Americans Who Can’t Afford Homes Are Moving To Europe Instead

Financial Advisor. Alice Kantor. 20 July 2022

More Americans are relocating to Europe, driven across the Atlantic by the rising cost of living, inflated house prices, a surging dollar and political rancor at home.

Italy, Portugal, Spain, Greece and France are among the most popular destinations. Sotheby’s International Realty said requests from Americans looking to move to Greece rose 40% in the April-to-June period compared to a year earlier. In France and Italy, U.S. demand is the highest it’s been in at least three years, according to Knight Frank real estate specialist Jack Harris. And Americans made up 12% of Sotheby’s Italian revenue in the first quarter, compared to just 5% in the same period a year ago.

Retirees and the wealthy have traditionally been the prime American buyers of real estate in Europe. But relatively cheap housing—particularly in smaller cities and towns—and the rise of remote work have made the continent alluring to a wider range of people, including those who are younger and find themselves priced out of the housing market at home. Growing crime rates in some U.S. cities and political divisions have also led Americans to look across the pond for a quieter lifestyle, buoyed by a euro that just dropped to parity with the U.S. dollar for the first time in more than 20 years.

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