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Construction permits: what to learn from the industry


The construction industry is a great example of an indicator of what to look forward to. For example if there’s a boom in commercial construction, we can think of business growth and job opportunities. The same happens with warehouse constructions or residential constructions. Every change in the construction industry has to be read in order to predict certain impacts in the area we are studying or in the whole country.


However, when we look at the statistics of residential constructions, we are looking at specific changes not only in the industry but on the people itself. Of course these variances could be caused by employment rates or by new tax benefits and legislation. But in most cases, these reflections we can perceive, talk about variations on the culture, migratory patterns, people’s preferences, solvency or desirability of geographic locations. So let’s take a look at the last trends we have in our power.


Total Residential Building Permits by Metro Area 2018


“Building Permits refer to the approvals given by local jurisdictions before the construction of a new or existing building can legally occur”, according to

Giving the number of permits and percentage variances since 2017, we can see the locations that had shown growth in the last period (2017-2018), following.


Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX +1.43%

Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX +34.5%

Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA +15.7%

Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ +6.9%

Austin-Round Rock, TX +11.3%

Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL +51.5%

Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA +2.3%

Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, NC-SC +9.1%

Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL +5.2%

San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA +4.3%

Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI +16.3%

Raleigh, NC +12.5%

Jacksonville FL +19.2%




The Orlando metro area registered an increase of 51.5 % compared to the number of construction permits in 2017. In this way, the Central Florida metro area took the 8th place in the country. Experts attribute the growth to an augmented demand from retirees, a better local tax environment and promising medical and tech sectors.


Following, the Houston metro area had an increase of 34.5 % in permits. This was fueled by rebuilding due to the Hurricane Harvey and to a fertile ground for the oil and gas industry.


¿But how does a construction permit work?


If you are about to request a building permit, you should know they are not always necessary. A building permit is intended to ensure that your plans for the project will comply with local regulations or policies, standards for land use, construction or zoning.


When you shouldn’t ask for a building permit

  • Simple repairs or replacements.
  • If you are hiring a contractor, most probably they will do it for you.


When you should ask

  • If the project involves additions or major changes to your home’s structure.


How to apply for a building permit

  • Contact your local building office and tell them the whole idea.
  • Besides preparing the building permit, prepare any other permit you may need for specific jobs, such as electrical.
  • Once you begin, tap the permit to a window or door next to the building.
  • At some points, call the designated inspector to verify everything is going well.
  • Once the inspector has approved the work, you no longer need to display the permit.


Lucrative opportunities are waiting for new investors in the growing zones in the US. If you have doubts or want to share your experience related to building permits, let us know.

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What there is to know about Opportunity Zones

The Federal Qualified Opportunity Zones program has turned South Florida into an even more interesting area for real estate investors. Aiming to incentive private investors, significant tax deferral opportunities are available all over the place in used-to-be economically disadvantaged areas that have already been revitalized. 


There are 123 opportunity zones, 67 just in Miami Dade, 56 between Broward and Palm Beach counties. That has allowed almost currently 16% of commercial assets to be located there. As we said before, most of the zones included in the program are already economically and commercially recovered, we are talking of neighborhoods like Miami’s Wynwood and Overtown. Another opportunity zones, that were already pointed out by investors prior to becoming part of the program are North Miami, Coconut Grove, Allapattah and some neighborhoods placed near Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. But, how is that opportunity zones work?


The basics of the Opportunity Zone Program


  • There are three kinds of tax incentives offered within the Opportunity Zone Program:
    • Deferral of capital gains invested until December 31, 2026.
    • Reduction of capital gains invested, leading to a 15 percent reduction in capital gains tax.
    • Exclusion of gain on QOZ property held for at least 10 years.
  • It’s not for every kind of investor. In order to access the tax deferral benefits you must prove gains from the sale of an asset.
  • The buyer needs to keep the property for, ideally, ten years (capital gains are tax-free at this point). At least they must hold it for five years (capital gains drop by 10%). The longer they keep the asset, the more they benefit. The goal of the program is to incentive long-term acquisitions, to economically change for better the community around.
  • Not only residential investors can be granted the benefits of the program, but also commercial ones. Multifamily rentals, office spaces, retail are the ones that currently more interested in these opportunities. Of course they have to meet some basic requirements to qualify, like: 


    • To provide at least half of the services within the area.
    • Make sure their workers spend at least half of their time in the area.
    • Business operation and management are based in the zone.


To qualify for the program, traditional limits on the kind of property or business investment are not so strict this time.


Now that we know the basics, we start thinking, which is the best opportunity zone to invest then?


Our highlighted opportunity zones


  • West Palm Beach
  • Boynton Beach
  • Delray Beach
  • Pompano Beach
  • Fort Lauderdale


Tax benefits are already generating value-building investments, bringing new jobs and business into the areas. This is really good news, both to investors and to existing local communities. Identifying resources and tools to help your real estate clients investing better and profiting more is part of your job as a realtor. Contact us if you want to partner and offer them not only your knowledge but also financing for their real estate investments.


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3 keys for realtors to sell more investments properties

Selling a house to a first-time buyer is not even close to what it takes selling an investment property. It seems the home-buying cycle is always the same, or at least similar. The buyer contacts you searching for a house to live in. Luckily, if you two have had a good experience together, they will contact you after two or three years to sell the first house and buy a bigger one. Of course, there’s always the word of mouth. But that’s it.


You won’t get any bigger profit from selling a residential property. On the other hand, selling an investment property could take you to a whole new level. An investor can buy several times from the same realtor and, of course, also recommend you to other investors. Helping them get the best benefit will turn you into an ally on who they can rely on. So how can you approach these kinds of buyers? Yes, in case you are wondering, you need to approach them, as with strategic planning.


Approaching real estate investors


In order to better know how to approach an investor you need to have a clear view of who they are. There are several kinds of commercial real estate investors. 


  • There are those who haven’t even think about investing yet. Your approach will be about why investing and what kind of properties they can invest in.
  • There are those who have given a thought to investing but they are afraid or haven’t decided yet. Your approach, in this case, will comfort them with security and providing answers to their doubts.
  • There are expert investors who you’ll be able to target directly by name. In this case, the approach should be focused on being an ally, take care of your investors budget and benefits, assessing them with a vast knowledge of the market.


Now that you have in mind which kind of investors could you target, what is the next step?


3 keys for realtors to sell more investments properties


  1. Start valuable conversations. Don’t just contact them to say happy birthday or happy 4th of July. Ask them about their concerns and listen. Listen and give proper, wise answers as a professional realtor. Advice them on the best moments for buying or selling, on the tax benefits, on the opportunities available for them.
  2. Help your investors defining a budget. Ask them about investment sizes, equity, main goals. Are they willing to expand their portfolio? Are they just looking for an extra income? Do they have other real estate holdings at the moment? Connect them with expert lenders so that they will gain more negotiation power and access to better investments.
  3. Provide an investment analysis. Most of all if your clients are those afraid of investing for the first time, show some initiative and check the previous rental price of the property, compare it with other similar, show them the math you’ve done.


Once your real estate investors are already trusted and willing to start, provide some extra added value by connecting them with the ones you recognize as the bests in the market. Your clients should have access to the best vendor, to the best lender, even maintenance person or taxes expert. Offer investors a premier service and you’ll be turning into a premier realtor while you grow your portfolio and your sales.

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Creating a realtor’s network: How to start doing better networking.


As a realtor, you can have tons of years in the market. But your experience will never make it alone, if you don’t assign time to do some networking. Allocating some hours in your agenda to do this kind of work, will assure you a better outcome in the real estate industry.


Most of the time, to be visible in your area is important. It turns out in the real estate market it’s inevitable. Our bet is, networking will be your chance to build a reputation, to work on your personal brand and finally, to get better and bigger real estate clients.


Why and how can a real estate agent do networking?


Almost every real estate agent knows that, by networking, no matter if it’s a big gala or a small affair, they will be achieving some goals:


  • More involvement in the community.
  • Better lasting relationships.
  • An increase in their referrals.


Nevertheless, there are two things worth noting here:


  • Relationships don’t necessarily have to be made with people belonging to the real-estate market. You can build trust with lenders, tax attorneys, or home inspectors. Any professional you believe that could ever help you serve your clients will be worthy of your time. 
  • If you are the only or one in the few real estate agents in the room, for sure you’ll get everybody’s eyes on you. It will be a great opportunity to exchange cards with possible future investors. So, don’t just pick events in the real estate industry.


Get your name out there


Not only can you search among the existing events the ones that adjust to your expectations, but you can create one of your own. What about designing an event to attract just the people you need and creating the database of your dreams? Let’s see some key points when it’s time to be the host:


  • Think about topics in which you can add value. Invite proper speakers or industry referents that can also provide their own points of view, enriching your speech.
  • Bring in different kinds of prospects. Design an ideal network that can help you reach your prospects. Make yourself a question: who could you work with as an associate? 
  • Prepare impactful presentation resources (images, videos, performance) and a personal story to share, that will help you create engagement. Most important, don’t forget to be honest with your audience, what are you expecting of them? Why are they investing their time on your event?


At last, but not least, don’t forget people want to have fun. Don’t make it all about business, get some entertainment to amuse your audience. The more family-friendly it gets, the more they will love your event.


