It's so easy to fall in love with an exotic location while on holiday, and many of our clients have done just that. So if you are looking to purchase property in the Sutherland Shire but do not live in Australia, you are still eligible to purchase – the process just takes a little more time.
If you are a non-resident purchasing property in Australia from overseas, you are required to obtain approval to purchase from the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) prior to taking out an actual home loan application. The Foreign Investment Review Board is an Australian Government entity that regulates the sale of Australian property to overseas persons and corporations.
If you're a non-resident wishing to purchase vacant residential land in Australia, you will usually be granted approval on the condition that you will commence construction of the home within two years of purchasing. Approval will also usually be granted to buy home units and townhouses off-the-plan, under onstruction or newly constructed (but never occupied), on condition that no more than half of the units in any one development are sold to foreign interests.
It is a requirement for non-residents to account for Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax on Australian property investments. There are tax incentives available in Australia, but you should check the Foreign Investment Review Board site for details or talk to a mortgage broker who has a good understanding of offshore investing.