Upswing predicted for inbound overseas investment
March 2024

Upswing predicted for inbound overseas investment

New Zealand rural property remains an attractive proposition for overseas investors, says a new addition to the PGG Wrightson Real Estate team.

Gary Brooks recently started as branch manager, Hastings for PGG Wrightson Real Estate. He has an illustrious 27 year career marketing real estate, notching up more than $500 million dollars’ worth of rural property sales. He has sole New Zealand partnerships with Sports Afield, the world’s best read outdoor recreation magazine, and with the North American Land Brokers Association, providing Gary’s clients access to high level international investors.

“Although in recent years overseas investment regulations have made it more challenging to take advantage, the enquiry from American investors keeps coming. They are motivated to diversify the geographic spread of their assets. They recognise the strong fundamentals that underpin New Zealand agriculture: fertile soil, temperate climate, advanced farming techniques, stable political environment, and a favourable exchange rate. New Zealand’s natural capital, remoteness from the rest of the world, and aesthetics are also strong drawcards for many."

From the perspective of a well-resourced investor from elsewhere, factors that New Zealand farmers may take for granted are regarded in a different light, reckons Gary Brooks.

“New Zealand properties that attract attention from overseas high net worth individuals typically fall into one of two categories: those with outdoor recreational characteristics such as access to hunting or fishing, or those with production potential that complements the type of operation the investor is already involved with.

“Over the long term, New Zealand’s economy has consistently performed well, based on a robust agricultural sector, a thriving tourism industry, and a strong focus on innovation and technological advancements. These characteristics create a favourable economic climate for investment, reducing risk and increasing returns.

“New Zealand’s long term underlying commitment to environmental conservation and sustainability aligns with the values of many investors, adding further to the overall investment appeal of our rural property,” he says.

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While New Zealand’s regulatory regime is regarded by some as an impediment to overseas investment, Gary Brooks sees another side of the coin.

Through his career Gary Brooks has conducted several discreet sales of high value waterfront properties, and is currently acting as a buyer’s agent for a number of North American high net worth individuals, including some with New Zealand residency, who he is assisting to secure local properties.

Initiated through a sideline guiding New Zealand guests on hunting trips around 12 years ago, another of Gary’s accomplishments is his affiliation with Sports Afield, the world’s oldest outdoor recreation publication, founded in 1887 and numbering 70,000 subscribers. In addition to the publication, Sports Afield is active in several other media and related enterprises, including Sports Afield Trophy Properties, a broad-based network of specialised real estate professionals who market ranch, agricultural, woodland, forest, equestrian, waterfront, hunting, fishing, and recreational outdoor properties. For the past five years Sports Afield has been named by a renowned marketing industry publication among the world’s top 150 licensed brands, alongside the likes of Disney, Hasbro, and Coca-Cola. Sports Afield estimates approximately 50 per cent of its readers are multi-millionaires, who typically spend more than $US200,000 each per annum on hunting trips.

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“Outdoor recreation opens numerous international doors, with hunting and fishing aficionados from across the world coming here. Those from the likes of Australia and Singapore are able to own New Zealand assets without OIO approval, many expat kiwis who have done well for themselves are motivated to purchase desirable rural property, and a surprising number of high net worth Americans have New Zealand citizenship or residency, so are also permitted to buy property without restriction.

“Being easily able to profile appropriate classes of property to extensive national and off-shore databases, giving vendors the option to promote their properties to the American market, ensures they reach as many qualified buyers as possible, which can make a big difference to a marketing campaign,” he says.

Gary Brooks has particular experience and success selling forestry blocks, large scale sheep and cattle properties and premium lifestyle blocks, the property categories most likely to attract the attention of overseas investors.

The North American Land Brokers Association has 180 real estate offices across North America and Alaska.

Explore similar articles in our most recent edition of the Property Express.

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