Buying a Home in Kuwait, What's There to Know
Kuwait is a fast-growing economy and many foreigners decide to live there. Here are some important facts you should know if you are planning to buy a home in Kuwait.
Buying a home in Kuwait used to be an impossible mission for all those who were coming from non-Arab states. But things have changed recently and now even people from different countries and continents can own a property in Kuwait. The rules are still strict, but we will get to them a little bit later. Now, let's focus on the facts that you should know if you are planning to buy a home in Kuwait.
What are the restrictions for foreigners buying a home in Kuwait?
Just like we have already mentioned, only recently have the ex-pats gained the right to become home-owners in this Arab state. The rules are still rather strict, so not everybody can get this privilege.
You might be a millionaire, but you will not be able to afford a roof over your head in Kuwait unless:
- you are a long term resident and you can prove your income earned in the state;
- you have never been convicted of any crime in Kuwait - this is extremely important if buying a home in Kuwait is what you want to do;
- you want to buy a house or an apartment that is smaller than 350 square meters and you are OK with that being your only residential property in Kuwait.
All the boxes need to be ticked and you need to have a considerate amount of money to become a Kuwaiti home-owner.
How much money you should set aside for buying a home in Kuwait?
The oil industry is the main factor determining the price of homes in Kuwait - a stronger industry causes higher prices.
The actual prices per square meter of a home in Kuwait vary depending on a location. For an apartment in the city center, you will have to set aside some 2,000 KWD per square meter which is around 9,300 AUD. The average price for a square meter outside the city center is around 950 KWD (4,425 AUD).
Of course, those are just median values and you should not rely on them when searching for a property for yourself. When you find one, we advise you to follow the process of property evaluation so that you don't overpay your property or buy something that is simply not a good investment.
You will probably have to rent before you buy a property
For expatriates who have just moved to Kuwait, renting is the only option since they won't be able to purchase their own home for some time. Since people usually relocate to this amazing state located at the tip of the Persian Gulf to pursue a career, the arrangements that they are offered here include accommodation. For people coming from the USA, Australia, or Europe moving to Kuwait can be quite a shock in terms of cultural differences, even more so if they do not speak the language of the locals. That is why they often pick the neighborhoods that are inhabited by people coming from the same country as they are.
What about renting prices? The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center is 270 KWD (1,260 AUD), while you can find the same apartment for 215 KWD (1,000 AUD) per month on a less attractive location. In case you need a bigger place and you want to live downtown, be ready to pay 560 KWD (2,600 AUD). That is the price of renting a three-bedroom apartment. Away from the city center, you can find the same-sized property for 415 KWD (1930 AUD)
The cost of living in Kuwait
Depending on where you are coming from you will find the property prices in Kuwait more or less affordable. The average net salary in Kuwait is 560 KWD (2,600 AUD) per month. If you compare the income with the property prices you will come to the conclusion that homes in Kuwait are not so expensive after all. Now, what about the utilities you will have to pay?
Before contacting Easy Move KW and arranging your relocation to Kuwait, you should find out how much money you will be spending on the utilities. The average sum of money to set aside for electricity, water, heating, cooling, and garbage disposal in Kuwait City is 60 AUD.
Who can help you purchase a home in Kuwait?
Buying a property abroad can be too complicated even when you speak the language, and when you don't, it can be an impossible task. Regulations in Kuwait may seem difficult to understand, so you will definitely need some help from the local professionals. Unfortunately, ex-pats have gained the opportunity to buy a property in Kuwait not so long ago and the market is still fresh. The number of English speaking real estate agents and lawyers dealing with this sort of sale is still not as high as it should be, so you need a good recommendation from someone you can trust.
The Internet is a good starting point for researching RE agents, but you can also contact your colleagues or relatives who went through apartment-hunting in Kuwait.
What to pay attention to when making a purchase?
Once you find and buy the property you like, you will be able to move all your belongings in no time. But first, let's see what you should pay attention to.
- Check the neighborhood - it is important to find one where you can feel safe and comfortable.
- The air-conditioning system is something you cannot live without in the country where the average temperature in the summer is 45 degrees Celsius.
- A closed garage - if you have a car and plan to use it during summer, this is the aspect you will have to consider.
- Proximity to your office - if you have children who will be attending school in Kuwait we have good news for you - there are organized buses taking children to and back from school, so you don't have to account for that when picking a location - choose one that is near your office.
Organizing your relocation
After you have finally purchased your new home and paid the legal and survey fee, your next step is to hire professionals who will help you relocate. Checking online reviews when hiring movers is a good way to start, but you should never make your final choice based on the reviews only.