Baltus Condo Miami

There is busy, and then there is busy like the Related Group gets busy! In the span of a three-hour period in late July, 2014, the developer did something that other companies could only dream of doing. They began construction on three new condos in Miami. At the same time, they entered the presale phase for yet another high-rise in downtown Miami. If that weren’t enough, consider that this was just a week after they nearly finished work on two other towers in the area. These other towers, ICON Bay, a 43-story tower with 299 units and Baltus House, a 15-story complex with 167 units, are already extremely popular in the area.

The New Projects

Related Group held their groundbreaking ceremony in Brickell Heights to celebrate starting construction on a pair of towers in the area. One of the towers will have 46 stories, while the other will be slightly larger at 49 stories. Combined, they will have 696 units. The towers will be going up on the 800 block of South Miami Ave, along the west side of the avenue. They held their groundbreaking at 10AM on July 31.

Just an hour later, they hosted another groundbreaking ceremony. This new tower is the Paraiso Bay, and it will be 53 stories high and have 368 units. The tower will go up along the north side of Northeast 31st Street in the 600 block. It is important to note that this tower is just the first in what the Related Group hopes will be at least four in the Paraiso family of towers. They want to develop other towers between Northeast 31st and 32nd street, and they hope to have close to 1,400 units between all of these different towers. While these are not in the groundbreaking phase yet, it’s a good way to get an idea of what Related Group plans to do and how rest is certainly not on their schedule.

Approximately an hour after the Paraiso Bay groundbreaking, they will start their presale phase for another of the towers in Paraiso. Paraiso Bayviews will have 44 stories and 388 units. The actual build phase of this project will likely begin sometime in early 2015.

Always Busy

This type of activity is nothing new for the Related Group. They have always been very active when it comes to building new properties in the area. Right now, they have plans for a large number of new towers – at least 34 – between themselves and their partners. This will account for nearly 8,400 units. Already, they are responsible for around 24% of the units in the South Florida area. Take a moment to consider exactly how many units this is already and how many they will be adding in the coming years.

One thing is certain. The Related Group is one that is never satisfied to simply rest on their laurels, and they continually look for new opportunities. However, to remain successful, the company needs to continue doing well on all of their presales to hit their targets.


Baltus House Condos For Sale

Baltus House Precontruction Condo

The Baltus House Condo

is a 15-story construction boasting 167 total units and situated right next to the Design District of Miami. The views available from this dramatic new building are truly something to behold, as intended by the award-winning international firm Arquitectonica. Featuring all state-of-the-art features, including a fitness center, it is easy to see why the opening of this condo is highly anticipated by many in the community. Scheduled to open in 2015, time is of the essence to get in on the pre-construction purchase of one of these condos.

Incredible Location

If you have been looking for a condo close to everything, Baltus House Condo has what you are looking for. Access is given to some of the most recognized shops available in Miami. The building is located right at the edge of the Design District of Miami as well as Biscayne Boulevard. The entire downtown Miami area is easily accessible from this new construction to provide residents access to everything they want to do.

Residential Features

Baltus House apartments offers residents the ability to choose between studios (620 sq. ft.), one bedroom (800 sq. ft.), two-bedroom (1,420 sq. ft.) and three-bedroom/bathroom (1,720 sq. ft.) units. Every unit is provided with one parking space for convenient and secure parking.

From the moment you walk into the building, you are greeted by the works of art provided by Jorge Perez. The elevator takes you to your floor where you can enjoy a modern home with interior design by BALTUS (Spanish design firm located just steps from Baltus House Condo in the design district of Miami). Every condo provides a view of Biscayne Bay, the Design District or Miami thanks to floor to ceiling windows in every residence.

The professional grade kitchen appliances make it easy to cook your favorite cuisine that can be enjoyed on your oversized balcony or inside your residence taking advantage of your view. Bathrooms are well appointed with imported porcelain tile flooring and bedrooms are spacious to make you feel at home.

Variety of Amenities

When it is time to relax, Baltus House Condo has you covered. Take a dip in the 55-foot pool with a magnificent view over both Miami Beach and Biscayne Bay. There are private cabanas available to make sure you have an opportunity to relax. Additionally, the nearby whirlpool allows you to let your troubles wash away. If you don’t feel like swimming, you can take a dip in the Jacuzzi on the rooftop terrace. Throw a party for you and your guests utilizing the BBQ grills on the rooftop or reserve the well-appointed clubroom. When you are ready to hit the gym, you have access to a state of the art fitness center that includes access to a yoga/Pilates room as well.

With everything that Baltus House Condominium has to offer, getting in on pre-construction prices from $234,000 to $801,900 is an easy choice to make. The amenities and the location make these residences sure to go up in value immediately after the building opens.

For more information or to reserve your unit today please contact the sale office at (305) 336-0457


Miami Condos For Sale

South Beach Condos For Sale

The luxury market in South Florida is exploding, with record-breaking residential listings as high as $125 million for the recently-listed former Versace mansion. But with prices that look like those of 2006, some are warning that Miami’s high-end market might be forming another bubble, CNBC reported. It is the type of speculative, largely foreign buyer in South Florida that worries experts. If Europe’s economy collapses, or if global markets fall back into a recession or even slow, the market for Miami’s pricey real estate could collapse overnight. “This is flight to safety for these buyers, an investment decision,” said Jonathan Miller of Miller Samuel Real Estate Appraisers and Consultants. “The question is, how long and how far will it go? Does this create a bubble at the very high end in these specific markets?”

