ORLANDO, Fla., June 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- International investors looking for property in Florida were lining up to hear from Florida's Realtors® participating in the SIMA 2013 Madrid International Real Estate Exhibition, held May 30-June 2, in Madrid, Spain.
The State of Florida was this year's special guest region at the real estate trade expo, demonstrating the strong ties between Spain and the Sunshine State. Florida Realtors® helped forge new connections with potential Spanish real estate investors during the event, according to 2013 Florida Realtors President Dean Asher, broker-owner with Don Asher & Associates Inc. in Orlando. More than 20,000 visitors attended the SIMA expo this year.
"The Spaniards are very interested in visiting Florida and also buying second homes in our state," Asher said. "They're happy to hear that both home sales and prices have been going up, meaning it's a good time to invest. Interested buyers were inquiring about locales throughout Florida ranging from the Panhandle, Miami, Orlando, Sarasota, Tampa and also rural areas."
The Florida Pavilion at SIMA promoted the state to international attendees as a great real estate investment and fun tourist destination. The pavilion was supported by Visit Florida, the state's official tourism marketing corporation; Florida Realtors, the largest professional trade association in Florida; and a number of local real estate organizations -- the Miami Association of Realtors, Sarasota Association of Realtors and Orlando Regional Realtor Association. The Florida delegation included Realtors from Miami, Sarasota, Orlando and Ocala, along with representatives from Florida Realtors.
Visit Florida President and CEO Will Seccombe noted, "Through our partnership with Florida Realtors, Visit Florida's strong presence at SIMA is certain to help us build on two consecutive years of record international visitation as we strive to make Florida the No. 1 travel destination in the world."
Other expo participants said:
"The Miami Association of Realtors has promoted the Miami market to buyers and investors at SIMA for nine consecutive years because it continues to be a very effective venue for us. This year, we are honored to have participated with Florida Realtors, Visit Florida and other associations in the Florida Pavilion to commemorate Viva Florida 500. As a top market for Spanish consumers, our exhibit attracted many buyers, investors and professionals serious about Miami and wanting to take advantage of our vibrant real estate market and exciting lifestyle."
— Teresa King Kinney, CEO, Miami Association of Realtors®
"As the largest real estate exhibition in Europe, SIMA was the perfect venue for the Orlando Regional Realtor Association (ORRA) to connect with prospective homebuyers who are looking to invest in overseas property. The show provided us with a great opportunity to share the many benefits of purchasing a home in the Orlando area and generate more homebuyers for our local Realtors."
— Steve Merchant, chairman, Orlando Regional Realtor® Association
"SIMA presented an opportunity for the Sarasota Association of Realtors to promote Sarasota as a destination to Spanish and international investors from all over the world. It further reinforces our connection to Spain, as the National Association of Realtors' (NAR) Ambassador Association to Spanish real estate professionals. The expo's focus on Florida allowed us to showcase the beautiful beaches and amazing lifestyle that Sarasota offers, during a time that international buyers are flocking to Florida."
— Roger Piro, president, Sarasota Association of Realtors®
Florida Realtors®, formerly known as the Florida Association of Realtors®, serves as the voice for real estate in Florida. It provides programs, services, continuing education, research and legislative representation to its 118,000 members in 63 boards/associations. Florida Realtors® Media Center website is available at http://media.floridarealtors.org.
SOURCE Florida Realtors