New research by the National Association of Realtors (NAR)Â suggests that withÂ nearly one in five Realtors having sold aÂ home to an international client in the past year,Â our real estate is still looking good to some folk.Â Â
“In this country we have always known that housing is a good long-term investment, and many foreign buyers seem to share this view,” NAR President Pat V. Combs said in a prepared statement.
Most buy for vacation purposes, and aboutÂ a third of all international buyers are from Europe, but buyers from Asia and North America each represent about one-fourth of the total market.Â 16% of all international buyers are from Latin America. By individual country, most buyers come from Mexico (13%), the United Kingdom (12%) and Canada (11%).
It would seem that in many cases, the desire is compounded by a week dollar (e.g. Canada, U.K.) or the need to withdraw cash from countries with unstable governments – none mentioned… (cough… Chavez… cough…)
In 2006, most international home buyers showed stronger preferences for condos/apartments when compared to U.S. home buyers (22% vs. 12%) and 28% percent of foreign buyers bought their houses with cash, compared with 8% of U.S. buyers (see comment above… cough…). The median sales price of homes purchased by international buyers was $299,500,Â higher than the U.S. median of $221,900.
Foreign buyers purchase homes across the United States, but 52% of sales in 2006 were concentrated in the sunbelt states — Florida (26%), California (16%) and Texas (10%). The South attracted nearly half — 49% — of international buyers last year, and 31% purchased homes in the West.
And if you’re really into NARÂ statistics -Â you can see NAR’s full report here.