Market Update: The Rise of the International Homebuyer

November 2014

International homebuyers are having increasingly more impact on the local real estate market. And in the past few years, wealthy Chinese nationals have emerged as the biggest foreign buyers of real estate in King County.
Below is a brief overview of the potential buying power of this growing market.  

Chinese have considerable wealth, and are looking for opportunities to invest that wealth in the U.S.  
China has the second largest GDP in the world after the U.S.
China has over two million millionaires, more than any country but the U.S.
Chinese traditionally see real estate as a strong investment. 
Chinese buyers are drawn to the Puget Sound area. 
Chinese clients purchased $1.98 billion in residential real estate in Washington state last year. To put that number in context, $1.98 billion represents 14% of all sales in King County in 2013.

When asked why they are leaving China, 78 percent of respondents in a Barclays and Ledbury study said they were seeking better educational and employment opportunities for their children.

A next generation of Chinese are making their home here. 

Finding Mr. Right, a blockbuster Chinese romantic comedy set in Seattle, has become one of China's top-grossing films of all time and is helping to boost interest in the area.