Oops, it looks like you’re using a web browser our site no longer supports. For the best viewing experience, please use one of the following:
Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari or Mozilla Firefox.
Log in

Not registered? Create an account
Already have an account? Log In

A Cheat Sheet For Foreign Buyers Purchasing in NYC

Agents, Agent Insight, Buyers // Jun 04, 2013


Dear Foreign Buyer,

As a broker who often works with foreign buyers and investors, I am more than familiar with the difficulty of navigating through the wacky world of New York City Real Estate.  With the right team in place, the process can be an educational and exhilarating experience.

To begin the process it’s essential to understand the financial snapshot of a NYC purchase before you begin shopping. This would include guidance and support from an attorney, accountant, and tax advisor.  Once you fine-tune the purchase, a property manager may be an additional team member you should have in place to deal with landlord matters.

With the help of an experienced real estate broker, you can count on these experts to help you manage your purchase in New York City.

To better understand the part each team member plays take a look at the outline below:

Real Estate Attorney

A real estate attorney will first set up an LLC for you to make your purchase.  This will give you an EIN or tax identification number.  The real estate attorney will also negotiate the terms of the contracts and if need be, act as your P of A (Power of Attorney) to sign all the appropriate documents.

Tax Advisor

A tax advisor is key in advising you on how New York State, New York City and the US Federal tax structure will affect you depending on your country of origin.  They will outline tax filing and tax withholdings.  Your tax advisor will also explain what it means to be a Non Resident Alien, or NRA, as there is a limit to the amount of time you can travel in the US for tax purposes.


An accountant will help to set up the appropriate accounts to fund the purchase as well as your escrow accounts for your tenant to pay rent.  They will also file your tax returns.

Property Manager

The property you own will need to be managed.  In some cases your real estate broker can handle this and in others, you will need a property manager.  They would be responsible for leasing the apartment, lease application processing, collecting rent, paying property-related bills such as taxes and common charges, and tending to the maintenance needs of the apartment.


A  broker is the key to your success in purchasing an investment property in the City.  As mentioned, an experienced broker will be able to connect you with the resources above. They will find the right property to fit your desires, guide you on sound investment(s), and negotiate to obtain the best deal possible. Working with a good broker who has vast market knowledge will put you on track to buy your NYC investment property.

Happy shopping,