THE ADDRESS Magazine Summer 2014 - Page 313

Market Insights from around the world Foreign buyers remain enamoured with U.S. properties Fiscal and economic worries aside, international property buyers still look to the United States more than any other nation when it comes to seeking safe havens in which to invest, a survey shows. According to the California Association of Realtors (CAR) “2013 International Clients Survey”, in fact 85% of international buyers say the U.S. was their only consideration, pointing to its stable government and financial system. The remainder said they looked to Canada, Germany, Mexico, China, Singapore, Sweden and France as safe havens to invest in real estate. However, America’s National Association of Realtors revealed that total residential property transactions fell in 2013 from a year earlier, from $82.5 billion to $68.2 billion. Besides the attraction of stability, foreign buyers were enticed by desirability of location and climate, as well as being closer to family and friends (both 20%), investment opportunities (9%), work changes (9%), educational opportunities (6%) and affordability (4%). The investors were anticipating long-term investment and tax advantages (18%) and rental opportunities (14%). Among the states, Florida welcomed the most foreign buyers in 2013. In total, Florida welcomed 23% of all non-resident buyers of U.S. real estate, with California at 17%, and Arizona and Texas both at 9%. Meanwhile, more than two-thirds of the foreign buyers paid cash for their purchases, compared to just 27% of domestic buyers. 313