Political and economic crises in Brazil create buyers market

Global Business

Brazil is mired in economic and political turmoil that is taking a toll on the real estate market.

CGTN’s Lucrecia Franco reports on the buyer’s market.

One upscale home in Rio de Janeiro, just 23 kilometers from the city’s downtown, has been on the market for more than two years.

With a pool overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, it’s fully furnished. The four bedroom house belongs to a Frenchman who has reduced the price from the equivalent of $2 million to about $1.3 million.

“The market is in crisis, everything stopped, stagnated, so we are offering it for some 30 percent less than the market price and, for what I have seen, it is unbeatable,” Property Manager Tatiana Ortenzi said.

The house is listed by a luxury real estate agency, whose founder is trying to make the most out of a distressed market – calling on investors to recognize the opportunities a buyers market presents.

“So when you take in consideration the fact that the price drop, the exchange rate and also next year probably the tax on transaction will get higher I think it is a very good time to buy now in Rio,” Real Estate Agent Frederic Cockenpot said.

But it’s not just luxury home prices that are falling, according to Rio de Janeiro’s Realtors association, there are more than 40,000 empty properties in the city, awaiting buyers.

That’s certainly evident in Rio’s famous Copacabana neighborhood, where dozens of “for sale” and “rent” signs can be seen up and down most streets.

“After 2015 the prices went down in Brazil more or less 10 percent, and in Rio between 15 and 20 percent,” said Leonardo Schneider, the vice president of Secovi, Rio’s biggest realtors association. “Why Rio is suffering more Because in Rio de Janeiro we had a huge expectation because of the Olympic Games, the summer Olympics.”

What real estate agents did not predict was Brazil’s deepest and longest recession on record. Now, they’re hoping bargain-hunters will keep the industry afloat as they cash in on once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to own dream homes in Rio.