With the housing bubble busted in the states, there are a couple of interesting things happening. Bank foreclosures have dumped countless properties onto the market, emptying out neighborhoods and forcing down house prices.
One result is that Canadians are buying up homes and condos in the USA, especially in Florida and Arizona at a rapid rate. Canadians are now the largest foreigner buyers of American properties. About 25% of all property sold to foreigners in the states is to Canadians.
Another side effect involves all those empty houses. With absentee landlords (banks) and so many houses sitting empty, incidences of property squatting has risen and where you’d least expect it – high-end homes. Upscale squatters have been found in many cities including Malibu, St. Louis and Seattle. Last month, Randy Quaid (Chevy Chase’s cousin Eddie) and his wife were found squatting in a guesthouse behind a mansion they used to own. It’s a weird story and it gets weirder as they are now living in a Vancouver area detention centre.