Can I buy property in Australia?
Whether one can buy property in Australia is a question commonly asked by foreigners wanting to reside here either temporarily or permanently. And why wouldn’t you want to live here? Australian cities including Sydney and Melbourne are commonly ranked among the best cities to live in.
While Australian citizens and permanent residents are not restricted in purchasing property, non-residents and temporary residents must comply with the guidelines as set out by the Australian Government’s Foreign Investment Review Board or FIRB.
Both foreign non-residents and temporary residents are required to inform the FIRB of intended purchases of (residential) real estate. However, the guidelines differ for both groups.
Generally, foreign non-residents are not permitted to purchased established dwellings. That is, they can purchase new dwellings, off-the–plan properties under construction or yet to be built, or vacant land for residential development within 24 months. They are not permitted to purchase established dwellings. That is, property that has been previously occupied (for 12 months or more).
You are required to notify the FIRB of any intended acquisition of residential real estate. In this regard, the FIRB refers to a temporary resident as a person holding a visa permitting them to stay for at least 12 months continuously, or a person who may hold a bridging visa while they are awaiting a decision on their permanent visa application.
Similar to foreign non-residents, temporary residents are permitted to purchase new dwellings, off-the-plan properties and vacant land. Additionally, they can buy an already established dwelling, but only if it is to be their primary place of residence.
As you can see, there are no restrictions for Australian citizens and permanent residents. Meanwhile foreign non-residents and temporary residents must comply with FIRB guidelines. For further information on FIRB acquisition guidelines, go to: