I've heard stories of savvy English people hopping across the pond for a shopping holiday in New York City thanks to the strong pound; but believe it or not, the Chinese are taking shopping trips with the mission of buying million-dollar homes.
These aren't rogue bargain hunters. Rather they're part of organized tours targeted at Chinese investors looking to take advantage of deflated American real estate prices.
The AP reports that growing incomes and isolation from the global crisis have created a rising Chinese upper class, looking for smart investments internationally. Companies, eager to steer the investors toward their dream homes, are organizing tours. From Feb. 24 to March 6, a group from China will visit foreclosed properties in New York, California, Boston, and Las Vegas. Such trips go for $2,000, plus the cost of airfare.
The buyers plan to rent out their new homes, or use them on business trips. One dad hopes his son can live there if he goes to university in the US. Since there are fewer investment options at home, the American dream is becoming China's, too.