations for the Canadian sunseekers who would like to just cross the border and find miles of golden-sand beaches, clear blue waters, and amazing theme parks.
Besides the weather, another tempting factor is that the median home selling price in the U.S. (312,482 CAD) is roughly half the Canadian one (602,100 CAD), which makes the prospect of a second mortgage if not actually appealing, then at the very least tolerable.
#3 Costa Rica – 9,770 monthly searches from Canada
Costa Rica real estate is a real magnet for Canadians. This amazing country, boasting crystal clear water and stunning tropical beaches, comes in third this year, which means the exotic location falls one place compared to 2015 but manages to remain in the top three when it comes to Canadians’ preferred destinations.
The laid-back town of Tamarindo attracts the most interest and the second most sought-after location is beautiful Jacó, followed by the province of Guanacaste in third place. And it’s no wonder Costa Rica is so appealing, given that the median price of a home in Canada will buy you anything from luxurious, beachfront condos to stunning custom villas overlooking the ocean.
To see all the countries that made the top 30 destinations for Canadians, check out the chart below and hover over the bars to see the traffic volume for each country: