Chinese Millennials Are Clicking Up a Storm Buying Asian Property Online

Bloomberg: Chinese Millennials Are Clicking Up a Storm Buying Asian Property Online

Ice Chen, a 36-year-old bank manager in Beijing, hasn’t been to Bangkok lately, but she just bought two apartments there.

The millennial is among younger Chinese flocking to specialist online platforms to buy international real estate.

The biggest of the sites,, reported a 60 percent surge in transactions to 5 billion yuan ($740 million) in 2018 and predicts a doubling this year. Much of the money is flowing to destinations in Southeast Asia, where prices look cheap compared to Beijing or Shanghai.

1 Like

Convenience is the lure. Buyers can select a property within hours by making an initial payment of less than $1,500. As a one-stop-shop, Uoolu is also a conduit for purchasers to get mortgages from overseas banks, find tenants and collect rent. Among buyers, about half purchase without visiting the property, while about 22 percent buy sight unseen and all online, without phone calls or a face-to-face meeting with an agent.

Thailand was the most popular destination last year for Chinese buyers searching through, a site for international properties. Buyers from mainland China and Hong Kong bought about 15,000 new Bangkok apartments, half of all purchases by foreigners, the research provider estimates.

1 Like

For the likes of Chen, the bank manager, however, the click-to-buy approach has worked well enough for now. She’s happy with a 6 percent rental return on her Thai homes, which were purchased by selling a Beijing apartment that generated just a third of that.

In Bangkok, the “prices are much lower, the climate is good, it’s suitable for retirement life, and also easy to rent,” Chen said, browsing booths at a Beijing forum where developers from the U.S. to Indonesia were advertising projects.

Now, she’s plotting her next purchase – maybe in Cambodia.

1 Like