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The highly anticipated return of foreign buyers to the U.S. is now upon us. Our country opened its doors to fully-vaccinated international travelers on Monday for the first time in 20 months. Given the weak status of the U.S. dollar and foreign buyers now in the fold, we could very well see another spike in what has been a year of record-breaking activity, as I mentioned in my email two weeks ago.

What has been eye-opening for many this past year is that high-volume activity has been driven largely by domestic transactions. According to Brown Harris Stevens’ President of Development Marketing, Stephen Kliegerman, the majority of buyers in the first two quarters of 2021 were local or from the west coast. And only recently in the past few months, have we begun seeing Chinese buyers returning to the market.

While international buyers historically contribute to a large percentage of sales in NYC, they tend to be highly concentrated in the high-end and luxury markets. New York, among a few other major U.S. cities, is attractive to the global rich because it is considered a safe investment. Add to this, many foreign buyers have been able to build up their wealth during the pandemic because of rising asset prices and stock markets, so we certainly expect to see some movement in the luxury sector.

While it is too early to report on market activity, some don’t expect to see a sudden boost in sales. For one, international buyers may not find what they want right away, given the low volume of supply. Also, visitor restrictions implemented during the pandemic in many condo buildings may be shifting some buyers to luxury townhomes where they can have staff come and go as needed. It is expected as booster shots become more widely available, we will see a bump in demand.

Nevertheless, Brown Harris Stevens has prepared for this wave of activity, recently launching a new partnership with “221 List”, a European online real estate and lifestyle marketplace. This is just another channel that enables us to provide added visibility for our buyers and sellers. If you’re thinking about listing your home at the start of the year, now is the time to start planning.

Let’s talk.
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Serjik "Serj" Markarian
Licensed Associate R. E. Broker
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My business is proudly built on referrals. Who do you know that I can help find their perfect home?
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