Where can South Africans buy property overseas?

Buying a residential property abroad can be an attractive option for investors looking to diversify their risk, but what are the restrictions on non-resident property purchases in popular South African expat destinations?

South Africans buying property abroad

United Kingdom

There are currently no restrictions on non-residents buying property in the UK.


Foreign investors are not allowed to buy existing homes, they can buy new properties, off-the-plan apartments and vacant land. If you’re a non-resident foreigner and you want to buy any residential property in Australia, you will first need to obtain approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board.

New Zealand

In August 2018, New Zealand passed a law prohibiting the majority of non-residents from buying existing homes, although they are able to buy newly built apartments in large developments, subject to a restriction on the overall percentage of the apartment block owned by non-residents.


Unlike Australia and New Zealand, Canada does not prohibit non-residents from owning property.  In some areas, non-residents are subject to a Non-Resident Speculation Tax of 15% of the purchase price, payable on purchase.

United States

Foreign buyers are eligible to buy single-family homes, condominiums, duplexes, triplexes, quadraplexes and townhomes.


There are no restriction on non-residents owning property in the Netherlands.


There are no restrictions on non-residents owning property in Germany.


Note this is a general summary of foreign direct property investment regulations for the countries listed.  There may be tax implications which affect any non-resident property purchase, and you should seek professional advice before considering any transaction.