2012 HAR International survey reveals many Houston agents are in the global game
In April, the HAR International program sent a survey to the membership in hopes of discovering the scope of their global real estate experience. The response rate was very positive, with more than 1,300 surveys completed.
Almost 40% of the respondents say they have done business with at least one international client in the last 12 months. For most of those, international business was a small component of their practice (most said it represented less than 10% of their transactions).
The bulk of those doing international business were most experienced selling residential property; namely, detached single-family homes in the suburbs. A high percentage had clients paying for properties in cash: just 33% said most of their clients apply for financing. 32% said most pay with cash and 35% said the payment was split 50/50 between cash and financing.
There are definitely educational opportunities on issues surrounding international business. First, 47% said working with international clients is more challenging that working with other clients (18% said easier). Financing issues were the No. 1 barrier cited in these transactions (52%), and half of all members said explaining the transaction process was the most challenging part of the experience.
Most members indicated they would at least consider signing up for HAR classes on international transactions and growing their international clientele. Perhaps that’s because of their projected outlook: 67% said the market for U.S. properties among international clients is growing while just 2% said it’s getting smaller. Even those not currently doing business in the international realm are realizing the growing opportunities this market presents.