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Questions and Answers

– Can a foreign citizen purchase real estate in the US?

– Yes, anybody can own a property in the US.

 

– Are there any special steps that need to be followed or anything done differently for non-US citizens?

– No. The process is no different from an American citizen purchasing a property.

 

– How much are the closing costs?

– Approximately 2% of purchase price. 

 

– What are the most common expenses of ownership?

– Utilities (water, electricity, cable TV, etc.) – costs will vary depending on usage; Community fees if any – vary by community; Property Insurance – varies de pending on the area, property and insurance company; Property Taxes – calculated by the county based on assessed value and county tax rate.

 

– Will I receive clear title on the US property I purchase? 

– Once the property has settled, you will have free and clear title.

 

– Does US law require me to purchase the property on my own name? 

– Not necessarily, the best structure will depend on your personal investment goals and circumstances. Some investors purchase in their own individual name whilst others choose to invest using a Limited Liability Company (LLC) which is used to provide several legal and tax advantages. 

 

– How will I collect the rent from my investment property? 

– All rental funds collected by the property manager will be deposited into your nominated US bank account. If you need help in setting up a US bank account, Florida Property Investments can assist you.

 

– What is the Capital Gains Tax? 

– This varies according to state, but if the property is owned for more than a year, the rate can amount to anything between 8% and 15%.

 

– What is the timeline of buying a property in the US?

– Generally it will take 2-4 weeks to buy a property.

 

– What is the Title Insurance?

– The lender will require title insurance to protect against any unforeseen claims against the property. Title insurance can also be purchased to protect the buyer as well. The title company will perform a search to insure that clear title can be passed at the closing and will write the required insurance policy. Costs vary with the amount of coverage, with most homebuyers paying 300 to 1,200.

 

– Do you charge a buyer’s fee?

– No. Florida Property Investments is paid by the Seller.

 

– Do I have to travel to Florida to buy a property?

– No. Some of our customers will make a property investment without travelling to the United States. However, we organize viewing trips on a regular basis.

 

– Is the property freehold or leasehold?

– We only sell freehold property in the United States.

 

– Who will manage my property?

– Florida Property Investments has selected well-established and professional property management partners in Florida. We also employ a Quality Control Manager to ensure our clients satisfaction in the after-sales timeframe.

 

– What are the typical property management fees?

– Property Management Fees are typically 8-10% of the monthly rental income. Some firms may charge a Finder’s Fee for finding new tenants.

 

– What kind of visibility will I receive from you after I have made a purchase?

– We maintain a unique, online login system for landlords to keep up-to-date on their investment portfolios. We issue quarterly Investment Performance Reports to our clients. In addition to this, we are of course available to our clients over the telephone and through email or Skype.

 

– Who is responsible to pay the Home Owner’s Association Fees?   

– The payment of the HOA fees always remains the landlord’s responsibility, but will actually be paid by the property management company from the rental income.

 

– Who will file my tax returns in the US?

– The property management company will make sure you comply with all laws and regulations in the US.

 

– Do I need to furnish my property?

– Not unless you would like to do holiday rentals. Generally, long-term tenants in the US will bring their own furniture.

 

– What about hurricanes? What happens if my property is destroyed by a hurricane?

– There are insurance policies which will cover for any natural catastrophe damages.

 

– Can I stay in my apartment?

– Yes – if the property is empty, you can notify the property management company that you will be travelling and using the apartment for accomodation.

 

– What if I end up with a bad tenant?

– This is highly unlikely as our management partners have a thorough tenant screening procedure. However, if you do end up with a non-paying tenant, the contracts are written up to allow for a swift eviction procedure through the local Sherrif’s Office.

 

– Do you also assist in selling my property?

– Yes. We work closely together with our US management partners who are all licensed property brokers.

 

– Who are Section 8 tenants?

– In addition to renting out your property to private tenants, you can also lease your property to Section 8 tenants. If somebody qualifies for the Section 8 government program, a part (or all) of their rent is paid by the state. An advantage of this is that part or all of your rental income is guaranteed as such, as the rent is coming directly from the state.