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Leading real estate marketplace compiles guide to investing in emerging countries

The world population is growing at a rapid pace, adding about 150,000 people each day. By 2050 there will be a world population of approximately nine billion people. The largest share of the fast-growing world population is coming from emerging markets in: Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.

At the same time, these regions are driving global economic growth. The International Monetary Fund has forecast that over the coming years, around 70 percent of world growth will come from developing countries. With this trend comes a range of opportunities for emerging market investors, as sectors such as construction and housing see rapid expansion.

As interest in these regions grows, leading property platform Bproperty lists five tips for real estate investors looking to enter these markets.

Familiarize yourself with local laws and restrictions

Before investing in emerging real estate markets, investors should gather accurate information about the laws and restrictions that are specific to the country. Foreign investors face restrictions on buying property in some emerging countries. In the Philippines foreigners are not permitted to own land. However, they can lease private land for a period of 50 years, and this lease can be renewed for a further 25 years. Additionally, the Condominium Act permits non-nationals to buy condominium units as long as total foreign ownership in the development does not exceed 40 percent.

Take a long-term view

Take the time to watch the real estate market and closely examine the long-term outlook before investing. Within regions that are subject to volatility, it is especially important not to rush into a final decision. Instead, try to take a long-term view of the market outlook. Property investments are always long-term decisions that must be well informed, but this is particularly true in emerging markets that are highly perceptible to change. The best way to be prepared is to use independent, verifiable sources that offer local and national information.

Find local partners

Finding a suitable lawyer, translator, or certified local real estate broker who can be your contact on the ground is necessary in order to navigate the local market. Choose people who are experts in their field and have the local knowledge you need to be successful in the market. This will save you time and money in the long run.

Build a diverse portfolio

There are constant price fluctuations in property markets around the world, but emerging markets can be particularly volatile. Therefore investors need to be flexible and able to quickly adapt to the changes. Investing in a diverse range of property in different regions and also different countries can help balance against these fluctuations in the market. Adaptability is the key to long-term success.

Be understanding of cultural differences

This applies to anyone looking to do business in a country other than their own. If you are planning to visit the country in which you are looking to invest, research local cultural practices and customs before your arrival. Something as small as how to introduce yourself in a business meeting can vary widely from country to country. In Myanmar, for example, where business etiquette is informed by the prevalence of Buddhism, traditions such as removing your shoes before entering a private home are still commonplace. Being aware of these differences from the beginning will help you to avoid any issues of miscommunication.

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