What is the best way to acquire/finance and trade properties in the US as a foreigner?

Question: Non-resident alien looking to establish a portfolio of residential properties for refurbishment and sale and/or long term investment. All acquisitions will require some form of financing/mortgage so what is the best vehicle or company to use where banks will be comfortable to lend against the individual assets being acquired. NB the investors do not have US social security numbers.
In Buying Property - Asked by peter m. - Oct 22, 2010
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Rob B.
Chandler, AZ

It sounds to me like you need a good American Partner that can provide the answers you seek and the vehicle you need for investing. I know you realize that all must be done according to the law, or you would not be making the inquiry you are making.
What your American investor is going to want is the following: 1. How much cash do you have available to invest? 2. What is the debt to equity ratio that you expect to have in any transaction? 3. Is your money available to be either transferred immediately upon demand by an escrow company under their contractual instructions, or better yet to set up an investment account that will be accessible by an escrow company? 4. What is the amount of participation interest in an investment entity that will likely be formed, are you willing to give to your American partner? (The entity will likely be either a corporation or an LLC depending on the advice that will be specifically provided by the US attorney that will represent the entity). 5. And a full definition of the investment strategy will need to be provided in the documentation that will be executed between you and your American partner. If these questions cannot be easily addressed it may be unlikely that
There are many qualified Americans that are in the industry that have the ability to help you achieve your goals.
Good luck Peter....
Rob Baird, CA RE Lic. #544165 (One of the oldest, active licenses in CA)
951 515-5855

Oct 22, 2010
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Jo B.
Denver, CO

I agree with the other reply, you need a good partner. No social may make it in today's market a little difficult. The banking system is still trying to figure out how to establish guidelines. I am an active investor who is looking for money partner/equity partner. What kind of residential properties are you looking for? What return do you have in mind? I only work or look for cashflow properties in different parts of the US, generally where the the demand is highest. Write me an email...ihomes@q.com willing to assist. Cya Jo

Oct 22, 2010
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Nils R.
Fort Myers, FL

I would recommend to align some more cash. Simply because the deals that you WANT to buy are going to be distressed assets, and it is not very feasible to get financing (pre-purchase) on those. However, they will give you a much better return and upside in the long term and also enable you to mortgage them (with a lower LTV) once stabilized. We have several European investors that are currently buying through us here (Southwest Florida) due to the great value that they can get in this depressed market. Anything from single family residential to 100+ unit condominium complexes. Let me know if you have any otrher questions. Nils

Oct 25, 2010
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Steve M.
Plano, TX

Peter, All the answers you have gotten are very good ones. You will need a partner in the market where you are looking to buy. If this is not a full time job for you I suggest you find a partner for whom it is.
The most important item mentioned other than a good and knowledgeable and honest local partner is - CASH. If you want to buy distressed anything you will need cash- enought to close and renovate and float the property until leased or sold.
I do multifamily in Texas and my local partner here does retail. We have opportunities but don't expect to use a lender as cash is king.
MB 35, LLC
Dallas, TX

Nov 3, 2010
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