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$153 Billion Surge in International Home Sales, Says NAR
International home sales have reached a new record of $153 billion, according to the latest report from the National Association of REALTORS® – a 49 percent increase from last year. Top Contributors to International Home Sales in the U.S. The U.S. continues to win the hearts of international buyers. Some are drawn to the educational opportunities for their kids, and while others are looking for investment or vacation properties, nearly half of them end up calling the U.S. home. Five countries top the admirer list, making up over 50 percent of total dollar volume sales:
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Pacific Union Delivers on International Reach
WAV Group has been studying broker website effectiveness for more than a decade. One area of interest is global reach. When we look at Google Analytics, we study traffic to understand the level of visibility that brokers are achieving for their websites internationally. Over the past 12 months, Pacific Union International has been living up to their name by expanding their international reach. Driving International Reach International reach has largely been a listing tool in real estate. Even in global cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago or New York, we see that 85 percent of buyers come from the immediate region. Ten percent come from other areas within the United States. Only 5 percent come from international buyers. Despite the real data, sellers continue to believe the media that buyers come from China and Russia. For many brokerages, the seller’s demand for international reach is colored in though franchise or network relationships. There is good news for brokerages that are not affiliated with franchises or networks. Over the past year, Pacific Union International has been focused on reaching high net-worth individuals, increasing their reach in the U.K. by 360 percent, and over 500 percent in China. Their targeting has resulted in 900 percent increased traffic in India and a staggering 2190 percent increase in Brazil. It is a six-figure investment, but far more effective than the delivery of international buyers from networks or franchises. Pacific Union’s traffic, leads, and transactions have grown enormously with this proactive approach.
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Using Your Social Networks to Expand Your Global Reach
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The Top 3 Things Brokers Can Do to Rock 2017
I don't know about you, but I always get energized this time of year. The holidays are behind me, my year-end planning is done, and it's time to hit the ground running in 2017. If you're like me, you've probably identified some things you can start doing TODAY that will help you achieve your 2017 goals. I've identified three things I believe can have a huge impact for your real estate business in the new year. GO GLOBAL! You have heard me say this before, but real estate has become a global business. Global is the new local. Consider that over $100 billion was spent on real estate in the U.S. by foreign buyers, according to the NAR 2016 Profile of International Activity in U.S. Residential Real Estate survey. Furthermore, Americans are retiring abroad in record numbers. There is similar real estate migration happening all over the world, and multicultural buyers are prevalent just about everywhere in our country. All this points to the need to have a strategy and sales platform that allows you to connect to global agents and their buyers. If you are able to plug into the global network of agents, you will have a distinct advantage over your competitors that have not embraced the concept of a global, connected, real estate industry.
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Why Are Chinese Buyers Searching for Property in the U.S.?
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5 Motivators for International Investment in U.S. Real Estate
Last year, NAR's Profile of International Home Buying Activity reported that China, Canada, Mexico, India, and the United Kingdom accounted for 51 percent of international real estate transactions in the U.S. While we may think that most international buyers are interested in luxury estates, NAR's research shows this isn't necessarily true. The report shows that global buyers are actually more modest with their purchases, with approximately 46% of purchases on property priced under $250,000. 5 trends you can expect from international buyers this year: 1. A number of foreign buyers are motivated to purchase properties in the United States to pursue educational opportunities. There were nearly one million international students studying in the United States in the 2014-15 school year, with a third of those students from China, followed by India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Canada. 2. According to the New York Times, the top motivators for Chinese buyers are: Capitalizing on the surging rents in parts of the U.S. for investment properties Moving investments beyond the reach of the Chinese government Maximizing opportunities for the family
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Canadian Home Buyers in the U.S.
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3 Great Ways to Build a Referral Network Without Borders
If you're looking to grow your business this year, it's time to look at one of the hottest trends in real estate – globalization. Often times, brokers, builders and developers don't really know how to start working the international front, even though it really does start in your own backyard. That's because America really is a melting pot. And you have a ton of multicultural agents, buyers and sellers in your own marketplace. So, how do you get started, or if you've done some things, how do you take it to the next level? First, get to know your local college admissions and housing departments. More universities are looking to recruit foreign students because they pay higher tuition and higher learning has suffered from budget cuts. Upwards of 35 percent of foreign students will purchase a condo or home, far more than their stateside counterparts. Even if you're in the heartland of America, you'd be surprised at the increasing number of international students that are now attending, way up from 10 or 20 years ago. And if you're in need of personal translation in person or in writing the language, these students can be an effective and affordable resource.
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Foreign Buyers: a Real Estate Trend to Watch in 2016
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Global Real Estate – Are You Ready?