Finally out there


When you finally make the time, hopefully the habit of creating or attending an event, be sure you get the most of it. Squeeze out your scheduled events to get, not the more connections you could, but the best ones. This is not about a figure, but about the quality of your network. This means you should try to make real conversations, to engage with people on a more profound level, introducing yourself in a memorable way and being reachable at a later time when they try to reconnect with you.


What do you think about networking? How do you do it yourself?

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Why Brickell is a great place to live in the US.

United States, Florida, Miami, Downtown Miami, Brickell. You’ve found the major financial district in Miami. Go beyond and you’ll find Brickell key, an island that provides the best views of the neighborhood.


Its look & feel, gastronomy, connectivity plus convenience and its creative culture, are the key items turning Brickell into a massive new construction center. Everybody wants to live in this Florida area, that has tripled its population since 2000. Some of us know that Florida gets 900 new inhabitants per day, being the second fastest growing destination in the US, after Texas. Brickell is now the hot spot in the whole place.


In just a couple of years more, Brickell, that is the downtown of Miami, is projected to have 109.000 residents. Today, it has 92.000, just do the maths. What is that makes Brickell especially appealing? Let’s see.


The 7 more appealing reasons to live in Brickell


  • There’s fluency of visitors that choose Brickell instead of the beach. It’s a mecca for brands that search interaction with millennials. Business opportunities, art installations, international cuisine. New restaurants, bars and hotels, as well as almost perfect weather, ideal for South American people, are just some of the first reasons to choose Brickell.


  • In Brickell corridor and Brickell key there’s an explosion of investments in new construction. Condos, office buildings, mixed-use developments and apartments, are just some of the types of properties about to be born in the neighborhood.


  • 85% of real estate buyers in the area are from countries like Argentina, Mexico, Brasil, Colombia, Venezuela, Spain and Italy, choosing among great condos like Brickell Flatiron or 1010 Brickell. Brickell City Center.


  • If you are looking for an urban core New-York stylish, Brickell could be your place. Its financial district feels more new yorker, rather than Miami. The Metromover will take you to different spots like Bayside Marketplace, American Airlines Arena, Miami-Dade County School Board or Miami-Dade College, for free. 21 stations to different destinations, 5:00 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week, as its website states. You’ll also find the best European brands like Le Roy René, Mirto or Acqua di Parma. 


  • If shopping or doing business is not your thing, we are sure you’ll be dragged into the interactive science museum (Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science) or the Pérez Art Museum Miami, two of the youngest museums in Miami. You’ll also find plenty of international exhibits or Miami-based artists.


  • In Brickell you can find the top spot for sushi in Miami, NAOE. If you are more fan of the Italian food, you’ll have options like Casa Tua or La Centrale. For South Americans missing their local food, La Mar or Quinto La Huella are options that will suit them.


  • Brickell is located, by car, 15 minutes away from Miami Airport, 15 minutes away from South Beach (5th and Ocean), 6 minutes away from the American Airlines Arena and 30 minutes away from the Bal Harbour Shops. The neighborhood is surrounded by  Little Havana, Allapattah, Coral Way, Coconut Grove and Downtown Miami neighborhoods.


Gyms, salons, spas, like the premier one at Mandarin Oriental, will provide facial and body treatments. For your mental health, relaxation at a terrace with an amazing view or at a docked yacht will both be good options. Brickell is not only a financial center, but also a place to enjoy. Since those times when it was only a patch of office buildings, it has developed into a place to really check out, a best-kept secret in Miami.

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Everything you need to know before investing in pre-construction condos in the US.

pre construction

When you think of buying a pre-construction condo in the US, you are approaching the idea of investing almost in a dream. If you are lucky, you will count on floor plans, renders, or blueprints that will help you make an idea of the possible outcome. On the other hand, you’ll have a stronger vote when it comes to choices on the future building, and for sure you’ll be offered a great discount, as you’re in some way, financing the whole construction. So, what is there to take into account? How can you reduce the risks and make the most of the advantages? When it comes to buying a pre-construction condo in the US, you should consider the pros and cons, and be alert on some items following.


What you should know before investing in pre-construction condos in the US.


You’ll find out a pre-construction building has different stages in a very visible timeline. Those are:


  • Reservation. The developer is still making plans. There are only blueprints and renders available, all of them can change a lot before the completion of the project. First-tier pricing is available for you if you sign up early to the project. Thus, one of our stronger suggestions is that you enter as soon as possible. You’ll not only be getting the deepest discounts but also be able, in most cases, to place a deposit without even buying the whole unit at this point. Work with a well-known broker so that you can rest on him. For sure deposit requirements will not be hard to achieve and, if you cancel during the first stages, most probably it will be with no penalties. Also, if you get in early, you’ll have a wider selection of units to pick. Whether you are an investor buying multiple units or if you are buying your house, this is a convenient stage to get in.


  • Contract. This stage of the projects begins with approval. The government will release the purchase agreement to those who already made a reservation. After this agreement, you’ll get 15 more days to go over everything before penalties for canceling start to be in force. For sure you’ll have to make another deposit and prices have increased since reservation phase. On the good side, if you enter at this point, you’ll have more certainty the project will be completed.


  • Breaking ground. 18-24 months is the average lasting of the construction phase for luxury buildings. Your capital will be multiplied at this point, although you’ll be requested new payments at certain milestones. If these are too surprising or come at a moment you have an adjusted budget, you can rely on a mortgage loan.


  • Completion. After construction come inspections. And after inspections, you can close on your condo. You’ll realize you’ve saved tens of thousands of dollars because of getting in early. You can now take ownership and if you want to, reselling at a lucrative price.


Search for the experts


Buying a pre-construction condo in the US is not hard. Only, if you are not an experienced buyer or investor, you should look for advice. Realtors on trend will help you choosing the best options, entering the project at the right timing and asses you with mortgage loan options if you are in need of.


If you also need assessment or advice on your finance to invest in this project, or if you’re not resident, you can contact us. We are experienced lenders when it comes to foreign national mortgages, knowing very well the Miami, Orlando, Texas and Colorado real estate markets, each of them with their particularities, and we can also assess you on the locations, neighborhoods, developers, and some other factors that may affect your future property.


When you choose to invest in a pre-construction condo in the US, you’re getting into an exciting proposition and you need to plan diligently and work with the best advisors you can get. In the end, your vision and your encouragement, but also your network, will drive you to success.

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Mortgage loans for foreign nationals buying in Miami.

mortgage loans for foreign nationals

Even with a fluctuating economy and always in disadvantage with the US currency, Latin Americans continue to invest in properties in Miami. Among the foreigners who buy in the city, we can say that there are 15% of Argentines, 11% of Venezuelans, 9% of Colombians and 8% of Brazilians. Mexicans and Peruvians complete the landscape. The real estate market in Miami is promising and, for that reason, it attracts investors from all over the world and especially from Latin America. Mortgage loans for foreign nationals are everywhere.


How and why do foreigners invest in Miami?


Investing an average of US $340,000 on a property, foreigners buy in Miami because they know that the rentability of a transaction there ends up being between 3% and 6%, according to the Miami Association of Realtors. In most cases, investments are made to protect people’s capital. Given the fluctuating economic situation in Latin American countries, even with some of them going through a political crisis, foreigners opt for this safer option: investing in Miami feels safer than in their own countries. With an initial percentage of the final value plus a mortgage loan, they can access a property that will allow them to safeguard the original investment, achieve some savings and bet on a better future.


The types of investments foreigners make in properties in Miami vary according to their purpose. 80% of foreigners invest in luxury residential assets. The rest is distributed among homes for rent, offices, or franchises. Being Miami a multicultural city, with amazing beaches, the best nightlife and ultimately becoming the hub of many technology companies and commercial ventures, the range of investment options is vast.


How to invest in Miami being a foreigner?


Generally, many foreigners invest cash. But if liquidity does not help and they need to apply for mortgage loans for foreign nationals, they should take into account that financial institutions analyze the following variables of credits for foreigners to define interest and terms:


  • Nationality
  • Type of property being purchased
  • Source of income
  • Source of liquidity


The mortgage loans rates for foreigners are usually low, ranging between 4.5% and 5% The minimum requirements are not too many. Let’s take a look below:


  • Visa, based on their nationality (at least a valid tourist visa), and a copy of the passport.
  • In the case of condominiums or townhouses, it is usually requested between 30% and 35% of the value of the property as initial payment.
  • Proof of income and liquidity (for example movements in bank accounts, reference letters, salary receipts, etc.)


Which option is more convenient when applying for mortgage loans for foreign nationals?


When applying for mortgage loans for foreign nationals there are two main options:

  • The first one is related to bank mortgage loans, that with lower interest rates are likely to be obtained. The disadvantage in this case is that banks offer less flexibility in customizing credits according to the investor’s conditions or goals.
  • On the other hand, there are mortgage loans for foreigners from private investors. This second option is very common, it offers a range of options for each special need. These are operations that are mostly closed in less than 7 days, without bureaucracy in between. This type of loans is very useful since the real estate market in Miami usually moves very fast, the investor must act quickly in order to not losing the opportunity.


