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How to Invest in Asian Property?

Mar 20, 2008
The steady downfall of the American housing market has forced the investors to think about the large global market. Among the global investments the Asian property market will continue to prosper for the next few years. Asia is becoming more and more investor friendly.

The property market has become more and more transparent to the foreign investors and the removal of restrictions on foreign investments from a handful of countries in the region also helped matters. These changes have definitely resulted in renewed interest of the foreign investors. With these things in mind some guidelines are presented in this article.

The industrial property market produced unexpected results in the year of 2007. Occupancy rates and rental levels got excellent boost for all kinds of industrial space which indicated consistent strong demand. There were benefits for developers and manufacturers as a handful of business park sites and close to a dozen industrial sites were launched.

If you have made up your mind that you are going to invest in the Asian market, first of all you have to choose the Asian country in which you are going to invest. If you take the case of Japan, office and retail property seems the right choice and rental growth should remain consistent. Real estate is a profitable sector even in India where urban land prices had a huge surge because of foreign investment. Thailand has a fresh investment market with a bubbling young generation waiting in the wings. Property is increasingly becoming cheap and it seems one may not get a better opportunity to invest in Asian property.

Perform an extensive search in the Asian market you selected for your investment plans. Always remember that you should be very familiar with your chosen country's rules and regulations regarding foreign investment. This is because these rules can play a very important role in the development of the investment plan you are going to execute in the investment market you selected. If you don't give enough attention to these rules you could suffer huge losses. Each Asian country has got contrasting set of rules and regulations, but almost all are aimed at making the investors feel very comfortable. So you don't have to express deep concerns about these restrictions.

The next thing to do is to spot an international real estate agent or broker who has got thorough knowledge about the Asian market in which you are planning to invest. The broker should be very carefully chosen because he should have a major influence on the future of your investment. Your choice of the broker will be very crucial if you are going to conduct negotiations in a language which you are not familiar with.

If you have found the right broker, you can think about an international real estate fund. This will give you the necessary diversification you need for your investment portfolio. These funds posses low minimums in the present scenario. So an intelligent investor can make excellent use of the property growth seen in most parts of Asia. You have to consult with your financial adviser about the Asian real estate mutual fund, Cohen and Steers Asia Pacific Real Estate Securities for the necessary help.

Thinking about a Real Estate Individual Trust (REIT) could be very handy if you are investing in the Asian property market. The Asian REIT market is progressing at a swift pace. The market got widened by 800 percentage in Singapore, 500 percentage in Japan and 1000 percentage in Hong Kong since 2003.
About the Author
Wantanee Khamkongkaew is an independent author evaluating and commenting on leading International Property Consultants in Asia and Greater China , especially CB Richard Ellis.
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