Writing for The New York Times, Claire Wilson reports:
"Prices in New York are a draw, especially when compared with those in other cities where wealthy Asians might otherwise have invested. Luxury properties here are about $1,500 per square foot, while a comparable London flat is more than twice that, $3,600 per square foot. [...] Comparable real estate in Hong Kong costs $2,000 per square foot; in Monaco, $4,300. Current exchange rates also work in favor of Chinese buyers. China's rapid development means there is more money than ever to invest in the United States. And newly relaxed banking regulations in mainland China make it easier for investors to move money out of the country."
"Cash is the coin of the realm. Brokers estimate that 50 percent to 75 percent of transactions by Chinese in New York do not involve mortgages. Culturally, Asians are loan-averse, thinking that coming to the table with less than the asking price will reflect negatively on them."
"The majority of the sales fall at the lower end of the luxury spectrum, but in one case a parent spent $20 million on an apartment for a daughter at college in Manhattan."