Australia opens its arms when it comes to foreign investment, as it helps to boost the economy. However, if you are a foreign investor (including foreign non-residents and temporary residents) looking to buy a property in Australia, it is essential that you know all the rules associated with buying Australian real estate.
Here are the main rules for foreign investors looking to buy residential property.
1) All foreign non-residents must notify The Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) of any proposed purchase of residential real estate.
2) Foreign non-residents or short term visa holders can invest in Australian real estate as long as it adds to the housing stock. This includes:
3) Cannot buy established dwellings as investment properties or homes, unless they do so with a spouse who is a resident.
4) Need to apply to buy new dwellings in Australia.
5) Need to apply to buy vacant land for residential development.
Please note: If the developer has been granted pre-approval to sell new dwellings to foreign buyers, the foreign buyer does not need to submit an approval application.
1) All Temporary Residents must notify FIRB of any proposed acquisition of residential real estate.
2) Can buy one established dwelling which must be used as their Primary Place of Residence (PPOR).
3) May buy new dwellings.
4) May buy vacant land to build new dwellings.
When you are looking to sell your property, there is normally no requirement to seek approval, unless conditions have not been met. This may include vacant land that was not developed.
For those that no longer wish to purchase the property, it is important to notify the FIRB to let them know you are withdrawing your approval.
Remember, like any large investment it is essential that you do your homework to ensure that this property is the best investment to suit your budget and lifestyle and in the right location.
To find out more information about the rules of buying property as a foreign investor and to check that you are eligible, you should visit the Foreign Investment Review Board website.