In the meantime, the new condo transactions at the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort & Residences as well as Mansions at Acqualina are off to a great start. About 170 units have been closed at St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort & Residences totaling more than $623 million in the first seven month of sales! In addition, deposits for about 80 units were collected at Mansions at Acqualina in the first 5 weeks of the sales center being open.

Buyers are purchasing these super-luxury, ultra-exclusive properties at an average $1,500 sq.ft. and paying on average between $1,2M to $13.5M dollars. This is a sure sign of Miami real estate exploding once again with prices breaking all previous records. The properties are up by 20 percent just this year, which even breaks the peak of 2006 year.
“Miami is hot and it’s not just the weather!” said Jack Levin, chairman of the Miami Association of Realtors.

Consider the stats: The lion’s share of Miami’s high-end real estate is now bought by foreigners. In 2010, according to the National Association of Realtors, Florida accounted for more than a quarter of the $82 billion in sales to international buyers.

The average price paid by those buyers was $400,000, against an overall U.S. average of $212,000. Sixty-two percent of international purchases were all cash, a percentage that has been increasing since 2007.

Real-estate economists and brokers say most of the foreigner investors are rich families from Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Russia. These families are growing increasingly nervous about threats to their wealth from economies and governments back home and are looking for a safe place to store their cash.

Miami is an ideal location, offering all the safety of the United States with the fun and mildly exotic feel of southern Florida.

In other words, Miami’s boom is not a broad-based market recovery driven by local families needing a home. It’s being fueled by a tiny top slice of super-rich overseas buyer looking for the latest hot investment.

As of the end first quarter in 2012, buyers had purchased nearly 45,000 condos in Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach areas. They’ve spent over $22 billion dollars. Currently the developers are proposing at least 32 new condo projects with nearly 6,300 units in each of the tri counties Miami-Date, Broward and Palm Beach.

As of June 2012, nearly 1,300 luxury condos priced at $1 million or more are available for resale in the South Florida market where buyers are purchasing an average of about 75 units monthly between January and May of this year, according to the data.


Miami real estate for sale

 Miami Beach Condos For Sale

Being a broker of Sunny Realty and providing one of the most used resource for Miami real estate (http://www.sunnyislesmiamirealestate.com/) I’m often asked: “how’s (Miami) real estate these day?”. Unfortunately I can’t just answer this question simply – “good” or “great” or “better”. When I start to explain that Miami basically has the best and worst real estate in the country, people think I’ve gone nuts and trying to sell them a story. However, here is The New York Post recent article By ANDY WANG.

Summer was hardly a vacation for those in the business of selling Miami condos.

“I didnt go to St. Tropez because of this”, says developer Gil Dezer, whose Sunny Isles Beach condo projects include the 384-unit Trump Royale and the three-building, 813-unit Trump Towers.
Dezer reports that he sold more than $100 million in Trump units during June, July and August ($50 million alone in August, including a $29 million, 34-unit bulk deal). He has closed more than $1 billion in Trump condos overall and has only about 75 units left.

Recent Trump Towers Condos sales

have been priced at about $525 per square foot. Thats significantly less than the $1,000-per-square-foot contracts buyers walked away from in 2009 after the financial crisis hit, but Dezer, whos paid off the construction loans for all four buildings, seems satisfied. (Donald Trump participated in a ceremonial Trump Royale condo mortgage-burning ritual, lighting the document on fire himself, in January.) The downturn made the job challenging, Dezer says. Every day was a battle. But when youre winning, its fun.

Winning could also be used to describe the situation at Icon Brickell. That nearly 1,800-unit downtown colossus, built by the Related Group with designs by Philippe Starck, seemed to be in peril not long ago, and two of its three towers were deeded back to its lenders in May 2010. But Icon Brickell Condos now nearly sold out, with more than 1,500 units closing for a total of more than $700 million. When you factor in units in contract, only about 30 condos remain.

I think the market has consumed the inventory in a much more rapid way than I and probably everybody thought, says Related Group chairman and CEO Jorge Perez, who adds that most buyers have been foreign. The Latin American economy has been strong.

The forecast was that we would sell all the units in three years at an average price of $350 per square foot, says Edgardo Defortuna, president of Fortune International Realty, which started selling Icon Brickell apartments in June 2010.

Less than a year and half later, Fortune is almost done and seeing prices at about $400 per square foot.

Demand has been so strong that Perez is now building another downtown development. The 192-unit MyBrickell is a couple years away from completion, but Relateds received over 60 reservations for condos before officially launching sales. Unlike Icon Brickell, MyBrickell isnt on the water, and Perez is passing on the cheaper construction costs and the deal we got on the land to offer units, with interiors by Karim Rashid, for about $300 per square foot.

Defortuna, meanwhile, is now selling downtowns Paramount Bay, a 346-unit building resurrected out of foreclosure by owners iStar Residential and ST Residential. Musician Lenny Kravitzs Kravitz Design firm is working on the building, where prices are about $400 per square foot.

South Beach real estate

with significantly pricier properties, is seeing lots of action, too. The summer was uncharacteristically busy, says Lana Bell, president of Sunny Realty, which has an office in South Beach and Sunny Isles Beach. We certainly didnt take a vacation.

