Author Topic: How to search for foreign properties?  (Read 7809 times)

aceyou

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How to search for foreign properties?
« on: May 21, 2015, 05:37:58 PM »
Disclaimer: this is purely for fun so that I can dream for the future!

Zillow makes it pretty easy approximate the cost of properties in pretty much any place in the US.  However, when I search for properties in other countries, I don't find anything nearly as helpful.  Am I missing out on better places I could search, or aren't there good sites yet for international listings? 

SwordGuy

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2015, 06:25:44 PM »
No kidding!   Zillow is great for both finding properties and making an initial eval of them for investment purposes.

You can find out how long ago it was bought.  With that info, it's possible to find out the prevailing interest rate on a 30 year mortgage when the property was bought.   Those two nuggets, plus an assumption there was a 30 year mortgage and 5% down lets you use a mortgage calculator to estimate how much they might still owe on the property.   That and a typical realtor commission gives you the ability to make an educated guess as to the lowest price you can offer where they don't have to pony up cash to sell.   That's useful info.


expatartist

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2015, 07:10:33 PM »
Great advice, SwordGuy.
Most countries don't have the lenient lending rules and long-term mortgages of the US, ie even 20% down is pretty low. Good to brush up on local lending norms before doing any calculations.

aceyou

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2015, 07:15:11 PM »
Yup.  I'm mulling the idea of either trying to FIRE asap, or having both my wife and I ride out till we are 48.  If we did that we would both collect a very good pension, plus we'd have a sizable next egg with all our 403 and 457 contributions.  If we decide to ride it out till that point, it would be very feasible for us to purchase a property or two in different parts of the world to act as a base for us to travel from and just enjoy life abroad.  Even though it would be 17-20 years away and the world will have changed a ton by then, it's just fun to play around and think about with what our options could be available to us down the road.  The problem is that I've gotten spoiled by the awesomeness of Zillow, so it's just not as much fun to search for foreign properties:)

aceyou

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2015, 07:17:23 PM »
Great advice, SwordGuy.
Most countries don't have the lenient lending rules and long-term mortgages of the US, ie even 20% down is pretty low. Good to brush up on local lending norms before doing any calculations.

Thanks expatartist, I didn't know that and that's good to know.  Although if I were to purchase something abroad, I'd likely buy it outright.  Either way, all my research is purely for fun anyway. 

jnc

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2015, 07:52:38 AM »
It depends on the country you are looking at. We are currently living in the Netherlands and the equivalent of Zillow here is called Funda (funda.nl). Other developed countries are probably going to have something similar... If you are looking into some developing countries, it might be more difficult though you can always find some websites with listing (whether to trust those websites or not is a totally different question).

aceyou

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2015, 08:10:25 AM »
It depends on the country you are looking at. We are currently living in the Netherlands and the equivalent of Zillow here is called Funda (funda.nl). Other developed countries are probably going to have something similar... If you are looking into some developing countries, it might be more difficult though you can always find some websites with listing (whether to trust those websites or not is a totally different question).

THANKS!  Anyone else who knows of sites like this, keep em coming!!!

Novillero

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2015, 06:37:06 AM »
Ireland is myhome.ie or daft.ie and
Portugal is sapo.pt

expatartist

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2015, 08:43:18 AM »

arebelspy

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2015, 12:40:54 PM »
Keep in mind that many other countries don't have the equivalent of an MLS, and even if there's websites with listings, it won't have everything available.

Often you have to check with multiple "realtors" when actually in the location to find out things that are available (and it will vary from agent to agent what they are listing, and sometimes there's overlap, and the same property might have a different price, etc.). The U.S. is quite a bit more structured in real estate dealings than many places.
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expatartist

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Re: How to search for foreign properties?
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2015, 05:28:34 PM »
Keep in mind that many other countries don't have the equivalent of an MLS, and even if there's websites with listings, it won't have everything available.

Often you have to check with multiple "realtors" when actually in the location to find out things that are available (and it will vary from agent to agent what they are listing, and sometimes there's overlap, and the same property might have a different price, etc.). The U.S. is quite a bit more structured in real estate dealings than many places.

+1 I found one place via a function on one of the sites I mentioned above, which emailed all their realtors with my requirements. Most agents' responses were, "Pfft, you'll only get a basement flat for that price," but one replied with a not-yet-listed rooftop flat to my specs, and I'll sign the papers this summer.

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