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Exchanging US land for Argentine land, anyone?

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expat0tree
8/14/2017 19:11 EST

I would like to swap my 20 acre parcel in the USA for some land in Argentina, i'm not attached to any particular province or land size.

If one would to ask why can't i just sell my USA acreage and bring the money here, that's because unfortunately i do not hold permanent residency in the USA (i'm Canadian) and so as a foreigner i would be subjected to a cruel 10% sales tax, plus Remax realtors there said they are charging 10% commission now on bare rural land, so that's a 20% haircut which i really don't want to take.

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TomP
8/14/2017 19:32 EST

expat0tree,

Yes, the ubiquitous clutches of the Governmental taxing authorities.

You have piqued my curiosity and knowing where the parcel is located would certainly help. If it’s 20-acres in San Francisco, Los Angeles or Manhattan you have a deal. If it’s 20-acres in Furnace Creek in Death Valley, California maybe not. I hope it’s somewhere in-between.

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expat0tree
8/14/2017 20:45 EST

The land is in the northern Washington state, Okanogan county to be exact. It has a pond that generates out flowing water all year round due to a natural spring at its core, there is a legal well drilled right near the pond. it is a steep type of parcel, nothing crazy though and it has numerous leveled meadows, a nice gradual crush road across it, power pole with a transformer at its center but no actual hook up, no structures either. no zoning and no building limitations whatsoever, elevation 4000 feet. surrounded by national forests, hunter's paradise etc.

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TBII
8/15/2017 09:34 EST

Where is your U.S. land located? What is the best use for your 20 acres? What does Remax say your land is worth?

Thank you.

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expat0tree
8/16/2017 18:02 EST

Bill,

The parcel is located 18 miles east from the town of Oroville, WA close to the village of Chesaw. It has great pasture for grazing animals, the neighbor used to mow the grass there just to feed his cows with it because he said it was "juicy", soil is deep sandy loam with some rocky spots at the top, the meadow grasses gets up to my neck in the summer, it's full of honey bees during the late summer, wild flower species are countless.

I never treed the acreage so i guess that's one option (naturally there are some poplars across the road but they cannot spread anywhere), to plant fruit trees maybe. It's also a good spot for a hunting cabin for renting out (there is a flat building site on top with a nice view), i wanted to build one myself back then before meeting my Argentine faith.

Remax evaluated the land at around US $75,000 as of this year 2017 but i'm not attached to getting back more than i put in. I bought the acreage for US $50,000 back in 2008, since then the neighbor and i put a little bit of money into fixing the driveway (layer of road crush) to allow for better year round access and hand pulling some noxious weeds that were asked to be taken care of by the Okanogan county (they send out letters every season), it does snow generously in the winter so 4 wheel is recommend for those slippery times.

no annual bills to pay other than the property tax, 2017 tax was $345.64, i pay online with a credit card.

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Keyl
9/21/2017 10:10 EST

Hello there.
Just saw your message but swapping land is not something easy, or even possible to do, in Argentina, at least not if you want a deed and property rights for it. You have to be are trying to make every possible effort in Argentina to squeeze as much money from you as they can. First you have to take into consideration that, as a foreigner, if one day you decide to leave Argentina and sell that land, they will charge you 3% of the sale in taxes just for changing the name on the deed. There are many fees associated to the transfer of deeds even for property where you will reside. The only way I think you could do this is if the person (legally "donates" the property to you (and you would have to figure out how you can do the same thing in the USA, where such "donation" right also exists) but you cannot legally sell donated land (if you attempt to do so, you lose it), neither can your children. That brings me to the net point' inheritance. Inheritance in Argentina is compulsory and follows stricts laws of whats named "sucesion" whereas the children and spouse of the landowner will come first in line to receive equal parts of the property, followed by other family members. Only if you have a certain amount of property you can freely give 25% of what you own to whoever you want. Many "sucesiones" last for years, i know of some that have had that status for as long as I have lived and it has not yet been solved. Be careful with anyone who agrees to "swap land" because both, the laws in the USA (where I live) and Argentina (where I used to live) are quite strict and different when it comes to what lands can be sold, "donated" (the only way I see here for swapping without having to pay the high percentages for the sale as a non-resident) and names in deeds cannot be changed without going through attorneys in the USA and "escribanos" en Argentina, both of which will ALSO want their piece of pie.
I would suggest you contact a bilingual "Escribano Publico" en Argentina and ask all the question regarding legal figures and possibilities before you embark in something that could end up being more costly than simply selling the land in the USA.
Good lack.

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TomP
9/21/2017 12:19 EST

Keyl,

Thanks for the info and you do bring up a lot of good points, however, not all of them apply to all people all of the time.

I have sold vineyards in San Rafael, Argentina numerous times and to people from the USA and Europe.

Fortunately my vineyards are NOT located in the Zone Prohibito or Forbidden Zone where a Bank Trust called a Fedei Comiso is used.

I don’t consider a 3% ding by the Argentine Government on the sale price of a vineyard as costly when compared to other countries. Yes, an Escribano will want his 2% - 3% fee based on the Sale Price from the Buyer and possibly from the Seller.

Title and Escrow Companies in the USA aren’t cheap, i.e. “No free lunches”.

Any real estate deal I do will in Argentina will involve an Escribano and Title search and I would use a Title Company in the USA.

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