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Affordable Housing For the Affluent

Palm trees
Lynne Sladky/AP

In resort communities, developers of swank vacation homes have had to scale back their ambitions.

High-end housing isn't immune from the real-estate slump, and so developers are building smaller structures to match the economic reality, the Wall Street Journal's Juliet Chung reports.

That means it's possible to nab a 1,800 square-foot house at the Turks & Caicos Sporting Club at Ambergris Cay for $1.4 million. Previously, the bargain-basement rate at the private-island resort was $2.5 million for a 2,800 square-foot house.

At Pine Creek Sporting Club in Central Florida, 1,500 square-foot cabins cost around $600,000, compared to $2 million for much larger properties before the housing crisis took hold. The Journal talked to one cabin-buyer who appreciated the ability to "lock it and leave" rather than worry about keeping a staff on site.

The idea is to keep the resorts growing while limiting damage to the property values of people who bought bigger homes when times were flush.