Expats will find it relatively easy to both buy and rent accommodation in Argentina. The country’s economic instability, combined with effects of Covid-19, has translated into a drop in property prices, making it a good time for expats to invest in Argentina. There is a wide range of options to choose from, and expats should have little difficulty finding a place to suit their budget and tastes.
Types of accommodation in Argentina
There is an incredibly wide range of accommodation available in Argentina, but the quality and style of housing depends on expats' location in the country and their budget.
While accommodation in Buenos Aires and other major cities is mainly in the form of high-rise apartments, the suburbs are populated by large stand-alone houses. Gated communities are also popular among wealthier Argentinians and corporate expat employees.
Properties in Argentina range from comfortable family villas in hilly La Cumbre, to Swiss-style chalets in Bariloche, and even a rustic home on a 40-acre vineyards in Mendoza.
Finding accommodation in Argentina
Finding accommodation in Argentina is not difficult but it is definitely a trickier process if expats do not speak any Spanish.
There are property rental websites that publish listings in English, as well as local Spanish websites that will be useful for expats who speak the language. Spanish speaking expats can also take a look at local newspapers.
Alternatively, expats can enlist the services of an English speaking real-estate agent. These professionals will have a good idea of what's available to rent or buy, as well as being able to speak the language and therefore negotiate deposits and leases with the landlord. Expats should keep in mind, though, that real-estate agents will charge a hefty fee as well as agent commission for their services.
Renting accommodation in Argentina
Renting accommodation in Argentina is not difficult anywhere in the country.
Expats can rent property on either a long-term or short-term basis. The most common duration for a lease agreement is two years but can be up to 10 years. If signing a two year lease, expats will have to occupy the accommodation for at least six months before terminating the lease agreement.
Leases of a shorter duration than two years are rare, but expats are more likely to find short-term accommodation in the major cities. Accommodation can also be rented out furnished or unfurnished, but furnished accommodation is more likely to be for a short-term lease.
When signing a lease, landlords will generally require tenants to pay one month's rent and a security deposit. The law in Argentina stipulates that the deposit may not exceed one month's rent per year on the lease.
Expats will also most likely need a guarantor if signing a long-term lease. This is someone who owns property in Argentina and can take financial responsibility for any damage incurred by the tenant. Expats who don’t know of a feasible candidate need not worry. There are many apartment brokers in Argentina who cater exclusively to foreigners looking to rent.
Utilities are generally not included in rental prices and expats will therefore have to budget for their water, electricity, gas, telephone and internet usage.
Buying property in Argentina
Foreigners have the right to purchase both property and land in Argentina. Expats should note that the finer details can differ from province to province. In Patagonia, for example, there are restrictions on foreigners buying real estate. This applies particularly to property located close to the Chilean border.
It is not necessary in most areas to have a residence visa in order to purchase land or property. That said, expats wishing to move permanently to Argentina with household effects will need to pay a Customs Bond and a yearly ‘guarantee’ on the goods until they have a permanent residence visa.
Before purchasing a property, one needs to obtain a Clave de Identificación (tax ID). It is also necessary that non-residents appoint an Argentinian representative to pay the property tax for them. Once the purchase price of the property has been agreed on, the buyer is expected to pay a boleto or a deposit, which is generally around 30 percent of the purchase price. The property purchase process generally lasts between one and two months.