Miami, a magnet for foreigners


Being Miami totally multicultural, we can say it’s a cosmopolitan city, and this can be noticed in almost every aspect: art, gastronomy, music, and the events that take place every day in the place. That is one of the reasons why foreigners are attracted to Miami. Besides, there are regular tourists who are tired of paying high rents in the area for each holiday or vacation. Then, they decide to invest in new constructions or already built properties thinking in a long term, dreaming with ideal vacations. Miami will continue to be a first chosen destination by foreigners who seek a better life-quality or a safer place for their business investments.


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Canadians Should Know these 4 Things When Buying Property in South Florida

Canadian snowbirds have migrated to South Florida and they are buying property; a lot of it! Between the years April 2016 and March 2017, they have doubled their purchases according to a new survey from the U.S. National Associations of Realtors. It doesn’t seem like much of a surprise since U.S real estate is generally less expensive than most parts in Canada. As the snowbirds are rapidly making their purchases in the warmth of South Florida, it’s crucial to have these important facts in mind:

Taxes Virtually Even Out for Canadians

An interest any foreigner buyer has when investing into property is the addition of tax cost they need to pay compared to residential buyers. This is not the case for the Canadian snowbirds! They have the advantage when purchasing property in Florida because the property tax is equal or less than the property tax amount in Canada. Home insurance is another concern foreigners have when investing into South Florida homes because of their occasional annual storms, but Florida offers relatively inexpensive home insurance.This will protect your investments and leave buyers with peace of mind without spending a goldmine.

Snowbird Affiliated Mortgage Lenders are Best

When purchasing U.S. real estate, it is best if done through a mortgage lender to ensure and smooth and less expensive process. There are several differences between the process of Canadian mortgage lending and the U.S mortgage lending that should be recognized. For example, the mortgage lending approval time in Canada is quicker than the process for Canadians purchasing in South Florida; the documentation is a bit complex, and also the closing cost is about 3% of the loan cost. The best way to ensure a smooth process is with a Canadian affiliation rather than an non-affiliated U.S lender. A Canadian affiliated lender could provide transactions with U.S. operations, which can arrange a cheaper rates. Also, a mortgage lender in Miami for Canadians can handle the application quickly to receive an approval as quickly as possible. It is recommended for snowbirds to take this route when investing in South Florida property.

Investing into the Right Property is Key

Don’t worry snowbirds, you’ll find tropical weather in many areas of South Florida, but the question is what exact properties are best to invest in? Florida offers a range of choices, whether the buyers desire to enhance the Miami nightlife or if they desire a peaceful home in Naples. First, a client should consider their reason for investing into the property, whether it is for business, vacation, or personal use. Investors should ensure that the neighborhood they have chosen will benefit them in the long run.  A helpful tip that can help any future foreign buyers is to invest into neighborhoods that are going through development. Before the area fills up with other buyers, it may be possible to land a great deal.

Real Estate Agents have your Best Interest

Thinking you do not need a real estate agent may not give you the best results when investing. The process of international purchases has many differences than residential purchases. When a buyer chooses a real estate agent, it’s recommended that he/she has experience with these purchases. It is recommended for Canadians to develop a dream team for international investments in South Florida; this means an experienced accountant, personal banker, and a real estate agent who understands the American and Canadian lending options. Also, having a mortgage lender for Canadians seeking to buy property in Miami or South Florida is vital.  Also, know your neighborhood is a fundamental rule in real estate, a real estate agent who has knowledge of their local market area can walk you towards your best investment. A mortgage lender who is familiar with the local market will also help make the entire process much smoother.


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What Argentinians Should Know Before Buying Property in Miami

argentinians buying property in miami

It’s no surprise that Miami real estate is one of the top investment destinations for international buyers, with Argentina being one of the top Latin American groups buying Miami properties. Many high profile projects are being bought and put in motion by Argentinian nationals – for example, the world renown, 66 story Aston Martin Residences was developed by G&G  Business Developments, a Miami-based firm owned by an Argentinian. The Oceana branded condominiums in Key Biscayne and Bal Harbour were created by an Argentinian art collector. Argentinians have also been quietly launching restaurants and many other businesses in Miami. They are boosting the market with their desire to work, play, and live in Miami’s multicultural environment as well as invest in its development.

While Miami is generally considered to be a “safe” place to invest in due to its relatively stable real estate market, it is important for Argentinians to know these key factors when purchasing Miami property:

Why Invest Abroad?

Other than the world renown, luxurious lifestyle, Miami has advantages over Argentina when it comes to property investment. Due to the country’s weakening peso and an inflation rate of about 25 percent, many expats are desperately moving their money into American real estate. The dollar restriction has caused Argentina’s own real estate market to decline, prompting those with properties to sell in dollars rather than pesos. “There are few profitable investments left in the country”, said Eduardo Blasco, a financial consultant in Buenos Aires. Argentinians are saving and making more money through renting while investing into Miami properties. It is safe to say that Miami is a “safe haven” for this group to make lucrative investments.

The Right Mortgage Lender

Argentinians, like many other foreign buyers from Latin countries, often purchase property with cash – many times because they believe this is the only way to do it. However, working with mortgage lenders has its advantages – it allows the buyers to secure assets while keeping their capital fluid and ready to invest in other opportunities simultaneously.
The key here is to choose the right team that is familiar with your home country’s customs and processes. While there are many great real estate professionals in Miami, When choosing a real estate broker, it is highly advised to pick one who has experience and knowledge with international real estate specifically. Same goes for the morgage lender.

What to Expect

Mortgage lenders for foreigners require a review of the client’s bank history and transactions to ensure they can afford the loan and also be asked to pay a deposit, normally of at least 35% up front. When choosing a mortgage lender, Argentinians should prefer one who not only speaks the same language, but who also has knowledge of Argentina’s economy, customs and processes as well. A mortgage lender in Miami for Argentinians that knows his or her way around the south american market could make the process easier and safer.

Before the Deal Seals

Proper tax planning when purchasing South Florida property is essential to making sure you don’t pay unnecessary taxes or worse, end up with an investment that isn’t as profitable as it could be. It’s important to be aware of the consequences that can result from not planning properly when closing the deal. These consequences can vary, depending on the ownership (individually or through an entity) and how the buyer plans to use their property whether it will be  personal, for vacation, or for business. Expats need to make sure potential tax liability for them as individuals can be reduced and or completely avoided. Buyers should organize their planning with tax professionals in their home country to assure that any U.S. tax planning does not lead to any unexpected tax consequences back in the buyer’s home. It is very important to schedule a talk with a U.S tax professional before closing on the transaction to guarantee the purchase is properly aligned with the buyer’s goal. In many cases, it is difficult to unwind the deal if accidental tax costs occur. It is strongly advised to make proper tax planning a priority when purchasing Miami real estate. One way to purchase properties in the U.S. as a foreign buyer is to form a domestic L.L.C. that is foreign owned so the asset belongs to the buyer’s domestically owned L.L.C, therefore being treated as citizen owned property and being subject to less taxes. This is just one method of many that can help reduce unnecessary costs.


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What Colombians Need to Know When Buying Property in Miami

Colombians are making their way to South Florida and closing deals rapidly in Miami. In the last year they have been behind ten percent of all international transactions, leaving Colombians to purchased the third-highest amount of Miami real estate compared to other foreign buyers. From Weston to Aventura, Colombia continues to be a growing community. To make sure Colombians proceed with their investments properly, here are a few tips that they should know:

Why Buy Property as a Foreign National in Miami?

Miami real estate has boomed in the past couple of years, offering high end commercial developments, luxury condominiums with a plethora of amenities, glamorous new environments, and seemingly endless career possibilities. Colombians are jumping at the opportunities in order to enhance their lifestyles. Colombia is also one of the highest tax burden in Latin America, in the past years their hasn’t been much development in the country. Also due to the widespread corruption of elected officials and those in power in Colombia, many citizens are seeking stability and investment opportunities outside of their homeland. South Florida offers that stability and offers many business openings for Colombians searching for a better a life. “I know the cost of living is higher, but obviously, income is higher as well,” says William Otalora as he begins to plan his future to settle in Miami.

The Choice of Getting a Mortgage

Not many international buyers are aware of the advantages of purchasing homes through mortgage lenders, since investing in cash is so common. When opting for financing, it is important to find a mortgage lender who is bilingual and has knowledge of Colombian and American circumstances for an easier process. When making the decision to purchase through a mortgage lender, buyers will be required to provide the following documents:

  • Copy of passport or visa
  • Letter from employer or an accountant that verifies their salary
  • Bank reference letter showing funds available for down payments, closing cost, etc.
  • Utility bill that demonstrates current residency

Any extra paperwork will be noted before the buyer meets for financing. Also, clients may have to pay a down payment for the mortgage, usually a minimum of about 35% or more, subject to vary depending on differing factors. Mortgage lenders can walk international buyers through the best rates and terms; currently, the market is such that experienced lenders can offer lower interest rates and longer terms on housing loans.

Always do Business with a Good Real Estate Agent

Expats can experience their best investment through an real estate agent. Colombians are obsessing over Miami property because of neighborly environments, high ranking schools, a culturally vibrant lifestyle and promising business opportunities. It is advised to work with agents that are native spanish speakers and understand what Colombians prefer. South Florida is finding many Colombians in popular neighborhoods such as; Weston, Pembroke Pines, the Biscayne area, Miami Shores and Aventura. International investing in Miami with a good real estate agent can expose buyers to Miami’s world class retail therapy, the tropical climate, and luxurious multiculturalism.

