Foreigners snap up Memphis real estate

International investors are drawn from as far away as New Zealand by low home prices and high rents. Move over, Miami.

By Teresa at MSN Real Estate Mar 3, 2011 9:48AM

© 2009 Memphis (Tenn.) Convention & Visitors BureauInternational buyers have long played a key role in the real-estate fortunes of cities such as Miami, Los Angeles and New York.

 

But who know they were flocking to Memphis, Tenn.? And they're not going there to pay homage to Elvis.

A company called Memphis Investment Properties, which buys distressed properties, rehabs them, rents them to tenants and then sells them to investors, stumbled upon the international market by accident last year, reports Steve Bergsman at Inman News.

 

This year, the company expects 50% of its sales to go to foreigners, up from zero percent two years ago.

 

Bergsman explains how the change came about:

An anesthesiologist from Italy, who also played in a blues band, decided that Memphis, the home of the blues, might be an interesting place to live. She found the Memphis Investment Properties' website and called.
Craig Jennings, Memphis Investment's director of investor relations, took the call. "She was like, 'Wow, these homes are so incredibly cheap and with euro conversion so good, you should be selling these to foreigners,'" he recalled. "That sparked my interest."

Memphis appeals to foreign investors for a number of reasons: The median home price last year was $67,000, lower than in most major U.S. cities. But rents are relatively high, which improves return on investment.

The decline in home prices has led foreigners with cash to snap up real-estate bargains throughout the United States. Brazilians are flocking to Miami, for example, and real-estate agents are traveling to Latin America to recruit buyers. Canadians are buying bargain-priced homes in Phoenix.

 

And now Memphis is on the map.

 

"Several people I met in New Zealand have flown into Memphis to see us, check out operations and drive around," Jennings told Bergsman. "They look at the properties and get a feel for the town. We sold 10 properties to folks I originally met while I was in New Zealand."

 
4Comments
Mar 8, 2011 6:09AM
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I've been saying that when it's time for me to sell then i'm going to advertise in areas where there are educated minds and some cash on hand. There are only 2 platforms regarding money. The worldly way which is controlled by greed and then there's God's way. If you want to know about it, well......read your bible, after all it has always been the #1 book sold worldwide, year after year after year. I know most of them are just lying around collecting dust because the world wouldn't be in the condition it is if people would apply the principals. Ask Him to reveal himself to you. I dare ya. :o)
Mar 8, 2011 3:37AM
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Angry This is not good! We all know the kinds of foreigners who will be buying this properties...people who have either no intention of remaining here, or learning the language & are just here to profit and then there's the other kind...the ones who are up to no good! People never think anymore! You can't be too trusting! When I had moved from NY out to Jersey, I (a U.S. citizen) was given a hard time because I had no Jersey I.D. I couldn't get a checking acct., NOTHING until I proved who I was & that I was going to get Jersey Identification! But, people from other countries come here, buy houses & it's no problem?! I'm going to be like them here & call this discrimination. I'm a citizen, born & raised in NY, and was treated like a criminal in New Jersey, yet there are TONS of illegal immigrants working on the farms & living there! Needless to say, I came back home to New York.
Mar 7, 2011 11:40PM
Mar 5, 2011 12:40PM
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What HAPPENED TO THE "FREE MARKET AND CAPITALISM"! It ONLY THAT ELITE GROUP OF LESBOS THAT CONTROL EVERYthing!!!!! gEE WHAT A CROCK! AND GO TO "THEIR COUNTRIES AND TRY TO GET A """"GOOD GOD DEAL""""""!!!!!! CRAP!
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