Real estate. Your dad always told you to buy bricks and mortar right? But now the price of property around the world has gone, for want of a better word, fucking nuts. How can you afford to buy a place of your own? Even if you make a relatively good wage, you’re probably looking at house prices near you and thinking, WTF.
Well, if you want to invest in property for cheap, especially with the long term plan to do it up and resell it one day, there are many places you can still get on the property ladder.
Some of these may require some investment in terms of rebuilding and renovating. Others might even need you to move to a new country. But if you’re flexible and you are ready to take a chance, these could be a great real estate investment.
These are our top picks for cheap investment property around the world.
1. Italy’s €1 Houses
You may have seen the headlines about houses for sale in Italy and wondered what’s the catch? Well, although it’s not quite as simple as handing over €1 for a ready to live in house (most of them really aren’t), this is actually a realistic option still.
Many communities across Italy, especially in the rural south and Sicily, have seen a drain of young people. So many of these pretty villages are in decline, with abandoned property everywhere. As a result, local mayors have taken the issue into their own hands and offer these incredibly cheap investment property to anyone willing to take a chance and move to rural Italy.
The truth is, many of the *really* cheap properties are in serious need of repair – like you’d be better off buying a house in better condition.
Investors may also need to commit to complete certain works, or a certain level of investment, within a specific time frame. But that being said, if you have a spare €20,000 or €30,000 and the drive to move to rural Italy, this might be a great opportunity for you.
Another country that has seen a huge drain of locals is Bulgaria. And, like Italy, there are low cost houses waiting to be snapped up by wily investors looking for a cheap investment property.
The issue is that many of these are also very rural, and often a long way from somewhere you might actually want to live. Bulgaria is a relatively big country with a small population (just under 7 million). But if you are dreaming of that rural life in a big house in the European Union, you’ll find property for sale for under €5,000 – and yes you could move in there tomorrow.
Bulgaria is also a fascinating country, bridging the east and west. The country boasts mountains, forests, sunny beaches, ski resorts and some lively culture.
Getting residency to live in your Bulgarian property might be another issue. If you’re not an EU citizen you will need to find a visa that allows you to relocate – or if you prefer to just buy and rent out, why not try that instead?
3. Spain and Portugal
Sorry to lump Spain and Portugal under the same heading, but… The Iberian peninsula does offer some incredible deals on cheap investment property. But again you need to be prepared to probably move to the middle of nowhere and invest in doing a property up.
Having said that, you can actually find relatively affordable apartments in suburbs and villages a stones throw from major cities like Valencia, Porto, Malaga and Faro. Think: €20,000 for a 2 bedroom apartment in serious need of renovations about an hour from Valencia…. Shop around on sites like Idealista.es or Idealista.pt.
But if you’re looking for cheap investment property in some of the most desirable countries to live in the world, look no further.
As one of the fastest growing economies on the planet, Ghana makes sense from a cheap investment property perspective. Not only that, Ghana is one of Africa’s most stable democracies, and is fast becoming a focus for global investors thanks to it’s open and welcoming policies for foreigners.
So what about property? Well, you can grab a pretty nice 2 bed apartment in suburbs close to Kumasi or Accra for around $1000, all in. Realistically, you’re going to be spending closer to $50,000 for something in an area where you might feel safer and closer to a big city.
5. Northern England and Wales
Hang on, is the UK really a wise investment destination? And can you really get cheap property in England and Wales?
Well actually, relatively, yes you can.
Wales in particular offers some great opportunities for low priced investment properties. You might live in an ex-mining town that has seen better days, but Wales is actually a beautiful and culturally vibrant country.
Parts of Northern England such as Teeside, Yorkshire (Hull in particular) and Cumbria also offer incredibly well priced property for real estate investors. You can actually buy a house in these parts of the UK for well under £100,000.
In fact, you get a decent apartment in Liverpool, one of the UK’s most culturally vibrant cities, for well under £100,000 – take a look.
Is that good value? Well, considering that the UK does remain one of the strongest economies on the planet and any property in the country is probably well connected to London or the other UK centres, then yes…
Want a beachfront apartment? Or a luxury pad in a vibrant city? Brazil is actually a very enticing offer, with a lot of opportunities to invest in cheap property.
Despite well publicised issues with security, Brazil offers an incredible opportunity to work life balance and great weather. It’s also one of the world’s more vibrant countries, with carnival a well known national celebration.
On top of this, Brazil is hotly tipped to become one of the dominant global economies. So if you want to get in before the rest of the world wakes up to this cheap real estate hotspot, take a look now.
Look at cities like Curitiba, Florianapolis, Recife and Porto Alegre for your cheap investment property.
Another latin American country with a mixed bag of a reputation. But despite the negative press, there is no doubting the fact that the lifestyle for expats in Mexico is an enviable one. And, if you’re looking for a low cost of living, plus the opportunity to buy some premium real estate for cheap then you should take Mexico seriously.
For the most part, cities such as Playa del Carmen, and most of Quintana Roo (the Tulum/Cancun side) are pretty safe – by Mexican standards. Neighbouring Yucatan is also relatively unaffected by the narco violence which seems to affect the north and west coast more. That said, it’s also the more expensive side of Mexican real estate thanks to the expat population around these parts.
Search around cities such as Merida, Guanajuato, Puerto Vallarta and San Miguel de Allende.
Heading back to Africa, and if you’re looking at up and coming economies then Kenya needs to be on your radar. As another of Africa’s tech hotspots, and with a rapidly developing local economy, property in Kenya could be a good investment in the coming years.
Nairobi and Mombasa both offer a great lifestyle, and incredibly cheap property too. Mombasa obviously offers that potential for a sea front lifestyle, whereas Nairobi is much more business oriented as the country’s capital and financial hub.
That said, Kenya isn’t the cheapest place on this list. A property in a gated community will likely set you back at least $100,000.
If you’ve always dreamed of owning land in Asia, well… The bad news is that most countries make it quite difficult for foreigners to buy property. The good news? Not in Malaysia. One of the regions most booming economies and a buzzing cultural hotspot, Malaysia is one of the easiest places to buy investment property in Asia.
Georgetown in Penang is a thriving cultural hub, where you can grab an apartment for under $70,000. Kuala Lumpur, the capital and financial hub, is a little more expensive, although you can pick up something in the suburbs for around the $100,000 mark.
Look to smaller cities such as Ipoh, Johor or Kuching for the best value for your investment property.
As the world’s global city, Dubai is obviously keen to attract investors from around the world. Think that it’s all millionaires and celebrities? You’d be wrong… You can actually pick up a very reasonably priced property in Dubai if you know where to look.
As Dubai has created so much investment property, the price can actually be very tempting. We’re talking under $70,000 for an apartment in Dubai International City or Liwan, although both of these locations are not the most glamourous image of Dubai.
Want to live in the Marina, the Palm or somewhere closer to the waterfront? Well, we spotted property for around AED420,000 (about $115,000). In short, yes you can find your dream property in Dubai for a dream price… Still!
The final word
If you’re buying property as an investment in a foreign country, make sure to do your own research about the rules and regulations for foreigners. There can be a lot of red tape that trips you up, so due your due diligence….
Check out our tips for investment and money right here on Global Playboy.