Overseas Buyers

If you are moving from overseas or are an overseas resident looking to invest in Australia, you may need special assistance with purchasing a property.

In Western Australia, purchasing property is done through an Offer and Acceptance process (except for Auctions). This is different to many other countries and in fact, different to other states of Australia.

Some key considerations for overseas buyers include:

Do you require approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board ("FIRB")?

Most overseas purchasers require FIRB approval prior to finalising the contract for the purchase of a property. The contract can be made subject to FIRB approval.

What are the general characteristics of the FIRB?

Whilst there are complexities with FIRB, generally, FIRB approval can be obtained for new homes (never been occupied) and for land being purchased to build a house. FIRB approval can take between 30 to 45 days.

Although some exemptions do apply, generally the purchase of established homes by non-Australian residents or citizens are not normally permitted.

The Foreign Investment Review Board is an Australian Government authority, and the applications for their approval must be lodged using their appropriate forms and paperwork.

Can you apply for finance?

If you are from overseas or you have newly migrated to Australia, it is still possible to obtain finance to assist in the purchase of your property. Whilst the lending criteria for overseas borrowers is typically stricter than the criteria for Australian residents, obtaining finance is possible and not as difficult as you may think.

As a rule of thumb, lenders can typically provide overseas borrowers with finance for up to 60% of the value of the property. However this depends on the criteria and policies of the lender, as some lenders will finance a higher percentage and others will finance a lower percentage. The loan to value ratio also depends on the type of property being purchased, the client's history with the lender and other characteristics of the client.

If you are an overseas buyer looking to obtain finance, then getting the right advice is critical as the criteria between lenders varies significantly. For example, some lenders will also allow you to use your overseas credit history, while other lenders will not.

AustAsia Finance Brokers has considerable experience in assisting overseas buyers with their finance arrangements. This includes clients that have recently migrated to Australia, and clients that still reside overseas. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help you.

AustAsia Real Estate has considerable experience in assisting Overseas clients to purchase property in Australia. We can assist you with the FIRB Approval and our associated company, AustAsia Finance Brokers can assist you with obtaining finance for the purchase of the property.