Due Diligence in Foreign Real Estate

Overseas homeownership can sound like a dream come true. But being able to own a home in one of your favorite locations can be either a dream or a nightmare, depending on how much due diligence you put forth leading up to the final purchase.

Gorgeous homes, condos and even land are available everywhere for the right price, but is the amount you pay taking care of everything? Will you be able to book your next flight knowing you simply have to open your doors and be home, without a hassle?

You may have heard the phrase “Buyer Beware.” Now more than ever, it is imperative that you ask the right questions and be aware of where your hard-earned investment dollars are landing. The customary rules and regulations you may be used to in North America may not even exist in other regions of the world. That idyllic vacation you enjoyed, that moment on the beach when you had your favorite margaritas and decided you were buying your own place – you need more than just a happy moment.

Never take a real estate offer at face value. Always ask questions. In fact, over its 24 years of business experience, ECI Development has laid a foundational 15 Critical Questions to ask when buying overseas.


Once you’ve recovered from your ‘margarita madness,’ take the time to learn how to efficiently and effectively evaluate a property or home overseas. It’s a significant investment in your future and happiness. Find a developer that is reliable and already delivering on those promises he made. You’ll be glad you did.

The basics, such as infrastructure and amenities, need to be in place. North American standards like great water pressure tend to be considered extras in Latin America. Think about the distance to medical care facilities – and while you’re asking about this, what about the road conditions to said facilities? You may have visited during the height of summer and glorious days, but what about when it rains? Questions you may not have thought of, you’ll find listed in our Global Property Resource Kit, so that you can get started on your quest to your dream overseas home.

If you start with these basic guidelines and expectations, you will soon realize that doing your due diligence NOW, will save you a lot of heartache (and money) down the line. The decisions you make about what is right for you depend on the answers to the critical questions you ask. Developers must be held accountable and should be able to answer these questions clearly.

Take charge of your life and your retirement future. Decide today that you want to spend less for a far better quality of life.

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