—— Many Chinese investors have asked us questions about buying a property in the United States, such as whether they can buy a house in the United States, whether American properties are expensive, or whether they can get a green card when buying a house in the United States. After sorting out the question list, CrowdFunz would like to list and answer those most frequently asked questions.
1. Can Chinese residents buy a house in the U.S.?
Yes, they can. Whether you are a Chinese resident in the country or a Chinese resident with a legal work or residence visa status in the United States, you can buy real estate in the United States. Buyers in the United States only need to be able to prove their legal status in the country of their nationality. Even if the buyer himself cannot come to the United States to participate in real estate transactions, he can also entrust others to assist in the purchase of American real estate.
2. Can I get a U.S. green card or visa by buying a house in the U.S.?
Owning property in the United States cannot be a basis for obtaining a U.S. visa or legal residence. It is easy to own a property in the United States. For example, through a broker-dealer to open a stock investment account, it is easy to buy a stock of a listed company available on the stock exchange.
3. U.S. real estate is expensive
There is no absolute answer to this question. The United States has a vast territory, and housing prices vary widely among states and regions.
One obvious difference from the Chinese real estate market is that in the US housing market, single-family houses are the mainstream; only some metropolitan areas that have very high population densities, such as New York, will have many condominiums available in the market.
Another difference from the Chinese real estate market is that the residential properties listed for sale in the United States are generally never priced per unit area, especially like single-family houses with backyards, which are priced as a whole piece of property.
The price of housing is closely related to the area in which it is located. In metropolitan and its surrounding areas with convenient transportation, housing prices are often high, while in many ordinary middle-class communities, housing prices and cost-effective levels are often very reasonable, and are in line with the income of local average.
4. Is the property rights of real estate in the United States permanent?
There are many forms of real estate property rights in the United States. In general, most of the residential properties have complete property rights which are called Fee Simple Estate and also a bundle of legal rights, and the owner has the absolute ownership to dispose of the land where the real estate is located.
In addition to the property rights to the land and the buildings on the land, the owner’s rights also include air rights over the area and mineral rights under the area where the land is located.
5. Does the lands in the U.S. belong to individual or government
Generally, the ownership of the properties available on the market is private. Under normal circumstances, the property sold by the seller has complete property rights in Fee Simple Estate, and the buyer obtains the complete property rights after buying the property.
Although most of the real estate in the United States circulates in the market, the property rights belong to private individuals, but the largest landowner in the United States is still the United States government. The U.S. federal government owns approximately 650 million acres of land, accounting for 30% of the country’s land area. Most of these lands are in the western United States, and many of them are used for military bases, parks, and nature reserves. However, there is still a small amount of land in various parts of the United States, which is sold by the government to private individuals.
6. Will property in the U.S. experience official requisition?
This problem often plagues home buyers in China, but the probability of encountering it in the United States is low.
First of all, the power of local governments in the United States is very limited, and local governments rely on taxation for budgeting. They generally tend to be conservative in new real estate development. At the same time, American real estate developers are more limited power. The development of new real estate projects requires approval from local community hearings.
Although it is unlikely to encounter forced requisition, local governments in the United States still have a legally protected land requisition right called Eminent Domain.
If it involves the construction of public facilities, such as road repairs, sewage treatment plants, power grids, etc., the local government will exercise eminent domain to purchase land affected by the public construction plan from the private owner at a price slightly higher than the market.
But if the owner of the real estate disagrees, the government will have to appeal to the court to start the land acquisition process, and the court will file a case for investigation and finally make an effective judgment.
Basically, the property rights of owners in the United States are fully protected. Because they are existing taxpayers, local governments have the responsibility to listen to the opinions of local residents.
7. Who is good to manage the properties?
In the United States, a license is required to perform any real estate-related services for others. Otherwise, it will be fined or imprisoned.
If the owners are unable to manage their properties, many Chinese investors will choose relatives and friends to help manage them and take charge of the lease, but personal experience in these areas is often limited.
A more reliable method is to find a reliable professional property management company where the property is located. Although licensed professionals will charge a certain fee, if they are responsible, they can save the owner time and money.
8. What does property management include?
Property management in the United States includes renting, advertising, reviewing the credit of the applicant, showing the applicant property, signing the lease, collecting rent on time, and in the worst case, through appeals in the court to expel bad tenants.
In addition, the maintenance of the property is also included in the property management, involving maintenance and repair of the property, weeding in the backyard, and snow shoveling on the sidewalk. In terms of finance, it also includes the management of various property-related utility bills and reporting to the owner the tax situation of the property, including school district tax, county tax, city tax, and tax related to rental income.