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What to Know When Buying a Condo Abroad

Written by Bermudiana Beach Resort

02 | 07 | 20

Dream Destination  |  
5 minute read

Buying a condo outside the U.S. can be affordable and sometimes even profitable. It allows you to establish a foothold instead of being a tourist. With all this reward comes risk, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy the Parisian penthouse or Bermudian condo you’ve been dreaming of.

Visas, location, price, climate and economy - these are the first few external factors you’re already considering when purchasing property abroad. From ownership laws to local culture, here are more considerations for your venture and what to know when buying a condo in your perfect destination. 

 

Learning the Foreign Ownership Laws Is Essential 

Before buying a property overseas, it’s important to be aware of your legal rights and obligations. It’s not common for countries to place restrictions on foreign ownership, but it’s one to watch. 

For example, non-citizens generally aren’t allowed to own land outright in Thailand. In Costa Rica, there are restrictions on its coastline and previously, Bermudian residential property was only available to purchase by predominantly high net worth overseas buyers. For non-Bermudians to purchase Bermuda real estate now, they must obtain a license from the government. 

If you’re purchasing a vacation property, you won’t need to establish residency, but check visa restrictions on how many days you can spend in the country. If you plan to retire or work abroad, you’ll need to think about qualifying for residency. Local laws, customs and legislation are some of the many reasons you should work with professionals who are well versed and know how to navigate them. 

Understanding Your Tax Liability

Before moving into a foreign country, it’s best to consider any tax rules that might apply - as well as the cost of living. There may also be ongoing tax payments you’ll need to make throughout the year, similar to U.S. property taxes.

Renting out your home can help cover your costs and in some cases, generate a profit. But the bottom line is before you commit to buying a condo abroad, you need to know how it’ll affect your tax situation.

Getting Acquainted With Culture 

couple-beach-romance-culture of bermuda

Just as the property buying process is different in every country, the culture surrounding property purchases is different as well. When you fall hard for the culture and charm of a destination, it’s essential to look past the daydreaming and dig deeper into the place you’re going to return to time and time again. 

There will be plenty of things you won’t expect, so we advise working with a local expert. They’ll have the experience, insight and track record to help a buyer through the international property purchasing process. You’ll also be able to quiz them about culture to better understand your second-home location. 

It might take multiple vacations before you’re happy that you want a more permanent base. Talk to your prospective neighbors, explore the location and do as much research as possible to give you all the knowledge you need to make an informed decision.

We’re a little biased, but although there are amazing destinations all over the world for you to consider, none are quite like Bermuda. You can immerse yourself in the local culture that takes influences from all over the world. 

Considering Rental Opportunity

Typically when you purchase a condo abroad, you’ll want to rent it out to contribute to its own running costs or HomeOwner’s Association fees. Renting out your condo when you’re not in residence can be a great way of making annual property costs affordable. 

Need to know what other benefits you can expect from purchasing a property abroad to rent out? 

To maximize your occupancy and rental opportunity, make sure your condo is in a prime location, furnished to a high standard and has access to amenities. Maintenance issues for a rental property can be challenging, particularly if you don’t live there full time. That’s an entirely different consideration, but it’s important to know if you’ll need to put money and time aside for renovating your property to make it rental-ready. 

This is where condo hotel resorts can be advantageous. They provide buyers with access to branded hotel amenities at a much lower entry price. Management companies and HomeOwners' Associations also make them a very convenient option. A kind of Done-For-You approach to second home ownership, if you like. Find more reasons why you should consider this turnkey type of property here.

We understand purchasing a condo isn’t always a straightforward process, but it can be made easier. There’s no doubt buying a condo can be a great decision if you want access to more amenities, less maintenance and a closer community. Purchasing a condo abroad is a fantastic experience, especially when it’s in a desirable location. But what exactly is the process?

Make Sure You’ve Got Everything Covered...

Purchasing a condo abroad is exciting but a serious commitment that requires a lot of thought. You must cover all bases and make sure everything is in order before making the move and purchasing your dream place.

There are questions you need to ask yourself and education you need to access before jetting off. So, if you think you’ll miss something out, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. We’ve put together a checklist that guides you through the entire process.

Download it below today for free and take one step closer to securing the place you’ve always dreamed of.

Buying a Vacation in Bermuda Guide