5 Things You Should Consider When Buying a Property Overseas

Whether you looking to buy an investment house in the USA or a unit in the UK, the whole process can be confusing and costly. This guide will take you through things you should consider along the way.

1. Research

While there is no better research than hitting the pavement, it isn’t always possible. There are a number of websites similar to realestate.co.nz for each country.

If you are looking in the USA, check out Zillow.com

If you are looking in the London or the UK, check out Rightmove

2. Local help

It really helps to get to know the professional real estate agents, accountants and lawyers in the city you are looking to buy in. It’s impossible to know all ins and outs of buying property in a foreign country. Find local guides you can trust and hit them up for as much information as you can before buying a property house unit.

3. Your rights

A common mistake of New Zealanders buying property abroad is not understanding the property laws of the country they are buying in. This is particularly important in South East Asia. Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore, as all have fairly tight ownership laws for foreigners.

Hiring a local legal professional will help you navigate the legal minefield and ensure that your rights are protected.

4. Tax

You need to consider the tax implications of an overseas property well before you buy it. Make sure you talk to your accountant, check the New Zealand Inland Revenue website for more information. Even more important are the tax laws of the country you are buying the unit or house. If you earn income from the house, it may be taxable in that country.

5. The exchange rate you get really matters

Once you have purchased the property, getting a good exchange rate when you transfer the money for settlement is very important. On a money transfer of $300,000, the difference between a bad exchange rate and the best, could amount to over $10,000.

Compare money transfer exchange rates and fees

By Justin Rampono Updated March 8th, 2021