Maverick, Home Buyer in West Hollywood, CA

How easy is it to buy a property in LA if you live in the UK? And what taxes are involved?

Asked by Maverick, West Hollywood, CA Thu Sep 24, 2009

Help the community by answering this question:


Its quite easy, in fact...You get about 50% more for your money out here....approx US$1.50 = 1pound. And, there are lenders that work with international clients...I can assist in finding you the right property and put you in touch with the lenders that can set you up with the right financing.

Please feel free to email me: Or, Call me (310) 600 1553

Hope to hear from you.

Roger Perry
Rodeo Realty, Beverly Hills
(310) 600 1553
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 7, 2010
Yes. Property taxes are .0125 of purchase price. Email me at @:
I will be happy to help you. Also, I used to live in Earl's Court. LOVE THE UK
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 19, 2010
Just to add to my other answer, in response to Sky, he obviously has no idea what the pound is doing right now as the exchange rate for us into dollars is far from at its best.

It's just a little something which shows his lack of attention to detail. "Double discount" - what the hell does that even mean. Drives me crazy when people will say anything, even when it makes no sense, just to try and clinch a sale.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 20, 2009
Having bought two properties in Beverly HIlls, whilst living in the UK I can tell you from experience it is really very simple. Property tax is very expensive but that is to be expected in an expensive city like this. That being said both of my purchases were 100% cash buys so I don't know how are thinking about buying but the best bet is to secure a loan from the UK as you'd struggle to get one over here with no American credit history.

All paper work was just scanned and emailed or faxed. At the end of the day if you have a good real estate agent and you yourself have done the walk through of the property you are looking to buy then its all good. You do not need to sign all paperwork in person.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 17, 2009
Bob's answer is very well written. I'll add that when you sell, the state will withhold 3.33% of the total price. I have a lender who will lend at good rates, too. Call me to get a piece of LA property while it is on double discount (weak US dollar+real estate crash)
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 3, 2009
You have not said whether you intend to pay all cash or get a mortgage. For an all cash sale there is no problem buying a property. Be aware that under the Patriot Act you will have to verify the source of your funds. If you plan on a mortgage and are a US Citizen once again there is no problem in purchasing property in the US. However, If you are a British citizen and you do not have a Permanent Resident status (commonly called having a Green Card) but you do have a work permit and a Social Security number then yes you absolutely will be able to get a mortgage. The following will apply.

1. Your work history in the US must be verifiable and that includes a work permit.
2. Lenders prefer that you are on a salaried job (W-2) status but if you are self-employed then there are certain conditions (see below).
3. 2 years of tax returns but if you have only one year then the job history will assume greater significance (on the same job or changed jobs).
4. Bank statements for previous two months. Be ready to explain any large sums of money that have been deposited in your account. Incidentally, under the Patriot Act escrow would be verifying a paper trail for the previous 6 months for the funds you use in the transaction. If you are self employed have all your bank statements ready for verification of income. If you have incorporated or own a business in a form other than as an individual, you will also need tax returns and bank statements of the corporation (or LLC, etc).
5. Your down payment would vary between 20 to 50% in some cases, 20% if everything checks OK and your debt to income ratio is within specified limits.
6. Some lenders will not do a Condo purchase - only single family homes.
7. Credit history. If you have not built up an adequate credit history then your work and income history becomes really important.

While you are shopping around for a loan, please do not make any expensive purchases on your credit card as it will change your debt to income ratio adversely.

Unlike the UK there are no solicitor’s (we call them Attorneys) fees unless you need to consult one during the purchase process. The transaction itself is handled by a third party entity called an "escrow."

As regards taxes, you will have to pay Property Taxes yearly which, as a rough guide, approximate 1.25% of the purchase price or tax assessor's value. For taxes on your income derived from the property, you will have to consult a tax advisor as double taxation rules may apply.

If you need help with the loan or with the purchase let me know.

Bob Khalsa
Broker Owner
United America Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 24, 2009
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