Buying foreign properties – Do Your Research

Buying foreign properties, especially off-plan purchases, may not be as straightforward and comes with risks. It is important to do your research thoroughly before embarking on the purchase.

Some factors to consider in your decision-making process are as follows:

  • Rules and restrictions on foreign ownership, such as type of properties which foreigners can buy
  • Lease period, some countries may define the lease period differently from Singapore
  • Taxation, some countries may levy taxes on foreigners to curb excessive speculation and to stabilise property prices
  • Property market trends in the country
  • Political landscape, as foreign legal and regulatory frameworks may change suddenly when domestic politics push for a change in policies
  • Social, natural climate of the country and utility services
  • Buying transaction process, it could be more complicated for a foreign buyer
  • Dispute resolution avenues and relevant laws
  • Approved building plan and other regulatory approvals
  • After-sales support from the developer such as progress reports on the property development

Other points to note:

  • Read and understand all the terms and conditions carefully prior to signing any agreement or document.
  • Obtain independent expert advice from appropriate professionals such as lawyers, valuers or bankers when in doubt on any matter.
  • You should ask the developer and estate agent as many questions as necessary before making a decision.

For more tips, click consumer guide on buying foreign properties.

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