How foreigners can buy property in Spain

Posted on June 8, 2018. Filed under: Buying in Spain, First Time Buyer help, International Properties, Lenders & Loan info | Tags: , , , , , |

Travel much? So many of our client’s do, which is why I recently got my CIPS designation. Having international connections with real estate agents around the world is important so our team can make sure you’re real estate needs get served…literally everywhere! I recently had the pleasure of attending the SIMA convention in Madrid and had a chance to network while learning all about the process of buying and selling in Spain.

Fun fact: Spain is in the top 3 countries where foreigners make purchases. Not surprising, because it’s beautiful. We’ll save that for a different post 😉

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The process of buying a property in Spain

First things first, financing. It does not make sense to begin your search until you know how much you are comfortable spending. Of course, cash is easiest. But this is a post for normal people, not cash cows…

Options for financing foreign property

So… you have a couple options. HELOC is a great one if you have more than 30% equity in your current home. Every time I mention the acronym HELOC (Home Equity Line of Credit) I feel it necessary to remind you to ONLY do this for appreciating assets. Do not use your HELOC for cars, boats, or babes. Only to buy more property. ONLY.

If HELOC is not an option for you, foreign financing is also currently available in Spain. Here’s a quick video we recorded with Lola from B. S. Bank in Madrid:

Current interest rates may actually be better than your HELOC, so it’s something to consider!

 

Finding your home in Spain

Like most countries, first steps are determining an area for your new home or vacation rental, and then selecting a buyer’s agent. Make sure to consider all the factors when determining your area. Here’s just a few to think about:

  • Proximity to airport
  • Walkable to restaurants
  • Local tourist attractions & festivals
  • Amount the property could rent for, both nightly & monthly
  • Noise levels (planes, trains, bars, church bells)
  • Crime statistics
  • Parking accommodations
  • If you’re vacation renting, does the area embrace that?

 

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Once you’ve got an area in mind, it’s time to get connected with a Realtor who works that region. Just like I mentioned in our post about how to buy property in Costa Rica… a quality agent is crucial in these countries where they don’t offer a Multiple Listing Service or a centralized listing database. We never recommend DIY buying, especially in a foreign land. You need someone who will actually go scout for you and someone who gets along with the other agents in the area so your chances of obtaining your favorite property are higher.

It’s always our pleasure to interview and pair people with quality agents. Please fill out the form below if you would like to find an English-speaking match in your desired area of Spain.

If you’re still nervous about buying overseas, or have any questions about getting started on the process, we would be happy to help. Contact Angie at 949-338-7408!

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Global Forum – International Real Estate

Posted on April 17, 2018. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Informed Investor Alliance, International Properties, Lenders & Loan info, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , |

 

Ways Immigrants Can Buy California Property

Have you been thinking about buying in the US, but live in a foreign country? We can help! There’s lots of talk in real estate about EB 5 Immigration , it’s a program United States offers to encourage foreign investors to purchase property here in the US. Because Trump administration has been putting the brakes on immigration recently, a Green Card is tough to get! This has caused major issues and investors (particularly from China) are getting turned away. 😦 But don’t be discouraged. According to Immigration attorney Qiang Bjornbak, depending on your country of origin and job, there may be options for your visa:

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If you would like to explore which immigration solution is best for you, we would be happy to put you in touch with Qiang for a consultation. She can help pave your path 🙂 Once you are able to legally own a home in the United States, then the next challenge is to obtain financing.

How Foreigners Can Obtain US Loans

Foreign loans don’t come without challenges. Seasoning, or the amount of time your money has been in the bank, can be a big one. Another issue can be a newer social security number. Furthermore, reported income, foreign bank statements, and low appraisals are all landmines that can explode during the loan application process. Red flags everywhere…what’s an investor to do?!

It was great to hear from a panel of lenders who are open to working with foreign buyers, and have experiences to overcome challenges. If you’re buying for the first time in the US, you NEED an experienced lender to make your loan process smooth. Regardless of which lender you select, always run a DU (Direct Underwriting) to make sure your loan is fully approved. Usually about 30% down is required on foreign investments, and you need 2-12 months of reserves. Certain lenders also offer down payment programs. Sometimes these loans can be closed in 30 days, but usually they take about 40-45 days. It’s best to make sure your funds are already in the US to ensure there are no delays.

According to feedback in the room… Sterling Bank & Trust is very easy to work with and has fabulous programs that are easy to qualify. ChinaTrust Bank has an ‘asset based’ program which is great when income isn’t high. Cathay Bank offers a foreign HELOC, which is very rare! Here are all the panelists, just fill out the form below if you would like an introduction!

  • Sterling Bank & Trust – Steven Chang
  • New American Funding – Frank Fuentes
  • HSBC Bank – Buddie Krugh
  • Cathay Bank – Howard Tung
  • ChinaTrust Bank – Kevin Yang

What States Do International Investors Prefer in the US?

Interesting question! Literally, it’s all over! According to 2017 data, here’s the top 5:

  1. Florida
  2. California
  3. Texas
  4. Arizona
  5. New Jersey

If you think sunny Southern California is the best state for you, let’s talk! Just fill out the form below or text call Angie at 949-338-7408. Happy investing – we can’t wait to help you open the door to your US property!

 

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    Orange County, CA Real Estate for hip first-time buyers and investors. Plus, fun things to know and do in OC.

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