I live in Miami, a very international city. Our real estate is being bought by South Americans, Europeans and, coming soon, the Chinese. It's exciting to watch what is happening here and how many brokerages and developers investigating better ways to reach these international buyers. The same can be said for many other markets around the U.S. There are obvious ones such as Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle. However, if you think global real estate is limited to these gateway cities, you are mistaken. Some examples of global real estate trends in other national markets: With the concentration of higher learning institutions and technology companies in the Boston area there are more and more Indians, Chinese, and other foreign nationals buying real estate; Come to Broward County, Florida (north of Miami) this time of year and you will notice a preponderance of Canadian license plates because so many have bought winter homes there; Greenville, SC was a sleepy little Southern town until BMW came to town about 20 years ago. Walk around downtown today and you will hear lots of German being spoken as many executives of BMW, and their supplier companies, have relocated; and, Las Vegas is a magnet for foreigners who love the gambling and shows. You know what else they love, buying property there!
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WAKE UP BROKERS! Hablas Espanol?
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5 Things to Consider About Foreign Real Estate Buyers
Recently, USA Today reported on the influx of foreign real estate buyers in Miami. Since I live in Miami, I'm seeing this first hand. But it's the same story in New York, Los Angeles, Houston, San Francisco, Vancouver, Toronto and, to a lesser degree, in other cities in the US and Canada. Foreigners are investing in US and Canadian real estate in droves. There are plenty of reasons for this but the big question is, what are brokerages doing to capture this business? If you are not actively pursuing the foreign real estate buyer, or at least making it easier for them to do business with you, you are missing huge opportunities. 5 things to consider about foreign real estate buyers Do you have foreign agents? If you don't, what can you do to attract them to your company? Do you translate your marketing materials (including your website) to multiple languages, depending on where buyers are coming from in our market?
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Are You International?
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A connected globe means global opportunities for you
Focus on a multicultural reach in your local market As a Cuban-American living in Miami, I'm quite sensitive to the international nature of real estate. Brazilians, Columbians, Venezuelans, Russians, and many other foreign nationals fuel a very robust real estate market in Miami. And the same can be said about other gateway cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Houston, and many more. If you're a real estate brokerage located in a gateway market, you're missing opportunities if your business lacks multilingual agents, multilingual staff, or a multilingual website. Without a multicultural focus, making outreach efforts overseas or being part of one or more international networks is impossible. Most brokerages in these busy international markets understand the need for a multicultural business model in order to effectively compete. It's pretty much a requirement for success these days. More and more, I'm seeing smarter brokerages in less international markets making efforts towards a multicultural model that are paying off. For example, I spoke to a development services company in coastal North Carolina recently. They told me how many of their buyers come from Canada and through their marketing outreach in markets like Toronto, Quebec, have encouraged Canadian buyers stop in their local developments instead of others.
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The Global Opportunity
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Avoid an International Crisis – Tips for Working With Chinese Buyers
In 2013, Chinese buyers accounted for nearly 20% of international sales in the U.S. and, on average, spent more than other international buyers. In fact, the Chinese are the fastest-growing group of property buyers and investors in the US. Their international property purchases are projected to reach $114 billion by 2015, almost twice the sales figures reported for all of the combined international buyers in 2012. The Chinese are interested in real estate as both investment opportunities as well as second homes outside of China. Proper business etiquette is essential when working with Chinese clients – not "minding your manners" can be a costly mistake. Below are some tips to help you avoid any international faux pas with Chinese clients. 1. Be on time. Better yet, be early! While our culture is often more forgiving of occasional tardiness, this is not true of many other cultures, including the Chinese. Being late is considered an insult and is certainly not the first impression you want to make. 2. Don't be overly aggressive with your handshake. In our culture, a firm handshake generally has positive connotations, conveying confidence. However, the Chinese prefer a more gentle and, in some cases, prolonged handshake. A prolonged handshake is a good sign, so don't be shy about maintaining this physical contact. In your first meeting, it is often appropriate to bow (slightly, and from the head, not the waist) when greeting someone. If you are unsure, politely follow your client's lead.
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What's New With ListHub Global?
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Attracting the International Buyer
Did you know that there was nearly $68 billion in real estate purchased by international buyers last year? Nearly half of these customers are from four countries--Canada, China, Mexico and India--according to the NAR's 2013 Profile of International Buying Activity. Over half are purchasing homes that are $250,000 or less. REALTOR® specialization on the buyer's side of the market--like cultural affinity or orientation with the prospective purchaser, foreign language capabilities, and experience in explaining U.S. real estate procedures and requirements to foreigners--appears to be important in bringing an international transaction to a successful conclusion. Approximately 27 percent of REALTOR® respondents reported having worked with international clients; 76 percent have been in the business for more than five years. Of the REALTORS® who reported transactions with foreigners, 54 percent reported that clients were referred to them through friends, previous clients, and international and domestic referrals. So what are the best ways for an agent or broker to increase their international business?