According to Sunny Realty latest Miami market report, South Beach condos sold for an average of $515 per square foot during the third quarter. But this factors in distressed properties, including units bought out of foreclosure.

At the markets top end, the W South Beach Hotel & Residences has closed about $260 million in condos at an average of $1,700-plus per square foot, developer David Edelstein says. The W South Beach sold more than $50 million during the summer. One penthouse went for $7.7 million, north of $3,000 per square foot, Edelstein says.

As with much of Miami, foreign buyers have been key at the W. (Douglas Elliman translated its market report into Spanish and Portuguese to spur international interest.) From May through September, about 65 percent of Edelsteins purchasers were foreign, and about half of those were from Brazil.

The allure of the W has helped nearby condo buildings lure in buyers, including those from New York.

Fashion designer Irina Shabayeva, who won season six of Project Runway, owns a one-bedroom with a balcony at the 52-unit Boulan South Beach development just south of the W, but on the other side of Collins Avenue.

I like the Boulan because it was so new, really fresh and modern, says Shabayeva, who primarily lives in the East Village. And its across the street from the beach and the W.

Shabayeva says she enjoys the New Yorker-friendly amenities at the W, which include a Warren Tricomi salon and a Mr. Chow restaurant. And Edelstein says that the Dutch, an outpost of Andrew Carmellinis SoHo restaurant, will open in the W by Thanksgiving.

Boulan, which has sold 22 condos and has one-bedrooms on the market for upward of $600 per square foot, is busy filling its own retail spaces, as well. An art gallery should open in time for Decembers Art Basel festival. A Mexican/Asian fusion restaurant and a nightclub are also in the works.

Neighborhoods all over Miami are getting big residential and retail makeovers. The 56-acre Midtown Miami developments second phase, which will start next year, will include a boutique hotel, a movie theater and 100,000 square feet of retail.

Well definitely have a fashion component, says developer Jack Cayre.

And the nearby Design District is getting a Louis Vuitton store.

There was probably a point in time here someone said, Whats Chelsea? or Whats Meatpacking? and eventually, they became a place because New York was ready to have another place, says Greg Masin, senior director at commercial real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield. When we look at the Design District and at Midtown, what we see is the evolution of the next place in Miami.

Plus, the downtown Metropolitan Miami developments third phase will include rental apartments and a Whole Foods Market. Plans for downtowns eight-block Miami Worldcenter site include residences, restaurants and retailers. And the Genting Group, an Asian casino operator, has unveiled plans for its $3.8 billion Resorts World Miami mixed-use complex. But the scope of the latter two projects will depend on approval for casino gaming, something thats the object of much speculation and uncertainty all over Miami.

Dezer says he has been talking to major Las Vegas casino operators about land he owns in Sunny Isles (13/ acres on the beach and 6/ acres directly across the street that hits the intracoastal waterway) that could accommodate a gaming resort with more than 2,000 rooms and 3 million square feet.

They’re both good real estate, Masin says of the Genting and Dezer sites. If they both had a casino, theyd both be successful.

Whatever happens, Dezer has options.

We originally bought [the land] to build condos, he says. We could build five condo buildings.

That idea would have seemed ridiculous in 2009, but now its more plausible.

Defortuna has sold out the 256-unit Jade Beach condo building in Sunny Isles Beach and has just three apartments left (for about $700 per square foot) at its 252-unit Jade Ocean sister property.

In terms of quality inventory, oceanfront, he says, you can make a strong argument that you need to start building now.

Originally published by ANDY WANG.

(c) 2011 The New York Post. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.


Miami Real Estate

The Miami Association of Realtors just reported that the current inventory of pending home sales has increased nearly 15% from one year ago. While several attributing factors have been noted for the rise in activity, one prominent change has been the increase in foreign buyer interest in the area.

Total Contract Activity- May 2011

The total volume of pending sale listings increased in the month of May nearly 29% over the previous year. Increased pending sales are a strong indicator of future sales, as pending sales generally close within 1-2 months of initial contract signing. While Miami single-family homes are currently driving this increase, Miami condo sales have been holding their own.

Miami real estate experts

point to the dramatic increase in international buyers over the previous year for such promising gains. South Florida’s real estate market remains one of the strongest in the country. In addition to the Florida marketplace, foreign buyers are driving activity in California, Texas and Arizona.

International Buyer Activity

According to the National Association of Realtors, the surge of foreign money into the U.S. real estate market surged by $16 billion in 2011, representing a 24% increase over 2010. The U.S. continues to retain the strongest international real estate interest among buyers. While the U.S. has always seen strong foreign interest, the increased inventory and lowered prices have caused an increase in purchasing activity. Foreign buyers are also taking advantage of favorable exchange rates, allowing them to take advantage of even greater property savings. With reduced pricing and favorable monetary conversions, foreign buyers are getting nearly double the discount on their purchases.

In addition to permanent international residents purchasing properties, many executives working within the U.S. on a temporary basis have been opting to purchase properties over renting, traditionally done in the past, due to the current pricing making the option more affordable.

Another contributing factor to foreign investment in U.S. real estate is the influx of international students seeking a college education. Many foreign families are purchasing properties for their children during their attendance.


