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What savvy investors consider before moving abroad

Vicky Devine

A combination of higher property prices and people’s general sense of adventure has left many looking to move overseas, but finances can take a hit without proper planning.

Speaking with Nest Egg, general manager of Mortgage Express Australia Vicky Devine has shared some general advice to help Aussies successfully transition abroad.

Consider your retirement plans

Retirees can benefit from a move overseas with an increase in funding due to a cheaper cost of living.


For retirees looking to move abroad, Ms Devine suggested there is a potential to gain an advantage depending on the country chosen by the retiree.

Some of the advantages include cheaper cost of living, cheaper property prices, higher amenity living and, given the purchasing power of Australians, a higher standard of living.

However, Ms Devine also warned that the trade-off could be to an inferior healthcare system.

Negatively you are away from Australian health providers and systems — medical systems may not be as good as Australia and you may, in fact, have to return for some services,” Ms Devine said.

Will Australians lose their benefits?

The benefits sacrificed vary greatly from country to country, so it depends on what country an Australian retiree ends up in.

Entitlements such as the pension, Defence Health scheme could be lost, and some countries could hold transfers.

Due to this, investors should do their research and speak to proper authorities such as an Australian consultant before embarking on their next adventure.

Foreign ownership restrictions

Many countries have foreign ownership restrictions on property, so it is imperative that any adventurous Australian does their research before trying to buy.

As Ms Devine stated: “Most countries have foreign restrictions on property purchase and then length of being able to stay there. Some countries may change the law, you can buy and be co-owner, and then if government change[s], you could lose the ownership of the property.”

Best practice

While it might seem fun to pack up and move abroad on a whim, it is vital that individuals take the time out to plan out their next move.

Overseas laws, customs, banking, health and tax considerations all need to be taken into consideration before changing locations.

Speak to migration services, financial planner, private banker, health provider, legal assistance with foreign purchase, taxation guidance, consultants and Australian consulates,” Ms Devine said.

What does a million Australian dollars buy?

While the Australian property market can be seen as expensive, comparison-wise many other nations are facing similar issues in housing affordability. With this, what can be bought for a Sydney property can vary greatly.

Ms Devine suggested that in New York or Hong Kong, if investors are moving purely for financial benefits, they might find themselves in a worse financial position.

However, if investors choose a country in South-East Asia, for example, they could potentially end up with much more bang for their buck.

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What savvy investors consider before moving abroad
Vicky Devine
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