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Why International Buyers Want to Buy in the US
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Product Review: ListHub Global
This product review is a bit out of the ordinary for us. There was no hour plus demo to sit through, no interface screenshots to take, and no set-up processes to explain. Brokers will be happy to learn that this is because ListHub Global is an extremely low maintenance solution that, once activated, acts like any other affiliate ListHub publisher. It's accessible through the same interface, and is automatically included in your ListHub reports. The only difference is that instead of syndicating listings domestically, ListHub Global distributes your listings to potential buyers in over 40 countries. While that sounds simple, ListHub Global is actually a sophisticated solution to a complex data problem. The Challenges of Global Listing Distribution At the heart of this problem is the organization--or lack thereof--of international listing data. Listing accuracy is a contentious issue here in the United States, but that's only because it's so important to us. We have agreements governing the use of listing data and have built MLS connected platforms to help ensure the integrity of that data. Internationally, however, the situation is quite different. In fact, a ListHub study of international data found that a whopping 75 percent of listings were inaccurate--some with "last sold" dates as far back as 2007, 2005, and even 1992! This is because in other countries, listing data is considered "open." Listings don't have the same protections as they do in the United States, and no one party bears the right or responsibility to ensure the accuracy of those listings. As you can imagine, US brokers looking to distribute their listings overseas face a daunting problem when it comes to preserving the integrity of their listing data.
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Why You Should Work with Buyers from China… and How
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The Challenges (and Opportunities!) of International Advertising
Imagine this, you find your listing displayed on a popular website in France--the only problem is that the listing sold five years ago! You are outraged, so you decide to call the website, a French publisher (a six-hour time zone difference away) trying to make a case that the website must remove the listing because it is no longer on the market. Now, imagine this conversation taking place in French... Operator: "Parlez-vous français?" You: "No...English please." Operator: "Je ne parle pas anglais." You: "...huh?" Well, you get the picture. It sounds daunting, to say the least! Marketing to international buyers comes with certain challenges. In other countries listings are considered "open listings" and nobody has the exclusive right – or responsibility – to market a property accurately and effectively. Currently, companies who syndicate listings to international publishers today are doing so without the level of protections we have become accustomed to here in the United States. Accuracy is a pervasive problem in international advertising, one that we explored in detail with our 2013 study on international advertising. We conducted research in which we evaluated listing data accuracy on two major publishers in the UK that display U.S. listings.
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The New Frontier of Internet Marketing, Part 2
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The New Frontier of Internet Marketing
Introduction There isn't a real estate agent or a home seller who hasn't dreamed – starry eyed – of the international buyer, waltzing in to pay for their property listing in cold hard international cash. International buyers are traditionally pictured as wealthy home buyers in the market for luxury homes – and some of them are – but the opportunity goes well beyond luxury. This paper takes a look at some of the facts around international trends in real estate and the current options for marketing properties online to international buyers. Our findings point to an opportunity that is already making a big impact in our business, one that is clearly growing, but difficult to measure and containing significant problems related to data management. The Opportunity The most recent Profile of International Home Buying report published by the National Association of REALTORS® in June 2013 showed International home sales in the U.S. reached their second highest level in recent years. The total market is estimated at $68.2 billion, comprising nearly 6% of the total real estate market in the United States. THE TOTAL INTERNATIONAL MARKET IS ESTIMATED AT $68.2 BILLION
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Expand Your Real Estate Reach
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2012 Forecast—Investment Properties Gain Popularity
Professionals Realty Group USA (ProsUSA) President Glenn Melton reports that the recent Chinese government's liberalization of restrictions on investing capital outside of the country, will have a positive trickling down affect on real estate brokers and agents' business in the United States. "The relaxing of Chinese foreign investment policies will create an influx of Chinese investment capital overseas," states Melton. "This will spur investments in the Asia Pacific regions, as well as the United States; especially given the concern that central government intervention to contain overheated domestic housing prices will lead Chinese investors to seek other opportunities abroad."
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Report on International Internet Traffic Searching for US Homes
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Video: International Buyers
The United States real estate market has become enticing to foreign buyers. What does this mean for our economy and consumers? MRISTV.com discusses this hot topic.
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Real Estate Marketing: Broker Branding Help Desk
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Looking for New Prospects? Target Canadians
Lower prices and the strong Canadian dollar are encouraging one in five Canadians to buy U.S. property today, according to a new survey of by the Bank of Montreal. Overall housing prices in the United States have fallen by 30 percent over the past four years. However, prices in regions that are traditionally destinations for Canadian snowbirds have dropped even more. For example, prices in Tampa have dropped 44 percent, Phoenix fell 54 percent, Las Vegas 57 percent, and Miami 49 percent.
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