Chinese buyers grow savvier about US real estate

Investors increasingly look beyond New York
January 02, 2017 11:00AM

As Chinese real estate investors become more familiar with the U.S. market, they are starting to look beyond New York City and Los Angeles.

“Many more Chinese today have worked, studied or travelled to other countries than was the case five years ago,” Charles Pitter, the CEO of real estate portal, told the South China Morning Post.

Over the past year, 30 percent of all Chinese inquiries to invest in the U.S. were for cities other than New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco, according to consultancy East-West Property Advisors. Meanwhile, Seattle replaced San Francisco as the third most viewed market on last year. Houston and Las Vegas complete the top five.

“Chinese buyer interest in non-traditional destinations is one sign of their growing comfort with overseas markets. It reveals a group of more sophisticated investors who are willing to look at opportunities further afield if they offer good investment fundamentals, better entry prices or less tangible benefits like lifestyle advantages,” Pitter added.

David Ji, of brokerage Knight Frank, told the paper that Chinese investors are no longer buying “blindly” thanks to the increasing amount of information available to them.

Chinese buyers have emerged as a force in the New York condo market over the past three years. In November, Bloomberg reported that Chinese investment in overseas real estate hit record levels in 2016.  [SCMP] – Konrad Putzier