If you’ve been dreaming of moving abroad, you aren’t alone. In recent years more and more people of all ages – from retirees, to college grads, to families – are making the move to start anew by relocating and buying property in another country. Some move permanently, while others opt to split their time and travel back and forth between homes, while still others are motivated by investing in real estate that can also provide an income stream when it’s not being used as a personal vacation home. Regardless of your situation, here are four things expats should consider before relocating or moving overseas and making a major real estate investment.
Once of the top concerns of many would-be expats involves making sure wherever they call home is safe. According to CBS News, a recent Expat Insider Survey by InterNations shows that Luxembourg, Mexico and Ecuador are the three best countries for expats worldwide, while Saudi Arabia,Kuwait and Greece are the three worst places for expats to plan on relocating.
“Unlike Luxembourg or Ecuador, Mexico fits expats like a glove,” wrote CBS News. “It is the clear winner in the ‘ease of settling index,’ with nearly 44 percent of expats saying that they’d like to simply stay there forever enjoying the beautiful weather, spectacular food and outgoing culture.”
Regardless of where in the world you might be thinking of relocating, be sure to check out the exact city and region with trusted resources like the U.S. State Department, which always posts the latest travel alerts, warnings and up to date country-specific information, as well as trusted local real estate investment companies, who have the connections and resources to help you through the process of buying property and moving overseas.
2. Residency Requirements
The ability meet residency requirements varies worldwide almost as much as the languages and cultures that are spoken. That’s why it’s a good idea to take residency requirements into careful consideration when thinking of moving overseas, making a real estate investment, or relocating abroad. For example, some countries will strictly limit your ability to work or obtain healthcare in their residency requirements, while others are quite welcoming and simply require expats to work with knowledgeable relocation experts to obtain the proper paperwork for legal property ownership and residency.
“Moving overseas gives you an opportunity to reinvent your life,” wrote U.S. News & World Report in an article about the best countries for expats. “In many places you will also be able to significantly reduce your cost of living.”
Portugal, Mexico and the Dominican Republic are named among the best countries for expats, just be sure to compare everything – from available amenities, infrastructure and affordability, to how easy it is to travel back and forth when visiting friends and family back home – before making a decision on the best location for investing in real estate.
3. Buying Property & Affordability
The ability to legally own property that you can afford is just as important as the ability to decide whether or not you can meet full or partial residency requirements. Even if you opt to make a real estate investment in a rental property and only use it for personal vacation purposes for a limited time each year, it’s still nice to have the option to quickly and easily establish residency or open a business when buying property, relocating and moving overseas or abroad.
“You’ll need to find out the rules about foreign ownership for the country you’re interested in,” wrote CNN Money. “Some countries restrict foreign ownership altogether, like Switzerland.”
Of course, determining the hard-and-fast rules about foreign ownership,buying property and investing in real estate is step one, regardless of the exact country you’re considering. To do this safely and easly, contact a trusted professional at one of the local real estate investment companies in your country of choice and be sure to obtain bilingual legal representation.
Whether you’re only going to be at your new home abroad for one week, one month, six months or full time, it’s imperative to ensure that high-quality, accessible and affordable universal healthcare is offered nearby. According to The Huffington Post, if you are considering moving overseas or abroad and affordable healthcare is a priority, especially if you have an existing ongoing medical concern, it’s advisable to stay close to a major city, popular expat haven or tourist destination.
“Medical care is cheaper most everywhere in the world than it is in the United States,” wrote The Huffington Post.
According to MoveHub.com, it can definitely be worthwhile to purchase whatever public universal healthcare that is available wherever you’re relocating, just be sure to check out exactly what you will be entitled to receive when it comes to quality affordable healthcare.
“Universal healthcare in Mexico is excellent, and its private care is amongst the most affordable in the West,” wrote AXA PPP International Expat Experts on MoveHub. “It’s always worth chatting with expats in your new country for their experiences of public and private healthcare in the country you’re headed for.”
From places like Thailand, Mexico and Malaysia to France and the Philippines, the possibilities are diverse and each destination offers its own unique set of challenges and rewards for those who are considering relocating and making a real estate investment. To make smart decisions and invest safely, be sure to compare real estate investment companies and work with trusted professionals in your location of choice.