If you are living and working in Australia as an expat, you might consider setting down some roots and buying a house. It’s much easier to invest in a house in Australia than in most other countries of the world. Here is a brief guide for buying residential assets in Australia as a foreigner:

Set a Realistic Budget

The step one of buying a house in Australia is setting aside a realistic budget you can afford. Buying a home may require you to borrow from a local bank. Australian banks are particularly discerning when it comes to foreign borrowers. If you want a mortgage, then your budget would have to be highly realistic.

Hire the Right Professionals

Buying a house in Australia requires a bit of legal work and you should know which professionals to hire. You will need a qualified mortgage broker to obtain a loan as non-residents if you don’t have reserve funds. The legal work is largely taken care of by a solicitor, who is a licensed lawyer, or a conveyancer, a legal agent who specialises in residential purchases. It’s common for some prospective homebuyers to hire real estate agents as well to locate properties. For example, you can hire property agents Dandenong to look for great suburban homes in the Melbourne area. However, keep in mind that these agents not legally required.

File Paperwork with FIRB

Non-resident homebuyers need permission from Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) to actually sign a title deed for a house. The application process is relatively simple and only takes about two weeks. However, keep in mind to apply as early as possible to avoid unwanted setbacks. There will be fees associated with your application that will depend on the value of the asset you are intending to buy. For example, a $1 million house would incur about $5,000 in application fees. Therefore, apply for FIRB once you have made up your mind about which house to buy.

Begin the Search

This is the part where you actually search for house at a location you like. It’s easy to find a house available for sale online for any area in Australia. If you want a more refined search, use a buyer’s agent to locate a house exactly as you want.

Get the Mortgage Approved

When you know which house you want to buy, get your approval for a mortgage. Then you should apply for FIRB as well. It’s highly recommended not to become vested in a house until you have the mortgage formally approved by the bank.

Negotiate and Pay

Once you have your mortgage in hand, it’s time to negotiate a price and get the final details of the contract ready. You can do this with the help of a buyer’s agent and a solicitor. Once you have negotiated a price, it will be time to place a deposit. When the deposit is provided, then the house will be basically yours.

Now, you only have to make the final arrangements by formalising the contract and signing it. Make sure all the clauses are in compliance with foreign investment laws. Once you have completed all the steps, then you would become a proud Australian homeowner.

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