Many people simply “fall” into buying real estate abroad. They either go to a show and like the look of the fancy dev photos and get infected by Häusermaklerin the chatter of the savvy salespeople (usually ex-timeshare salespeople!) or they go on vacation, meet someone at a bar, get invited to a ‘free’ event and passed tens of thousands of pounds with little care. Don’t let this happen to YOU!
Before you buy or invest in a vacation home, first make sure it meets your needs. £100,000 goes a long way to renting a holiday home over the next 30 years without having to deal with currency fluctuations, remote property management, maintenance costs and complicated tax laws. Many people who buy a vacation home rarely make any money, at best you can expect breakeven on your investment.
So before you hand any checks :-
- Make sure your purchase delivers what you want. Cheap holidays abroad or if you invest what you expect from it. If it is income – how much? If it is capital appreciation – how much and by when?
- Don’t be fooled by marketing brochures. They will only bring you the “good news”. They won’t tell you what else is being built in front of or behind your property, including the finances of all the companies involved and whether they’re about to go bankrupt!Just because an area has gone up in price today doesn’t mean it will be by the time you come up for sale. Think of those who have invested in Bulgaria on the coast. Many cannot even sell for half the price they bought them for!Make sure the prices you are charged are the same as a local would pay. Many places (Cape Verde for example) have been hailed as the next “Caribbean”. Real estate has therefore already been sold at prices similar to those in the Caribbean!buy anything abroad until you have visited the country and received independent reviews from people NOT affiliated with the company you are planning to buy from.Calculate your costs from start to finish. What are the shopping fees? How much does it cost you to sell? What tax do you pay? Are there different inheritance laws? What are the forex experts’ predictions on the exchange rate against the £ now and in the future? If you don’t have time to work these out or don’t know how, ask a professional or don’t buy!Make sure you have two lawyers – a local lawyer AND an international lawyer. That’s how the professional investors buy because they know it’s the wrong end of the road not to.If the purchase of the property requires you to use the developer’s legal and/or financial firm, run away as soon as possible as this indicates a lack of transparency and makes it easier for shady companies to blind you . You have been warned!Weigh the risk of investing abroad versus investing locally. Force yourself to write down the pros and cons of investing abroad/the country you are looking at.
- Make sure you work with a currency specialist, never buy through your bank, it will cost you a fortune!
Finally, you must be aware that you will avoid all the mistakes made by other investors abroad who lost money in Bulgaria, Spain and many other countries, for example:-
Spain, including key issues
- People bought properties with a “view” of the sea, then new ones were built in front of them, obscuring the view.
- Builders took people’s money and went broke – they took deposits with them.
- Properties were built on land without the proper permits and buyers were not given the proper paperwork to make the property legal.
- People bought properties off plan in areas that were then flooded with competing properties that were being built at the same time or were coming onto the market cheaper.
- Those who wanted to sell after five years or more found that the market was too competitive and new construction was driving down the price of their property.
Bulgaria, including key issues
- From a coastal perspective, too many properties have been built to meet demand.
- It was often cheaper to stay in a local hotel than to rent an apartment.
- No local demand, only overseas.
Cape Verdi including key issues
- The island has been sold as ‘the next Caribbean’ but properties have been sold at ‘Caribbean prices’, for example £60,000 for a one bed seafront apartment that would buy you a three bed local village house. In St Lucia, 5-10 minutes drive from the coast, you would buy a three bed property in a good area that could also be rented out to locals or people on long holiday/work breaks.
I am one of the UK’s top property experts, regularly quoted in the press including the Telegraph, Independent, Times, Daily Mail and Express, and have appeared on BBC2, BBC Radio 4, Channel 4 and a number of BBC local radio stations.
I have been working as a consultant in the real estate industry for several years and have been renovating properties for over 20 years. I’ve also written a number of books, including four for which ? – Buying, Selling, Moving, Immobilienhändler Renting and Letting, Developing your property and the real estate investment guide.
Do you want to buy real estate for back taxes? Here’s how to get them without participating in the tax sale
If you’re looking to buy real estate for back taxes, you’re a smartass . Of all the types of real estate you can buy, tax refund real estate is the most profitable. The problem is that tax sales are getting too crowded these days as more and more people learn about this investment method. The competition is too tough to make any good offers. Here’s how to buy property against taxes without competing in the tax auction with other bidders… and why you need to invest this way if you want to be successful.
Aside from the competition, there’s one major, compelling reason you can’t buy property for back taxes on tax sales: you can’t view it first. Would Immobilienhändlerin you buy a house to live in that you couldn’t view? Doubtful. When you bid on a tax sale, you are agreeing to buy, in cash, a property that may have significant problems of which you are unaware…or may suffer significant damage in the post-purchase period, but before foreclosure (1-5 years depending on which state you are in). If that’s not enough to convince you, then what is?
During this redemption period
During this grace period, when owners can pay their taxes, you can legally (in most places) buy their property and pay the taxes yourself. After the tax sale – if they cannot salvage the property – their property is already “sold” in their eyes , although they still own it for a while. They approach her during this time and offer to buy what they see as her now worthless deed. You can often get these deeds for as little as a few hundred dollars and turn the property over before you even pay the taxes.