Realtors cheer uptick in inquiries
Government’s reduction in property licence fees for international buyers and Permanent Resident Certificate holders is stimulating the Bermuda real estate market.
But realtors say the Island is not out of the woods yet, as they wait and see if the increased interest will translate into more sales.
Coldwell Banker Bermuda Realty said they had seen a jump in inquiries from PRCs and international buyers.
However they cautioned they could not say at this point whether the pick up in interest would result in increased sales through 2013.
“We are pleased to announce that we have received significant interest in one of our waterfront Tucker’s Town homes from both PRCs and Bermudians and successfully negotiated sales and purchase agreements on two condominiums with prices in excess of $2,500,000,” Coldwell Banker Bermuda Realty said in its July luxury market update.
The realtor said that luxury homes and condominiums which are located in sought-after areas, in excellent condition and priced for the current market are benefiting from the recent increase in market interest from qualified luxury home buyers and “this bodes well for 2013”.
“Recent policy changes relating specifically to PRCs and overseas buyers announced in early 2013 were most certainly welcomed by the industry,” Coldwell Banker Bermuda realty said.
“The Government’s stated objective was to stimulate the market and ultimately, our economy by incentivising overseas buyers and PRCs to participate and engage in our community through the acquisition of real estate. During Q2 of 2013, our agents have noted an overall increase in enquiries from PRCs and luxury home buyers however, it’s difficult to state unequivocally at this juncture, whether this increased activity will result in notable and sustainable increases in transactional activity in this market segment through 2013. ”
Penny Pascual MacIntyre, executive vice president of Rego Sotheby's International Realty said the realtor had seen interest and activity from PRCs “awaken” since the land policy change.
"As with any sector, the properties which are well-maintained, properly priced to market and in need of minimal repairs and/or upgrades are of most interest,” Ms Pascual MacIntyre said.
“Last year operated at a whisper for internationally available properties. This year we feel a pulse as we are experiencing more inquiries and conducting viewings with more international buyers.
“However the Bermuda real estate market is nowhere out of the woods with more than half the year gone and only two internationally available properties under contract."
The PRC property license fee was reduced to four percent for 18 months and international buyers licence fees have been reduced from 25 percent to eight percent for a stand-alone home (rising to 12.5 percent after 18 months) and from 18 percent to six percent for a condominium (increasing to eight percent after 18 months).