The trend has already hit Sydney, Vancouver and the U.S. Now it's happening in Japan: busloads of real estate buyers from China are coming in, buying up homes and pushing prices higher.
Realty agencies in Beijing are organizing twice-monthly tours to Tokyo and Osaka, where 40 Chinese at a time come for three-day property-shopping trips, seeking safe places to invest their cash abroad. They're being prompted by the yen's decline to 22-year lows and excitement over the 2020 Tokyo Olympics driving up prices, as they did in Beijing in 2008. Property tours will soon start from Shanghai too.
Partly as a result of nascent Chinese buying, Tokyo apartment prices have reached their highest levels since the early 1990s, up 11 percent over two years, according to the Real Estate Economic Institute Co.