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Asian investors welcomed to Australia with new tech deal

By Orana Durney-Benson
13 February 2024 | 10 minute read
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New Zealand’s leading property app for Chinese expats has linked up with Australian real estate listings.

Australian real estate search platform Homely.com.au has joined forces with HouGarden, a New Zealand-based app that touts itself as the “number one portal for Chinese property seekers based out of NZ”.

The partnership announcement coincides with the release of new data from the Australian Treasury, which showed Chinese buyers accounted for half of foreign residential property investment in Australia across the first quarter of the financial year.

According to the recent data, Chinese buyers contributed $700 million in residential real estate investments in the September 2023 quarter. China was followed by Hong Kong, Vietnam, India and Taiwan, each of whom contributed $100 million in value during that same period.

HouGarden was founded in Auckland over 10 years ago by tech expert Sam Yin, who aimed to create a real estate portal for both the local and international Chinese community in New Zealand.

HouGarden’s collaboration with Homely has been described by Homely CEO Adam Spencer as a “pivotal” moment in Australian real estate.

“The partnership will focus on the integration of shared knowledge, the enhancement of interactive property displays, and the overall improvement of the digital experience to better cater to Asian markets,” said Mr Spencer.

He added that Homely is “already the cost-effective alternative in the Australian market” and that the new partnership will enable its listing agents and vendors “to get maximum exposure to a whole new market when they list on Homely”.

HouGarden’s social media presence is expected to be a particular boon for both companies, with HouGarden stating that it has a “strong presence on popular Chinese social media like WeChat”.

The collaboration comes in the wake of increasing interest in Australian real estate by Chinese investors and families in the post-pandemic years.

For China-based investors or recent migrants looking to enter the Aussie property market for the first time, the partnership will also offer “a more streamlined buying experience and a more straightforward pathway to Australian real estate with two trusted brands,” according to HouGarden and Homely.

Asian investors welcomed to Australia with new tech deal
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