Foreigners purchase properties in the U.S. for residential, investment, and vacation purposes, according to NAR’s 2015 Profile of Home Buying Activity of International Clients. About 46 percent of reported international transactions were intended for primary residences. About 20 percent purchase for renting out the property, and about 15 percent purchase for vacation purposes. About 11 percent purchase for both vacation and residential rental purpose. Buyers from Canada and the United Kingdom tend to purchase properties for vacation and residential rental, while buyers from China, India, and Mexico are more likely to buy properties to use as a primary residence.
About 61 percent of purchases by foreign buyers were for single-family detached homes. About 19 percent purchased condominiums and 11 percent purchased townhouses.