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  • Residential investment

    If you’re a foreign person (including a temporary resident or foreign non-resident) and you have invested in, or plan to invest in, Australian residential real estate, you may need to:

    • lodge a Residential real estate application form and wait for your approval before you buy, and
    • register your purchase using the Land and water registration form after settlement.

    Residential real estate includes:

    • new dwellings
    • established dwellings to live in or to redevelop
    • off-the-plan properties
    • vacant residential land.

    On this page:

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    Before you invest

    How to apply

    You apply by completing a residential real estate application form.

    Note: You can attach up to six files to your FIRB application. Each file must be under 3MB. Use only English alphanumeric characters to name each file and keep file names as short as possible. File names in a different language or using special characters, such as # @ & $, may affect the submission of your application.

    If you need to attach more files to your application, send them separately to firbresidential@ato.gov.au, along with your application reference number. You will receive an application reference number once you have submitted your application.

    We cannot consider your application until we have received your fee. Make sure you use the correct payment reference number to reduce any delays.

    There are limited circumstances where a fee waiver or remittance will be granted. This is determined on a case-by-case basis. Fees will generally not be waived or remitted following an unsuccessful attempt to purchase property or if there has been a change of mind to invest in the targeted property.

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    After you invest

    Your residential real estate approval will state whether you need to register your purchase with us, using the Land and water registration form. If instructed, you must register no later than 30 days after the date of settlement. There is no cost involved in registering.

    How to register

    You register by completing a Land and water registration form.

    If your situation changes

    If your situation changes, you may need to update your registration. Common situations include if:

    • you no longer hold residential land – complete a Land and water registration form to remove your details when you sell, transfer the land to someone else or no longer lease the land from someone else
    • you are no longer a foreign person – complete a Land and water registration form to remove your details
    • the property is no longer residential – complete a Land and water registration form to remove your registration.

    Foreign investment rule breaches

    If you avoid your obligations, for example, if you enter into an unconditional contract for purchase before you receive approval, you could face an infringement notice, or civil or criminal penalties.

    If you have information about someone you think may be deliberately breaking our foreign investment rules, you can report it confidentially online via the Foreign Investment Review Board website at firb.gov.auExternal Link.

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    Last modified: 25 Jan 2018QC 52586