When you think of Israeli real estate, what thoughts immediately come to mind? Do you find it challenging? Daunting, perhaps? Maybe you envision passionate Israelis shouting at you, claiming they can secure the best price in all of Israel, or even the entire world. As someone who grew up in England, I completely understand those sentiments. In fact, I shared the same apprehensions when I embarked on my own property search. Having arrived in Israel 13 years ago after working as a real estate broker in England for three years, I was taken aback by the seemingly complex process of purchasing real estate in Israel. It took time to shift my mindset from English to Israeli, but after years of dedication and hard work, it finally paid off.
However, while I managed to gain a solid understanding of the Israeli property market, my clients from abroad faced even greater challenges. I encountered individuals who arrived with arbitrary budgets that did not align with market conditions, and many had no idea what the purchasing process entailed or how to prepare for it. Unfortunately, due to the lack of information available to foreign buyers, numerous deals were delayed, slowed down or even canceled. This marked the genesis of my Israel real estate events.
The idea behind these events was simple: to make information about the Israeli purchasing process accessible and attainable for clients from abroad. The goal was to assist Anglos in fulfilling their dream of buying property in Israel by equipping them with the necessary tools and information. These events feature a panel of experts from various real estate-related fields, including mortgage brokers, interior designers, currency experts, property managers, real estate lawyers and brokers, specializing in specific major areas. I gathered a team of professionals who specialize in helping Anglos purchase real estate in Israel, and that’s how the events took off.
While we certainly showcase apartments for promotion, the main focus is on one-on-one discussions that take place after the sessions or in-person meetings. The sessions themselves are dedicated to providing attendees with a comprehensive understanding of up-to-date and relevant information, including market conditions and prices, legal considerations and taxes, mortgage processes and rules for foreign buyers, property renovation and management from abroad, as well as transferring funds from the US to Israel.
Like any new venture, the beginning was slow. Despite my experience as a Jerusalem realtor, I had to establish a solid network in America and build relationships within the communities. Fortunately, I now have an exceptional network of clients, media connections and community ties that have contributed to the development and growth of these events. Over the past five years, we have successfully hosted over 100 events.
It’s truly rewarding to witness the many success stories that have emerged from these events. Seeing participants apply the knowledge they’ve gained to their own purchasing processes, whether for relocation, a vacation home or investment purposes, brings me tremendous joy.
These events are great for people who are actively looking as well as those starting their search.
I want to share one of my success stories that happened through the events: There was a family that had spent several years searching for a home in Jerusalem without any luck. Frustrated by their ongoing struggles, they expanded their search to include Raanana and Netanya. When I first met this determined family at one of my events, I took the time to sit down with them, comprehending their requirements, and promptly presented them with a selection of suitable options. Surprisingly, within just one month, they saw one of the homes that they eventually went on to buy.
Here is another example of how the events turned into a success story, this time for someone just starting in her property search. Tamar, from New Jersey, attended one of the events held at her local synagogue and later approached me to discuss her family’s property search. Over the next few months, we stayed in touch until she was ready to begin her search. During a family trip to Israel, we explored various apartments until they finally found the perfect one. Throughout the journey, Tamar consulted with the team she had assembled and relied on the expert advice she received. Today, they are proud owners of a beautiful, brand-new apartment in Old Katamon.
“We had a very positive experience with CapitIL that culminated in our buying an apartment in Jerusalem. Ben Levene was a great guide, because he not only shared a lot of useful information, but also was interested in our questions, respected our budget and tailored his recommendations to our needs as we developed a clearer sense of what we were looking for. He also helped us understand that visiting neighborhoods where we were considering buying an apartment is a crucial part of the process. It all started with an information session Ben had organized at a local shul, where he brought together professionals who have years of expertise in helping guide US residents through financial, legal and other practical aspects of purchasing property in Israel. That session was formative for us, as it turned the beginning of a dream into a goal that seemed attainable. We ended up working with some of those same people, and each of them supported us toward that goal. Thank you, Ben!”
Tamar is one of many examples who did not know how to begin and that is exactly why these events exist. They are a perfect way to help you begin or advance your search and have the opportunity to meet experts in the field who can help you make that lifelong dream of purchasing in Israel a reality.
This article is based on the opinions of CapitIL Real Estate CEO & Co-Founder Ben Levene. Ben Levene is a Jerusalem real estate expert with over 10 years of experience, specializing in helping Anglos purchase real estate in Israel. To start your Israel property search, please contact Ben at +972-53-822-4336 or [email protected]. To see a full list of venues and to register for the events, visit www.israelevent.live/june2023