Miami real estate

Miami Condos For Sale

Miami real estate

as well as sales of existing condos in the Miami metropolitan area rose 46 percent in May, 2011 compared to the same period in 2010, according to data from the Miami Association of Realtors. There were a total of 1,420 condo sales last month, up from 972 in May 2010. Miami single family home sales also showed an increase, jumping 20 percent to a total of 875 sales last month.

Most of Miami condos

are purchased by International buyers who continued to dominate the Miami real estate market, with 60 percent of closed residential resales last month transacted by foreign buyers, who also bought a staggering 90 percent of new construction sales. “The current performance of the Miami market is exceeding expectations,” said Jack Levine, Chairman of the Board of the Miami Association of Realtors.

In fact, the volume of Miami home sales rose, continuing a record-setting pace. However prices are still on the decline, although there are signs of stabilization. This logic-defying housing market phenomenon continued to embrace interesting trend lines in May of 2011 — Miami condo sales soared, slashing down the inventory even further, but overall prices fell once again. Furthermore, local sales are increasing while the national market slumps, but local prices are falling faster than the national average.

Here is a full story from Miami Herald – http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/06/21/2277801_p2/south-florida-real-estate-paradox.html or you can read it below:

The region’s real estate narrative is also at odds with traditional market economics. The coexistence of shrinking supply, rising demand and falling prices has left analysts with a number of questions: How long can this frenzied sales pace —fueled by Latin American and cash investors’ appetite for discounted real estate — continue? With inventory shrinking rapidly, when will the strong sales activity translate into price stability and appreciation, as market economics dictate? How large is the “shadow inventory,” and how will those unlisted bank-owned homes affect the recovery?

In Miami-Dade, there were 875 sales of existing single-family homes and 1,420 condo sales, increases of 20 percent and 46 percent from last May, respectively. Compared to April, home sales were up 5.4 percent and condo sales were up 1.1 percent.

In Broward County, 1,142 single-family sales and 1,537 condo sales represented increases of 6 percent and 14 percent over last May, respectively.

In the first five months of the year, more than 23,000 homes and condos have traded hands in South Florida, one of the strongest five-month runs on record. Nationally, 2011 has been a poor year for sales, with double-digit declines nearly each month.

South Florida’s rapid sales pace has helped reduce the region’s housing inventory, which has gone from severely bloated to suddenly lean over the last couple of years.

There are now 31,659 homes and condos for sale in Miami area, down from 61,755 in May 2009.

The crucial “months-of-inventory” figure has slimmed to 7.2 months in Miami-Dade and 5.5 months in Broward, both down to a fraction of their peaks. Economists say that six months of housing inventory is indicative of a healthy market.

So why hasn’t the shrinking supply of homes led to price stabilization?

“We have a whole bunch of pent-up supply,” said William Hardin, professor of real estate and finance at Florida International University . “There’s a squeeze play going on because no one is going to sell a house in today’s market unless they have to.”

The majority of homes that are selling are under distressed circumstances —either a Miami foreclosure sale, or a short sale that doesn’t cover the cost of the mortgage. Those properties — popular among cash investors and foreign buyers — sell at deep discounts, dragging down overall prices in the market.

In the single-family market, May 2011 median prices fell 8 percent to $180,200 in Miami-Dade. Broward suffered a particularly large decrease, with single-family prices falling 17 percent to $188,500.

There are some signs that prices may be beginning to stabilize, specifically in the condo market, where sales have been the most rapid.

In Miami-Dade, median condo prices slipped just 1 percent, to $124,300. In Broward County’s condo market, there was a 9 percent year-over-year increase, with median prices reaching $80,400.

Year-to-date, median prices are up across the market: Miami-Dade condos (36.2 percent), Miami-Dade single-family homes (19.4 percent), Broward condos (16.5 percent) and Broward single-family homes (14.2 percent). While prices are up since January, the year-over-year figures provide a more reliable barometer of values, since they compare the same time periods in the region’s seasonally driven market. It’s too soon to say if sustained appreciation is here to stay, although industry insiders are pitching that message.

But even as South Florida’s market looks to rebound from its worst bust in history, a number of troubling issues threaten to drag out the recovery.

However, two of the factors that normally support a healthy housing industry — a strong job market and significant home equity — are painfully absent in South Florida. In Miami-Dade County, unemployment sits at record high 13.4 percent. Nearly half of all South Florida homeowners with mortgages owe more on their homes than the current value, one of the highest underwater rates in the country.

Stricter lending standards have made it difficult for many potential buyers to obtain a mortgage. In May 2011, 60 percent of home sales were completed without a mortgage as all-cash investors.


Miami foreclosure properties for sale

foreclosure condos in Miami

As of June 3rd, 2011, the number of foreclosed condos and homes in South Florida year-to-date is 11,551, down from 30,635 at the same time last year, based on the most recent data available from Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties. Please see the graph above which shows foreclosure activity in these three counties.

South Florida real estate

is known for its boom and bust cycles. The current bust cycle, one of the worst in history, seems to have bottomed out and now on it’s way to recovery in a big way, judging by recent statistics. A rise in employment in the state and a great deal of foreign buyers are among the factors playing into what seems to be a quick climb in the desirability and the value of Miami real estate.

Of course, this is not a new phenomenon for Florida real estate. The state’s real estate market has historically gone through cycles such as this, when the value of homes declined and when it became a buyer’s market. The sales of homes have also gone up in much bigger ways than employment has gone down. Compared to 2010 figures, condo sales were up over 130%. The increase has also impacted single family homes, with an over 50% increase in those sales figures over last year.

