By Coy Carter, REALTOR® with Wagner Realty; and Janet Sowers, GBC Staff Liaison

SARASOTA, Fla. (January 14, 2019) – Do you want to take your business to the next level? Would you like direction from experts in the field on how to expand your customer base and conduct international transactions? Joining the Global Business Council at RASM should be the priority when you craft your 2019 business plan.

The probability of you being involved in a real estate transaction involving a foreign party is quite high. Forty-one percent of Realtors® in Florida reported working at least one transaction with an international customer. According to the 2018 Profile of Residential Real Estate Activity in Florida report, our area was tied for fourth as the destination of choice for foreign buyers. Canadian buyers make up 41 percent of our market, Europeans at 32 percent, Latin Americans/Caribbean 10 percent, and Asians with 6 percent.

When you think global, don’t forget to include your American customer. Did you know that one out of 10 in your contact list is considering investing in property outside of the U.S.? Whether it’s a vacation home, an investment property, or for retirement purposes, the GBC offers you the chance to meet foreign Realtors® so you can confidently refer your customer to knowledgeable agents overseas and possibly get a referral fee for doing so. You also need to be aware FIRPTA can affect your American buyer when a foreign seller is involved.

GBC members can take advantage of education, networking, and referral opportunities that keep them connected and informed. We strive to offer members quality and timely information presented by experts in their field. Topics covered annually are Jumpstart Your International Business, Immigration, FIRPTA, and the CIPS Designation courses. The annual Global Conference offers an abundance of information from local, national, and international real estate industry professionals. Each of our educational programs is followed by a networking session. This gives you the opportunity to make new connections and strengthen ties with like-minded colleagues.

“Being a member of the GBC gives agents a competitive advantage in the market. Not only will they gain a better knowledge of how to most effectively assist and protect their buyers, but they will learn the nuances of working with a foreign seller and how this can impact the transaction. Knowledge is power and networking builds continued success,” Carla Rayman Kidd, Coldwell Banker.

The GBC is comprised of Realtors®, just like you, who understand we live in a global economy, and working with customers from all over the world is an essential part of business in Florida. RASM Business Partners, who offer products and services geared towards the international community are also active in the GBC.

Whether you are a property manager, residential sales specialist, or a commercial agent, you will find a program offered by our GBC that will benefit you.

Join the Global Business Council for the nominal annual fee of $25, and receive free and discounted admission to the GBC events held throughout the year. For more information, email Janet Sowers.