Australia is embracing Chinese investment in real estate

Australia is embracing Chinese investment in real estate
Australia is embracing Chinese investment in real estate

Chinese real estate buyers have gone from being hardly there to being everywhere in the property markets. How are Australians adjusting to this new reality?  

Chinese are the biggest international buyers of property in Queensland. They are also number one nationwide, when ranked by growth and momentum.  

People in communities all over Australia have embraced this new reality with a minimum of xenophobic fuss. As an Australian, it makes me proud of my native country.  

Here’s one data point. Because I operate the Chinese international property portal Juwai.com, I receive emails from all over the country from people asking for advice on how to sell their homes to Chinese buyers.  

Not once has anyone written to ask me how to prevent a Chinese buyer from purchasing their home.  

Sure, there have been some angry comments in the media. But nothing happens in this country without angry comments in the media. The typical monthly Reserve Bank announcement on interest rates generates more controversy than the whole Chinese buying phenomenon.  

One reason Australians have embraced Chinese property buying is because most understand that – at some level – they benefit from it.  

Those Chinese real estate buyers who come here to live permanently increase the size of our economy.  

Chinese immigration, which accounts for some of the Chinese buyers, is a boon for Australia. The Wall Street Journal has reported that increases in migration from China in one year lead to a stronger property market three years later, in the form of better sales prices.  

And how about an extra $400 in your pocket. Government research estimates that an increase in immigration today could boost the economy enough to pay that much to every Australian, every year within 20 years. That could be a total economic boost to the Australian economy of $14 billion.  

Those who immigrate here are just a fraction of the overall group of Chinese property buyers. Many more are investors, or are seeking the Aussie lifestyle in a second home. Some are here for business, or are providing a home for their children to live in while attending Australian schools.  

China is the biggest source of international students in the Australian education market. Their fees provide valuable cash flows to Australian educational institutions. That keeps education less expensive for those of us who grow up here.  

All those students also help make education-related travel services are our country’s fourth biggest export in dollar terms — right after iron, coal and gold.  

That brings us to real estate. Every time an offshore Chinese investor buys a new apartment or home, she is in effect slipping money into your pockets. Offshore investors are channeled by Foreign Investment Review Board rules into new construction. By buying off-the-plan, they give developers the funding they need to build more and keep prices stable.  

All that construction also creates jobs. Residential building will add $63 billion to the economy this financial year - an increase of 5% over last year.  

And the Australian Bureau of Statistics says the construction industry is one of the nation’s biggest employers, and also pays more than the national average.  

Australia has embraced Chinese property buyers. I think it might be time you did, too. Go ahead. Give a Chinese real estate investor a hug.


Andrew Taylor is the founder and co-CEO of Juwai.com, the number-one Chinese real estate portal for property in Australia and around the world. Find out more about him at list.juwai.com.

 

 


 

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