Can an Indian buy a property in Australia

Emigrating to Australia: Working and Living Down Under

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The endless expanse of the outback, miles of beaches, the good weather and friendly people - Australia looks like a paradise on earth for many who are willing to emigrate. From adventures in the wilderness to the exciting nightlife in the hip metropolises, the continent state has a lot to offer its residents. However, immigrants should not be blinded by the advantages and above all should not leave in a hurry. Because although modern Australia has predominantly European roots, there are many local peculiarities that need to be taken into account when living, working and living.

Although Australia is a classic immigration country, the bureaucratic hurdles for new Australians should not be underestimated. Since the 2000s, the Australian government has gradually tightened immigration policy; Visa requirements and work permits are not easy to obtain. Therefore, emigration should be planned long - several months in advance. How emigration succeeds and what you need to know about life, housing and renting locally.

facts and figures

Area / location:Australia lies between the Indian and Pacific Oceans in the southern hemisphere. With just under 7,760,000 square kilometers, Australia is almost 22 times the size of Germany.

Population:A little over 25 million people currently live in Australia (as of January 2019). Above all, the coasts of the continent state are more densely populated, while large parts of the interior - the outback - are sparsely populated or not at all. Every fifth Australian lives in the largest city, Sydney, while the capital is the much smaller Canberra: around 370,000 people live here.

Climate: Large parts of the hinterland consist of deserts and semi-deserts. On the coasts there is more rainfall. As in Europe, there are also trained seasons in Australia. However, these are exactly the opposite of the European ones: During the German summer, it is winter in Australia.

Language: Even if there is no official language, English practically takes on this task. Australian English has some regional features in terms of vocabulary and pronunciation. But if you speak and understand British or American English, you will usually get away with it in Australia.

Currency: The official currency is the Australian dollar. The cost of living is slightly higher than the German average, and Australians pay by credit card more often than Germans.

Politics: Australia is a parliamentary democracy. The official head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, but she only takes on representative tasks. The country's head of government is the prime minister.

Residence permit & work permit

Although Australia is a classic immigration country, there are high hurdles for anyone who wants to live there permanently. For German citizens, one is initially sufficient to enter the country visa, which can be applied for relatively easily at the Australian embassy. It is sufficient for tourists and business people.

Permanent residence permits and getting a work permit is much more difficult. To make matters worse, there are a good two dozen different types of visa, each of which must be applied for in a separate procedure and contain different requirements. It is therefore absolutely advisable to contact the Australian embassy for advice.

Is ideal it when immigrants already signed one employment contract with an Australian company or an invitation from a government agency. Then there are very good prospects for a permanent residence permit. For most emigrants, however, it is certainly difficult to get a firm commitment in advance.

For those who want to emigrate without a permanent job, there are so-called "Lists of eligible skilled occupations" (Lists of qualified occupations). These lists show professions that are particularly in demand. Often these are academic professions, especially engineers, doctors and IT specialists, but craftsmen are also urgently needed. As a rule, emigrants only have a chance of obtaining a work visa if they can demonstrate work experience in these areas.

The lists are updated regularly and can also be viewed via the Australian embassy. Workers who have the lists of eligible skilled occupations want to get a visa between 18 and 44 years to be old and, moreover, to be good and demonstrable English proficiency feature. Also should no serious criminal record are in the police clearance certificate and no serious and especially contagious diseases present, such as tuberculosis.

Find a job

In Australia, too, jobs are mainly advertised on corresponding online portals. There is nothing wrong with applying directly to Australian companies from Germany - nowadays the interview can often easily be carried out by video call. Good English skills are required for this - but these are essential for the emigration project anyway. Most portals such as "Seek" are privately organized. There is also the official state job site "Jobsearch". In addition, there are the job pages on the homepages of Australian daily newspapers.

There is also a contact point in Germany: The Central Foreign and Specialized Placement Service (ZAV) of the Federal Employment Agency is a government agency that places employees abroad. In addition to specific job offers, there is also a lot of additional information about living and working abroad.


Insurance, bank account, reporting requirements

Anyone who emigrates and therefore stays abroad permanently is obliged by law to go to the old place of residence to unsubscribe. Section 17 of the Federal Registration Act provides that this must be done within two weeks of moving out. If you want to deregister before you move out, you can do so at the earliest one week before you move out. However, the move has far-reaching consequences. The entitlement to child benefit expires if the entire family is deregistered and participation in elections is only possible with a separate application.

