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Seek local advice before you buy property overseas

By Adam Partridge


Buying property overseas varies from continent to continent, with many different terms and conditions, so it pays to do your homework. “How hard can it be?” you ask. The answer to this is “it isn’t” – as long as you are made aware and advised correctly on the buying procedure from start to finish.


Making a decision to purchase a property abroad is a big step. While some people invest their money in a dream second home to possibly retire to, or for use as a holiday home, others buy to let for financial reasons.


These different investment examples may fulfil different needs but they still need to be achieved through the same channels in order to avoid a traumatic experience at an unexpected and sometimes unaffordable cost. This can put people off investing in the future especially if buying abroad for the first time.


Investing in property abroad for the first time is extremely exciting. However, if you do not understand the language or the buying laws of the country it can be difficult.


When I purchased my first property abroad this was a problem, so I sought assistance closer to home and from meeting my property consultant to receiving the keys it took just five painless weeks, making it an enjoyable experience. The reason this was made possible was because I dealt with professional people who understood my needs and made sure I received experienced and honest advice. So I was confident in what I was doing. In turn I gained knowledge and experience to give me a head start next time.


Firstly it is important to look at your finances to ensure you have enough money to put down the initial deposit. Payment structures will vary from country to country but generally a holding deposit of either five or 10 per cent is needed. Once you have reserved the property, you will need to comply with the developer’s payment structure. If you require a mortgage, you would be strongly advised to apply for it with a bank that complies with where you are buying. As long as these procedures are explained the process will be straight forward.


Buying overseas is more often than not very different to buying in the GCC, with the majority of Europe working within an established and mature legal system regarding the property market. You will generally receive a draft contract from the seller’s solicitor to read through thoroughly and sign once happy with the terms and conditions.


After this is done and all parties acting on your behalf are doing everything they can, you will share the same enjoyable experience as many other people whose dreams have become a reality.
--  Adam Partridge is the International Sales Manager of Sherwoods Independent Property Consultants