Foreign investors are making housing more expensive. Should we tax them for it?

A luxury home in VancouverBy Emily Badger | The Washington Post

James Surowiecki has a column in the New Yorker that makes a number of interesting points about our increasingly international real estate market — a trend powered by the super wealthy with real consequences for the rest of us.

For starters, this pattern no longer simply covers rich oligarchs buying second (or third or fourth) homes in Paris or Manhattan. Increasingly, the wealthy in Latin America are buying homes in Miami. Canadians are buying homes in, of all places, Arizona. Seemingly everyone but Londoners is buying a home in London — and then leaving it empty. And the Chinese are flocking to Vancouver (or, at least, their money is). As a surprising result, Surowiecki writes, Canadian officials now believe that “Vancouver’s real-estate market is tightly connected to what happens in the Chinese economy.”

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