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How Realtors Can Secure International Clients

How Realtors Can Secure International Clients

How Realtors Can Secure International Clients

How Realtors Can Secure International Clients

For Realtors in Florida & New York, working with international clientele is a great way to level up in their careers. Many foreign buyers looking for properties in the U.S. have plenty of cash at their disposal, ready for a quick close; they are just looking for someone to help them navigate the process. But it can feel a little like jumping into a game of double dutch if your experience has been limited to domestic buyers. International buyers want experienced agents who specialize in dealing with foreign nationals and are familiar with the unique requirements and barriers. Here is how realtors can break into the international market and start attracting foreign buyers as their clients- how realtors can secure international clients

Begin Networking Online

The SEO game takes time and while its important to compete for key search phrases, it’s not going to be your immediate way in. Begin by networking with other international realtors in groups, forums, at events and more. Realtors that are Certified International Property Specialists are typically listed out on realtor databases and sites. Establishing a relationship with firms and agencies in other countries is another great way to position yourself for great international referrals.

Make Your Website Legible in Multiple Languages

Don’t let language barriers turn off a would-be closer to a frustrated lead that decided to take their business elsewhere. With today’s accuracy of Google Translate, there’s no excuse for an outdated website that doesn’t translate your pages into at least 3-5 different languages. Many realtor sites offer easy, 1 click drop down menus with flags that allow international viewers to select the language they want to view your website in.

Hire a Diverse In-House Staff

If you or your team understand the cultural background of the potential client better than the next realtor, they’ll most likely choose you over them. That’s how realtors can secure international clients – or at least, one of the ways. If you have done your research about their customs, specific national requirements that pertain to the home buying process, or even if you can speak some of the language, you’ll have an advantage over the next realtor who didn’t do the extra work to fully understand the client. If your knowledge is limited, hiring assistants or filling your team with people from other countries who speak different languages could give you that extra advantage. If you get a Brazilian prospect and you don’t speak Portuguese – and one of your staff members does, this can be the difference between getting the business or having to watch them choose your competitor.

Establish Relationships with Lenders who Specialize in Financing Foreign Buyers

No man or woman is an island and if all you’ve got to offer is your services, you’re already at a disadvantage. Most good realtors have a whole network of professionals they can refer their clients to when they need a specific step in the home buying process. The lender is a highly important contact and establishing a relationship with the right ones is key; it can be the difference between a smooth, easy financing process or a long, drawn out, discouraging search. Establish a relationship with a lender who specializes in financing foreign buyers so they can help your client navigate the sometimes complicated path to securing a mortgage loan for a residential or commercial property in the U.S.

Once Secured, Stay Engaged and Accessible

Putting your information, trust and capital in the hands of people maybe you’ve never met in person before and who happen to be hours of flight time and maybe oceans away can be nerve-racking. Put yourself in the shoes of the buyer – wouldn’t you like to have the peace of mind that your agent is responsive and won’t dodge your calls or drop off the radar at any moment’s notice? Be extra present and accessible with your international clients. Set up Skype calls, keep a line of communication open via WhatsApp and don’t let more than 24 hours go by (at the most) when communicating via email. The more transparent and responsive you are, the more trusting your foreign buyer will be and the more likely they are to close with you and to refer their contacts to you.

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Guide to Buying Residential Property in the U.S. as a Foreign Buyer

Buying Residential Property in the U.S. as a Foreign Buyer

For decades, foreign buyers from everywhere from Russia to Turkey to Argentina have been choosing Florida as their go-to investment destination. In the past 5-10 years, the building boom in Miami has continued to attract them and is only creating more and more opportunities for profitable investments. Brazilians and Argentinians flock to Brickell City Centre, Russians have been loving Sunny Isles and the Chinese are buying up properties in the new Paramount Worldcenter downtown. But for many prospective buyers, there are still a lot of questions and speculations floating around about how the process really goes and exactly how do you secure property in the magic city as a foreign national? Many international buyers find it challenging to navigate the complex process of buying residential property in the U.S. as a foreign buyer while they are still living overseas – even more so if they’re in seeking financing for the property.

Here are a few of the basic that outline the process, to help demystify the requirements and steps to buying residential property in Miami as a foreign buyer:

Find a Real Estate Agent and a Mortgage Lender Experienced in Foreign Loans and a

“A lot of the first time buyers are under all kinds of wrong impressions,” says Mauricio Ordoñez, one of the principals at Q Kapital mortgage lending firm in Miami, Florida, “Some foreign buyers think that if they don’t have a visa, they don’t qualify; or that they can only buy in cash. Because our team specialized in foreign loans, we can set the record straight about all these misconceptions.”

Foreign buyers should begin their process by finding the right professionals to help. Finding a real estate agent that knows the lay of the land when it comes to buying residential property in the U.S. for an international buyer is important since the requirements and the processes tend to be very specific. Referrals are a great way of finding the right agents to work with – the national Association of Realtors lists out agents that work specifically with international buyers on their website. They are listed as “international property specialists” and typically travel often to promote their services. Many times, if the buyer resides in the country of origin during the property buying process, they’ll be communicating with their realtor remotely, which means they’ll need a trusted professional to take on the task.

Finding a mortgage lender that is experienced in foreign loans and specializes in this time of financing is just as essential as securing a real estate agent that is well versed in foreign property buying. Securing a loan for an international buyer isn’t the same as it is for a domestic buyer; lenders like to know who they’re borrowing from and can often be very guarded about which borrowers they lend to.

Securing a Mortgage for Property in Miami as a Foreign Buyer

Buying property with cash is common practice, whether it’s for investment strategy or a way to expedite things; however it’s not the only way an international investor can purchase property in the U.S. Foreign Nationals are also entitled to financing when looking to buy property in Miami or the U.S. Recently, mortgage rates have become increasingly affordable and competitive and terms have become longer, allowing international buyers to maintain liquidity and freedom while securing their asset. While lenders that offer home loans to foreign buyers are few and far between, many new development projects are establishing relationships with lenders who do offer this type of financing so they can ensure their units will be available to international buyers.

Requirements to Securing a Mortgage as a Foreign Buyer

Expect to pay around 30 – 40% of the value of the property as a downpayment.

Be prepared to show documentation of income via bank statements, reference letters from banks and credit institutions, asset documentation, copies of passports, multiple forms of identification and other personal information.

The more transparency in the information provided, the higher the chance of securing the loan and the faster you can get approved.


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3 Exciting Projects Coming to Miami that will Continue to Skyrocket Commercial and Residential Property Investing

paramountworldcenter-commercial and residential property investing in miami


Miami has been leveling up in a big way over the past few years and the world knows it – maybe that’s why there’s been such a boom in commercial and residential property investing. Long anticipated projects have been unveiled one after the other and we’ve seen new buildings go up in what it seems like the blink of an eye, new districts and cultural epicenters develop and the Miami skyline change before our very eyes. The Brightline Train Station had its inaugural run in January 2018 from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale; The Frost Museum opened its doors in May 2017 and Brickell’s new open air mall/designer shops opened in 2016. Miami real estate news seems to be on fire with headlines about new and exciting projects everyday; and none of it is going unnoticed on the international stage. Foreign nationals from every corner of the world are searching for mortgage financing for commercial properties in Miami more than ever. Here are just a few of the most exciting projects underway now.


The Metro area of Miami, from the Design District and Wynwood to Brickell and Downtown Miami continues to enjoy the focus and funds of investors and developers in the city. All efforts are pulling together to revamp the areas into vibrant cultural hubs, worthy of even more international popularity.

3 MiamiCentral is one of the biggest upcoming projects underway in the city. This project spans over 6 downtown city blocks and will offer a massive mixed-use urban space. The space will include commercial properties for retail and restaurants including a food hall, residential properties and will be the the Brightline Train Station Miami stop. It is also on track to be the site for the next Tri-Rail stop in Miami. 2 MiamiCentral and 3 MiamiCentral will offer urban mixed-use office spaces. This project is on track to become, as its namesake implies, the heart of central Miami – it’s strategically located near everything from the American Airlines Arena, to the Adrienne Arsht Center, Downtown Miami, Wynwood, Design District, Bayside Marketplace, the Frost Museum and the Perez Art Museum as well as Miami Beach and the Port of Miami.

Brightline announced its Miami to Ft. Lauderdale to West Palm Beach service is scheduled to open in the coming months and the 3 MiamiCentral office building announced its opening in February 2018.

One Thousand Museum

This ultra luxury condominium project has been incredible to watch during its construction. Anyone who passes through Biscayne blvd. near the American Airlines Arena has undoubtedly noticed the unique design of the One Thousand Building, dreamed up and brought to light by the architects Zaha Hadid Architects. Its curved columns are a unique addition that has already made this project stand out from the rest. This building is designed to significantly change the Miami skyline and offer a new luxury residential space with impressive interior and exterior architecture. The amenities are also exceptional, including a heliport and a bank-quality vault. Projects like these are the things that foreign investors look for when they consider their next investments in residential and commercial properties in Miami. The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2018.

