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Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Old Dec 17th 2009, 4:43 pm
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Default Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Hi there people, my first post here so excuse me being naive and asking a few questions.

I am a 30 year old single male who has a 30k plus income. I'm employed in the Forces and no home in the UK, I'm currently thinking about buying a holiday home in Miami near South Beach as I have numerous friends over there and like the area. (Who wouldn't?!).

How easy is it to get a mortgage?
What are the pit falls?
Has anyone done this before and has advice?
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 4:52 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Nobody is going to entertain those questions until you explain how you will get legal authorisation to live and work in the USA.

Many people want to come to the USA, but over 99% of them don't have a sniff of getting a visa.

Perhaps you could start by giving some info in that area - if you don't have a chance of a visa then all other questions are irrelevant.
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 4:54 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

What about all the Brits that buy holiday homes in FL and come over just on vacation? Maybe that is what he is thinking about
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 4:57 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Sorry like I explained in my post I'm new to this and assumed that you would understand that I meant a holiday home.

I also forgot to ask that how long could I stay in the country for?
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 4:58 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by BritishGuy36 View Post
Nobody is going to entertain those questions until you explain how you will get legal authorisation to live and work in the USA.
It doesn't sound like he wants to live/work here BG. I think he just wants to buy the home for a place to stay when he comes here on holiday (or perhaps as an investment).

Airborne, if you expect to get a mortgage from a US lender, you will face some challenges. You will not have a credit history here, and you don't have a legal right to live here. These are not insurmountable, but they will be difficult to overcome. I read a few folks on here that have had to show their visas or Permanent Resident cards to prove their legal status. One thing that will help is a sizeable deposit (perhaps >30%). Cash can still do some talking.

FYI, owning a home in the US does not give you any legal rights to be here longer than 90 days at a time, and will not guarentee that you can enter the country (only US citizens have a guarantee). So if you abuse the Visa Waiver Program, you can find yourself with a home that you can't visit, unless you qualify for a visa.

Wish I could be of further help.
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 5:00 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Tons of Brits have second homes in the US..
If you want it as a holiday home that you will use a lot then it could be cheaper to own...we use ours about 4/5 months of the year the cost of renting would be a lot more than owning for us..but if you are only coming over for 2/4 weeks a year and have no plans or way to retire to the US then just rent..
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 5:02 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by AirborneBrads271 View Post
Sorry like I explained in my post I'm new to this and assumed that you would understand that I meant a holiday home.

I also forgot to ask that how long could I stay in the country for?
You can visit for 90 days at a time, but I'll tell you, we've had two sad stories this year alone of people in similar situations (work offshore and have no permanent home elsewhere) who felt they "should" be able to stay in their US 'holiday' home on their time off.
Both eventually got refused entry to the US as intending immigrants and one got a ban for 5 years.

Brit or Canadian 'snowbirds' who come over for 6 months at a time (Brits need a visa for this) are generally retired, and have significant ties to their home country (in the form of their national health care).

If you visit on the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) you are admitted for 90 days as a visitor. The general rule of thumb however is to spend less than 90 days per visit, to spend as much time outside the US as in, and you must meet the qualifications to use the program, one of which is to have a home outside the US that you do not intend to abandon.

Unless you think the property would be an excellent investment, you might find it better to *not* have stronger ties INside the US than you do out (like real estate).
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 5:03 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by AirborneBrads271 View Post
I also forgot to ask that how long could I stay in the country for?
Considering your age and lack of ties to the UK, you can enter the US on the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and stay for up to 90 days. The rule of thumb on this is to spend at least as much time outside the US as you do inside the US... so, 90 days in... 90+ days out.

The other possible option is a B-2 visa, good for multiple visits of up to 6 months each. But, if you're eligible for the VWP, your chances of getting a B-2 visa are slim to none... even less so considering your age and lack of ties to the UK.

Ian
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 5:08 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by AirborneBrads271 View Post
Sorry like I explained in my post I'm new to this and assumed that you would understand that I meant a holiday home.

I also forgot to ask that how long could I stay in the country for?
I agree with Meauxna, you aren't going to get a B-2 visa as you aren't old enough to be a snowbird, have no strong ties to any country, you are going to be presumed to have immigrant intent right off the bat and if you have property here as a single 30 year old each successive VWP entry may get harder.

I know it's not what you wanted to hear but your circumstances put you pretty well up there on the list of people they are going to suspect as someone who will attempt to stay in the country and never leave.

Remember, it's not what you're planning that's important, it's what the immigration officials think you're planning that determines whether they let you in or not.

{Edit} Cross-posted with Ian
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 5:29 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by ian-mstm View Post
Considering your age and lack of ties to the UK, you can enter the US on the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and stay for up to 90 days. The rule of thumb on this is to spend at least as much time outside the US as you do inside the US... so, 90 days in... 90+ days out.

Ian

Good advice from a knowledgeable poster.
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 6:28 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by BritishGuy36 View Post
Nobody is going to entertain those questions until you explain how you will get legal authorisation to live and work in the USA.

Many people want to come to the USA, but over 99% of them don't have a sniff of getting a visa.

Perhaps you could start by giving some info in that area - if you don't have a chance of a visa then all other questions are irrelevant.
The guy's only thinking about buying a house, no need to jump down his throat.

There are far too many aggressive posts like this on here at the moment.
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 7:09 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by helwardman View Post
There are far too many aggressive posts like this on here at the moment.
What would you prefer... a) a bunch of mushy, oozy posts entreating you to go ahead and spend your hard-earned money on a nice house and all will be rosy tomorrow morning when the sun once again shines oh, so sweetly on the good earth; or b) a bunch of right-to-the-point posts warning you of the dangers of buying a house in the US without any forethought whatsoever as to whether or not you can actually ever live in that house?

I don't know about you, but I'd prefer the hard-nose approach - a jolt of reality never hurts.

Ian
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 7:14 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Have you thought about how much propoerty costs down in Miami? It's definitely not cheap, and it costs about as much as a house in southeast England. Plus expect to pay on the order of $1000+ a month for homeowners insurance, unless you don't care about spending $100,000+ on a home and having it destroyed by a hurricane, which by the way, South Florida is the most hurricane prone area in the state, and very quite possibly the country. You can always buy a cheap home down there but I hope you don't mind your house being broken into every now and then. I'm not being mean, I'm being very honest for your sake. At 30k a year, I don't think owning a 2nd home in a very high cost area would be very feasible
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 7:16 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by chrisfromusa View Post
At 30k a year, I don't think owning a 2nd home in a very high cost area would be very feasible
According to the OP, he doesn't have a 1st home.

Rene
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Old Dec 17th 2009, 7:18 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about purchasing a home in Miami

Originally Posted by ian-mstm View Post
What would you prefer... a) a bunch of mushy, oozy posts entreating you to go ahead and spend your hard-earned money on a nice house and all will be rosy tomorrow morning when the sun once again shines oh, so sweetly on the good earth; or b) a bunch of right-to-the-point posts warning you of the dangers of buying a house in the US without any forethought whatsoever as to whether or not you can actually ever live in that house?

I don't know about you, but I'd prefer the hard-nose approach - a jolt of reality never hurts.

Ian
It's perfectly possible for a person to offer advice without being unnecessarily confrontational.

Too many people on here seem to take a little bit too much pleasure in trying to get other people's backs up. They would never behave like that if they were talking to the other person in the flesh so why behave like an a$$hole just because they are online? Smacks of cowardly bullying to me.
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