Miami’s high-end rentals are also booming, led by Miami Beach rentals, which has seen its inventory practically vanish, led by New Yorkers looking to establish residency in South Florida. It seems right now people are establishing residency out of New York City and into South Florida, whether they’re buying or renting. We’re back to 2003 or 2004, where we have pocket listings, and things don’t need to go on the MLS to be rented. The high-end market follows the trend from downtown Miami and Brickell, which had a rental occupancy as high as 85 percent in February, according to the most recent report from the Downtown Development Authority. That was a 31% increase from 2009.

The US is slated for another round of quantitative easing, which will likely drop the value of the dollar further and which may make this market even more attractive to international buyers than it is already. Combined with an increasing rate of visitors and tourists in Miami where every year is a new record, it’s possible that the decline cycle has finally ended.

Click here to view all currently available <a href="foreclosure condos in Miami and foreclosure homes in Miami


In today’s Wall Street Journal I read a great article about International buyers all over the world. The Russians are buying luxury properties in London, Miami, New York, Silicon Valley. The Brazilians are buying condos in Miami and Chinese are buying in California. The biggest players in the residential-real-estate scene today often come from halfway around the world.

If you prefer you can read the article on Wall Street Journal site (the link is below) or here is the full article:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703730804576317150261940990.html

This spring, Russian billionaire Yuri Milner paid $100 million for a French chateau-style mansion in Silicon Valley, setting a record for the highest price ever paid for a single-family home in the U.S. In January, Ukraine’s Rinat Akhmetov closed on two of London’s most expensive apartments ever for a combined $222.5 million. In Paris, a Gulf princess spent $96.9 million last year for a mansion with an inner courtyard, garden and private chapel on the Left Bank.

Some of the biggest residential real-estate buyers in many cities are emerging from halfway around the globe. In London, one report finds that 65% of buyers in the Miami luxury residences hail from abroad. According to the Miami Association of Realtors, nearly 60% of all sales last year throughout the city were to buyers from foreign countries. About half of the buyers in one new luxury condominium on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue are from overseas.

While foreign purchasers make up about 7% of the U.S. residential real-estate market, their numbers have swelled: According to the National Association of Realtors, 18% of Realtors in the U.S. market reported selling a home to at least one international buyer in 2010, up from 12% in 2009.

The makeup of these buyers is changing, reflecting changes in the global economic scene. Buyers from Russia have returned, and the numbers are growing from Brazil, where the economy grew 7.5% last year. Australians are buying ski homes in Aspen. In Tampa, Fla., Venezuelan buyers are buying heavily discounted beach condos.

One of the biggest factors in many areas is the emergence of the Chinese. As housing costs on China’s mainland skyrocket—raising concerns of a property bubble there—monied buyers are heading abroad, moving into markets that look, in comparison, like a bargain.

In Orange County, California Chinese buyers now account for more than half of his showings in tony Newport Coast, up from a very small handful two or three years ago. Many Chinese buyers seek brand-new homes with more than 10,000 square feet to use either for vacations or as a place for their children to live when they attend college.

Amy Williamson, the vice president of sales for Prodigy Network, which markets condo buildings like Trump Soho Hotel Condominium in New York, visited Shanghai last month, meeting with local brokers and potential buyers there. Beverly Hills-based broker Joyce Rey traveled to Beijing in October, arranging a reception at an art gallery where photographs of homes priced between $10 million and $125 million were displayed around the room like artwork. Tim Swannie, the Valbonne, France, director of Home Hunts, says one of his agents is working with two Chinese clients who are looking for vineyards in the $5 million-to-$10 million range in the Bordeaux region.

In the U.S., many foreign buyers are taking advantage of the relatively weak dollar. In March, Pascale Saliou, a 44-year-old from Brittany, France, paid about $600,000 for studio in a building with a contemporary art-filled lobby in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. Ms. Saliou has been visiting the city regularly for more than 20 years and finally decided to buy a New York apartment because of the exchange rate. “We never imagined we could one day do this,” she says.

Not all foreign purchasers are shelling out millions (in the U.S., the median price paid for a home by an overseas buyer was just under $220,000, according to the National Association of Realtors). And not all are traveling thousands of miles. Canadians are the largest group of foreign buyers in the U.S. today, representing about 23% of foreign buyers, up from about 17.6% in 2009, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Global property buyers gravitate to a handful of highly specific locales: In London, Russians and people from the Middle East flock to central Knightsbridge, where blocks of sleek condos offer top-of-the-line amenities. In New York, newer condos packed with contemporary design attract foreign buyers. Here’s a look at some of the top global real-estate markets for foreign buyers.

Last month, Russian composer Igor Krutoy—who has recorded more than 100 songs in Russia and collaborated with many of the country’s music stars—made headlines when he and his wife, Olga, purchased a 6,000-square-foot 12th floor condo at the Plaza for $48 million. It was one of the highest prices ever paid for a condo in New York.