The Paramount Miami Worldcenter

This project is bringing a new level of amenities to Miami, claiming to have the most amenities in one residential building in the world. Some of the most eyebrow raising offerings will include a full soccer field, a boxing studio, a complete indoor basketball court, a jogging path and golf simulator. The building will have its own skyjack and lounge for onsite nightlife; a roughneck infinity pool, an onsite spa and salon, an entertainment lounge fit for live music and even recording music – and much more. The paramount Miami WorldCenter is, as of late, 45 stories in with construction and 73% sold.  This mega project will also feature an office building and a retail portion. Completion date is still unknown, but the developers announced it being at its halfway point during December 2017.

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4 Tips for Foreign Buyers Seeking Vacation Homes in Miami

Foreign Buyers Seeking Vacation Homes Miami can receive financing for luxury properties like this one

Foreign Buyers Seeking Vacation Homes Miami can receive financing for luxury properties like this one

Miami continues to be a top destination in which non-U.S. residents continue to invest in. Vacationing in Miami for half the year and then renting it out during the other half is a profitable, popular strategy that many international buyers have. Miami’s proximity to the ocean, it’s buzzing nightlife and vibrant culture continue to be magnets for foreign dollars. If you or your client are a foreign buyers seeking vacation homes Miami, looking to buy one or any other residential or even commercial property in Miami, here’s our advice from a team that has decades of experience in the sector.

Get to the MLS (Multiple Listing Service)

Around the world, many home buyers only know one way to find properties – and that’s going to to dozens of real estate brokers to find a property. A homebuyer ends up spending countless hours going from broker to broker to see if they happen to have listings that match their budget, location preferences and other criteria. Buying in the U.S. is much more convenient in many ways and in that particular aspect, beats everyone out at efficiency. The MLS is the Multiple Listing Service that allows home buyers to view properties all in one place, regardless of who the realtor is. It’s a collection of real estate listings housed in one database and is widely known and widely used in the real estate industry. It is much more beneficial and efficient for the homebuyer and for the real estate broker. This is the national MLS listing – South Florida can be selected from the list: and it is an invaluable tool for foreign buyers seeking vacation homes Miami.

Foreign Buyers Seeking Vacation Homes Miami Can Benefit from Mortgage Financing

The common idea is that foreign nationals  looking to buy properties in the U.S. have no choice but to pay it all in cash because finding financing is nearly impossible. This is not true. Foreign buyers can definitely obtain financing for properties in the U.S. through mortgage lending companies that are familiar with the foreign buying process. The best practice is to find a mortgage lender that specialize in lending to international buyers. Apply with them to see how much financing funds will be available to you or your client. Having about 30% of the purchase price as a downpayment is beneficial for better terms and rates. Once you or your client know how much funding will be available, then you can start looking for properties in your funding range. Financing allows you to keep your assets liquid in case you have any unexpected expenses associated with the purchase or any other scenarios.

The Seller Pays the Brokers, Not the Buyer

It’s common practice in the U.S. for the seller of a property to pay the real estate brokerage fee; those seeking properties typically get the services of a real estate agent for free. For Foreign buyers, it is the most advantageous to find a broker who is local so he or she understands the areas in which they will be finding you properties; and also, a broker who is experienced in dealing with foreign buyers. International property investing has its own set of hoops to jump through. It’s a different process than it is for a citizen or resident, so it’s best to work with a realtor who can guide you through all the necessary steps to do buy residential or commercial properties in Miami properly.

You Don’t Need A Visa to Buy Property in the U.S.

Many foreign buyers think they cannot invest in U.S. properties without first getting a visa of some sort, but the truth is, a visa is not currently required. Again, finding a realtor who is well versed in the foreign buying process can help you along every step of the way. Finding a mortgage lending company who is experienced in the foreign buying process is also key.

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How Mobile Tech is Redefining the Property Buying Process

Person using mobile tech to look at property prices

If you talk to veteran realtors who remember doing business in a smartphone-less world, you’ll learn about some ancient history like when they used to send documents via fax and about old artifacts like flimsy manila folders that housed important documents, all kept inside massive cabinet drawers. They’ll also tell you about the an ancient ritual called a closing in which all parties were required to be present to complete the purchase/sale of a property. Thanks to mobile tech, nothing has been the same. Technology has affected everyone and every industry in different ways, but in the real estate market, it has helped agents overcome some of the biggest hurdles they once faced; it has allowed them to better serve their clients every step of the way. Here are just a few of the ways tech has redefined the property buying process.

Mobile Pre-Approvals and Financing Applications

Smartphones have now brought virtually every capability that once used to require being present somewhere to the fingertips of anyone, anywhere so long as they have access to Wi-Fi. Getting pre-approved and getting final approval for financing on a commercial or residential property used to require an in-person meeting with the client, realtor and bank. Then it required dozens of notarized papers and records being faxed over from one office to another; so if you didn’t have a fax machine available, you could forget about submitting your paperwork in a timely manner. The ease of using email via smartphones has made everything speed up. Also, applications for financing no longer require even a full phone conversation. Apps like mortgage lender The Q Kapital’s mobile app (categorized under finance apps) allow potential buyers to fill out all the required information from their mobile phone from anywhere in the world and get the most important step out of the way: getting pre-approved then getting fully approved for mortgage financing. Mobile mortage financing allows any foreign buyer looking to purchase properties in U.S. cities like Miami and New York to know how much financing will be available to them.

E-signing platforms are widely available now on the app store and Google Play store. They can be used to complete multi-party real estate transactions from a computer or phone easily. They are built to be secure and to fit the format of proper legal signatures so all your paperwork is airtight. Mobile tech has helped make all parties more efficient and helped expedite so many processes that used to take days, even weeks sometimes.

Mobile Tech Facilitates Remote Viewings

Starting the home or commercial property buying process nowadays can be done without leaving your bedroom – or without ever flying into the country where the property is. Of course, it’s always best to fly in at least once before purchasing to get to know your possible new asset in person as well as the surrounding areas. But if you have a great realtor on your side, they can walk you through showings all via skype, facetime or whatever video chatting software you subscribe to. The important thing is to have a great realtor who will be 100% honest; if there are other factors that can’t be picked up through a cell phone screen, such as mildewy smells, humidity or environmental noise, they need to relay that to you before you make a decision on a property. The same can be coordinated for an inspector’s visit to the home if this is part of your process thanks to mobile tech. 

Mobile Tech Facilitates Remote Closings

While closings used to require everyone’s presence to sign documentation in person, it is now the easiest part of the property buying process thanks to mobile apps and the signed, notarized power of attorney a client can give their broker. Even if you’re in Argentina, for example, and purchasing a property in Miami, it can all be done electronically. Finding a financing company that knows the ropes when it comes to purchasing property abroad as an international buyer is key; they will help navigate you through all the red tape and proper protocols to do so properly and in a way that is beneficial to the buyer.

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Why Miami is a Hot Spot for Commercial Investments

While the first thing that pops in people’s minds when they think of purchasing property in Miami is a vacation beach home or a family home, one of the sectors that has become a serious hotspot is commercial real estate. When it comes to buyer-side commercial investments, Florida as a whole is one of the top picks nationwide according to the National Association of Realtors.

Here are some of the reasons commercial property buying has seen such a huge surge in the past years:

Strategic Location & Attractive Lifestyle

One of the lures for Miami on every front and for every industry has always been its strategic location. As the gateway to the caribbean and Latin America, it is a convenient place for South American or international investors to position their property investments and to build international business models with more global reach. Miami’s pro-business economy, resort style living and thriving metropolitan neighborhoods are also a great place to live or to visit as business is being conducted or tended to.

While current activity in the residential property sector is indicative of the high demand for living spaces among international buyers, the trends in industrial real estate such as warehouses and logistics spaces reveal how well the local economy is doing. Traditionally, South Florida’s tried and true cash cow has been commercial properties used for retail shopping plazas, hotels, medical facilities and office spaces. But with online businesses selling goods that require manufacturing, storage and shipping, more and more investors have been on the hunt for locations in which to do this.

Location is important especially for distribution warehouses, which require proximity to the places the company ships to and an airport. Ground and maritime  transportation are just added perks and rarely happen all in one place; Miami happens to have all 3 and allows for proximity to Latin America and the caribbean for companies that want to ship there. And with consumers demanding reduced shipping times ( once acceptable at 7 days or more; now it’s common practice to get goods delivered within 48 hours) the location of your distribution center is of utmost importance.

Subscription based services are another business model that is steadily on the rise, affecting the demand for warehouse properties. The surge of new companies entering the South Florida market and the expansion of established ones like Amazon and Apple have been adding momentum to an e-commerce boom. Local press has been following Amazon’s announcements about their new headquarters closely, building more and more buzz about the possibility of Miami being the next headquarters for the e-commerce behemoth. Now Apple has been added to the conversation as they begin a new bidding war among American cities interested in becoming their next headquarters.

Growing Population

It seems there are more and more people in the city each day; it’s not your imagination. In the past 5 years, the city has seen around 500,000 new residents with a population rate increase of 1.88% in 2016. With more people comes more demand for products which comes with a need for more space in which to house and distribute those products- thus more commercial properties selling. Whether it’s inventories sold online or in traditional retail, the space continues to be in demand and foreign investors will continue to cash in on this demand.

