If you could run from the pandemic and live on a private island, would you? Muskoka, located in Ontario, Canada, is an area ripe with private island homes on various surrounding lakes, and realtors are reporting an uptick in buyers, reports the New York Times. A couple from Phoenix once rented a home in Muskoka, dreaming one day to purchase part of one of the private islands. The pandemic pushed the couple to make the decision, providing them with the ability to live and work remotely. Their 3.5 acres and two-bedroom cottage on an island with 30 homes cost $1.46 million. One realtor says these island properties were once a challenge to sell, but interest has “increased dramatically” this year.
In the last year, 39 island properties, “more than double the normal for island homes,” sold in Muskoka, which has about 150 islands and 900 island properties on its three largest lakes, Mr. Halloran said. The market also soared for lake cottages with road access. The lack of available waterfront property on the land side made “island properties more desirable because there was so much demand,” he added, with some houses selling the day they were listed.
Prices for island homes in Canada and Europe are “shooting up,” said Farhad Vladi, owner of Germany-based Vladi Private Islands, which lists island homes worldwide. “Normally, Canadians are looking more for holiday properties in Florida,” he said, but since the pandemic hit they are seeking waterfront closer to home. “It’s the same in Europe,” he added. Instead of sunshine and comfort, “now they are looking for security.”