Hotel Online Special Report

 Record Number of Americans Interested 
in Vacation Homes; 
American Resort Development Association Study Details Consumer Trends
WASHINGTON, June 18, 1999 -  The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) today released the results of the 1999 American Recreational Property Survey, showing that Americans want to purchase second or vacation homes more than ever before. Fully 26.7% of American households believe that their chances of purchasing recreational property during the next 10 years are about "50-50" or better, while 44% of those surveyed thought that there was at least some chance of purchasing during this time period. Interest in such purchases has increased markedly since 1990, when only 15.5% of households assessed their purchase chances at "50-50" or better.

"In good economic times, Americans believe that owning a vacation home has become more of a reality than a dream," said Cynthia Huheey, President of the American Resort Development Association. "With a booming economy and baby boomers reaching their peak earning years, recreational property ownership is on the rise."

Americans' number one choice is to own traditional, single-family vacation homes or cabins, while vacant land for future development and resort condominiums are the second and third most popular choices respectively. Resort timesharing or fractional interest vacationing shows the greatest proportional increase in interest, a near tripling since 1980. Twenty-two percent of Americans express interest in purchasing a timeshare, up from 8.0% in 1990. Further, of the 1.7 million households who purchased recreational property in the 1990's, more than 1 million, or 60% of the total, purchased timeshares.

Florida remains the state most preferred for ownership, with Hawaii, California, Colorado, North Carolina and Arizona behind. Ocean beach areas represent the most popular types of resort areas for vacation property ownership, followed by resorts located in the mountains or near lakes.

Americans with an interest in vacation property cite a median price of $47,000 as an attractive and realistic price for ownership of vacation property. Only 18% of respondents felt that paying $100,000 or more was an attractive and realistic option for them, despite that this cost would be a typical price range for a single family or resort condominium unit, the most popular options in terms of purchase interest. Two-bedroom units remain the most desirable size for vacation homes, condominiums, and timeshares.

The survey was prepared for ARDA by Steven Miner Research and Appraisal of Salem, Oregon. The survey included interviews from a random sample of 1,119 Americans from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Similar studies have been commissioned by ARDA in 1990, 1993, and in 1995.

The American Resort Development Association is the leading international trade group representing all facets of the vacation ownership, timeshare, and recreational property industry. ARDA has over 900 members, including well- known hospitality and hotel corporations, publicly traded companies and privately held developers.

Chris Larsen, 202-371-6700, 
or Trevor Francis, 202-737-5339, 
both for the American Resort
Development Association
Also See: ARDA Claims Vacation Ownership the Fastest Growing Segment of the Travel and Tourism Industry / April 1999 

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