Luxury Real Estate: Coldwell Banker's Previews International program is the most dominant force in the luxury real estate market today. Coldwell Banker's Previews International program holds a very strong position in the luxury homes market, having a 50 percent market share of U.S. properties with a sales price of more than $1 million. In the U.S. market for 2007, Coldwell Banker's Previews participated in approximately 25,000 transactions worth $46.6 billion.

Sales figures are equally impressive internationally. The Caribbean is jumping with sales figures that are up from various offices. In 2007, Coldwell Banker Bermuda Realty sold 59 million-dollar properties. CB Bermuda Realty has sold 60 million-dollar properties through quarter-ending September 2008.

Despite the current state of the world economy, sales figures remain up. Coldwell Banker Land-de Wilde Realty of St. Croix, Coldwell Banker Jamaica, and Coldwell Banker Real Estate Turks & Caicos reported September as best month of sales to date for 2008.

According to Jim Reed, managing director of Coldwell Banker Island Affiliates, the quality of the sales associates is the key to Coldwell Banker's dominant position in luxury real estate.

Generally speaking, our affiliates are all number ones in their respective markets. Each office is made up of quality business people who, when brought together, create incredible synergy, Reed said.

There are more than 4,500 certified Previews property specialists. It is one of the strongest networks of real estate professionals worldwide. The scope of the rigorous training program prepares agents to handle the special needs of buyers and sellers of luxury real estate. Many transactions remain totally in-house, as the worldwide network of Previews property specialists work together to facilitate. It is one of the advantages of being the best in the market.

Investing in the Caribbean

In regard to first-time investors seeking to purchase real estate in the Caribbean, Mr. Reed emphasized that securing an agent with local expertise is key.

Every market is different with different laws, standards of practice, and so on. With that in mind, the best advice I can give to first-time Caribbean real estate buyers is to enlist the help of seasoned professionals-starting with a top local real estate vendor-and then follow their recommendations for a lawyer, title insurance, financing, and so forth.

The Coldwell Banker brand has a global reach with 3,600 offices on six continents in 47 countries and territories. There are approximately 600 Coldwell Banker offices outside of the United States.

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