A registration requirement in Australiaas required by law in Germany, there is no such thing. There is only the option of registering voluntarily at the German diplomatic mission abroad.

Get health insurance in Australia

The topic Insurance is very important for expats, especially health insurance is advisable. Just like Australian citizens, anyone who has a permanent residence permit is automatically entitled to basic medical coverage Medicare. Those who only have a temporary residence permit, on the other hand, are completely independently responsible for any medical care and have to pay themselves.

But also who has a right to Medicare does not have the same guarantees as someone with health insurance in Germany. Medicare only covers the absolute basic medical needs and emergency care. Visits to the dentist, for example, are completely eliminated and are not taken over. If you want better coverage, you can first contact an international insurer who offers special offers for emigrants.

There are also private insurance providers on site, with different services and costs. These cover significantly more areas than Medicare. Emigrants should compare services and prices well and opt for such an insurance if they want a German level of coverage in their new home.

open a bank account

An Australian one is important for emigrants Bank account, as domestic transfers are much easier, faster and usually cheaper in the long run. People who emigrate from Germany can usually not keep their German accounts if they are no longer registered in Germany.

Whereas in the past an account had to be opened personally on site, in the age of digitization it is now possible to apply for an Australian account from Germany. Several providers make it possible to open an account online from abroad and then pick up the bank card at a branch on site.

As in Germany, which bank you choose depends on the services you want. Emigrants should therefore compare the service offer and the account management fees with different credit houses in advance.

Pension entitlements

A bilateral agreement between Australia and Germany has existed since 2003. This means that pension entitlements that were acquired in one of the two countries are also recognized in the other country.


Organize the move

The decision has been made, the big step is imminent: Even more important than with a domestic move is the right planning of the move. When packing and planning, it is now particularly worthwhile to clear it out - because every kilo has to be transported around half the globe at great expense. Therefore, emigrants should think carefully in advance to what extent they would like to take their household effects with them and what they might prefer to buy new locally.

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Transport of household items

Furniture can be transported to Australia by shipping container, but you can also rent furnished furniture or buy new furniture on site as an alternative. The bottom line is that both can be cheaper than taking your own cupboards and chests of drawers with you from Germany. Container loads also have to make the long sea route and the customs inspection behind them and may not arrive at their destination until well after the emigrants - four to six weeks should definitely be planned for the transport.

German electrical appliances can also be operated in Australia - voltage and frequency are identical in both countries - but the plugs and sockets have different shapes. So if you really want to transfer your kitchen mixer into the new phase of life, you have to take care of a plug adapter.

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Import regulations

Personal items - from your own clothing to furniture - are generally allowed duty free if they have been in use for at least a year. Customs formalities are still required. The best thing to do is to contact an international moving company who will take care of the transport, including all bureaucratic tasks. Money can be saved through so-called additional loads. Larger cargo loads are simply filled with smaller items, thereby saving costs.

If you want to save yourself a lot of stress, you can hire a moving advisor from Germany. They can help you with the organization and estimate the moving costs for you.

Entrants under 18 years of age electronic devices and jewelry are also allowed in the Value up to 450 AUD (Australian dollar) import duty-free. At For adults, this limit is $ 900. You can also enter the country with up to 2.25 liters of alcoholic beverages and 25 cigarettes. If you bring more, you will have to pay customs duties.

Australia follows a strict policy Quarantine policy. Food as well as animal and plant products must be declared upon entry. A subsequent investigation will determine whether the goods will be imported or confiscated and disposed of. Most fruit, vegetable, meat and egg products are not allowed to be imported, only canned food can pass through customs.

The Import of your own car is possible, but time-consuming. First of all, an import permit (vehicle import improval) at the Department of Infrastructure and Transport be requested. Only with this can further approval steps, including a vehicle quarantine, take place. Since there are high fees and possibly import duties as well as considerable effort, it is only advisable in exceptional cases to bring your own car.

