The U.S. window is still open, says Kevin O’Leary

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX:  If you are not prepared to be a landlord, consider investing in REITs.  Downside:  you can’t use

Rising prices or no rising prices — the U.S. is still the land of opportunity for Canadian property investors, says Kevin O’Leary of the Dragons’ Den, but only for those prepared to think outside the box.

Speaking exclusively to Canadian Real Estate Wealth last week, O’Leary said the window of opportunity remains open for Canadian investors and Snowbirds to snatch affordable U.S. property, despite rising prices in various States and the dwindling number of foreclosures.
“There are markets like Boston, which never really had a major correction. And, yet, when I look at Phoenix, or some of the inner coastline (regions) of Florida, they had 50 per cent corrections,” he told CREW as part of an upcoming feature in the September issue of the magazine.  “This is a classic situation where you have to know the specific geography of where you are investing.”
Revealing that a majority of his own real estate investments are through REITs, he advised fellow commercial investors to consider the same route.
“It’s probably best to enter the U.S. market through a REIT than to pick individual properties yourself,” he said. “Institutional buyers have also done the same thing, gone to professional managers and said ‘let’s do a portfolio of 20, 30 to 50 to 60 different positions’ than to just own one building in Boston, Phoenix, Florida or Houston.”
Referring to Snowbird interest south of the border, O’Leary  maintains that certain areas, including parts of Florida, continue to offer affordable despite the state’s strengthening prices.
“Phoenix is a fantastic opportunity,” O’Leary told CREW. “It is up about 25 per cent off the bottom, but still 75 down from the top. So a 2,500 square foot house in a gated community is still a great buy,” he remarks.
*Check out the September issue of Canadian Real Estate Wealth for the full in-depth interview with Kevin O’Leary and his views of where in this country to invest.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013 07:35  Written by Grainne Burns

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