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Congratulations on taking the plunge and deciding to purchase a second home abroad!
With sun, sea and sand to head to whenever it takes your fancy, there’s nothing better than having a home overseas.

But there’s also a lot to think about when it comes to making such a purchase, so whether you’re making the move to the sunny Algarve or perhaps heading further afield to the US here’s everything you need to know:

Do you have the right to reside?
If you are buying a second home within the EU you will be required to have a ‘right to reside’, especially if you decide you want to work in the country. However, once this is in place your family will be free to live in that country throughout the year, regardless of their nationality.

Have you considered the cost of living?
The cost of living varies greatly from country to country, and depending on where you decide to buy in the location you choose. For example, a property in the heart of Lisbon is going to cost more in terms of living costs than a property in the Azores. From how much your food shopping will cost to fuel, it’s important to consider these things before you sign anything.

What about tax?
When it comes to tax, many of us already feel like we’re paying too much but be prepared to continue to pay UK prices with a property in another country. In fact, when making that initial property purchase those buying in France could still face the UK buy-to-let stamp duty chargeif the intention is to rent the property out while not living in it. Check what you will owe and understand exactly what you are paying for before signing anything.

Do you speak the language?
If you are not fluent in the language of the country you are buying in it’s a good idea to seek out a financial advisor or interpreter who has experience with house buying to ensure nothing is missed on your paperwork. Alternatively, the estate agent you go with can help you with this and there are many English speaking estate agents already out in countries (click hereto check out an example of one such company in Portugal) waiting to assist you.

Rent before you buy
Renting is dead money but before you dive head first into the world of legal documents, other country laws and regulations it might be a good idea to lease a property first. This will give you experience of living in that country, how to deal with the utilities and local tax and prepare you for that house purchase.

There’s a lot to think about when considering a second property purchase in another country, tread carefully, ensure everything is in order before you sign and that you understand exactly what is expected of you in regards to fees and extra charges throughout the process. Then it’s simply time to enjoy the home in the warmer months or when you feel like you just need to get away from it all.

Where to buy from?
We suggest you check out the wonderful European properties that are available at Design Home Sales.