Guide to Investing in Australia

Posted by John Coomer on December 15, 2017

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Australian property is an option well worth considering if you’re an overseas investor (or an expat).

There are several good reasons why.


Why should I invest in Australian property?

  • Residential property prices in good locations in Australia have a long-term record of capital growth. Property should be regarded as a long-term investment.
  • Financial markets in Australia are highly regulated. Defaults on property loans are low due to the responsible lending provisions of Australian consumer credit protection legislation. Lending institutions in the Australian market must comply with these provisions.
  • The majority of residential housing in Australia is owner-occupied. This means that there is less investor speculation in the market, leading to more stable property prices. In fact, during the GFC when property prices fell in many international markets, Australian property prices were largely unaffected.
  • Australia is experiencing strong population growth in many of its major capital cities, which helps to fuel demand for property. This trend is forecast to continue.
  • Australia is a political and economically stable country. It has achieved economic growth in every quarter for more than 25 years, which is a world record.


Where should I invest in property in Australia?

There’s an old saying that there are three important factors when choosing real estate: location, location and location. There is plenty of truth in that statement.

Historically, property prices in Australia’s major capital cities have had the strongest growth, particularly those located near central business districts (CBDs).


How easy is it to invest in Australian property?

Buying property in Australia is much easier for foreign citizens (also known as non-residents) than in many other countries. Foreign investors in Australia need approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board.

It is the current Australian government policy to encourage foreign investment into new residential housing. The goal is to create jobs in the local construction industry and maintain economic growth. However, you can also apply to buy vacant residential land subject to the dwelling development being completed within four years from the date of approval. Established resale dwellings are not permitted for purchase by foreign investors.

The application and approval process takes up to 30 days from the date you sign a contract to purchase an Australian property. The purchase contract should be conditional on the approval being obtained.


Are there any additional costs when buying Australian property?

As a foreign non-resident investor, you’ll be subject to some additional fees when buying property in Australia.

  • A stamp duty surcharge if you are buying property in three Australian States (New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland).
  • An fee when applying for your property purchase approval with the Foreign Investment Review Board.
  • A $5,000 fee if the investment property is vacant for more than 6 months in any financial year (July 1 to June 30 in Australia).


Will I need to lodge a return tax in Australia?

Yes. If you purchase an Australian property there is a legal requirement for you to lodge an annual return with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).


How we can help

At FindAHomeLoan, providing mortgage broking services for investors looking to buy property in countries like Australia is one of our specialities. Whether you’re looking for a new loan or to refinance, we can provide detailed advice and assistance. We have a network of partners including lawyers, accountants and bankers to guide you through the international property investment process.

We work on a no-fee model until we find the right loan for you. We would be happy to speak or meet with you to discuss your needs and goals.

We’ll take the time to understand your circumstances and provide the best advice.

Contact us now to find out how we can help you!


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Topics: Australia

Written by John Coomer

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