Guide for a Foreigner Buying Property in South Africa



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One of the most common questions asked is, “Can I buy Property in South Africa as a Foreigner”. The simple answer is Yes, buying a property in South Africa as a non-resident is allowed!

If you’re thinking about purchasing a holiday home, an investment property, or even a permanent residence. It’s important to know that property can be owned individually, jointly, or by entities such as companies, or trusts, or similar entities registered outside South Africa.

If you are a non-resident keen to invest in property in South Africa, this is what you must know. Here’s a guide for a foreigner buying property in South Africa.

Can I Secure Residency in South Africa if I Buy a Property?

No, you DONT get permanent residency by buying a property in South Africa.

There are three predominant ways of entering South Africa as a foreigner:

  • On a visitor’s permit for periods up to 90 days for the purpose of taking a holiday, conducting business, for medical treatment, and a host of other defined short-term activities.
  • On a temporary residence permit for periods of up to four years, this is for non-South African citizens who are taking up employment in SA (work permit), acquire an existing business or start a new business on the (Business Permit) and people with two degrees of kinship to a South African citizen or permanent resident by blood or marriage (relatives permit).
  • On a permanent residency permit in South Africa in an appropriate category, like a permanent work position or Retirement – on the basis of a pension or an if you’re wealthy, the Financially Independent Permanent Residence Permit Is also an option. You need to have the equivalent of R12 million worth of global net assets, then you qualify to apply for this permit. Though, this right comes at a pretty penny: the fee is R120,000.

Do I Have to Give Up My Passport When I Become a Permanent Resident in South Africa?

No. South African citizens and residents are allowed to have dual passports.

Do I Have to Pay Taxes?

As a foreigner buying property in South Africa, you are required to register as a South African taxpayer solely for the purposes of their capital gains tax obligation.

Can a Foreigner Get a Home Loan in South Africa?

Yes, foreigners can get a home loan in South Africa. Major banks will offer home loans to Non-residents who can cover the costs and transfer duty of the transaction together with a downpayment for up to 50% of the purchase value of the property.

In order to qualify for a South African mortgage bond, the non-resident will need to provide proof of earnings and comply with the Financial Intelligence Centre Act. This Act, in simple terms, requires identification of the non-resident for money laundering purposes and involves the production of certain documents such as a passport and proof of residential address.

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