The comment I have probably heard the most since moving here to Argentina from both foreigners and locals is that I'm a "visionary". I'm flattered when I hear that. It is true that I have been perceptive when it comes to the real estate market. My biggest regret is that I did not purchase at the bottom immediately after the crash in December 2001.
When everyone was moving all of their money outside of Argentina I was taking a serious look at the potential of real estate in Argentina along with tourism and started moving my money into Argentina. Experts say the best time to buy is when there is blood on the street. I tend to agree with that but I feel more comfortable that I formulated a business plan over the course of 2 years before moving to Argentina instead of jumping in and rushing to purchase real estate. I thought it through very carefully.
There is a reason I got into the real estate market here in Argentina. Real estate will be around till the end of time. Presidents, governments and politicians, financial crises.... all come and go but real estate will be around forever. With the unstability of the banking system here in Argentina it makes real estate even more attractive. Real estate will always be a safe haven for citizens of Argentina.
Buying an apartment is not like buying 1,000 shares of Pets.com. No fortunes are going to be lost by purchasing real estate here in Buenos Aires. Now with foreign interest in real estate here -- prices are going up even at a faster rate. I also predicted that mortgages would enter the market here which has also proven to be true, albeit at a very slow pace. Anywhere in the world where credit and financing is introduced to the real estate market, it has drastically pushed up demand which in turn pushes up prices in real estate.
I made a significant amount in the US stock market in the late 1990's but with the meltdown in the stock market I lost much of that money that I made. I learned the stock market is extremely volatile and some investments can go to $0 overnight.
I wish I discovered real estate earlier. In fact, most of my clients are not millionaires with money to burn. The average consulting client is a hard working professional that has worked hard most of their adult lives. Many were fortunate enough to have purchased real estate in the United States or the UK that they felt was a fair price and then dumped it when they felt it became overvalued.
They sold their properties at a tremendous profit and they were looking for a place to diversify their investments. Many of my consulting clients didn't have plans to invest in Argentina before they came here for vacation. Many of them came to Buenos Aires and stayed in one of my owned or managed properties and were impressed with the quality of service and the properties.
They could clearly see that I was on to something and this was a good business to be in. Yet others read about my business model and company in a number of newspapers, and business or investment magazines around the world. We have been featured in several publications around the world . I am also a reoccuring real estate consultant on HGTV's House Hunters International, where my 5 shows I've done for them have been the highest rated shows in the history of their network.
I have never approached any of my consulting clients. These clients could see the price they were paying to stay in a hotel vs. a 5 star apartment. They much preferred a luxury apartment at a fraction of the price of an expensive hotel. People pay $300+/night to stay at nice hotels because they know what to expect. Good service, good location and little uncertainty. Many of my clients used my former company (I sold ApartmentsBA.com in October 2010) every time they came to Buenos Aires and began to see that they knew what to expect in one of our luxurious owned properties. No hassles, no lies, no games and they always got their security deposit back. In fact, we service several corporations that formally gave their business to 5 star hotels and discovered our properties and never have gone back.
The capital appreciation potential alone was worth purchasing real estate in Argentina for me. The tremendous rental income is just icing on the cake. Tourism is booming here in Argentina and I see no slowdown for the foreseeable future. We are not resting on our laurels though. We are not just marketing to tourists but businessmen/corporations, Embassies and I started marketing to cosmetic surgery patients in 2005 which has proven to be a good clientele base. My vision was to create high occupancy with a number of different groups year-round. That vision has become a reality.
People call me a "visionary". Maybe I am one. I do know that in what I am doing no one loses. I only purchase properties that will be highly desirable properties for rentals and as an investment. My business plan was very simple. Besides a nominal monthly fee to manage the property, my firm only made a percentage of all rental bookings. Of course I never made any guarantees or promises on the occupancy rates but if I didn't rent out your property, I didn't make any money. It's that simple.
Unlike a realtor that only wants you to buy an expensive piece of property anywhere in the city, my only goal is that you buy a good property that is rentable. I was in a partnership with each property management client. They make money and we make money so we have an incentive to keep the property filled. I'm in the unique position of being a property owner instead of just a website that books apartments like every other website in Buenos Aires. I know what is important from an owner's perspective.
As I mentioned, there are no losers. My clients are buying wonderful properties that many of them use when they are here. The value of the investment is not going to plummet. In fact, I believe the reverse is true. Argentina wins with tourism dollars flowing into Argentina with both property owners that are purchasing properties, renovating and furnishing them and clients that are renting properties.
My company is single handedly responsible for bringing tens of millions of dollars per year into Argentina every year with foreign investments and tourism dollars. I would argue that besides the big hotels here in Buenos Aires, my former rental clients collectively as a group are spending more money within Argentina then almost any other group. My clients are dining out every day, shopping, getting expensive medical procedures, and taking multiple trips within Argentina.
I am experienced and knowledgeable with the local rental market and trends. I myself am an owner of several properties in Buenos Aires. My objective is to assist you in many possible ways. I am an expert in this matter. At the same time, I welcome comments, suggestions and questions. I will help keep you updated on market trends and the capital appreciation of your property.
Your objective is to make a profit on your investment. My job is to also help keep my clients stay focused and on track. I do not let you get distracted by things that do not affect the overall bottom line and investment objectives. I can offer many client testimonials to give other new investors an idea of what I have done for them.
I have outlined the reasons why owning property here in Buenos Aires is a good investment strategy. I hope that many others share in my vision.
For more information on becoming a consulting client and a "Partner " and sharing in our vision, please contact us.