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China inquiries on US property jump after visa rules eased

[HONG KONG] Chinese inquiries about real estate investment in the United States surged 35 per cent this week after the two countries agreed to extend the terms of short-term visas, China's top international property portal said on Friday.

The White House announced this week that both countries have extended the terms of multiple entry short-term tourist and business visas to 10 years from one year. Student visas were extended to five years from one year.

The relaxation on student visas could have a bigger impact than the other two, said, an online property marketplace that refers potential Chinese buyers to overseas agents. It said there were twice the number of inquiries about student visas compared to tourist and business visas.

Simon Henry, co-chief executive officer of, said many parents of Chinese students buy property in the United States for their children to live in. "Eighty-five per cent of wealthy Chinese want to educate their children overseas," he added.

"Chinese individuals who are considering investing in the US are very encouraged by the new visa arrangements, as it removes one of their biggest headaches." The United States is the top destination for inquiries about home purchases by Chinese buyers, according to's data, followed by Australia, Canada and Britain.