US Billionaires in a Rush to Buy Properties in New Zealand

US Billionaires in a Rush to Buy Properties in New Zealand

 A number of wealthy, high net worth individuals from the United States have been looking to buy property in New Zealand in 2017. This property buying spree has accelerated since Donald Trump became the President of the United States. LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman said that the “New Zealand" had now become a code word for an end of the world scenario among the rich and famous of the Silicon Valley.

Properties for sale in New Zealand have never been more popular than they are now. New Zealand has only 4.5 million people, who are known for being humble, nice and liberal. It has become one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world over recent years, largely because of its stunning natural landscapes, depicted so beautifully in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

PayPal founder Peter Thiel, hedge fund manager Julian Robertso and  Titanic director James Cameron are just three of the ultra rich individuals who have purchased luxury estates in New Zealand.

 Why are they doing this?  Stacy Coburn of real estate company Bayleys Queenstown explains Silicon Valley billionaires are buying large properties in South Island as a means of escape from a terror attack, nuclear catastrophe or other end of the world situations. Mr. Coburn says, "Queenstown is seen as a bolthole for the future if things do turn to the worse in the world.

“Given what has been happening around the States, they want the ability to come down here and get away from all that. Some have touched on the fact they feel that something may happen and if it does happen, but hopefully it won't, they will be in a more stable environment without the same security fears,” Coburn added. 

Luxury house builder Peter Campbell says that his company was building luxury homes for ultra rich US, Australian and European clients in the Wanaka and Queenstown area. Each of these properties costs between $4.5 million and $18 million.   

"[Overseas clients] would represent about 50 per cent of our business. A lot of our projects are for overseas based clients. They don't talk extensively about [why they are building here], but there is a common thread that they see New Zealand as remote and secure, but very much a first world offering. It is an island and remote, but easy to get to," Mr. Campbell said.

 New Zealand is a safe, English speaking country that is not only beautiful, but easy to get around.  Matt Lines, who heads the destination specialist company Seasonz explains what makes New Zealand such a sought after destination: "Easy access to the ocean, mountains, lakes, beaches, streams, water and land activities and great little cities and communities are just a few of the selling points.”

Also, the barriers to entry to the country are pretty relaxed, as Jim Rohrstaff , a real  estate specialist based in Auckland explains: "The laws around owning most property here are simple, easy to understand, and you own the property with a freehold title."  

Following Trump’s election, a record 13,401 Americans have registered with New Zealand’s immigration department and made the first move towards getting a residency there. This certainly presents a lot of opportunities for those who’re looking to sell real estate in New Zealand online in 2017.

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