I wrote in an earlier blog about the Chinese buying property in the United States because of the bargain prices of our real estate. Along with the Chinese the Russians are also buying American real estate. During the crash in the real estate market in the 1980’s the Japanese came in and bought a tremendous amount of real estate. The crash in the 80’s was due to the failure of the Savings and Loans Institutions. Now we have a repeat of the 1980’s, with banks failing just like it was predicted when the banks were deregulated. Just like then, now some people feel that the real estate market will never be the same, but it seems people from other countries appreciate the long term value of American real estate. Consequently they are taking advantage of the real estate market while it’s at current bargain prices. .
In addition to luxury cars, vacations, branded clothing, high-end footwear, and race horses, Russia’s elite is also passionate about buying international properties. This can be illustrated by a few recent noteworthy real estate transactions such as the purchase of Donald Trump’s beachfront mansion in Palm Beach, Florida by a Russian fertilizer oligarch, Dmitry Rybolovlevy for $95 million (supposedly the most expensive residential sale recorded in U.S.) The purchase of a Manhattan townhouse by investor Len Blavatnic for $50 million, just a few blocks away from his $31.5 million townhouse he bought a few years ago, The purchase of a condo on Central Park West by former Kremlin insider Boris Berezovsky, The purchase of a ranch in Colorado by the Chelsea football club owner Roman Abramovich for $36.4 million, and the purchase a beautiful multi-million condo by Aleksey Morozov, Captain of the IIHF World Champion Russian Hockey Team.
Moscow’s real estate is among the world’s costliest. So property in the politically stable U.S. environment is a boon for well-to-do Russians. According to Hall Willkie, president of real estate firm Brown Harris Stevens, foreign buyers now make up about 15% of the New York City real estate market and Russians are the largest contingent. The Miami area in particular, with its upscale shopping and hip nightlife, is attracting Russians and is increasingly viewed as a fashionable escape from Moscow’s harsh winters.
By the way, I see an uptick in real estate sales. As of yesterday, in Nevada County, there was 176 pending sales compared to about 120 sales pending around the first of the year. .