Buying property in Europe
Prices: Average home costs $257,350 (about 200,000 euros) in the first quarter of 2010 (Finfacts).
Transaction costs: 3.19 percent to 10.11 percent of purchase price (Global Property Guide).
Restrictions on foreign property ownership: No.
Buying process: Refundable booking deposit, up to 3 percent of purchase price, paid to agent after loan approval. At contract signing, you pay a nonrefundable deposit equal to 10 percent of the purchase price minus the booking deposit.
Tip: A stamp duty of up to 9 percent of the purchase price is payable once the conveyance of the property is complete, which can take six to eight weeks from the contract signing. First-time homebuyers with properties purchased at $398,909 (310,000 euros) or below are exempt from the stamp duty (Global Property Guide).