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2017 Profile of international RE activity in Fla.

Posted by RuyM on November 13, 2017
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Since 2005, Florida Realtors has released an annual study on international real estate activity in Florida. Conducted by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Research Group, it attempts to understand the interaction of members with international clients, the challenges and opportunities they face serving foreign clients, and the characteristics of foreign buyers who purchase Florida property.

The 2017 Profile of International Residential Real Estate Activity in Florida covers the 12-month period of August 2016-July 2017 and includes info on U.S. clients seeking to purchase property abroad.

The survey considers only residential purchases in the state.

Survey highlights

Florida residential property purchases by foreign buyers.
Foreign purchases in the state increased to $24.2 billion, a $4.8 billion increase from 2016’s $19.4 billion
Foreign transactions accounted for 21% of Florida’s residential dollar volume of sales, a 2% increase year-to-year
Foreign buyers purchased 61,300 Florida properties [47,000 in 2016], which made up 15% of Florida’s residential market [12% in 2016].
The median purchase price paid by foreign buyers increased to $259,400 [$252,500 in 2016], which was in line with the overall increase in Florida prices.
The median price paid by foreign buyers was 18% higher than the median price paid by all Florida buyers
Nationalities of Florida’s foreign residential buyers.

Latin American and Caribbean buyers accounted for the largest portion of Florida foreign buyers 34%, though this group made up [39% the previous year].
Canadian buyers increased to 22% [19% in 2016]
Other countries remained consistent year-to-year: The share of European buyers was unchanged at 23%; Asian buyers at 10%; and African buyers at one percent
Most foreign buyers were concentrated in five metropolitan areas: Miami-Fort LauderdaleWest Palm Beach [53%]; Orlando-KissimmeeSanford ([1%]; Tampa-St. PetersburgClearwater [9%]; Cape CoralFort Myers [6%]; and North PointSarasota-Bradenton [5%].

Transaction details

72% of foreign buyers made an all-cash purchase.
68% of foreign buyers purchased residential property for vacation, residential rental or for both uses [72% in 2016]; 49% bought a townhouse or condominium [52% in 2016].
35% [40% in 2016] purchased in a central city/urban area; 15% purchased in a resort area [14% in 2016]
93% of foreign buyers visited Florida at least once before purchasing a property [92% in 2016].

Florida clients searching properties abroad.
17% of Florida’s Realtors said they had a client seeking to purchase property abroad, up from [14% in 2016]
Top countries of interest from Florida residents looking elsewhere: Colombia, Costa Rica, Spain, Canada and the Dominican Republic.
75% were interested in residential property [79% in 2016].
75% intended to use the property for vacation, residential rental or both uses [84% in 2016].

Florida’s Realtors interaction with international clients.
While international business rose, fewer Realtors in Florida 44% said they worked with an international client in 2017 [48% in 2016].
61% of Realtors said they did not have cultural and language problems.
Personal contacts, previous clients and business contacts accounted for 72% of referrals or leads.
An agent’s firm, franchise website or social media was the primary source of online leads, followed by other aggregator websites and
Respondents were evenly split about the outlook in the next 12 months:
43% expected the same or an increase in international clients,
42% expected a decrease,
15% had no opinion.
56% expect foreign retirees to be potential clients.

© 2017 Florida Realtors

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