Where Would You Move: A Hilltop Home or Oceanfront Property?

If you said on the water, you're in the minority. And some lucky few get both.

A hilltop AND an ocean view in Orange County. Patch file photo.
A hilltop AND an ocean view in Orange County. Patch file photo.

California luxury home buyers preferred hilltop homes over oceanfront properties four to one, the California Association of Realtors said today.

Forty-one percent of buyers who bought homes for more than $1 million polled in the association's "2013 Luxury Real Estate Consumer Survey" said they purchased a home with a hilltop view, compared with 10 percent who bought an oceanfront home.

Hilltop homes outranked oceanfront homes and ocean-view homes combined, which made up 38 percent luxury purchased.

Sixteen percent of buyers chose luxury homes near a golf course, 12 percent in mountainous areas, 9 percent in resort areas, 4 percent on lakefronts and 1 percent at a ski resort.

Fifty-seven percent of luxury buyers were single, compared with 37 percent of traditional buyers who were single.

Seventy-nine percent of luxury home buyers said they acquired the home as a primary residence.

Ten percent bought a home as a vacation or second home, 9 percent as an investment or rental property and 2 percent cited other reasons.

Additional survey findings include:

A fourth of luxury home buyers said the main reason they purchased the residence was because they wanted a larger home, compared with 23 percent who said they were tired of renting.

About 35 percent of all luxury buyers were able to pay cash for their properties, compared with 27 percent of traditional buyers and 11 percent of first-time buyers.

Thirty percent of luxury home buyers made higher down payments than traditional buyers and had less problems getting financing than traditional buyers.

On a scale of 1 to 10, luxury home buyers rated acquiring financing difficulty at 3.7, compared with 8.6 for traditional buyers.

While luxury home buyers spent less time looking for properties -- five weeks -- compared with traditional buyers --10 weeks -- and luxury buyers looked at 10 properties while traditional buyers looked at eight before purchasing the home.

Luxury buyers tended to be more optimistic than traditional buyers, with 71 percent of luxury buyers saying they expected home prices to increase in a year, compared with 36 percent of traditional buyers.

Luxury home buyers intended to keep the property for a median of 10 years, compared with six years for traditional buyers.

—City News Service


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