The recent devaluation of Chinese yuan could prompt China’s real estate investors to look towards the global real estate market to protect their investments. Capital is expected to move far from developing markets to be safe from increasing currency risks. There are expectations however that extreme wealthy Chinese real estate investors and developers will invest heavily in an established economy like the US before further yuan devaluation. Thomas Lam, a Senior Director and Head of Valuation & Consultancy with Knight Frank states, “mainlanders mostly buy overseas homes for immigration, for their children who are studying abroad or as holiday homes. They will be unlikely to sell in haste unless significant problems arise with that country’s property market such as political unrest.” Decisions to invest in the United States housing market will rest on how the Xi markets hedge the Renminbi against their currency or the industrial sector.
Although the yuan is projected to slip further, wealthy Chinese investors and developers will likely convert their money into other currencies or purchase properties in different countries with higher yields as an approach to fence hazard. David Crowe, NAHB Chief Economist, assures our economy to be healthy, “since the affordability had edged slightly lower in the second quarter. The Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) will remain well above 50. And where half the households can afford half the homes sold, low mortgage rates, pent-up demand and continued job growth should contribute to a gradual, steady rise in housing throughout the year.”
Countries such as Korea, Russia, Portugal and as of late New Zealand will continue to witness investment influx from mid-level Chinese investors as properties in developed economy like the United States may prove to be a greater expense. Some market experts say, more Chinese investors will invest in other countries as they seek diversification. It’s likely to witness a slight drop in the reported investment flow from China when reported in US dollars; one of the effects of yuan devaluation.
Records also show that “China is the largest investor in the American real estate sector over the last year”. According to Michael Cole, an editor with Mingtiandi, “Chinese investors have already put $13.4 billion into overseas real estate this year, with over $3 billion heading to the US.” This confirms Chinese real estate developers today are experienced when it comes to foreign investment and their decision to invest in any country. However, the level of investiture will depend chiefly on the availability of properties and good exchange rates.