The idea of buying a property to live in or to rent abroad can be hugely exciting. The problem with the dream of living in a warmer climate is that people tend to rush in without really knowing where potential problems could lie. Allowing yourself the time to consider the following will help you avoid some of the pitfalls of buying a property abroad.
Knowing Your Rights
Depending on the reason for your buying the property, it is important that you research your rights before you do so. For example, if you are buying to retire abroad, you should do the appropriate research first. Will you be entitled to your current pension in the country you are choosing to live? Many countries have certain agreements with the UK in terms of access to certain pension funds, but many don’t. Moving to countries such as Spain, Greece and Italy, for example, shouldn’t affect your pension payments (as long as your provider has outlined paying overseas into their agreement), nor should it have any impact on your state pension or any annual rises you are entitled to. But countries such as Australia and New Zealand have different rules which may restrict your access to certain funds and increases. So, know your rights.
Moving Abroad to Work
Again, you can’t just assume that you will automatically gain the right to live and work in certain countries without restrictions. Many Brits moving abroad look into the economical aspects of the country before they go, helping them to make a decision on whether it would be useful to go through all the correct procedures to get a working visa. Many countries in Europe, for example, have a comparatively lower cost of living. So, working and saving abroad could potentially be worthwhile. But you must seek the appropriate, professional advice before you move or buy. Even if you are moving temporarily to spruce up the property you are planning on buying, there may be restrictions around what you are and are not entitled to do. So, make sure you plan in advance to avoid any mistakes that could cost you.
Paying Too Much
Trust us, you don’t need to break the bank in order to choose a beautiful property abroad. Prices in countries like Spain at the moment are hugely affordable, but there will still be some sellers out there who will add the ‘luxury’ price tag where it is not needed. Many budget villas and bungalows and so on are just as ‘luxury’ in style, location and space as the up-market options, but they will be hugely more affordable. So, be sure to shop around and opt for the budget option first. You don’t want to pour your money into a luxury-labelled property and later find out you could have had a similar option for half the price.
Research Your Chosen Location
Although this is last on our list, it should be top of yours. Knowing your location will help you better understand where you will purchase your property. From local cultures and traditions to geographical insights, business opportunities and insights into the economy of the country you are buying in – all of this will impact your decision-making. So, start here if you want to avoid the pitfalls. And, if you consider the above carefully and plan wisely, you should be in for a much smoother and more affordable process.