REPORT: The Chinese middle class is buying up American residential real estate
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Chinese consumers may have soured on some American products, like iPhones, but they have only sweetened on U.S. residential real estate.
They have been the top foreign buyers in both units and dollar volume of residential housing for six years straight, according to the National Association of Realtors, and now they expanding to new, lower price tiers.
The article goes on to state the following:
Chinese consumers appear to be less interested in trade wars and more interested in bidding wars, according to San Francisco-based real estate agent Michi Olson, who just returned from an international real estate property show in Shanghai.
“The Chinese are basically politically agnostic,” Olson said. “What I mean by that is even though there is a great tension between [the] U.S. government and Chinese, the Chinese citizen seems to be able to separate the political turmoil with the sound real estate investment.”
Olson said the biggest difference this year is price point. Initially, it was wealthy Chinese buyers purchasing million-dollar properties, all in cash. Now more middle-class Chinese buyers are searching for lower-priced homes and they are using mortgages much more often.
“The Chinese people still see the United States as a safe harbor where they can take their assets and park their money not only for their money but also for the future of their children,” Olson said.
Several lenders in the San Francisco area now specifically cater to Chinese buyers. The median price of a home sold to a Chinese buyer dropped from just under $530,000 in 2017 to $439,000 in 2018, according to the Realtors. And while California is still the favorite among Chinese buyers, they are now moving into markets in Texas, Georgia and Florida.
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