Information for overseas buyers and investors

If you live outside New Zealand and are considering purchasing a property in the upper North Island, you've come to the right place.

Our residential, rentals and commercial teams have a wealth of local knowledge we can share with you as well as answers to some of those commonly asked questions.

Many members of our staff speak different languages and regularly work with people from overseas, so we not only have a good understanding of your needs but we have a wealth of local knowledge we can share with you.

Who can buy property in New Zealand?

There are a few types of property that can’t be bought by non-citizens or permanent residents without government permission, so you will need to make sure that you make the real estate agency aware of your status. The New Zealand Government's foreign investment policies are administered by the Overseas Investment Office (OIO), whose prime role is to assess applications for consent from foreigners who intend making substantial investments in New Zealand. The following groups can buy new or existing property in New Zealand without restrictions:
  • New Zealand citizens
  • New Zealand permanent residents
  • Australian citizens
  • Singaporean citizens

All other nationalities are subject to restrictions on buying 'residential' or 'lifestyle' property and may require consent from the Overseas Investment Office. The OIO has published some useful guides to the restrictions.

Can you buy a home in New Zealand to live in?

Investing in New Zealand

You will need an IRD number

If you enter into a contract to buy property, you will need to provide a New Zealand IRD number before the settlement can take place, and you can take possession.

This applies to the sale or purchase of all land and property in New Zealand. You'll need to give your New Zealand IRD number to your lawyer, and you'll need to complete and sign a Tax Statement before settlement can occur and possession be given.

Offshore buyers and sellers will need to provide a New Zealand IRD number or obtain a New Zealand IRD number before the settlement date.

If you are an offshore buyer or seller and you do not have a New Zealand IRD number, you will need to open a New Zealand bank account before applying for a New Zealand IRD number.

Offshore parties also need to provide their tax number/details from their country of origin.

You can find more information in our one-page guide: Taxation (Land Information) Legislation information - what you need to know

You must comply with Anti-Money Laundering (AML) legislation

From 1 January 2019, anyone selling a property is required to provide proof of their identity under the New Zealand Government’s Anti-Money Laundering laws. In some cases, buyers may also be asked to identify themselves in a way that satisfies AML requirements.

How do I find out more about the property market and house prices?

For an in-depth look at the Auckland housing market and the latest information on house prices, check out our market reports section.

How do I find out more about rental prices?

For the latest information on rental prices across Auckland sign up to our quarterly property management newsletter.

Why should you choose Barfoot & Thompson

  • Local knowledge: Barfoot & Thompson specialises in real estate in the upper North Island, so our salespeople have a wealth of local knowledge. From important amenities to shops, schools and recreation, all our salespeople can give you the advice you need to help you find the right home or commercial investment
  • We cover a large area: Barfoot & Thompson is not franchised, which means our salespeople have access to every listing in our system and can help you buy property in any part of Auckland, Northland and the Bay of Plenty.
  • Our sales people speak different languages: We have a number of salespeople who speak different languages
  • We sell 1 in 3 Auckland homes: As Auckland’s largest real estate company, selling around one in every three homes, we’ve helped many people buy their dream property
  • International connections: Barfoot & Thompson is a member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World.