According to Jonathan Miller, CEO of appraisal and consulting firm Miller Samuel, foreign buyers make up 15% to 20% of all home sales in Manhattan. They’re particularly strong buyers of thoroughly renovated or newly built condos priced at several million dollars or more. Pamela Liebman, president and CEO of New York-based brokerage Corcoran Group, says that in the first quarter of this year, nearly 20% of new condo sales at Corcoran went to foreign buyers. One deal under way includes a group of Asian investors who are buying 13 apartments in a building, each priced between $1.5 million and $2.5 million.

Manhattan has long been one of the most popular markets in the world for international buyers. But the makeup of international buyers has shifted. Gone are the investors from Ireland who were snapping up condos amid the economic boom in their homeland, says Mr. Miller. Today, it’s buyers from China and Brazil. In the past 18 months, brokers say Russians—known during the boom years for making large real-estate purchases in opulent trophy buildings—have returned after sitting on the sidelines during the recession.

International buyers tend to gravitate to certain buildings. Luigi Rosabianca, a real-estate lawyer who works with international buyers, says the André Balasz-designed William Beaver House in the Financial District is popular with his Latin American clients. “Certain people are attracted to certain energy and aesthetics,” he says. At the Sheffield, a 582-unit condo building at Columbus Circle where 28% of sold units have gone to overseas buyers, sales staff now print marketing materials in Mandarin, French, Spanish and Italian.

At midtown’s Setai Fifth Avenue Residences, where apartments are priced from $1.2 million to $15 million, about half of the buyers have been from overseas. Giuseppe Rossi, the executive vice president of Bizzi & Partners Development, who is originally from Italy, notes that many Italians have purchased apartments there. “We’re Italian developers so there’s a certain appeal to Italian products and the way we built,” he says. Brazilian buyers have also made several purchases there, including Brazilian soccer star Kaka, who recently bought three apartments in the building which he plans to combine, says Mr. Rossi. (Kaka didn’t respond to requests for comment.)

Giorgio Castro, a 62-year-old Rome-based entrepreneur, says he dreamed of owning a place in Manhattan for decades. Last year, with the euro-dollar exchange rate giving him more than a 40% discount, he finally snagged a $1.3 million one-bedroom condo in a Wall Street building designed by David Rockwell.

“It was a good opportunity to buy something I longed for,” says Mr. Castro. “With the money I spent, I could not have bought something equivalent in Rome.”

The Paris real-estate market is booming, driven in part by the high prices foreigners are willing to pay. In the “Golden Triangle”—the tony area near the Champs-Élysées—apartment prices rose 38% in the last year, according to the Paris Notary Chamber. For Paris apartments costing over $2.8 million (€2 million), three foreigners buy into the market for every one foreign seller, says Charles-Marie Jottras, president of the Daniel Féau network of real-estate agencies.

Mr. Jottras just closed his first deal with a mainland Chinese buyer, an apartment on the luxurious Avenue George V for $14.2 million (€10 million). The six-bedroom apartment, down the street from the Chinese embassy, features a 2,150-square-foot living room. A new influx of Chinese buyers is also looking at the 16th arrondissement near the Trocadéro Place, where stately buildings appeal to foreign buyers. The Brazilian presence is also growing; Jean-Philippe Roux, manager of luxury real-estate agency John Taylor’s new Paris office, says he has nine Brazilians interested in the seventh and eighth arrondissements.

France’s neighbors Italy and Britain account for about a third of the international market. These buyers often seek apartments on the Left Bank, in the Saint-Germain neighborhood, as well as in the more bohemian Marais area because of the central location for train stations.

Russian and Middle Eastern buyers tend to concentrate in the “Golden Triangle,” where there are the most luxurious hotels and boutiques. A 1960s-era building at 12-18 Avenue Montaigne, near the Louis Vuitton and Chanel stores, is a big draw, as is the recently renovated building at number 51-53 on the opposite side of the street.

There are only a handful of mansions in Paris. Mr. Jottras’s record sale happened last year and was for the Hôtel de Bourbon-Condé, a mansion with an inner courtyard, garden and private chapel, in the seventh arrondissement on the Left Bank. For $96.9 million (€68 million), a Gulf princess had a new home.

China’s housing boom spilled over to Hong Kong, where property prices have surpassed previous historic highs and are now some of the highest in the world. According to property agency Savills, Hong Kong’s homes are 52% more expensive than London’s—and 111% more than New York’s.

In April 2011, a 5,636-square-foot condo at 39 Conduit Rd. in the Mid-Levels district sold for $46.4 million (HK$361 million). Local newspaper Ming Pao reported that it was bought by Shi Yuzhu, the Shanghai-based founder of online gaming company Giant Interactive. Forbes magazine reported his net worth at $1.6 billion.

Meanwhile, a house on 11 Headland Rd. in Hong Kong’s Repulse Bay neighborhood recently sold for $84.9 million (HK$660 million). Newspaper Ming Pao reported the buyer as Gao Yanming, chairman of Hebei-based shipping company Hosco Group. Henderson Land, the developer, confirmed the transaction but declined to comment as to the identity of the purchaser.

Mainland Chinese buyers are more concentrated in the new luxury sector of condos priced over $1.5 million (HK$12 million), like the Cullinan in West Kowloon. In this sector, they represented 28.8% of the deals during the last half of 2010. In the ultra-expensive range—$25.7 million (HK$200 million) and above—Joseph Tsang, managing director at Jones Lang Lasalle in Hong Kong, estimates that almost all the transactions involve buyers from China.