Miami is undoubtedly a sound investment for anyone looking to purchase commercial real estate. That is why financing companies like The Q Kapital, that understand the international property buying processes in the U.S., specifically in Miami, are so important. To help foreign investors get the help needed to secure the investment opportunities this growing burst in development has to offer.

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5 Misconceptions Foreign Buyers Have When Buying Property in Miami

According to NAR or the National Association of Realtors, Florida is the state with the most foreign real estate investors nationwide. Roughly 41% purchase homes, 22% invest in rental property and 21% make double use purchases that serve as rental homes and rental property at different times of the year. While many other countries only allow land sales to citizens from that country, the U.S. is rather unique in that foreign buyers are allotted the same privileges and rights overall as U.S. citizens and residents when buying properties in the U.S. However the structure of the purchases, the way funds are taxed and distributed do tend do differ from the way a U.S. Citizen or resident would handle buying property. The following are just some of the common misconceptions that many foreign buyers have about purchasing property in Miami:

Foreign Buyers Don’t Necessarily Need Cash to Buy Properties in the U.S. as a Foreign Buyer

It’s one of the most common ideas everyone has about foreign buyers- the idea that they can only buy properties in the U.S. buy having the full purchase price available in cash. First of all, it’s important to note that cash transactions for real estate above $1M in Miami-Dade County and above $3M in Manhattan, New York are required to be reported to the federal government as a means to prevent money laundering. Above these amounts, the transactions lose the privilege of confidentiality.

While buying with cash is one way to purchase property for foreign buyers, it isn’t the only way. The truth is, foreign buyers are eligible, just like U.S. citizens and residents, to obtain mortgage financing on both residential and commercial properties in the U.S.

The minimum you can put down on a property is 3.5% with an FHA loan- however having 20%-30% is recommended. Foreign buyers typically are asked to come up with higher down payments; around 40% or more. Still, financing can have its benefits, allowing international buyers to free up their investment capital, keeping it liquid and moving while securing a valuable asset at the same time.

It’s Best to Buy Property in the U.S. as a Corporation, not as an Individual

As mentioned earlier, foreign buyers are welcome to obtain financing for their properties – they are not required to pay it all in cash. However the trick to obtaining financing for a foreign buyer lies in the structure of the transaction. Buying property as an individual is possible but comes with hefty taxes from the U.S. government when it comes time to selling the property – about 45% of an individual’s gross estate located in the U.S. that exceeds $60,000. The structure with which a buyer purchases property affects the taxes they are subject to in a big way. Most experts advise foreign buyers not to buy as individuals to limit the liability, minimize taxes and to keep confidentiality. With careful planning, a foreigner can purchase U.S. property through a domestic L.L.C., corporation or different corporate entities – that are owned by a foreign corporation or trust – this method of buying can render the buyer exempt from the U.S. estate tax and certain risks for the family.

It’s important to remember that foreign nationals are subject to FIRPTA- Foreign Investors Real Property  Tax Act. This law says that the sale, transfer, gift or exchange of U.S. property by a foreign national will be subject to a 10% withholding tax on the gross purchase price of the property at closing. It was enacted to ensure that capital gains taxes are paid by international buyers. There are some exemptions available that a buyer’s legal team or financing team can help them use (if they qualify) to avoid the tax. Mortgage lenders and financing companies for foreign buyers seeking properties in Miami, New York or the rest of the U.S. can help an international buyers navigate the right deal. 

The Seller Actually Pays the Real Estate Agent, NOT the Buyer

In the U.S., the seller of a property is normally under contract with their listing agent or selling agent to pay them a commission of the sale. If a buyer comes to them with their realtor and the sale is made, the listing agent then shares their commission with the buyer’s realtor – the amount is up to their negotiations. In some instances, the buyer’s agent may require payment or reimbursement for services rendered, rarely exceeding the amount of $300. Closing costs, however, are to be paid by the buyer.

The Buyer Doesn’t Necessarily need to be Present at Closing

Years ago, a closing meant everyone was required to be in the room together, signing documents and executing the transfer of title and ownership documents from the seller to the buyer. Nowadays, however, power of attorney allows representatives, typically agents, from both parties to perform the closing procedures remotely, without either party needing to be present; that’s neither the buyer nor the seller. If a mortgage loan is involved in the purchase of the property, the closing can be executed from the buyer’s country of origin if he or she is not present in the U.S. at the time.

Buying property in Miami, New York or many other areas in the U.S. can be a big win for foreign buyers when done correctly. It’s important for foreign buyers to become educated on the best ways to do so and to enlist the services of a professional realtor and a qualified, experienced tax and/or real estate attorney to help them navigate the procedures. It’s also important for the buyer to find a mortgage financing company in Miami or in the city they’re looking to buy in that has experience working with international clients so they can really help guide the buyer through the smoothest property buying process possible with the most advantageous terms. 

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Top 5 Areas in Miami that are Perfect for Latin American Buyers

When it comes to buying properties in South Florida, everyone knows foreign buyers are attracted to Miami-Dade like magnets to a refrigerator door. It’s the most attractive, one of the highest valued cities in the state, is one of the most diverse and has tons going on as far as entertainment and cultural nightlife, not to mention one of the fastest growing entrepreneurial cities in America. But Miami is big and for international investors who are not from the magic city, it can be difficult to discern which of the many neighborhoods to buy property in. If you, your client or someone you know is looking to secure a foreign national loan to buy property in Miami, here are the top 5 neighborhoods they should consider investing in based on information available from real estate organizations and recent survey in the Miami Herald.

5) Buying Property in Homestead

This may come as a surprise, but Homestead is one of the most undervalued neighborhoods in Miami. It doesn’t get the international limelight of other more famous neighborhoods, but its rapid development is coming along nicely. Over the past few years, the area has been building single family homes at a breakneck speed as well as shopping centers and entertainment. From an investment standpoint, the housing is comparatively affordable and has a huge growth potential. There’s already been a significant appreciation in property values in the area over the past 2 years or so. Many properties are brand new and located in gated communities, so they lend themselves to more established foreign buyers with families who are looking to put down roots in the area as well as single buyers or couples who are looking into investment properties to inhabit only during months out of the year.

4) Buying Property in Sunny Isles

Sunny Isles has been and continues to be one of the most popular neighborhoods for foreign buyers. Steps away from the internationally coveted turquoise waters of Miami Beach and also form grocery stores, restaurants, shopping centers and entertainment, the properties in this area are perfect for international investors looking to invest in Miami or looking to move in. Beachfront condos are a popular purchase choice in this area.

3) Buying Property in Coral Gables

One of the most beautiful and most historic neighborhoods in Miami, it is a haven for gorgeous single family homes and offers one of the most important factors families look for: competitive private and public schools. There are also world class shopping and dining locations such as Sunset Plaza, Miracle Mile and Merrick Park just minutes away from laid back, suburban areas, so residents get the best of both worlds. Any area that borders the waterfront, of course, always retains a high value, so it is a great investment if a buyer is looking to sell at any point in time. The area also houses a high population of latin american or descendants of latin american residents, making it culturally friendly to a latin buyer. For the best place to buy a single family home for a laid back, suburbian lifestyle, Coral Gables is a great choice.

2) Buying Property in Brickell

With the completion of the Brickell City Centre and other high profile projects, Brickell has been getting more and more attention both internationally and locally. Few areas boast such a vibrant

city lifestyle in the heart of bustling streets and newly erected high rises that are also bordering the water. The surge of construction and renovation of the area has created an excellent work, dine, shop and play environment that has currently made it a magnet for young professionals and millenials who are renting and buying luxury condos in glistening new high rises overlooking the Miami River and the bay. Its proximity to everything makes it easy to get around – whether in the metromover, trolley, Uber/Lyft, biking or on foot. 

1) Buying Property in Miami Beach

Number one is no surprise; Miami Beach has, for decades, been the most famous part of Miami-Dade and continues to be the most desired area to buy property. The proximity to the warm Atlantic waters will likely never lose its appeal. International buyers who wish to maintain their lifestyle in their home countries and visit Miami over holiday often opt to buy condominiums or apartments that they can use during their stay and then rent out for the rest of the year. It’s an investment that will likely continue to stay in demand over time. It also accommodates buyers from all nationalities and walks of life, from young, single buyers to families to retirees or “empty-nesters.” Miami Beach is another area with a vibrant nightlife just steps away from the ocean as well as world-class shopping such as the mall on Lincoln Road.

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Evolving Real Estate Market: The New Miami is Made up of Foreign Buyers

Back in July, Business Insider published an article citing the buying power of foreign investors in the U.S., naming 5 countries specifically whose citizens were buying the most – a total of US$153 billion over the period of a year: China, purchasing US$31.7 billion; Canada, purchasing US$19 billion; United Kingdom, purchasing US$9.5 billion; Mexico, purchasing US$9.3 billion; and India, purchasing US$7.8 billion in real estate. And that was just residential, so it didn’t include statistics of foreign nationals buying commercial properties.

Nationwide, foreign buyers seeking property in the U.S. have become a notable force – but still accounting for just 5% of home sales in the country. When it comes to Miami and South Florida’s local market, this percentage is more than ten times that. According to a data compilation published in July 2017 in the Miami Herald, foreign buyers accounted for a whopping 80.2 percent of residential sales in Miami-Dade county. Miami has been called the “most international city in United States,” by the CEO of the Miami Association of Realtors, so this is nothing surprising.

