We are British nationals moving to San Francisco area this summer on an H1B visa. When we have enough credit rating set up, can we buy on H1B status?

Asked by mmobley, Aptos, CA Fri Dec 27, 2013

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Greg Bryan J…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Mon Dec 30, 2013

You can definitely buy here, as the previous broker and agent stated. One thing I would strongly advise before you buy property though is to consult with a tax or accounting expert who works with internationals and knows estate planning.

I am a realtor and attorney who has helped foreigners in the past with their real estate transactions and although I am not a tax expert I can warn you of two major areas you want to be wary about.

1) The Death Penalty Tax - In many instances for Non-US Citizens there is a “Death Penalty” where if you die a spouse who is a Non-US Citizen gets taxed on the transfer of the estate (ie property). There are ways to avoid this, but you should probably talk to a tax expert.

2) Residency.
A US resident alien pays the same taxes like a US citizen. So, all his or her WORLDWIDE income is subject to US taxes.

A nonresident alien pays US taxes on US income only and not on his or her foreign income. This classification is important.

Note there are other estate planning considerations and other considerations depending on what your plans are for either an extended period in the US, eventual citizenship, etc.

Best of luck but definitely educate yourself about how the above will affect you. Also feel free to contact me.

Greg Bryan
GB and Associates
Cell (415) 640-4341
Fax (415) 946-3467
Web Reference:  http://www.gbandas.com
0 votes
Mahmooda Bhi…, Agent, San Fransisco, CA
Fri Dec 27, 2013
Mahmooda Bhimjee
415 845 7104

Congratulations on your moving to our wonderful city of SanFrancisco, one of the greatest place to live in the US.

I can put you on touch with the mortgage people, who specialize in working with overseas investors.
They can work with your credit rating from Britain.
Please email me directly at mbmg@ amsiemail.com
So that i can put you in touch with them.
You will then have all documentation they require with you, when you come
You should rent in the area you are interested in first, so you are sure you would like to live there.
I can also do a relocation tour with you and help you find rental property here and take you on a tour to introduce you to the different neighborhoods.
0 votes
Lance King, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Fri Dec 27, 2013
You can buy property here, the question is who will finance it. Normally you will have to put down as much as 50%. I would talk with HSBC as they seem to do most of these loans. Once you get your financing straight we'd be happy to show you properties here in the city, or outside as we work in surrounding areas as well.

Even if you could buy right now I would suggest you rent in the area you think you want to buy to make sure it's right for you.

Best Regards,

Lance King/Owner-Managing Broker
King Realty Group

BRE# 01384425
0 votes
Thanks Lance - we will have about 40% deposit once we sell our house in Cyprus and we will definitely take your advice and rent first but it will have to be in the countryside as we will need some land - we are bringing our cats with us. I know - mad Brits! But they are family so we have to accomodate. Let's stay in touch.
Flag Fri Dec 27, 2013
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