Luxury Real Estate Trends for 2008, Part 2

2008,Looking Forward: Key Market Trends for Luxury Housing

Continuing from Part 1:

3. “Stealth Wealth” and a desire for privacy will be important motivators.

The have-yachts will want to separate themselves from the have-nots. Yet those who have wealth may choose to not flaunt it. The growing disparity of wealth will cause some wealthy to move more “under the radar.” At the same time, the wealthy are reacting to mass affluence by looking for properties and locations that offer greater exclusivity and privacy. Remote locales served by private jet, boat, or helicopter will have new appeal. So will properties which offer unique experiences from olive groves that let you create your own personal brand of olive oil to sporting clubs providing unusual sports.

Key points: Recognize the need for discretion when working with the wealthy. They seldom want you talking about their transaction details. Expect locales that are both exclusive and “protected” to be in demand. Understand that the search is on for properties that offer interesting experiences. Assess your listings and the properties you show with these things in mind.

4. Environmental issues will rise to the forefront.

The desire to have a positive impact on the environment is growing. The wealthy are responding positively to self-sustaining property developments and other “green” property options. This is part of a bigger trend—using wealth for good.

Key points: Encourage your builders to “go green” when possible. Highlight environmentally correct features of the properties you list or show.

5. The wealthy are increasingly citizens of the world—luxury real estate will become even more international.

Wealthy buyers from abroad will continue to view U.S. real estate as a bargain and will look to purchase in U.S. locales which offer attractive lifestyles and good economic fundamentals. The falling dollar will continue to make U.S. residential real estate an attractive purchase. At the same time, more wealthy Americans will look abroad for second homes or retirement properties. The desire for tax havens will drive some purchases at the über level.

Key points: If you are in a major market, there is growing opportunity in the international segment—both in marketing your listings to international buyers and in helping your American clientele buy overseas. Begin to network internationally, get involved in international organizations such as The International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI) consider earning the Certified International Property Specialist designation (CIPS), go on trade missions, network with other agents who work the international market and learn what’s working for them, and check out the many resources NAR offers in the international arena.
© 2008 The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing, posted with permission from the Institute of Luxury Home Marketing

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