We talked recently about the signs to look out for when identifying a market that’s ripe for investment. One of these signs is a growing middle class…
In any country, the rate of growth of its middle class is one of the best indicators of a healthy economy. But cashing in on that local middle-class market is an area that’s often overlooked by foreign investors… who tend to focus more on tourist areas for pre-construction buys and/or short-term rental income.
Today, let’s focus on where and how you can tap into this area of opportunity among the world’s growing middle classes.
Where In The World Do We Find A Burgeoning Middle Class?
Between 2003 and 2014, Brazil’s middle class grew by 40%. Despite a recession during 2015/2016, today it boasts the world’s 9th largest economy, with a booming middle-class that’s growing by 2 million people a year.
Meanwhile, 2015 was a significant year for the Colombian economy. That’s when, for the first time, Colombia’s middle class—now 30.5% of the population—outnumbered those living in poverty.
This shift isn’t just visible in raw statistics. You can see the changes on the streets in the major cities of these countries.
Today in Medellín, Colombia, for example, you’ll see more cars on the roads… more shoppers in the malls… more local diners eating in the restaurants and waiting in line at movie theaters.
The next step up the ladder is owning their own home. Ideally, these young Latin American buyers want shiny new homes… ones that are within the city confines, so they can continue to enjoy an active social life without a long commute to work every day.
Unfortunately, city-center prices come with a hefty price tag… even for those now earning a healthy local salary. And, mortgage interest rates can be a deal-breaker. Though lowering in both Colombia and Panama in recent years, lending rates are as high as 9% for young buyers in Brazil.
Panama Steps Up To Serve Its Quickly Expanding Middle-Class Market
One country that’s made an extra effort to help its middle class get on the property ladder is Panama.
Panama’s government offers subsidized mortgages that mean low to no interest rates for our middle-class buyer.
Plus, it recently passed a new law granting a property tax exemption on all primary residences worth US$120,000 or less.
If you’ve been keeping an eye on the property market in Panama City, you’ll wonder where you’d manage to find a livable space in this metropolis for less than US$120,000…
One developer we know in the city has the solution…
He’s recognized that most of the apartment inventory in Panama City is priced out of reach for most would-be middle-class homeowners. The typical product is large apartments for families, houses, or small apartments built for the expat market (meaning in high-priced locations).
And, commuting is not an attractive option. The commute time to the city from the other side of the Panama Canal can take two hours or more. Lots of Panamanians are making that trip twice a day five or even six days a week… and they’re eager to get out.
This developer is building small, affordable condos in convenient city locations that fit the bill for our middle-class buyer. Starting at US$90,700, these units qualify for the preferential interest rate on his mortgage and leave him free of property tax.
But they also represent an easy pre-construction opportunity for you…
Save US$16,155 On Your Pre-Construction Condo—With A Buy-Back Guarantee
This new development is in a prime city-center location, right by the metro station at Vía Porras and Vía España.
Walk out your front door and you’ll find shops, cafés, restaurants, and the metro connecting you to the rest of the city…
You have a couple of strategies here:
You could hold the unit—and either use it yourself or put it on the long-term rental market to earn a steady cash flow. Return on investment is projected at 6.35%, based on a monthly rent of US$575.
Or you can let it go on completion. For LIOS readers, we’ve been able to negotiate a buy-back guarantee with the developer… so you won’t have to go through any of the hassle of putting your condo on the market yourself.
If the project is finished within 12 months, the developer will resell the unit on your behalf and pay you back your purchase price plus 10% interest.
If the project is finished within 18 months or 24 months, the buy-back option is your purchase price plus 15% or 18% interest, respectively.
Best of all, whichever path you choose, you’ll qualify for a 15% discount… plus, an extra US$3,000 “scooter discount.” (For local buyers, there’s a free scooter included in the package. For investors, the developer has agreed to cut an extra US$3,000 off your condo price.)
So, taking US$3,000 off that US$90,700… and applying your 15% discount… your pre-construction condo price is just US$74,545. That’s a total savings of US$16,155. And, you’ve got access to all of Panama City amenities—without any commute.
Does One Of These Panama City Condos Make Sense For You?
If you’ve been dreaming of a foothold in Panama City, this is a chance to get in at a price that’s rarely seen by foreigners in this market… and secure yourself a modern condo in a well-connected part of the city…
If you see this as an investment play, your risk is minimized with the developer’s buy-back guarantee. One year from when building starts (it’s scheduled to begin in July), you could have all your money back plus 10% interest. If the developer takes longer, that interest payment could reach 15% or 18%.
Of course, you don’t need to decide your exit strategy right away…
But with just 29 condos left in this 70-unit building, you will need to act quickly…
If you’re interested in finding out more about one of these US$74,545 condos, I recommend you to get in touch right away for more information.