RECENT ARTICLES:

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Gathering investors to get in at the beginning of the boom

1:32 PM John Boyle
Dubliner Denis Fahy, a 12-year veteran of Buenos Aires, is putting together a fund of Irish investors and local banks to buy high-end residential properties in the city.

Using as a base the Coldwell Banker international price index, widely used for international price comparisons by companies relocating executives, he calculates that high-end residential properties of around 200sq m (2,152sq ft) in size cost on average US$1,907 a square metre in Buenos Aires compared to US$6,965 in Dublin.

The aim will be to let the fund's properties to relocating executives on two to three-year leases with an average rental yield of 8.5 per cent a year before taking advantage of the rise in values by selling out within five years.

For Fahy the attractions for Irish investors are obvious: "It is like investing in Ireland 10 or 12 years ago. We are just at the beginning of the property and credit cycle."

After more than a decade's experience developing property here, Jack Murphy knows the ropes in Argentina and says that despite its reputation for bureaucracy and corruption, it is a country where you can do business.

"Argentina is full of pitfalls. The problem here is that everyone wants to shortcut and, once you start taking shortcuts, you've had it because you'll say to a guy 'fix this for me' and you pay him some money and then it never ends.

"We go the straight way and it takes you longer but in some respects it doesn't take you that much longer. Just that here everything has to be instant. Nobody plans for next week and, if they want it, they want it now. My attitude with planning is that it is a painful process but listening to people I know involved in construction in Ireland it is the same there."

Another boon to the property market is the sudden influx of massive numbers of tourists. When its peso was pegged at one-to-one with the dollar in the 1990s, Argentina was South America's most expensive country. But following devaluation it has become very cheap, sparking a tourism boom.

Over four million tourists are expected to visit the country this year with projected growth in the sector of 10 per cent a year.

There is a massive shortage of hotels in the country and 200 are under construction or ready to break ground.

To fill the gap there is a huge short-to-medium term apartment rental market in Buenos Aires. Many of the smaller foreign investors who have bought into the local property market in recent years are involved in this sector, among them John Boyle of Mayo.

He and his Argentine wife Clara sold their house in Ireland in 2004 and bought a four-bedroom detached house in the swank northern suburb of Martinez for US$82,000 as well as two apartments in the city which they rent through their website www.myspaceba.com, along with 140 properties for other investors, 30 of whom are foreign.

Boyle has recently moved into sales with his sites www.argentinapropertysales.com and www.buytorentargentina.com.ar helping foreigners buy into the market and then managing their properties for them.

A typical €50,000 investment will yield around 9 per cent per annum based on 10 months occupancy, after management fees.

"The strength of the euro means property is cheaper now for Irish investors as the local market is in dollars, but any future appreciation of the dollar will benefit the investor," says Boyle.

"Prices are dirt cheap and the tourist boom is forecast to double visitors within the decade. The risks are offset by the investment opportunity."

No comments:

Post a Comment

  • MY SPACE BA: Clara and John Boyle
  • Phone: (54-11) 4793-3496
  • Cel: (54-9-11) 3261-8904
  • E-mail: info@myspaceba.com
MYSPACEBA 2009, All Rights Reserved