Chinese home buyers have been the top foreign buyers of residential housing in the U.S. for six consecutive years, and now they’re expanding their footprint beyond luxury markets to lower-priced tiers as well, the National Association of REALTORS® reports.
Chinese buyers in the U.S. have long had an appetite for million-dollar properties that they’re willing to pay all cash for. But recently, middle-class buyers from China are looking to snatch up lower-priced homes in the U.S. They’re also more often turning to mortgages to finance their purchases.
“The Chinese people still see the United States as a safe harbor where they can take their assets and park their money not only for their money but also for the future of their children,” Michi Olson, a real estate professional in San Francisco, told CNBC.
The median price of a home sold to a Chinese buyer fell from slightly under $530,000 in 2017 to $439,000 in 2018, according to NAR data. The top places Chinese buyers are targeting in the U.S. for their real estate purchases: California, Texas, Georgia, and Florida.
“The Chinese are basically politically agnostic,” Olson says. “What I mean by that is even though there is a great tension between the U.S. government and Chinese, the Chinese citizen seems to be able to separate the political turmoil with the sound real estate investment.”