Foreign Investment in South Florida Real Estate Declines, Yet Still Dominates US Market – Hoodline

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The international appetite for South Florida homes has taken a step back this year, with total spending from foreign buyers down to $5.1 billion from $6.8 billion in 2022, according to the latest figures from the Miami Association of Realtors. Despite a noticeable drop in overall spending, foreign investors continue to exert significant influence in the area, accounting for 18 percent of the total residential real estate transactions.

As per The Real Deal, the total number of properties purchased by international buyers slumped to 6,200, down from 9,400 a year earlier. The Miami Association of Realtors underscored the enduring appeal of South Florida, underscored by the region outpacing both the national and state average in terms of foreign market share. This is highlighted by the fact that South Florida’s 18 percent share is a staggering nine times greater than the U.S. figure of 2 percent and more than double that of Florida’s 6 percent overall, as revealed in a report released by the organization.

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Latin America continues to lead the charge of foreign investors in South Florida, with Colombia, Argentina, and Brazil topping the list. The Miami Association of Realtors’ data indicated that Colombian buyers represented 15 percent of the international homebuying activity in the region. The robust showing is also evident in Miami-Dade County, capturing the lion’s share of the foreign business with $3.7 billion in closed deals, dwarfing the sales in Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Real estate agents in the region are taking note of trends that are reshaping the market. “The foreign market has definitely represented a larger portion of transactions,” Jaclyn Bild, an agent with Douglas Elliman in Miami, acknowledged in an interview with The Real Deal. As interest rates rise, cash offers from international buyers, who traditionally have favored condominiums, are giving them a competitive edge, particularly in areas like Brickell, a prime Miami neighborhood.

In the arena of luxury real estate, Canadian buyers are making waves, particularly in Miami Beach, according to Dina Goldentayer from Douglas Elliman. Despite their presence in deals exceeding $20 million, it’s the varied mix from multiple countries that sustains the region’s high global sales figures, with foreign buyers originating from an impressive 52 countries in 2023.

With a high percentage of cash transactions—69 percent among international buyers compared to 42 percent of U.S. foreign buyers—the strength of the South Florida market is also buoyed by the influx of domestic buyers from states such as New York, California, and New Jersey. These out-of-state buyers, drawn by Florida’s lower tax rate and diverse lifestyle, are maintaining the momentum of Miami’s real estate market, which remains the top international destination in the U.S. for the fifteenth consecutive year.

As reported by the MIAMI Association of Realtors, 49 percent of its members worked with an international client in the past year, which is substantially higher than the national figure of 16 percent.

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