Australia is a popular investment location – famous for its outdoor lifestyle and strong housing market.

So how can you, as foreigner, get in on the action?

And do you need to be a resident to do so?

Australia’s buoyant residential property market, economic stability, natural beauty and favourable climate have made it an attractive destination for international real estate investors. However, the rules for non-residents buying property in Australia are complex and subject to regular changes. This can make the process of applying for approval to buy an investment property difficult for foreigners to understand. On top of that, there are penalties for breaches of the foreign investment rules.

It takes a company like ours to guide you through all steps to a successful property purchase and investment.

A key consideration when buying real estate in Australia is that non-residents must buy new properties or vacant land on which a new development is planned. The Australian Government has implemented this policy as it wants non-resident investors to add to the Australian housing stock rather than compete with residents for existing properties, which are in short supply in some areas. It also wants to avoid foreigners contributing to property price rises through speculative investment. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.

Can you as non-residents buy property in Australia?


Combined investment in commercial and residential real estate by foreign buyers totalled AU$87.8 billion last financial year (2020), according to the Foreign Investment Review Board’s (FIRB) annual report. Commercial property made up $73 billion of this, while residential property made up the remaining $14.8 billion.

Investors from the United States ($19.6 billion) were the biggest buyers of Australian real estate for the second consecutive year, followed by investors from Canada ($13.3 billion), Singapore ($9.8 billion), Hong Kong ($9.3 billion) and China ($6.1 billion).

Can you as non-residents Buy property in Australia?

Foreigners can buy an investment property in Australia but there are some rules and regulations around the type of housing they can purchase.

Foreigners, or non-residents, must apply for approval to buy their desired investment property.

The types of dwellings foreign investors can purchase are:

New buildings

These are usually approved without conditions.

Buying a home to live

Foreign investors can buy a home to live in if they are a temporary Australian resident. However, the home must be sold if you leave it unless you become a citizen or permanent resident.

Vacant land

Investors will be approved for this provided construction of a dwelling is planned to be completed within four years.

Established dwellings

Foreign investors can only buy these if they plan to knock the existing dwelling down and replace it with a greater number than there were previously. For example, if a foreign investor bought a house, demolished it and replaced it with two townhouses.

What types of property can temporary residents buy in Australia?

Foreigners on a temporary visa are allowed to purchase a single established dwelling or new dwelling in which they live during their time in Australia, once they receive FIRB approval. Alternatively, they can purchase a vacant block of land if they plan to construct a dwelling in which to live.

In addition to purchasing a property in which to live, temporary residents of Australia may buy an unlimited number of new properties for investment purposes dependent upon FIRB approval for each development.

Why invest in Property in Australia?

Investing in Australian property has always been popular with investors looking for strong returns and stability.


Australia’s property market has a proven record of stable prices

What’s the big difference between Australia and other property markets?

  • Around 70% of Australian households are homeowners so there is relatively little speculation.
  • There’s been a consistent undersupply of housing in most capital cities.
  • Australia has never had prices fall more than 20% in one year.

Consistent growth performance

  • Australian properties have enjoyed consistent capital growth over the last 100 years, with property prices doubling roughly every 7 to 10 years.
  • One of the reasons behind the growth is Australia’s chronic housing shortage in many of our major cities.
  • The population is growing at a rate much faster than dwellings are being constructed. The primary reason for this is a consistent high level of immigration and strong employment demand.
  • Australia has responsible lending legislation and prudent economic management via the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), reducing the risk of asset price bubbles.

It is easy to invest in Australia

Many countries have very restrictive foreign investment laws or banking regulations that make it difficult to invest.

This is not the case in Australia:

You don’t need to set up a company in Australia or buy with a citizen.

Government approval for foreign citizens can be fairly quick

There’s strong and effective consumer protection legislation in Australia through the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 (NCCP Act).

Australia’s legal system is based on the UK system just like Hong Kong or Singapore

There’s minimal political, social or economic instability in Australia.

Australia is a great place to live

Australia is well known for its diverse international cities, outdoor lifestyle and breathtaking natural beauty.

Queensland (QLD)

Queensland (QLD) is famous for its wonderful beaches, reefs, 300+ sunny days in the year and laid back lifestyle. Brisbane is the largest city in QLD. If you prefer less hype, Gold Coast and Byron Bay are the perfect coastal areas to enjoy.

Victoria (VIC)

Victoria (VIC) has a stunning coastline stretching to South Australia (SA). Melbourne is vibrant city with European feel and diversity.

New South Wales (NSW)

New South Wales (NSW) for the tranquil Blue Mountains, beautiful coast, strong economy and home to most lively and world famous city: Sydney.

The Northern Territory (NT)

The Northern Territory (NT) is renowned for its distinctive outback experience.

Western Australia (WA)

Western Australia (WA) has stunning beaches and provides a ‘far away’ life-style like no other.

South Australia (WA)

Enjoy the peaceful and less crowded part of Australia with the flair of a world-class city: Adelaide.

Over the next 50 years, it is expected that the trend of migration to Australia will continue and property prices will rise as a result.