Guam Real Estate, Guam Property, Real Estate in Guam, Guam Economy and Guam Business Climate
Welcome to America in Asia
The following is a brief description of Guam U.S.A., its location, economy and business climate as it affects the local real estate market.
Please be sure to click on any one of the links below that further describe our people, history, culture and paradise, along with the local Realtor® association, online property search tools, our homes, condominiums and townhomes, plus real estate and community information specific to popular villages and areas of interest and expertise.
Situated in the Western Pacific, within close proximity to the Asia Pacific Rim countries including Japan, South Korea, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and the Philippines, Guam truly is America in Asia.
Guam is an unincorporated territory of the United States and closest U.S. soil to the Asia Pacific region. It is the southernmost island of the Marianas Island Chain and largest island in Micronesia, with an area about 210 square miles in size. Guam is located east of Manila, Philippines and south of Tokyo, Japan, both a short 3.5-hour flight away. Its average year round temperature ranges in the mid to high 80’s most days and mid to high 70’s during the evenings. Its population in 2018 is estimated to be around 165,718.
While its stable U.S. political status, government, economy, and currency in U.S. Dollars certainly make the island a distinct attraction in the Asia Pacific region, it’s lush tropical landscapes, warm breezes, powdery white sand beaches, clear waters and sunny blue skies eventually lure people and companies from all over the region and U.S. Mainland to invest in Guam real estate and make Guam home.
When you purchase real estate on Guam, you take and hold title in the same manner, with the same guarantees and constitutional protections as you would have anywhere in the United States mainland. Real estate holdings allow for both fee simple and leasehold ownership and the deed or lease is recorded and filed at the Office of the Registrar, Department of Land Management, Government of Guam. In addition, real property taxes are relatively low when compared to the U.S. mainland. According to the Department of Revenue & Taxation, Guam real property taxes are computed using 70% of the property’s appraised value. The amount due is one-half (1/2%) percent of that for buildings, or one-eighth (1/8%) percent of that for land.
Japan is the predominant visitor market and source of foreign investment in the hotel, tourism and visitor transportation industries over the last four decades; however tourists and foreign investment from South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia and Investors from Taiwan, the Philippines, the U.S. mainland are playing increasingly larger roles.
With well over 1.5 million visitors every year and growing, tourism has been Guam’s staple industry, contributing about 60% of Guam’s total revenues and generating about $1.2 billion annually. Relying almost exclusively on visitors from Japan, local tourism officials continue to explore ways to expand arrivals and diversify markets. One such effort comes through the development of the cruise ship market. The cruise ship industry certainly has great potential for Guam with several notable ships making dock visits, including Japanese cruise ships the Nippon Maru and MS Asuka II, and most notably, the Queen Mary 2, the largest luxury cruise line to enter Apra Harbor. Visitors from South Korea most notably, and China, have increased substantially as well as smaller markets such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Russia and the Philippines. Pursuing smaller markets will help to grow and diversify the tourism industry over time.
Guam also plays a key role for the U.S. military due to its geographic location. Military spending usually contributes about 30% of Guam’s total revenues, however beginning in 2020, with the relocation of almost 5,000 Marines and more than 1,000 of their family members from Okinawa, Japan, which is reported in local media to cost about $8.6 billion over the next few years, its percentage of contribution to Guam's total revenues will likely substantially increase for a period of time. The U.S. military has a large footprint on Guam, as the island is home to a big Navy Base and port harbor in Sumay, Agat, a Naval Computer & Telecommunications Base in Finegayan, Dededo, a large Air Force Base in Yigo and numerous other U.S. military support units, Army, Air Force and Navy Reserves, Army and Air National Guard and a Coast Guard detachment. With roughly $300 million in average annual military spending, together with the estimated $8.6 billion relocation of Marines from Okinawa, Japan, Guam is a key destination for investment.
Both tourism and the military are the two major components driving Guam’s economy, contributing a combined 90% of Guam’s total revenues. In our Guam links section, you will see useful links to the local military community and you can find information on tourism at the Guam Visitors Bureau link under Government of Guam.
All things considered, real estate is still a local business driven by local conditions and we expect great growth in all sectors of the real estate market these coming years. The future of Guam real estate is exciting. Guam is truly a unique island by itself both physically and economically. New waves of foreign investment are expected. Economic and population growth is in the forecast, so savvy real estate investors large and small, both companies and individuals alike should give Guam serious consideration and we at Pacific Rim Realty, stand ready to assist you every step of the way.
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