Taking advantage of the moribund economy and housing market, Canadian Snowbirds have been snapping up U.S. real estate bargains, especially in the popular "Sunbelt" states. Canadian buyers are finding condos and townhomes priced as much as 50% less than a couple of years ago.
When it comes to buying a second or retirement home, Stuart, Florida is a prime destination for Canadians seeking warmer climates during the cold Canadian winter. With rock bottom pricing of homes in the Stuart area and an abundant selection of quality homes for sale, you have a perfect market to buy!
The transaction process for Canadian home buyers here is straightforward and not much different than that of a local home buyer. There is no risk to you until your offer is accepted and contingencies are met. You do need to submit an earnest deposit, which is usually 1-2% of the purchase price. if your contract is not accepted or canceled for a valid reason, your deposit is returned to you.
If you are buying in a community with a homeowners' association you will need to make sure it is adequately funded. When an HOA is underfunded (typically because too many units are in foreclosure and dues are not getting paid) it can mean higher payments for the building’s upkeep.
As a foreign owner, when you sell the property you will be subject to a 10% FIRPTA withholding (10% of the sale price) if you do not have a tax ID or social security number. Obtaining a tax ID or social security number in advance will avoid the withholding; otherwise it will be refunded if no tax is due when the tax return is filed.
For information about foreign ownership, investment and financial planning for Canadians in the US, check out The Canadian Snowbird in America: Professional Tax and Financial Insights Into Temporary Lifestyles in the U.S.
Thinking of a second home in South Florida? We are experts at helping Canadian "Snowbirds" enjoy the warm weather, golf and other amenities that come from owning a vacation or second home in greater Stuart! Contact us for more info or to set up a private tour of homes and neighborhoods.