During 2016, international sales came to a total of $6.2 billion in South Florida. Venezuela was at the top of the list of foreign nationals buying property in South Florida, making up 15% of sales. The country’s current political and economic unrest has been the catalyst for many residents to move their assets offshore. Following Venezuela on the list of top international buyers were residents from Colombia, making up 10% of international sales, Canada at 6%, Mexico at 4%, France and Peru at 4% & Italy, Ecuador and China at 3%. Brazil and Russia were also included in the list of top buyers. When it comes to interest and web searches, we see a slight shift in which countries hold the top spot of international buying power. As of July 2017, according to The Real Deal Miami, Colombia came in as the #1 country with its residents searching for properties in Miami to invest in. This was followed by Canada, Argentina, Venezuela, Spain, Brazil, France, India and Italy, in that order.

With plenty of change and shifts going on with foreign currencies, economic climates, political environments and morphing regimes, Miami continues to be a promising place for foreign nationals to live and work in. It is no longer a place just to liquidate capital in; the vibrant lifestyle Miami offers and the rapidly developing metropolitan quality of the city is attracting more and more foreign nationals to spend their time and money in. Developers in Miami are also catering to this shift in the international perspective of Miami as more than just a money vault.  

There was once a time when international residents simply bought up spaces in mixed use buildings and let their assets sit. Now, Miami’s growth paired with external factors have made it a more enticing place for these international buyers to come live in. “Lifestyle spaces” like the famous Brickell City Centre that includes a place to live, work and play in are being scooped up by foreign nationals at an dizzying rate. In Brickell City Centre’s Reach & Rise condos, 80% of the residential project is foreign owned. Also, the emergence of available foreign national loans and agencies that specialize in providing foreign national mortgages for residential and commercial properties in the U.S. has offered another alternative to buying properties with cash outright. Some Florida mortgage lenders specialize in providing financing to international buyers with special foreign national loans programs that walks them through the entire process from applying through closing, making it more accessible and comprehensive than ever for a foreign investor to buy property in Miami.

Residential spaces aren’t the only lure; emerging markets forming in pockets all around the city are driving more foreign buyers to invest in commercial spaces and projects, creating a self fulfilling effect in which the value they perceive in the city is being furthered by their investments.

With the steady influx of international property buyers, the city is looking more diverse than ever before. The pool of property ownership and investors is expanding, including a more diverse group of nationalities everyday, ultimately driving up the city’s value internationally. The future is bright for the magic city and it’s already diverse makeup is only getting more global and valuable  with every new property purchase and development.

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Why Investing in Miami Properties is a Huge Win for Foreign Buyers

Miami is one of those cities that has attracted everyone from all over the world for decades. There are more international buyers in Miami than in the rest of the United States. 72% of The National Association of Realtors members in Miami-Dade and Broward reported working with an international client back in 2014 – that’s much higher than the national average, which is 28%. Foreign buyers tend to spend more on properties in Miami than even domestic buyers.

As far as superficial reasons, It’s a no brainer; there’s sunny, warm weather virtually year round, offers proximity to some of the nicest beaches in the world, is a port city, features a young, energetic nightlife, offers world class shopping and many other luxuries. But apart from the obvious, there are some key reasons why it is a great place for foreign nationals looking for a place to buy properties, whether for commercial investments or for residential units.

Strategic Location

For Latin American and Caribbean buyers specifically, the proximity to Latin America is a huge draw. Going back and forth from Latin America to Miami is just a few hours of flight time for those who need to fly back whether to see family and friends or to handle business. The top countries investing in South Florida in all the surveys and research campaigns each year always include Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina among the top countries where the most foreign investors originate from. Over the past decade or so, growing instability in many of these foreign economies has also been another motivating factor behind the foreign investment boom. The U.S. is considered one of the most secure investments and Miami is as close to Latin America as you can get while still being in the U.S.

Miami is, of course, a thriving port city, with more than 40% of all national exports with a destination of Latin America originating from it. Miami International Airport is also at the top spot when it comes to international cargo.

Excellent Climate in which to Run a Business

With a diverse population comes a diverse industry landscape. There are thousands of multinational companies in Miami, offering a plethora of opportunities to Latin American and Caribbean investors. On a state level, Florida offers an excellent climate to do business in. The state levies no corporate income tax on limited partnerships, subchapter S-Corporations, NO individual income tax, no corporate franchise tax on capital stock, and no property tax on goods in transit for up to 180 days. The corporate tax for C corporations are just 5.5% of the net income, a competitive percentage compared to other states. The state also offers sales and use tax exemptions on manufacturing and machinery expenditures as well as many other things related to a number of industries.

Foreign Buyers have a Good Reputation with U.S. Banks

Florida mortgage lenders have more experience with handling applications from overseas buyers than those in other states. Just 2 years ago, 80% of the property sales in Florida were handled in cash; however, the willingness of the banks to provide financing has brought this down to just 50%, whereas the other 50% of the sales are being financed. The banks in the state are eager to provide financing for international buyers due to their reputation. The familiarity that banks have with international buyers has led them to consider a foreign buyer as a reliable buyer who is financially educated and has plenty of capital at their disposal. Thanks to this good reputation, securing a foreign national loan with banks is not as difficult as it seems and sometimes, is even simpler than it would be for a U.S. resident or citizen.

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Why Miami’s Real Estate Industry is only Getting Stronger After Irma


When Irma was on it’s way to making landfall in South Florida, many media outlets and realtors alike expected the worst. At the time the category 5 storm was projected to hit Miami dead on and even reached winds of 190 mph at one point, so the city and all its industries were bracing for complete devastation. Eventually, Irma dropped in strength and veered away from Miami by the time it made landfall, so the impact wasn’t quite as severe as once projected. Miami’s downtown area and Brickell were broadcast nationwide, showing shocking images of the streets mostly underwater due to storm surge. But just hours after the storm hit, a large portion of the storm surge had receded. Power was out for thousands, but many of the well-built condos and and structures either never lost power or only lost it momentarily.  The expectations were total loss on every front for all industries, especially the real estate industry.

A little over a month after the hurricane, industry players are starting to see that what didn’t completely destroy the city’s real estate actually served to make it stronger. Miami’s bouncing back quickly and there are several reasons why the storm didn’t scare away buyers the way it was expected to.

Strong Infrastructures mean Strong Investments

If Irma did anything positive (which wasn’t much, but there’s always a bright side)  it was to show how well Miami’s building codes passed the test. Since Hurricane Andrew wreaked havoc and decimated Miami in 1992, Miami-Dade’s building codes have since become some of the strictest in the nation. While there was some building damage throughout the city, structural engineers and other authorities that did initial damage surveys credited the tough building codes designed to take on serious hurricanes helped spare the city from much worse. Much of the aftermath was downed power lines, felled trees and power outages. Strong infrastructures that stood the test of a serious storm means the value of a South Florida home is high and worth the investment.

Swift Action from the Governor means Efficient Leadership

Governor Rick Scott, who’s been in office since 2011, has seen his fair share of storms and hurricanes – and his experience showed with the way he handled the hurricane protocols for the state of Florida. He took extra measures, ordering a statewide evacuation well ahead of landfall, giving residents plenty of time to prepare their homes, pack up and hit the road. He activated thousands of Florida National Guard Members to aid in preparations and planning as the storm approached; he issued several warnings and addressed the state with a press conference urging everyone to evacuate as soon as possible. As the mass exodus began, he suspended tolls across the state’s highways and roads to ensure everyone got out in a safe and timely manner. Florida’s leadership and excellent handling of the storm was another plus for any foreigners considering buying a home or commercial property in Miami and searching for a foreign national mortgage.

How Quickly Miami Got Back to Business

While news stations televised the storm surge flowing through the streets in downtown and Brickell. What wasn’t necessarily shown was how quickly that water receded, just hours after the storm passed. Power was out for thousands following the storm, as expected, but power was back to the vast majority of the city within weeks compared to the months it took to get the power back after hurricanes Andrew and Wilma.

As far as the real estate industry, September 2017 sales did slow, as was expected with all the business closures including all those involved in closing property sales. However, during this time, the median price for a single-family home went up 7.6 percent from the previous year’s prices and have been going up steadily for 70 consecutive months, according to the Miami Association of Realtors. There were several outstanding sales right after Irma including a $9 million dollar sale on a property in the Venetian islands, two more for $7.55 million and $7.5 million in Coconut Grove and lastly, another in Coral Gables for $5 million. Many luxury property realtors have gone on record saying they haven’t seen much reluctance from buyers to invest in coastal properties despite Irma’s landfall. Sellers have adjusted asking prices in the wake of the storm to help stimulate sales and it seems these adjustments have helped.

The consensus seems to be that even after Irma, international buyers eyeing Miami as a place to invest in properties have not been deterred and are still searching for foreign national loans to finance their purchases. Storms are a fact of life in Miami, but as a city that only continues to develop and grow, it has served to make it that much stronger and efficient. The New Miami and it’s value is only going to continue to grow.

