Tony Hanna
CEO
Tiburones Inmobiliarios
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View from the Top

Second-Home Market Driving Recovery

By Alejandro Enríquez | Tue, 12/07/2021 - 17:30

Q: What role does Tiburones Inmobiliarios play in the real estate sector?

A: The real estate sector represents 15 percent of Mexico’s GDP, making it the second-largest contributor to the country’s economy, only behind the automotive sector. We represent 7 million jobs in 78 economic branches and, unlike other economic sectors, real estate assets stay in the country.

Tiburones Inmobiliarios was born during a conference organized during my time at AMPI, which brought together key figures in Mexico’s real estate sector. We now organize in-person and virtual events, including 116 digital events. In 2022, we will launch events in the US and other parts of Latin America.

We have a solid network across the globe thanks to 10 years of experience at different industry associations. In Mexico, our main partners include some of its most relevant real estate companies, such as Lamudi, Immobiliare and eXp Holdings, which is among the most relevant platforms in the sector worldwide.

Q: How is the pandemic transforming the real estate sector?

A: We are a community that builds up the real estate sector at the individual and corporate level by channeling communications for business to thrive. The real estate sector was reset after the pandemic. For example, one of our recent clients performed an operation without personally knowing the seller, the property’s location or the local legal procedures because the entire purchase process was completed digitally. This was unthinkable a few years ago.

Q: What role do online portals such as Lamudi play in real estate?

A: Technology is the great winner of the pandemic. More than 50 percent of real estate consumers use online portals. These companies and online platforms will become more relevant as the years go by. Lamudi, for example, was purchased by one of the most influential Asian real estate holdings. It has grown from 100 employees in 2019 to almost 500. eXp Holdings has a virtual world, offices and custom-made platform for digital real estate operations.

Experience, years in the market and best branding practices are no longer a guarantee of success. Clients today are demanding two things. First is speed, as we have 45 seconds to answer our client before they make another decision or walk away. Second is service, because clients are looking for a smooth service.

Q: What are the key drivers for Mexico’s real estate market recovery?

A: Second-home purchases have been driving the market in recent years. People from other countries continue to migrate to Mexico, particularly to the Riviera Maya, and 2020 saw records in the second-home market. The country has many attractive tourism destinations. Asia is leading the international real estate market and prices in Mexico compared to Asia are laughable. Russia is also showing interest in Mexican properties.

Q: While analysts say that money in Mexico is expensive, ROIs for real estate projects remain attractive. What is your perspective?

A: Mexico’s interest rates range between 7 and 9 percent and cannot be compared with interest rates in the US that range between 2 and 3 percent. However, Mexico’s interest rates and money market remain competitive. Other strategies include borrowing in other markets and investing in Mexico. One of the greatest breakthroughs is that foreigners can request and receive mortgages in Mexico.

Q: What are Tiburones Inmobiliarios strategies to ensure growth?

A: We have an event on Sept. 23 in Cancun that will be attended by key sellers and architects, such as Jorge Arbiti. We will host another event in Queretaro in October, in Monterrey in November and we close the year in Mexico City. We will continue to have virtual forums and the next will include Jorge Antonio Lozano, President and Chairman of IPADE and UP. Next year, we will bet on Spanish-speaking events in the US and move into other Latin American markets and Spain.

Alejandro Enríquez Alejandro Enríquez Journalist and Industry Analyst