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Our Global Network - A Warm Welcome to Howard Morrel visiting Hong Kong

We recently had the chance to meet with Howard Morrel, a very experienced Broker and top producer with Engel & Völkers, New York.

Mr.Morrel, heads the Howard Morrel team, a group of seven carefully chosen multilingual luxury real estate specialists. The team members possess an encyclopedic knowledge of Manhattan and are known to adhere to the highest levels of confidentiality and discretion.

Outstanding service and counsel are the hallmarks of the Howard Morrel team that is well versed in dealing with an international clientele. Members of this highly ranked team use a combination of traditional and cutting-edge methods to get desired results. The Howard Morrell team has an excellent record and has collectively sold over a $1 billion worth of New York real estate over the years.

Mr. Morrel, a trained attorney from the New York Law School, is a member of the Real Estate Board of New York. He brings with him more than three decades of experience in the real estate industry. Before his foray into real estate, Mr. Morrel had a successful career in the American music industry where he had the chance to work with legendary performers such as Miles Davis, Yoko Ono, Linda Ronstadt, and Natalie Cole amongst others .  

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You specialize in New York City real estate. Hong Kong is often referred to the‘New York of Asia’.  Do you subscribe to the view? [Morrel, Howard] Hong Kong has extraordinary energy. It is like NY on steroids. So positive and focused.

Manhattan has recently been voted as one of the top real estate markets in the world. How easily can a foreign buyer access the NYC market? [Morrel, Howard] NYC is an easy market to access. The most important factor is having a trusted relationship with a person exclusively representing the HK entities interests.

What kinds of NYC properties are popular with foreign buyers? [Morrel, Howard] In the commercial sector large prestige office buildings, and large development sites. In the residential sector luxury condominiums.

Do foreign buyers come to work in NYC first and then after a few years begin to participate in the real estate market? Or do international buyers typically bring in money for real estate purchases? [Morrel, Howard] In my experience most of the funds invested here are placed as longer-term investment, not to participate in the real estate market.  

It’s a well-known fact that South American buyers constitute the largest proportion of international buyers in US cities like Miami. Are there any nationalities, which are preeminent as international buyers of real estate in New York City? [Morrel, Howard] Investors from China constitute the single largest investment group. 

Is it necessary for an overseas buyer need to have agent representation in New York City? If it is essential then perhaps this presents an opportunity for Engel & Völkers franchises in different cities to work together and collaborate? [Morrel, Howard]   Yes this is correct. This is the single most important reason for us to be working closely together.

What about financials and costs involved in a buying transaction? Are only cash buyers welcome or is mortgage finance acceptable? [Morrel, Howard] Buyers are permitted to arrange financing but a contract of sale will typically require the buyer to purchase regardless of whether or not they are able to secure financing. So the deals are typically considered to be cash.

How long does the whole transaction process take after a property has been identified? Does the buyer need to be New York the whole time? [Morrel, Howard] A transaction can happen quickly. A deal can close within 45 to 60 days. A buyer does not need to be physically in NY at any point during the process. The purchaser can designate a legal representative typically called a Power of Attorney to work with me to negotiate.  I am also a licensed attorney. We can also sign all contracts via email.

What about rental prospects of the property? After an international buyer has bought an NYC property do you help market it? [Morrel, Howard] Yes-100%. 

What kind of returns can an International buyer expect? [Morrel, Howard] Returns range from 2 CAP to 3 CAP. 

What according to you are the best areas of New York City for investment? [Morrel, Howard] Anywhere in Manhattan is terrific at this time. But it depends on the type of property the investor is interested in purchasing. Manhattan has many diverse neighborhoods. Each neighborhood has various specialties.

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Are you thinking of investing in New York City? Perhaps your children are going to study in the Big Apple, and you want them to have their own dwelling. Whatever the reason may be, do get in touch with us with your requirements. We will partner with our New York City outpost to secure you the best advice and follow-through for your real estate transaction in New York City.

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