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New Mobile App Changes How Foreign Nationals Apply For Mortgage Financing

Miami based mortgage lenders, The Q Kapital Group, launch mobile app to expedite mortgage applications for international buyers

Miami, FL (May 24, 2017) – Miami based commercial and residential mortgage lender, The Q Kapital Group Corp., has launched a mobile app to better serve their international clientele. The mortgage lending company specializes in mortgages for foreign national buyers interested in purchasing commercial or residential properties in Miami, Florida and New York; the app facilitates the mortgage process for both domestic and international buyers of real estate in the USA.

The Q Kapital’s app, searchable as “Q Kapital” and categorized under finance, makes applying for a mortgage easier for potential buyers on the go. Featuring a user-friendly interface and intuitive functionality, the Q Kapital mobile app allows users to initiate the mortgage application process, get an initial quote, and submit required documentation.

“Our objective is to make the mortgage process as simple and smooth as possible for our applicants.” said President and founder Mauricio Ordoñez. “We created this app to make mortgage acquisition for foreign national buyers easier, wherever they are in the world. The app has an intuitive interface making it simple to use, and it’s also secure. This expedites the entire process tremendously.”

Foreign national buyers from Latin America, Europe, Canada, the Caribbean, and even Asia and Africa are often under the impression that they can only acquire US properties with cash. However, there is an abundance of mortgage credit available to them through direct lenders such as Q Kapital. The launch of the mobile app gives potential foreign buyers a chance at finding financing for commercial and residential properties in Miami, all of Florida, and New York, with a special focus on luxury residences and commercial property, or income-producing assets like multi-family homes and hotels.

Co-founder Gaston Schneider added, “We believe that the mortgage process should be simple, safe, and easy. Nowadays with everyone accessible via mobile, people can use our app to apply wherever they are in the world. By using our new app, anyone can submit a loan application in seconds. It’s a fantastic tool that we are proud to say is also free.”

Download the app:


Google Play:

About The Q Kapital Group

Based in Miami and celebrating their 10 year anniversary, Q Kapital is a direct mortgage lender with a focus on foreign national mortgages. Q Kapital provides loans to clients buying commercial or residential properties in Florida and New York. With co-founders Mauricio Ordonez and Gaston Schneider at the helm, immigrants from Colombia and Argentina, respectively, the company intimately understands the needs of foreign nationals and respects the challenges of buying property in the US. Q Kapital’s team explains the requirements of the US banks, and facilitates the mortgage process for international buyers.  Q Kapital also helps US Citizens and/or residents with buying or investing in residential or commercial properties in Florida and New York.

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Mortgage Lender The Q Kapital Acquires

Mortgage Lender The Q Kapital Acquires

Miami, Florida mortgage lender acquires online mortgage network 

Miami, FL (March 7, 2017) – Miami-based commercial and residential mortgage lender specializing in financing for foreign nationals, The Q Kapital Group Corp., just acquired the online mortgage content network, The website features a variety of digital content that serve as an educational resource for those in the mortgage and real estate industry.

The content network serves as a helpful resource for international buyers interested in commercial and residential properties in the United States. The Q Kapital specializes in lending to foreign nationals, who are often uninformed of the funds available to them. As they seek to better serve their international clientele, this new addition provides a valuable resource for potential property buyers.

The website features a wealth of information that aids in the process of purchasing mortgages for residential or commercial properties in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, and the rest of South Florida. is an information hub for potential property buyers that offers essential tools and facts about the type of mortgages available, common mistakes to avoid, a directory of the paperwork needed when purchasing properties, and a section for potential buyers to check their current credit scores.

“As more foreigners and international investors look to buy property in Miami and Florida, our goal is to simplify the mortgage process for them. With this acquisition, we now have a wealth of information to empower them as they make financing decisions towards their new residence, vacation home, or business property. Wherever they are, from Canada to Europe to Latin America, there are mortgages available to foreigners buying in Miami and all of Florida,” said Mauricio Ordoñez, CEO and founder of the Q Kapital Group.

About The Q Kapital Group

Based in Miami, The Q Kapital Group is a direct mortgage lender with a focus on mortgage for foreign nationals financing. The Q Kapital provides financing opportunities and mortgage for international buyers looking into Florida commercial and residential mortgages . The experienced professionals at the company understand the needs of international clients and respect different cultural situations. The professional staff will explain the requirements of the US banks, further facilitating the process for the international buyers, The company is also an expert in loans to US nationals looking to purchase residential or commercial properties, as well as first time home buyers.


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The QKapital Group Closes $6.2 Million Loan on Porsche Design Tower Condo Sold to Foreign Buyer

The QKapital Group Closes $6.2 Million Loan on Porsche Design Tower Condo Sold to Foreign Buyer

Financial services and mortgage lender group finances purchase of another unit in the Porsche Design Tower

Miami, FL (December 22, 2016) – Miami based commercial and residential mortgage lender, The Q Kapital Group Corp., just financed an international buyer earlier this week for $6.2 million on a $10 million condo in the Porsche Design Tower. With less than 10 units left as of December 15, this new purchase brings the Porsche Tower one step closer to completely selling out.

The condo, unit #4001, is a 9,500 ft. duplex, secured by an international buyer and financed for over 60% of its selling price through The QKapital Group. As a preferred lender for the Porsche Design Tower, The QKapital was able to provide the multi-million dollar loan within a week’s time, allowing the buyer to quickly purchase the unit before the highly anticipated project sold out.

In addition to this recent deal, The QKapital Group has already financed over $20 million in luxury residential loans for international buyers and future residents of the Gil Dezer’s Porsche Design Tower. The oceanfront skyscraper in Sunny Isles has consistently made headlines recently, highlighting the rapid sales to foreign buyers from all over the globe.

“We are excited to have closed this deal and to be part of this prestigious new project in Miami,” said Vice President co-founder, Gaston Schneider. “Dezer did an amazing job on this tower; thanks to our relationship and preferred lender status with the Porsche Design Tower, we have been able to fast track our clients’ financing processes so that they, too, can be a part of this monumental new residential space before it sells out.”

About The Q Kapital Group

Based in Miami, The Q Kapital Group is a direct mortgage lender with a focus on mortgage for foreign nationals financing. The Q Kapital provides financing opportunities and mortgage for international buyers looking into Florida commercial and residential mortgages . The experienced professionals at the company understand the needs of international clients and respect different cultural situations. The professional staff will explain the requirements of the US banks, further facilitating the process for the international buyers, The company is also an expert in loans to US nationals looking to purchase residential or commercial properties, as well as first time home buyers.

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Let us help you invest in your future projects. The Q Kapital Group in Miami can show you how.

The Q Kapital Group is the No. 1 lender for foreign national buyers. We can help you with residential and commercial property around the globe.

The Q Kapital Group is the Best Mortgage Company for US Citizens, US Residents, and Foreign National Buyers of Residential & Commercial Real Estate.

The Q Kapital Group is ready to help Realtors and your International real estate buyers and investors close on Miami condos. We can finance or refinance foreign nationals buying Miami real estate up to 65% of the purchase price at this property or any other home, condominium, or commercial property.

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Commercial properties are our specialty.The Q Kapital Group is here to help you with financing.

Get help from us for all your commercial property needs. The Q Kapital Group is here for you.

The Q Kapital Group is the Best Mortgage Company for US Citizens, US Residents, and Foreign National Buyers of Residential & Commercial Real Estate.

The Q Kapital Group is ready to help Realtors and your International real estate buyers and investors close on Miami condos. We can finance or refinance foreign nationals buying Miami real estate up to 65% of the purchase price at this property or any other home, condominium, or commercial property.

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Move into the state of the art Porsche Design Tower in Miami. The Q Kapital Group will be your finance solution.

The Q Kapital Group is the preferred lender for the Porsche Design Tower Miami, move into a state  of the art building.

The Q Kapital Group is the Best Mortgage Company for US Citizens, US Residents, and Foreign National Buyers of Residential & Commercial Real Estate.

The Q Kapital Group is ready to help Realtors and your International real estate buyers and investors close on Miami condos. We can finance or refinance foreign nationals buying Miami real estate up to 65% of the purchase price at this property or any other home, condominium, or commercial property.

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All Colombians have a right to get mortgage loans in USA. The Q Kapital Group will show you how.

We will be in Bogota to give information about doing business in the USA. We will cover topics like Corporate Structures to protect your investments and real estate law and immigrations visa in the USA.

The Q Kapital Group is the Best Mortgage Company for US Citizens, US Residents, and Foreign National Buyers of Residential & Commercial Real Estate.

The Q Kapital Group is ready to help Realtors and your International real estate buyers and investors close on Miami condos. We can finance or refinance foreign nationals buying Miami real estate up to 65% of the purchase price at this property or any other home, condominium, or commercial property.

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The Q Kapital Group is the top lender for foreign national buyers for residential and commercial properties globally. Though we service clients in all countries below find a list of specific countries we focus on:

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Argentinians in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Argentinos en Miami, Florida 

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Chileans in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Chilenos en Miami, Florida 

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Colombians in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Colombianos en Miami, Florida

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Ecuadorians in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Ecuatorianos en Miami, Florida 

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Mexicans in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Mexicanos en Miami, Florida 

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Peruvians in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Peruanos en Miami, Florida

Residential and Commercial Mortgages for Venezuelans in Miami, Florida 

Hipotecas Residenciales y Comerciales para Venezolanos en Miami, Florida

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