The news that National Security Minister Wayne Perinchief has recommended lifting the restriction on Bermudians selling top of the market homes to non-Bermudians will make realtors happy, at least.
It should be welcomed generally. This was a wrong-headed policy designed to solve a hypothetical fear, namely that non-Bermudians would end up owning more of Bermuda’s land than was thought right.
Yet Government was also authorising the sale of fractional tourist properties at the same time, which had the opposite effect.
It reduced the value of some Bermudians’ property at the same time that it made non-Bermudian property owners wealthier, simply by changing the laws of supply and demand.
That these Bermudians tended to be wealthy is neither here nor there. The negative effect was real and reduced confidence in Bermuda as a place to invest.
So this recommendation is overdue but welcome, and should be accepted by Cabinet. It will do a little to help the economy in the short term, and a great deal in the longer term to show Bermuda is open for business.