Southwest Florida apparently escaped the free fall in foreign investment in residential real estate that hit much of the country. And the Sunshine State remains the most appealing to those property buyers, besting California and Texas. Among Florida’s metropolitan areas, the North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton market stayed in fourth place in popularity with foreign buyers. This trend has held true for at least the last eight years.
Matching historical trends across the country, Florida continues to be at the epicenter of foreign investment — attracting 20% of all foreign buyers with Canadians representing 42% of those residential transactions.
Craig Cerreta, the managing broker at Premier Sotheby’s International Realty’s downtown Sarasota office, said Canadians are maintaining interest in the Sarasota-Manatee market. “Our primary foreign buyers for this region are Canada and Europe,” he said. “In fact, we have seen a slight uptick in Canadian buyers looking. Not necessarily contracting yet, but at least looking.”
Moreover, “Premier Sotheby’s has not seen a significant reduction in foreign buyers over the past 12 months,” Cerreta said. “This includes our regions across the west coast of Florida through Orlando.”
While foreign buyers purchased property across Florida, those transactions focused on Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach (54%), Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford (9%), Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater (9%) and North Point-Sarasota-Bradenton (5%).