Chinese investors lead foreigners with $6.1 billion in purchased US real estate last year

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Buyers from China, including those from Taiwan and Hong Kong, acquired $6.1 billion in U.S. real estate in the last 12 months, the most out of any other country.

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the top states for these purchases were California and Florida.

With the increase in U.S. home prices, the average spent on homes was just over $1 million, with more than half of the buyers paying in all cash.

Canadian buyers purchased the second most U.S. real estate with $5.5 billion, followed by buyers from India ($3.6 billion), Mexico ($2.9 billion) and Brazil ($1.6 billion).

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Overall, foreign buyers purchased 98,600 U.S. homes this year, 24 percent of which were in Florida and 11 percent in California. This represents an 8.5 percent increase from the previous year and the end of a three-year decline in sales.

The sunshine state was the top destination for real estate investors for the 14th straight year, with 44 percent of foreign buyers claiming they bought the properties as vacation homes, rental properties or both.

Chinese nationals have comprised the largest foreign group of real estate buyers in the U.S. since 2013 with over $188 billion spent over the last 10 years.

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In a press release, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicted that “due to rising interest rates, overall home sales will decline in the U.S. this year.” However, it may not dissuade foreign buyers who pay in all-cash and are immune to interest rate changes.

The timing also coincides with the lifting of pandemic-related restrictions, which has resulted in an increase in international travel in recent months.

Other factors, such as the U.S. dollar appreciation against other currencies, including the Chinese yuan, may affect foreign investment in U.S. properties.

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U.S. home builder confidence plummeted this month, sinking to the lowest level since May 2020 and raising fears of a meltdown in the national housing market.

Featured Image via Enes Yilmazer

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