International Interest in U.S. Homeowners Increases

I don’t know about you but I find surveys extremely interesting and this recent one that NAR did focuses on the International Home Buyer.  International is clarified by anyone who resides outside of the United States and based on the results of the survey it appears that the the strength of the dollar, the value and desirability of U.S. real estate, and the emerging economic recovery continue to drive international interest in owning a home in this country.

Here are some key points of interest form the 2010 NAR Profile of International Home Buying Activity, which include data from between April 1, 2009, and March 31, 2010.

KEY POINTS OF SURVEY:
– $66 billion of U.S. residential property, or 7% of the residential market, was purchased by foreign
buyers (those with residency outside the U.S., recent immigrants, and temporary visa holders);

– 28% of REALTORS® reported working with at least one international client in the past year, up from 23% from
the 2009 report;

–  International buyers came from 53 different countries around the world; the top four countries were Canada,
Mexico, the U.K., and China/Hong Kong;

–  Two factors important to international clients when purchasing property in the U.S. are proximity to their
home country and the convenience of air transportation;

–  Florida, California, Arizona, and Texas account for 53% of purchases;

–  The median price paid by international buyers for a home in the U.S. was $219,400, a decrease from 2009’s
median price of $247,100;

–  16% of the total international purchases were for homes priced at more than $500,000 (According to REALTORS®,
international buyers are typically looking for a second home);

–  66% purchased single-family detached homes;

–  More international buyers purchased a condo than did their U.S. counterparts, at 23% and 7%, respectively; and

– 55% of foreign buyers paid in cash. REALTORS® reported that a majority of international buyers use all cash
because of the difficulty in establishing international credit in the U.S.

Are you finding yourself working more and more with international buyers?  And have you sought out education in this niche to help you better assist these buyers?

I’d be interested in your comments and will also just close by mentioning that MAR has an International Council which offers education and networking events for those working in this niche.  If you are interested in more information http://www.marealtor.com/content/international_council.htm .