Foreign investment in the U.S. housing market has reached an all-time high.
According to the 2017 Profile of International Activity in U.S. Residential Real Estate report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), transactions increased in all five of the top countries. For the fourth consecutive year, China topped all countries based on sales dollar volume; however, the reason for the sudden explosion was a more than 100% jump in activity from a nearby neighbor.
Between April 2016 and March 2017, foreign buyers and recent immigrants purchased $153 billion in residential property: an increase of 49% from 2016, and a new high surpassing 2015’s $103.9 billion. The greatest contributor was Canada, with buyers bringing in $19 billion, up from $8.9 billion the previous year.
“The political and economic uncertainty both here and abroad did not deter foreigners from exponentially ramping up their purchases of U.S. property over the past year,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “While the strengthening of the U.S. dollar in relation to other currencies and steadfast home-price growth made buying a home more expensive in many areas, foreigners increasingly acted on their beliefs that the U.S. is a safe and secure place to live, work and invest.”