Mr. Tsang says Chinese buyers look for luxury finishes, ornate decorations and grand hotel-style lobbies. “They’re into glamour and bling,” he says. “In order to attract the Chinese buyer [from the mainland], you need to put out the most expensive stuff on display.”

In the past, the pricey homes along the southern coast of Hong Kong island were popular among well-heeled expatriate bankers from the U.K., Australia and the U.S. But the influx of Chinese buyers and the resulting spike in prices has even forced some members of this wealthy class out of their traditional stomping grounds.

The city’s largest brokers routinely organize bus tours for interested buyers from mainland China to visit new development sites.

Local brokerage firm Midland Realty recently organized three tours during the May 1 weekend, a public holiday. By the end of the weekend, the agency had 10 deals signed, starting at $643,000 (HK$5 million) for new condos. During a tour earlier this year, the agency says some buyers purchased units for $1.3 million (HK$10 million) on their first visit to Hong Kong.

“If you look at the new apartments [in West Kowloon], over 60% are mainland Chinese buyers, but if you count the lights at night, you won’t see many. It’s sold out, but it’s pitch dark,” Mr. Tsang says.

According to Liam Bailey, head of residential research at real-estate agent Knight Frank, London’s ratio of international to domestic buyers for prime real estate is the highest of any major city in the world. According to his report last month, 64% of buyers of central London homes priced over $8.1 million (£5 million) are foreign—”the highest of any major city, without a doubt”—and probably the highest it’s ever been, Mr. Bailey says.

The number of nationalities represented has also swelled; 61 nationalities purchased homes in London last year, up from 46 in 2009, with Russian, Chinese, Indian and Middle Eastern buyers seeing the biggest growth, according to Knight Frank.

For many, the U.K.’s steady political environment and stable economy make London a safe haven for wealth. Sterling’s decline against the dollar—around 20% since 2008—makes property even more enticing. But currency arbitrage and safe-haven status aside, different nationalities are drawn by different aspects.

For U.S. buyers, it’s London’s leafy Hampstead Village, according to Marcus Oliver, associate director at real-estate agent Chesterton Humbert’s Hampstead office. He said 80% of foreign buyers in Hampstead over the past three months have been from the U.S. “Americans are attracted to the quintessentially ‘London village’ feel of Hampstead, with its quaint Victorian houses and the rolling Heath. It matches up with the clichéd impression of London.”

Meanwhile, the status and bright lights of a pad in central Knightsbridge are luring the newly monied Eastern Europeans and Middle Eastern buyers, says Roarie Scarisbrick of HSBC-owned buying agent Property Vision. “Knightsbridge property is the ultimate status symbol for the new settlers of Eastern Europe with their newly amassed fortunes.” Properties like the Knightsbridge, One Hyde Park and the Lancasters, where residents enjoy 24-hour security and amenities ranging from golf simulators to private movie theaters, are attracting some of the world’s wealthiest oligarchs and sheiks.

One such buyer is Ukranian billionaire Rinat Akhmetov, who in January closed on two apartments in the Candy Brothers’ new One Hyde Park development in Knightsbridge for a reported $222.5 million (£136.6 million) to combine into a triplex penthouse. Mr. Akhmatov’s press secretary Olena Dovzhenko confirmed the property was purchased as investment through the oligarch’s company, SCM Capital Management.

In neighboring Kensington, with its proximity to museums and coffee shops, the typical buyer is French, Swiss or Italian, says independent search agent Charles McDowell. He recently found a home for 38-year-old Parisian Michelle Dellion, in South Kensington. The five-bedroom townhouse on Mulberry Walk cost $16.3 million (£10 million) and has 5,000 square feet of living space. “We had to be in London for my husband’s job. Kensington is near the Lycée [Français Charles de Gaulle] and the park—with our three children it was the best area for us,” said Ms. Dellion, a stay-at-home mom whose husband works in finance.

Mindful of this tendency to flock together, developers have launched targeted marketing drives. Within the last six months, luxury London developments The Heron, Bramah Chelsea, Wellington House and Neo Bankside have held marketing exhibitions in Singapore and Hong Kong. Last September, Bramah hosted a successful exhibition at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Hong Kong. “We sold 50 apartments off plan over two weekends,” says sales executive Matt Shenton.

In the Greater Miami area, nearly 60% of all sales last year were to buyers from overseas, according to the Miami Association of Realtors. For sales of newly built condos downtown, like Icon Brickell that figure jumps to 90%, says the group.

Many of the buyers are from Brazil, which experienced an economic growth rate of 7.5% last year. Brazil’s currency, the real, has risen about 40% against the U.S. dollar in the last two years.

Property developer and marketer Fortune International focused heavily on Brazil to sell Jade Ocean, a 50-story building the company is marketing with infinity pools, a private movie theater and a children’s playroom decorated with Philippe Starck furniture. Its two-story penthouse loft apartments sold for between $3.5 million and $10 million. Nearly 85% of Jade Ocean’s sales have gone to overseas buyers.

Fortune’s principal developer Edgardo Defortuna says that last fall, he worked with American Airlines to invite a group of potential buyers and American Airlines contacts to a dinner party at a restaurant in Brasilia. “The Black Eyed Peas were having dinner in the next room,” he says. His company is also encouraging the airline to add new flights from different cities in Brazil to Miami, which American Airlines says is in the works. In an e-mail, an American Airlines spokeswoman said, “it makes business sense to promote Miami not only as a place to visit but a place to live.”

