African interest in residential real estate in Europe and the United States increased by 25% in 2020

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Friday June 11, 2021 / 1:00 PM / Article sponsored by Marina Safronova / Image header credit: The Street

Despite the pandemic, the interest of Africans in real estate abroad did not decline in 2020. Conversely, it increased by a quarter, reports real estate brokerage abroad. Tranio after analyzing data based on around 1,000 requests from African customers over the past two years. The countries which were most interested in foreign ownership and which left the most applications are South Africa, Nigeria and Egypt. Greece has become the most popular place to buy residential property abroad during the pandemic.

Growing predilection for Greece and Germany

When it comes to the locations chosen, Tranio’s African clients have searched for properties in Greece, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United States and Canada, among other countries. Moderate prices are more likely to explain Africa’s predilection for Greek real estate compared to other European real estate markets, the growth potential and high rental yields offered by Greek real estate, as well as the Golden Visa program. Greek Golden Visa program allows foreigners to obtain a residence permit by purchasing real estate. Greece’s residency-by-investment program is the cheapest compared to similar European programs as it requires investors to purchase a property with a total value of at least 250,000 euros.


Germany is the second most popular place among African buyers. In 2020, the interest of Africans in the German real estate market almost doubled compared to 2019. Germany has one of the strongest economies in the EU and a developed real estate market. As PwC reports, German cities are now among the most stable real estate markets in Europe, with Berlin at the top of the PwC ranking of cities with the greatest investment potential.

The Italian government recently halved the requirements for a residence permit per investment. Although Italy only recognizes investments in an Italian start-up or local business, such a relaxation of the conditions for granting residence permits could stimulate further interest in Italian real estate.


Spanish real estate is attractive to those willing to invest more than 500,000 euros to obtain a European residency through its Golden Visa program. Canada and the United States have always been a dream destination for many nationalities wishing to immigrate.

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South Africa is a regional leader in terms of foreign real estate investment

In 2020, inquiries from South African residents accounted for a third of all African inquiries for overseas properties in Tranio, increasing by 10% from 2019. If we compare them to Google queries, we will see that residents South Africans most often sought permanent accommodation. residency in Australia, Canada and South Africa itself. The latter query can be attributed to people who are already living in South Africa for reasons of work, marriage or tourism and who want to know more about how to become a citizen of the country. The interest in Australia and Canada can be explained by their immigration programs which allow foreign nationals to legally naturalize in countries. Likewise, the most sought after countries for immigration are Canada, New Zealand and Australia.

Lately, the World Bank ad that African economies have survived the economic crisis induced by the coronavirus pandemic with more success than might be expected. Like Deloitte reports, the South African economy is expected to rebound in 2021 and 2022 after the disastrous impact of COVID-19. The sharp contraction in 2020, due to forced closures and the resulting lack of economic activity, translated into an expected high growth rate of 3.3% in 2021 due, in part, to base effects .

Canada is a top Nigerian and Egyptian immigration destination

The second most active investors come from Nigeria: they left a fifth of all foreign property applications in 2020 from Africa. The third most active buyers came from Egypt.

Google queries show that Nigerians are most interested in US real estate, apartments in Dubai, and homes for sale on Banana Island in Qatar, as well as in Canada and London. In addition, Nigerian residents most often seek permanent residence in Canada and Australia and ways to immigrate to Canada, the United Kingdom and New Zealand.

Egyptians are most interested in immigrating to Canada, as are other African residents. The most popular immigration destinations for Egyptians are Canada, Australia, Germany, New Zealand, and the United States. Likewise, Google users in Egypt searched the most for Canadian, Egyptian, and German citizenship, as well as permanent residence in Canada.

Ghana and Kenya round out the top 5. One notable detail is that 2021 is the peak year for both countries’ GDP, and although they are not in the top 5 of African countries where this figure is highest. high, this may indicate that countries economies are on the rise.

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