Recent statistics show that the number of property sales to international buyers in the United States has decreased drastically in 2015. However, surprisingly, the amount of money which is being spent by international buyers has risen by around 13%.
Between April 2014 and March 2015, the number of international sales was around the $100 billion mark. In the previous year, this number was at roughly $90 billion.
So, what does this mean? Well, the number of buyers is falling, likely due to the increased strength of the dollar, but the property expenditure rising, which is most likely down to international buyers being an upscale group of buyers. These are not the people who are going for the low end of the market, arguably where there is very little money to be made, but these are the people going for the big bucks and the big accommodation where people will be willing to pay through the roof to live there.
About 51% of all international property investors come from just five countries. Right at the top of the list you have China. However, the United Kingdom, India, Mexico, and Canada follow closely behind.
Chinese investors spent close to $28.6 billion on property in the United States over the past year. Not only were they the group of buyers willing to splash the most cash, but they purchased far more units i.e. Chinese investors were more willing to go for the cheaper properties. Although, to be honest, they did not go that cheap, they spent on average $831,800 per property.
So, how does this compare to the United States average? Well, the average price of a property in the United States at the moment is $255,600, almost a quarter of what Chinese investors were spending on properties. The overall average for foreign buyers is somewhere in the region of $499,600. This goes to show that foreign buyers, even those who are planning to live in the United States, are willing to part with a greater sum of cash.
About 35% of real estate agents claim to have worked with a foreign buyer over the past year or so. Not everybody was looking for an investment property, however. They claim that about 46% of the international buyers that they worked with were searching for a main home. 20% were searching for a buy-to-let property, and 26% were interest in investment potential.
It was not just the housing market that attracted spending from international investors, however. They were also aiming for commercial property. India, in particular, very much favored residential property for children attending educational establishments. Canadian investors tended to purchase property for vacationing.
Property investment occurred all over the United States. However, four states seemed to bear the brunt of sales; Arizona, Texas, California, and Florida. Florida attracted about 21% of foreign purchases, the highest by far.
The majority of purchases made by foreign investors were done by cash due to an inability to obtain credit in the United States.