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December 2011

Where are foreign buyers looking?

Point2 has just released a report which analyses the views of listings across their syndication network.   Specifically, they look at where international buyers are looking.


Here's a quick peek at some of their findings:

  • Overall, the most visitors came from Canada, followed by the U.K. and Mexico
  • 33% percent of the international traffic searching for homes was directed to Florida listings, followed by Arizona (15%) and Nevada (8%)
  • Canadian traffic really dominated some markets.  For Arizona views, 92% percent of all international traffic was Canadian.  Canadians also dominated the international views in these markets: Hawaii (75.9%), Michigan (74%),  Nevada (71%), and California (65%).


You can find a link to the full report on this Point2 blog post.

Record Miami Condo Sale

At $21,500,000, the recent sale of the top-floor penthouse condo at the Setai Resort and Residences set a new record for the most expensive Miami condo ever sold.  At 5803 square feet, the unit brought $3,704 per square foot, also a record for Miami condos.  

The seller was Netscape founder Jim Clark, who reportedly purchased the unit, ready for finish-out,  in 2004 for $9M.  The unit went on the market in February with an asking price of $27M.  The buyer is a private businessman who's name has not been publicized.  

Would you like a green card with that purchase?

Interesting article in this week's New York Times which highlights a government program that grants "green cards" to foreign nationals who invest $500k or more in U.S. real estate development.  Despite some criticisms, the program is gaining momentum--funding almost a BILLION dollars of new develpments in New York City alone.  

Affluent foreigners are rushing to take advantage of a federal immigration program that offers them the chance to obtain a green card in return for investing in construction projects in the United States. With credit tight, the program has unexpectedly turned into a mainstay for the financing of these projects in New York, California, Texas and other states.

The number of foreign applicants, each of whom must invest at least $500,000 in a project, has nearly quadrupled in the last two years, to more than 3,800 in the 2011 fiscal year, officials said. Demand has grown so fast that the Obama administration, which is championing the program, is seeking to streamline the application process...

It is certainly an interesting option for foreign buyers (and US developers).

WSJ: Developer Courts the Global Elite

Interesting story in today's Wall Street Journal looks at "One57" -- a new condo development that targets the world's ultra-affluent and will be the tallest residential tower in NYC.  

Designed by French architect Christian de Portzamparc, One57's 95 condos for sale have a combined price tag of $2 billion, or an average per unit of more than $21 million, which would match Manhattan's 15 Central Park West as the most expensive building ever sold.


While a hallmark of the economic downturn has been the collapse of the housing market, the extreme top of residential markets in New York, London, Hong Kong and other select cities has been resilient.

Mr. Barnett says the number of billionaire and multimillionaire investors in the world has never been greater. In addition to Russians and Western Europeans, he says, "you're seeing Latin Americans in a big way. You're seeing Chinese in a big way. You're seeing the return of the Middle Eastern buyer."

Thanks to this demand, the ultraluxury market in select cities is looking healthier than practically any other corner of the housing market. Developer Courts the Global Elite