Buying Your Dream Home in Australia

Without a doubt, one of the great things about moving to Australia is the opportunity of buying your dream home. Yes, we’ve had many a debate here about which houses are cheaper between the UK and Australia, but there is no doubt which houses are bigger.

In fact, as you will have read in my post My House Is Bigger Than Your House. It’s Official! – Australian houses on now the biggest in the world…….

Dream HouseThat isn’t one of them!

But if you are emigrating to Australia, one of your major problems is where are you going to live when you get here? Choosing your dream home takes time so do you go into rented accommodation when you arrive, which may mean committing to a six or 12 month contract? Or do you do something ridiculous like buy your dream home on the Internet without seeing it, like we did?

You can read about that in Moving to Australia – Part Thirteen.

If this is a dilemma you are facing, I could have just the help you need. More on that in a minute, but first we need to address this question.

Who Exactly Can Buy a House in Australia?

According to the latest information, Australian citizens (obviously) and foreigners with permanent residency status can buy Australian residential property.

If I am reading it correctly, everybody else needs FIRB approval. FIRB are the Australian government’s Foreign Investment Review Board. Their rules change all the time, they last did so on 24 April 2010. Since then all temporary residents are required to get FIRB approval before they can buy.

There is one possible exception. You can buy a new property “off plan” – which means it hasn’t been built yet, if the developer has already obtained approval to sell dwellings to foreign buyers. But of course, if you do that you still end up going into rented for, probably, at least 12 months.

For all the latest information, visit

Want to Buy Your Dream Home Now?

Here’s that help I mentioned earlier. I got an e-mail the other day from IWC Media (makers of ‘Location Location Location’ and ‘Relocation Relocation’) asking if I could help them find suitable candidates for their upcoming TV programme ‘Phil Down Under’. They are looking for Brits keen to find their perfect home in Australia.

You need to be available and able to buy in November/December 2010 and you can either be here already, living in rented, or you could be still in the UK waiting to relocate. Either way, you will need that FIRB approval if you do not already have permanent residency status.

If you’re interested, you’ll probably want to move fast. You can register over at…..

If you are tempted, but not sure, perhaps you’ll want to read the full press release which they sent me…….IWC

An IWC Media Production for Channel

Channel 4
8 x 60 minutes

Phil Down Under

Property guru Phil Spencer from C4’s ‘Location Location Location’ is taking his property finding and negotiating skills along with a large dose of English charm, down under. He’s heading to the other side of the world to help emigrating Brits find their perfect home in Australia.

In each episode, Phil will be helping one British couple navigate their way through the Australian property system. Phil will help find, survey and negotiate the deal on their dream pad. From harbour-side homes in Sydney and Beach pads in Byron Bay to Ranches in the Outback and Retreats in the Rainforest, no property search is too daunting for Phil.

For the return of this exciting series we are on the hunt for people who are looking to emigrate to Australia before the end of 2010 or people who have already made the move and now need help with their property search. They must be available and able to buy in November/December 2010. They must have secured approval from the FIRB (Foreign Investment Review Board) without which they can’t buy property in Australia. If they’ve got the papers and they would like the help of a dedicated team who will assist them find the house of their dreams all they have to do is follow this link and fill in the application form.

Visa Assessment Service
{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Arsalan khan October 16, 2017, 1:36 am |

    Hi. I am from Pakistan I want to move Australia for investment purposes so tell me the whole process in detail s and also mention the initial investment.thanks..

    • BobinOz October 16, 2017, 9:31 pm |

      You would need to talk to an investment professional and a MARA registered migration agent about that. It will be a complicated process, so you would want to do it properly.

  • nikhil chawla August 4, 2016, 6:07 am |

    Hi bob ,
    I am a Australia PR holder from india. I have received my PR a month ago. I am planning to move australia in oct 2016. I want to buy a properties in Sydney suburbs. I wanted to know that is there any government based portal where i can see the properties and actual rates to buy the same. What is the procedure to initiate the process of buying the property in sydney or near by suburbs.

    Will appreciate your response.

    Thanks and regards

  • Liana Zora January 13, 2016, 8:27 am |

    Hi Bob,

    We hold 188 visa and we plan to come to Queensland. We have three boys 12,11,9 and a girl 7 years old.
    Please do you think it is wise to buy a house with a loan or it will be better to rent a house?
    Thanks a lot!

    • BobinOz January 13, 2016, 9:41 pm |

      Ah, that’s not a question I can answer for you, that’s really down to your personal preference. We purchased a house straight away because we were absolutely sure we were coming here to stay and we were certain about where we wanted to live.

      So it depends on your situation, but generally speaking I would advise people to try and secure a six-month rental when they get here so that it gives them a chance to have a good look around, get the feel for the place, and check out some of the suburbs. Only after doing that can you have some kind of idea about where you really want to live.

      There are a lot of expenses attached to buying a house; stamp duty, solicitors fees, that sort of thing, and then more of the same if you decide to sell. So you need to take those into account as well.

      • Liana Zora January 14, 2016, 7:50 am |

        Thank you so much for your advice!!!

  • Neill & Sarah Hudson September 6, 2012, 8:48 am |

    Hi Phil, we live in Canada at the moment, we are thinking of moving down under to Australia, for our family of 4 boys under 10, where would you recommend to start out new life.
    kind regards
    Neill & Sarah

  • BobinOz September 2, 2010, 12:15 am |

    The wait can be painful, I know. But if you get there in the end it’s all worth it. Good luck Chris.

  • Chris August 31, 2010, 3:29 am |

    Just wish my ENS decision would hurry up and come through, I would apply in a shot!

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