expat network

7 Reasons Why It’s Better To Buy Than Rent When Moving Overseas

Whether you’re contemplating retirement under the Mediterranean sun, taking the family to Australia or a career relocation to the Far East, moving abroad is an exciting, life-changing prospect. But when it comes to finding a home, the question is whether to buy or not to buy. Renting a home has its merits, but so does buying a property. YourOverseasHome.com explain the advantages of buying a property overseas instead of renting.

Christopher Nye, senior editor at Your Overseas Home says:

Moving yourself and your family overseas can be stressful enough. You can understand why some people take the easier option of renting, rather than committing hundreds of thousands of pounds to a property purchase.

“However, there are sound reasons for buying rather than renting, and not just the obvious financial benefits. 

“When we surveyed our readers*, 80% were planning to buy when they got there, 17% to rent and then buy as soon as possible, and just 3% to rent long term. But is the majority right to buy? We say yes.”

Here are seven great reasons to buy property abroad instead of renting: 

1. Committing to your new life

When moving abroad, there can be a temptation to play it safe by leaving an escape route open for an easy return to Britain.

Moving abroad can be hard due to missing family, experiencing culture shock, getting the family settled, etc. But buying your own corner of that country helps to make a strong psychological commitment, as well as a financial commitment. 

2. Investment

A good rule of thumb when emigrating is to continue doing what worked well at home. Buy a property abroad and you’re investing in a tangible asset that’s more likely than not to rise in value. 

When you rent, you’re mainly benefitting the landlord, paying more in rent than you would on a mortgage for the same property. 

3. Your home, your style

In a new country, possibly suffering culture shock, it’s important to at least feel at home when you’re at home! Owning a property abroad gives you the freedom to design your space to your tastes. 

From redecorating to landscaping, you can do what you want (subject to local planning rules, of course). Also, when you’re doing DIY, remodelling or just decorating your own place, there is more opportunity to make connections in the neighbourhood.

4. Protection from landlords

Different countries have different rules on tenant rights. But in the UK a renter can be a victim of a “no fault eviction” should the landlord change their mind on renting the property, and the same goes in many countries abroad. 

When you own, no-one can take that away from you. It allows you to establish roots in your new community.

5. Land yourself a golden visa

Several countries continue to offer visas for property buyers from overseas. They are often known officially as “residence by investment” visas, but the basic feature is that if you buy an expensive property you can get to live in the country.

In Greece, for example, a property purchase of €250,000 (£215,000) can grant you a visa..

6. Currency benefits

Those who keep their home in the UK and opt to rent abroad lose in more ways than one. 

For those receiving rental income from the UK, which they convert to their new currency to pay their rent for their property abroad, they lose out financially. This loss comes from making small, frequent payments at poorer exchange rates. 

By selling the property in the UK and sending the proceeds overseas as a lump sum, they are likely to receive a better exchange rate. 

7. Taking the pets

If you’re taking a cat, dog or more exotic pet with you, or would like to get one when you get there, not every landlord will welcome them. Many rental contracts will have a no pets clause. So, to be safe, it’s best to purchase your own property so you don’t have to worry about landlords’ preferences with pets. 

In conclusion, while renting may offer flexibility in the short term, buying a property abroad can provide long-term financial benefits, freedom and stability. It’s an investment not only in bricks and mortar but also in your family’s lifestyle and future.