Ski Town Home Buying Is Gaining Against Beachside Getaways

Second-home snowbird buyers have tended to favor warmer, sunnier climates. But interest in ski towns is surging, a new report from® finds.

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Homebuyer demand in ski towns is surging. Searches of homes in ski towns jumped 36% annually in the fourth quarter of 2020, according to a new report from®. A bulk of that demand is coming from households already in cold weather climates, such as Northern states. Many are favoring nearby ski towns as they look for an escape closer to home.

Seven of the top 10 ski towns seeing the largest percentage spikes in online views are located in the Northeast and Midwest.

“Historically, residents of the Midwest and Northeast have shown a preference for warmer cities, and contributed to much of the out-of-state demand in homes in sunny states, such as Florida,” says Danielle Hale,®’s chief economist. “This year, we found that snowbirds’ interest in ski towns increased more than interest from other areas across the country. It’s not surprising. Americans are increasingly searching for getaways that are within driving distance. Skiing is done outdoors and generally at a distance from others, making it a relatively safe sport during the pandemic.”

Plus, many of these areas offer year-round outdoor activities, making them attractive summer destinations too, Hale says.® researchers examined home searches of residents from 10 traditionally “snowbird” markets to about 200 resort-linked ski towns. Residents of the following eight markets were showing record interest in ski towns: Boston; Chicago; Columbus, Ohio; Indianapolis; New York; Philadelphia; Providence, R.I.; and Minneapolis.

Overall, the following 10 ski towns showed the greatest interest in-home shopper interest online, according to® (ranked in order of percentage increase):

1. Union Dale, Pa.

  • Increase in searches (year-over-year): 225%
  • Median list price: $185,000

2. Choteau, Mont.

  • Increase in searches annually: 143%
  • Median list price: $174,500

3. North Creek, N.Y.

  • Increase in searches annually: 132%
  • Median list price: $272,000

4. Eden, Utah

  • Increase in searches annually: 122%
  • Median list price: $1,190,000

5. Windham, N.Y.

  • Increase in searches annually: 118%
  • Median list price: $692,000

6. Boone, Iowa

  • Increase in searches annually: 113%
  • Median list price: $165,000

7. Otis, Mass.

  • Increase in searches annually: 113%
  • Median list price: $402,000

8. Lakeside, Mont.

  • Increase in searches annually: 105%
  • Median list price: $972,500

9. Paoli, Ind.

  • Increase in searches annually: 103%
  • Median list price: $135,000

10. Boyne Falls, Mich.

  • Increase in searches annually: 100%
  • Median list price: $321,700