Ray Woods, a spokesman for UK-based www.maltabuyproperty.co.uk said: “Residential property purchase should be approached with the same rigor as a business investment.
“It may seem self evident but buying a property is a very different proposition from being on holiday.
“If long-term value is about location, location, location – then the current troubles in many parts of the World such as Thailand, Greece, The Middle East, Africa and some parts of Eastern Europe are timely reminders that not all locations are models of stable and peaceful democracy.
“For many potential buyers, the purchase of an overseas property is a very big step that can be fraught with anxiety. This anxiety can be minimised by undertaking rigorous research in advance.
“Increasingly, we are seeing clients interested in permanent relocation renting properties for six months or a year before purchasing. This is a relatively risk-free way of finding out if life as an ex-pat is for them.
“We always recommend to potential clients that they begin their planning by drawing up their own criteria. This helps them to be more confident in their choice of country or region. For example, language barriers, local or regional government planning considerations, sound property rights, resale opportunities, climatic and geophysical concerns – and of course, political stability should all be taken into account at the outset.
“Unfortunately for many, their attention is focused too heavily on the initial buying price. This is understandable, but it can lead to a dream becoming a nightmare. Exit costs for example, can be higher than anticipated diminishing the true return.
“Those interested in purchasing should undertake their research thoroughly – and this does not mean in the local café, bar or taxi!
“They should be prepared to pay for professional advice and undertake research visits – just as if they were investing in a business.”
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