Working in Real Estate, I am asked this every day… What’s happening with the market? Is it as slow as everyone is saying? Have we missed the boat? Why are our properties not selling? Should we Invest in Panama?
There is no doubt that things seem to be slower than usual, ask anyone here and you will hear the same story…
So let’s start with why there has been a slow down in the Panama Real Estate Market…
First the Canadian dollar plummeted, Canadians who would normally be looking to buy here, just couldn’t afford the crippling exchange rate and Canadians already living here realised if they sold their properties in US Dollars they would be making a pretty penny converting it back to Canadian Dollars!
Next we had ‘Panama Papers’ a huge leak, of so called dodgy financial dealings here in Panama.
Fact 1. Some of the completely legal loopholes that make Panama a nice little Tax Haven, are the reason many people are here!
Fact 2. It is easier to open a bank account in the US than it is to open one here in Panama.
Conspiracy theory… The ‘Panama Papers’ were a deliberate leak by the US to stop Americans flooding to Panama and investing here, taking their money out of the US.
Then we had the whole ‘Wakid’ money laundering scandal…
In amongst all of this, everybody had eyes on Europe whilst Britain made the decision to leave the European Union. The result of the BREXIT decision causing the value of the GBP to drop and hurting a lot of Brits and European prospective buyers.
Right now, all eyes are turned to America… Many North Americans are playing the waiting game to see what happens in the upcoming Presidential elections.
My personal opinion… one half of the American population will be heading out of the States, we just don’t know for sure which half yet!
There is no denying that the Real Estate market has been very slow, and yet, here at Try Panama we are still making regular sales, whilst a lot of our competitors are treading water… Why?
Firstly, we are completely honest with our clients, it really is a buyers’ market, so, if you’re a seller, be, realistic, price your home to sell, everyone thinks their home is the nicest, the best and worth an extortionate amount of money, especially if you live in the beaches area, but what you are doing is pricing yourself out of the market, which you just can’t afford to do with all the competition you have!
The other real benefit we provide is that we are members of the MLS… YES… there is anMLS here!… the problem is, many ‘Realtors’ here are not a part of it because they are not working in Panama legally. Because of this, many ‘Realtors’ cannot or will not work with other ‘Realtors’ and in many cases, they just don’t want to share! Something Try Panama does not agree with… sharing gives our Buyers and our Sellers the best opportunity and customer experience!
Fact. 80% of our sales in the last 12 months have been MLS listed properties.
The last reason I believe we have been so successful over the last few months, when everyone else is feeling the slump, is not just because of our vibrant, happy, can-do personalities, although I am sure that plays a huge part! But actually because we have nurtured long term relationships with our buyers… two of my most recent sales took a year to come to fruition, 4 visits to panama, many, many viewings and finally a sale. Buying a home, whether you plan to live here or purely as an investment, is often an emotive purchase, add in the fact it is in a foreign country and you can understand why, it can sometimes take a lot longer for buyers to make that decision… so we are patient, we help and guide our clients and are in it for the long haul!
Panama is currently rated as the Numero Uno, Number 1, Country in Latin America, to invest in right now… The country is still on a huge growth spurt with new infrastructure projects starting every day, it is by far, the safest, of all the Latin Countries, both for your money and your person, and buying Real Estate here, is likely to be a great investment!