February 12th, 2015 at 2:00 pm

International home buying trends

When it comes to real estate in Southern California, it isn’t just the local residents who are looking for the best properties and deals. International homebuyers are becoming more prominent in our area, and play an important role in the continued economic growth and stimulation of the housing market.

According to a recent National Association of Realtors (NAR) study, Los Angeles is the top city searched by international consumers. These prospective buyers are flocking to California from all over the globe, including Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Japan, Korea, China, and Ireland, to name a few.

What attracts international homebuyers?

For starters, there’s more money to invest than ever before. More overseas millionaires means a greater disposable income from the international market. For overseas buyers, a stable market, good school districts, and safe investments are top reasons for wanting to make the move stateside. In Southern California, affluent neighborhoods are the most desirable because home values stay stable. For consumers who do business in their home country as well as in California, buying a home stateside just makes sense. NAR also reports that “immigrants are attracted to the U.S.’s strong, legal protection of personal property rights.” In the U.S., international homebuyers can rest assured that their assets are protected.

When it comes to international buying trends, expect clients to gravitate toward more upscale or higher-priced homes. In the 2014 Profile of International Home Buying Activity, the mean purchase price for a home by an overseas homebuyer was $396,000 and the mean for domestic homebuyers was $247,000. Housing remains affordable in the U.S. for the international market. Buyers from China spent the most money on average when purchasing a home from April 2013 to March 2014. Approximately 60 percent of international transactions are all-cash sales.

Check back for our second part in this series, where we’ll look at what an influx of international buyers means for American buyers and the Southern California real estate market.

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