Russian buyers tend to cluster in northern, beachfront areas. Mr. Defortuna says he’s planning a trip to Moscow and St. Petersburg to pitch several of his Miami-area buildings. There, he hopes to throw a dinner party with Donald Trump Jr., an executive vice president with the Trump Organization.

Unlike Americans, who tend to look for single-family homes, overseas buyers favor condos. Italians have been drawn to the Capri South Beach, a condo building with downtown views and its own marina, says broker Nelson Gonzalez. The Icon Brickell Condo, a three-tower complex downtown, has a large number of British and Brazilian owners.

Venezuelans are also a growing presence, as are buyers from Italy, Spain and Switzerland.

Henrik Wiingaard-Madsen, a shoe-manufacturing company owner from Denmark, says he got a 30% discount in July for two apartments in the Icon Brickell Tower—$520,000 for a two-bedroom and $840,000 for a three-bedroom—plus a rebate. Icon “had so many units, they were kind of desperate at the time,” he says. “The price was so low compared to the quality.” Mr. Defortuna says his company took over marketing for the complex last June, and that the building “has filled in significantly since then.” So far, about 80% of the units have been sold.


Several positive articles appeared in Sun Sentinel as well as Miami associations of Realtors:

Sales of Miami condominium

units jumped 134% in January of 2011 compared to January 2010, according to a report from the Miami Association of Realtors. A total of 1,262 condo unit were sold last month, compared to just 540 in January of 2010. The report is based on data from the 25,000 member Miami Association of Realtors and the Southeast Florida Multiple Listing Service. Sales of single-family homes rose 55 percent last month compared to January 2010. “These significant increases in sales for both single-family homes and condominiums reflect the strength of the Miami real estate market,” said Jack Levine, chairman of the board of the Miami Association of Realtors.

Also, there are Fewer vacant new homes in South Florida

Paul Owers reports on February 25, 2011 that the surge in buying existing homes in January did not translate to new home sales, which fell 12.6 percent last month. People aren’t bothering to buy new homes when they can scoop up low-priced foreclosures and short sales.

But here’s a bright spot for home builders: the inventory of finished vacant new homes is declining in many markets across the country. South Florida’s inventory dropped 10 percent in the fourth quarter compared to a year ago, according to Metrostudy. The Palm Beach Gardens research firm considers South Florida to be Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties.

Of the 33 markets nationwide that Metrostudy analyzes, 26 saw year-over-year declines in inventory.

“South Florida, like most markets in the country, is seeing a nice reduction,” Metrostudy’s Brad Hunter said. “That’s a necessary thing. That puts less downward pressure on prices.”


Miami Condos

About 85% of the 50,000 condos built during Miami condo boom era have sold.

You can read more about it here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/01/27/2036345/condo-inventory-detailed-in-new.html#ixzz1E31liat2 or down below:

Developers have sold 85 percent of the condos built in Miami during the building boom beginning in 2002, according to a report released this week by Bal Harbour-based consultancy Condo Vultures.

The report, which studies condo markets from South Beach to West Palm Beach, found that developers have sold 41,258 condos in the last eight years, with the largest chunk of sales taking place in downtown Miami.

“People are certainly taking advantage of the fact that [condos] are affordable and available both to live in and also to invest in,” said Leo Zabezhinsky, manager of business development and real estate for the Miami Downtown Development Authority.

While many of the boom-time buyers were speculators , many of today’s buyers are investors and vultures, hoping to capitalize on the troubled market by renting out the units.

That explains much of the shift in sales activity taking place between South Beach and downtown Miami, as rental demand is up in places like Brickell and purchase prices are lower in the city than by the ocean.

“An investor comes in, they look in South Beach, and they get sticker shock,” he said. “If they want to be on the sand, they go up to Sunny Isles Beach. If they’re looking for investment value, new construction, they go to downtown Miami.”

Spurred by bulk buyers and lender takeovers, condo sales in downtown Miami reached 3,675 in 2010, up 57 percent from 2009, according to the report, based on county records. Condo sales in South Beach totaled only 123 last year, up from 107 in 2009. At the current sales pace, it would take about a year to sell out the remaining developer inventory in downtown, and more than a decade to sellthe 1,300 new condos in South Beach.

Areas like downtown Fort Lauderdale benefitted from good timing, as developers completed most of their condo projects before their housing market crashed. There are only 160 new condos yet-to-sell in downtown Fort Lauderdale, where more than 5,000 units were built during the boom.

Condo Vultures focused its report on seven housing markets in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, concentrating on areas east of I-95 and near bodies of water. During the 8-year span covered in the report, 244 new condo projects were created in those markets, for a total of nearly 50,000 units.

The epicenter of the building, sales and developer default activity has been in downtown Miami and Brickell, where more condo units were built in the 2000s than in the previous four decades combined.

About 18,675 new condos have sold in the downtown area in the last 8 years, totaling about 84 percent of the inventory, according to the report, based on county records.

Developers “built 23,000 condos, and when over 80 percent have been sold and occupied, clearly it tells you that this is where people want to live and invest,” said Zabezhinsky. “The condos have single handedly helped lead the transformation of downtown Miami into a 24/7 global city.”


Content published by Lana Bell

Content published by Lana Bell