Legal regulation for pets

Bringing pets to Australia is subject to strict regulations. Dogs and cats must be in quarantine for at least 10 days on arrival and may only be accommodated in the aircraft in the cargo area. The owner also needs a valid import permit for his animal and a veterinarian must certify the animal's health within five days prior to departure. In addition, dogs and cats must have an implanted identification chip and a rabies vaccination. In addition, there must be immunity against rabies, which must be confirmed in writing by a veterinarian. Puppies that are still being suckled and pregnant animals are not allowed in. Certain breeds of dogs are also on a black list and are not allowed to be imported into Australia.


Living in Australia

Almost 90 percent of the Australian population lives in coastal cities and their suburbs. The vast majority of jobs can be found here and there are by far the largest real estate markets in the country. Until a few years ago, apart from the centers of the largest cities, single-family homes were the standard Australian home. A rented apartment, on the other hand, was considered a sign of poverty.

In recent years, however, this has changed in many cities and renting has become more common - even if it is still less common than in Germany. In the big cities like Melbourne and Sydney in particular, however, the purchase prices have risen so much in recent years that the idea of ​​renting has inevitably established itself: Many Australians simply could no longer afford their own home there.


Rent a property

Hotspots like Sydney have comparatively high rental costs and prices are currently still rising significantly. In contrast, there are large stretches of land in the hinterland, the outback, where real estate and land are very cheap. However, the Australian outback cannot be compared to living in a village in Germany. Anyone who opts for a rental house away from the big cities, for example, may be several hours' drive from the nearest neighbor or shopping and work opportunities.

In addition, emigrants should assume that the properties do not meet German standards in many ways and, for example, often do not have a basement and are less massive. It is also common in Australia for brokers to broker rental properties. The costs are usually borne by the person who places the order, usually the landlord.

Rental Legislation in Australia

If you move to Australia from traditionally tenant-friendly Germany, you will probably rub your eyes with some laws and customs. Tenancy law is largely a matter of the federal states and thus differs in regional, it but generally grants the landlord significantly more rights. The rent is not generally paid monthly, but sometimes weekly. If payment is not made, landlords can very quickly terminate the residents of their property. In the state of Victoria, for example, it is enough to owe two weeks' rent. Then the landlord can give notice of another 14 days. The tenant must therefore move out immediately at the end of the month in default.

Also the Tenant privacy is less protected than is the case in Germany. In Victoria, for example, landlords have the right to come by for a general inspection twice a year. In certain circumstances, you only need to give 24 hours notice of your visits.

The general distribution of duties, however, is similar to that in Germany: The landlord is responsible for all repairs to the building. In the event of an emergency, such as water damage, tenants can commission repairs on their own up to a certain upper cost limit. The tenant is responsible for paying his rent in good time and for reporting any damage to the property to the owner immediately.

The notice periods are usually much shorter than in Germany. In many states, it's just 28 days. If a tenant wants to move out, it is therefore advisable to give notice in writing at the end of the previous month and either hand over the letter in person or send it to the landlord by registered mail. In special cases, moving out within 14 days is also permitted - for example, if the tenant needs care in a facility.If security is not guaranteed and there is danger to life and limb, immediate termination can also be given.

The Australian housing advertisement

It is different from Germany furnished rents widespread. When reading the apartment advertisement, it is therefore important to pay attention to whether an object unfurbished (unfurnished) or fully furbished (fully furnished) is offered. There are also mixed forms - in which case it is usually precisely listed which furniture is available. The size an object is usually not measured in square meters, but with the number of bedrooms specified. A living space is required. A two bedroom- Property (a property with two bedrooms) accordingly has a total of three rooms.

Another regional peculiarity is the temporary rental. Many properties are rented out for an indefinite period, as is customary in Germany. But there are also apartments and houses that are for you fixed term (fixed period) - usually for a period of 6 to 12 months. If the tenant stays in the property for longer than the specified period without signing a new fixed-term contract, the rental agreement automatically becomes an open-ended one. Under certain circumstances, the rental contracts can therefore be extended or expired. However, the landlord is not obliged to get involved and can also insist on moving out after the deadline has expired.

A deposit is also common in Australia. However, it is comparatively low and should be in the range of four to six weekly rents.


Buy a property

Emigrants without permanent residence are actually not allowed to buy Australian property. The only exception are objects in so-called tourist zones (Tourist zones). Anyone who is allowed to stay in Australia for an indefinite period, on the other hand, is entitled, just like an Australian, to buy regular property. Probably the biggest obstacle is then the high purchase price in the big cities and the suburbs within commuting distance.

