Image of a luxurious home interior

What is a UHNWI?

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The USA houses roughly 300,000 people with investable assets of $30 million or more. That’s a ton of money. They are known as ULTRA High Net Worth Individuals or UHNWI. 300,000 is not a lot of people (0.01% of the USA), and then again it’s quite a potent audience. It’s the population of all of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania! And many of them are aging and passing on wealth to family members so the number of prospective home buyers is actually much larger. And this group is growing as new fortunes are made every year. More importantly, this group will be the source of both future inventory as they age and seek to downsize… well as a source of new buyers for those making new fortunes or inheriting as the greatest wealth transfer is already underway.

Great fortunes are made in multiple ways: investments, finance, business creation, technology, entertainment, media, healthcare, divorce, marriage, lotteries, and many other less obvious arenas……and yes the good old-fashioned way: inheritance.

This group is also most likely to own a second or third home, and often this is done LATER in life as a reward for hard work – or selling a business – or playing catch-up for decades of frugality.

* In 2020, the world’s wealthiest population—those with a net worth of more than US$30 million—grew 1.7% year over year, adding 4,730 individuals to bring the total to 295,450 in 2020. Their combined fortune rose 2% to US$35.5 trillion, according to Wealth-X’s ninth annual World Ultra Wealth Report released Wednesday. Last year’s ultrawealthy expansion was much slower than the nearly double-digit pace in 2019, but represented a sharp increase from 2018’s flat growth rate of 0.8%. (WEALTH-X)

* The super-yacht business is a great barometer of the ultra-wealthy….and we hear that all yacht-builders are fully booked for many months/years ahead. Even the second-hand yacht market has soared in the past 12 months. The ultra-rich added almost $2 trillion in wealth since January 2020.

* UHNWI wealth has grown globally over the past 18 months: Luxury home sales in Australia are soaring as the country’s expanding ultra-high-net-worth population drove demand for prime properties. In the first quarter of 2021, the number of prime residential sales—defined as the top 5% most expensive homes in each market—increased 58% year over year to a record 1,429 homes. Compared to the fourth quarter of 2020, luxury sales were 17% higher. (MANSION)

* San Jose, Calif., has the highest density of UHNW individuals, with one for every 727 city residents. This concentration is 2.5X greater than New York, the world’s largest UHNW city with 11,475 individuals!