By W.A. Muller
Jennifer Roberts and Randi Fisher of J/R Luxe (jr-luxe.com), Manhattan’s premier brokerage team, answer our burning questions about working with foreign investors and the international real estate market.
Resident: What do you think foreign investors are looking for in new developments now?
Jennifer Roberts: The majority of foreign investors – not the ones who make headlines buying the most expensive apartments at One57 or 432 Park, for example – are incredibly savvy so they’re looking for a great deal. Investors are looking for units in quality buildings by reputable developers that they’ll be able to either lease out or sell in a couple of years. They want to know they’ll be able to make a healthy profit off the deal. The majority of buyers we’ve worked with are not looking for trophy properties on Park Avenue, although that does happen.
Resident: Do you think developers are taking note of where the foreign money is going?
Randi Fisher: Absolutely. You can see that some developers now are building smaller units with more efficient layouts because they know that local and foreign investors, alike, want a practical investment. There continues to be a great demand for new condo product throughout the city, which you can see through all the rental-to-condo conversions happening now. Developers like HFZ Capital Group, which currently has 10 such conversions in the works, are being incredibly smart because they’re sparing no expense regarding finishes and amenities. These buildings are going to be top-of-the-line once complete.
Resident: Are the foreign investors you’re working with looking at real estate in other cities, such as London or Shanghai?
Jennifer Roberts: Some are looking at their real estate options in other cities internationally, mostly London and Monaco but also San Francisco and Miami. But many do eventually end up buying in Manhattan just because the returns here are so much in their favor. Residential real estate returns have climbed steadily even despite the recession, which is unbelievable, so it’s really in foreign investors’ favor to invest here. Also, luxury real estate is much more inexpensive in Manhattan than in cities like Hong Kong, London and Monaco. The world’s most expensive listing is in Monaco at the Tour Odeon for $391 million! That’s crazy, even by Manhattan standards.
Resident: What experience do you both have working with foreign buyers and sellers?
Randi Fisher: First of all, no brokerage comes close to matching Coldwell Banker’s international reach – J/R Luxe’s listings are instantly seen by those eager to own their own piece of New York City. We are Coldwell Banker Previews International Property Specialists with Coldwell Banker Previews International, which has offices in 52 countries. Because of this, we have become trusted advisors to a wide range of international clientele.
Jennifer Roberts: We provide value to our clients. J/R Luxe prides itself on treating everyone that walks through our door with a truly personal real estate experience. We evaluate each and every one of our customer’s unique needs in order to pair the perfect buyer and seller with their ideal home.
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