Although the prices in the coveted locations can be very high, the houses are usually quite simply built. Single-family houses often have a simple wooden frame, thin walls and no basement. In many cases, insulation is permeable - which can be quite uncomfortable even in the rather mild Australian winter. Sometimes properties are even offered that have no heating facilities at all.

If you are looking for European standards, you should look for real estate in double brick- or brick cavity- Looking for style. These are names for more massive construction methods, as they are common in large parts of Europe. Although these properties are offered less often, they are more massive and better insulated.

The broker search

Very few Australians sell their property themselves. In most cases, this is done by a broker. The client bears the costs, usually the seller. However, if you don't want to run from broker to broker to view the respective offers, you can hire one yourself as a buyer. The advantage is that a broker commissioned by the buyer also represents the buyer's interests and can search for a property that perfectly fits.

In addition, it is quite common for the seller to indicate a list price that is up to ten percent inflated for a property. When the purchase is made, this price is then negotiated down. Those who do not trust themselves to do this are also in good hands with a broker. For this, however, the searcher must also take over the broker's commission as soon as a sales contract is concluded.

Australian brokers must have a state broker license, or work for a licensed broker. Professional brokers are also usually members of the respective broker associations, which are organized at the state level. Another very high quality mark is accreditation at national level by the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA). This certifies that the broker has many years of professional experience and professionalism in his work.

Real estate is becoming more and more common, especially in hotspots such as Sydney or Melbourne auctioned. Because there is particularly high demand here, it is not uncommon for dozens of interested parties to bid on a house, driving the price up significantly.

The purchase agreement

The legal requirements and processes of the buying process very complex and also vary from state to state. Therefore, only the most important steps can be mentioned in the following: If an interested party finds a suitable property and if an agreement is reached with the seller or the broker on the condition, the price and possible repairs still pending, these results are translated into a sales contract (Contract of Sale) transferred. Usually this is done by the real estate agent.

The buyer and seller then carefully examine the contract again, improve it - if necessary - and finally sign it. It is advisable to get a Lawyer (Solicitor), who can advise you on the purchase, check the sales contract for traps and guide you through the administrative language of Australia. An attorney can also verify that the contract has all the necessary annexes such as certificates of ownership and sewer plans that must be provided by the seller. The type and number of these certificates vary from state to state. In addition, a FIRB approvalbe necessary, so a confirmation by the Foreign Investment Review Board (the Foreign Investment Audit Committee). A lawyer can also clarify whether this is the case.

Is the contract from both sides under the testimony of one Notary signed, it becomes a legally binding document. As a rule, the buyer must immediately make a down payment of 10 percent of the purchase price.

This is followed by the Transfer of Land, that is, the transfer of land ownership rights. A so-called Stamp duty due, which is designed differently, but is by and large comparable to the German real estate transfer tax. On the official homepage of the Australian government there are links to so-called Land Transfer Calculators, i.e. calculation masks for the amount of the respective real estate transfer tax - sorted by state. This completes the most important steps in buying a property and the buyer is the new owner. An appropriately trained lawyer can also check whether there are additional registration fees or taxes.

The financing

Even if immigrants with a permanent residence permit are actually not considered creditworthy for the first two years, the banks also grant loans to new Australians when buying property. Because the home can be used as security. The most important requirement here is a good financial cushion. The buyer should bring at least 20, but better 30 to 40 percent of the purchase price. Then loan financing is realistic. Professional Mortgage Brokers (Mortage Broker) can also mediate. It is worthwhile to carefully compare their offers with direct offers from the credit institutions and to have several offers made.

Building inspection

If you want to protect yourself from nasty surprises, you should have your property thoroughly checked before buying. This includes standard items such as the electrics or any water damage. Termite infestation is also a widespread problem in Australia. A good Inspector (Expert) can provide clarity here. It can be advisable to get your own appraiser and not to rely on a recommendation from the broker. This is the only way to ensure that you receive a neutral assessment. In most states, such a check is voluntary, but in some it is a mandatory part of the purchase process.

In Australia, there are annual taxes on property that must be paid by the owners. The amount varies from state to state and is based on the value of a property. A rough guideline is approximately $ 1,300 per year for the average Australian home.

Hannes Wolf

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