Buying Abroad with Family. A Guide

Buying property abroad with family can be a good way to spread the burden

The Overseas Guides Company Ltd. has published a guide to buying abroad with family. As they say, “ a holiday home is perhaps the most life-enhancing thing you will ever buy. It helps you get to know and love another culture. It can be more relaxing than a package holiday to the tourist sites – a holiday whenever you want it, forever, and to pass on to your children. […]”

“A holiday home abroad has the power to keep families together. Siblings might fight like cats and dogs as children, but many find they appreciate each other’s company more as they get older. Every Christmas you promise to see each other more often, but by the summer you’ve drifted apart again. For older children who don’t want to go on the usual family holiday, for students who don’t come home as much anymore, a holiday home can be the glue that holds the family together. […]”


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We’ve all heard about families that fall out over money. How can you protect yourself, your investment and your closest relationships?

You need legal protections that will endure down the generations. Read on for some great advice on this, from specialist lawyers. […]

“There are many ways to structure the legal aspects of ownership, and the one you choose will depend on your own family circumstances and preferences. Whoever pays the most might call the shots, for example, or the head of the family might retain control.”

“The crucial thing is that you do put in structures, and that you genuinely intend to follow them. Good fences make good neighbours, so all parties should work on the assumption that in the end you may fall out and end up in court arguing over the letter of the agreement, even if that is the last thing on your mind right now, in the excitement of buying. For example, is a loan really a loan or does one sibling “sort of” think it might be a gift? Is time being shared equally or does one of you really think they own it more than the others”?

“As years go by, memories fade and new family members come onto the scene, so it can save many problems down the line if you get everything in writing, and remember you have done so”.

Buying abroad with family. The three most important considerations from a legal point of view are ownership, payments and inheritance

We asked some trusted overseas lawyers for suggestions on legal structures for the deal. […]”

Giandomenico De Tullio of De Tullio Law Firm in Italy says that, one solution would be for the head of the family to buy the property: “In Italy it would be advisable to structure the investment in the following way: grandma and grandpa would purchase the ‘usufruct’ [lifetime right of use] assigning to their children the bare ownership. When the grandparents pass away, the children will acquire full ownership of the property without the need to manage the Italian succession procedure.”

Finally …

Read the full Guide to buying abroad with family Or get in touch with us at

First published in Great Britain in 2017 by: The Overseas Guides Company Ltd, 26-28 Hammersmith Grove, London, W6 7BA
Copyright © The Overseas Guides Company Ltd, 2017


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