With an increasingly tough market and some experts calling for a possible ‘Double Dip‘, real estate investors (rehabbers/flippers/wholesalers) are competing with below-market priced distressed properties on the market. And although as per a RealtyTrac report there was a slight decrease in foreclosure activity in May (a whooping 3%), there were still over 300,000 foreclosure filings for the 15th straight month. With more and more REO’s coming to the market, investors continue to struggle in finding potential buyers.
Well, according to a report by the National Association of Realtors, Foreign Investment in U.S. real estate, purchases of residential homes by foreigners (those with residency outside of the US, recently arrived immigrants and temporary visa holders) for the 12 month period ending April 2010 totaled a nice $64B, compared to $36B for the 12 month period ending April 2009. International investors have always been attracted to the U.S. as a real estate investment with our growth-oriented tax laws, a consumer-friendly judiciary, and strong private property rights.
Leading the way for the 3rd consecutive year were Canadians (God bless their hockey-loving hearts) accounting for 23% of those purchases ($14.7B). Mexico (10%) and the United Kingdom (9%) also had their share of foreign investment. And with a depreciating US dollar, it is likely that foreigners will continue to flock to the U.S. for real estate investments. Even though it was not part of my marketing plan, many of my clients are Canadian, most of which are cash buyers and now I will refocus my marketing strategy to include more exposure to foreigners. If you are not actively targeting foreign clients, perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate that. Comments are always welcomed and appreciated.