International housing choices for expats in the USA

International housing choices for expats in the USA

International housing choices for expats in the USA

Explore diverse international housing options tailored for expatriates in the USA.

This blog will help you understand the ins and outs of renting vs buying property in America. It will shed light on local laws and how the real estate market works. Understanding these will help you make a smart decision on whether to invest in foreign real estate or opt for a rental property.

  • Getting familiar with the housing market in America

  • Housing types and costs across the US

  • Pros and cons of renting

  • Pros and cons of buying

  • Tips on finding a place rent

  • Platforms to search a house on

  • Strategies for purchasing a property

  • Climate impact on housing in the US

  • Let's get started!

Getting familiar with the housing market in America

If you're new to the US housing market, you may find it a bit confusing at first. It's also a good idea to chat with our housing search team. They can give you useful advice about the market and help you find your dream home. 

Housing types and costs across the US

In the United States, you'll find a wide mix of homes, and their types and costs can change a lot depending on where you look. For example: 

  • You can find dreamy beach houses and Spanish-style bungalows in states near the sea, like Florida and California. These can cost somewhere around $300,000 to $700,000 on average. 

  • In other places like Texas and Arizona, ranch-style homes are more of the norm. These usually cost between $200,000 to $300,000. If you're thinking of moving to busy cities like New York or Illinois, then apartments and condos might be your thing.

  • Yet, their prices can be all over the place. For instance, a condo in Chicago might cost around $500,000, but in Manhattan, you could be looking at over a million.

  • In some New England states like Vermont or Massachusetts, you might come across traditional homes, which are called colonial or cape-cod style homes. These usually cost somewhere between $250,000 and $400,000

But, these are just estimates. Housing prices can change a lot depending on things like where the house is, how big it is, how old it is, and its condition. So, if you're thinking of buying international property like foreign property in the United States, it's a good idea to get in touch with our housing search team. They can help you understand the market better. 

Pros and cons of renting


  • Flexibility: As a tenant, you have the freedom to relocate relatively easily, which can be particularly beneficial if your work requires you to move around frequently.

  • Fewer maintenance responsibilities: The landlord is usually responsible for all major repairs and maintenance.

  • Lower Upfront Costs: Renting generally requires less money upfront compared to buying a home.


  • No equity: Rent money provides you with a place to live, but it's not an investment for the future.

  • Less control: You have limited ability to customize your living space without the landlord's permission.

  • Possible rent increase: The cost of your rent can increase over time, depending on the terms of your lease and market conditions.

Tips on finding a place to rent

Searching for a rental in a new country can be thrilling yet a bit tense. Here are simple steps to help. 

  1. Know the area you're looking at. Is it near your job, shops, and transport? 

  2. Check your budget. Can you afford the rent? 

  3. Read the lease agreement. Know the contract length, notice period, and extra costs. This can save you trouble later.

If you're a foreigner, renting property in the US can be a smart move. Relocately’s housing search team can help you with this.

If you plan to stay for a longer period, check the rules about a residency visa. You also have to think about the type of house you want to buy or rent. A property in Florida might require storm shutters, while one in Minnesota might need a steep roof. A 

Platforms to search a house on

In the digital age, lots of online realtors facilitate the searching and buying process for potential homeowners in the USA. Websites such as Zillow,, and Trulia provide extensive listings and vital information about properties across the country. These realtors allow users to filter their search based on location, price range, property type, and more, providing an accessible way to compare properties. Moreover, they offer comprehensive details about each property, including photos, floor plans, neighborhood information, and sometimes even virtual tours. This wealth of information allows prospective buyers, whether domestic or international, to conduct a thorough search from the comfort of their homes before deciding on the most suitable property.

Strategies for purchasing a property

When considering strategies for buying a property, it's important to understand the various legal aspects and financial responsibilities that come with it. Mortgages, taxes, and legal fees can quickly add up, making it crucial to research and understand all aspects of the purchasing process. 

Climate impact on housing in the US

If you are interested in the different types of housing in the United States, then you might also check the climate impact on them. Relocately has some fun facts for the different types of US housings:

  • In Florida, hurricanes are common. This has led to homes designed to handle these weather conditions. They have strong concrete walls and storm shutters. 

  • Kansas and Oklahoma can face tornadoes. So, houses here often come with basements or storm cellars. 

  • States like Minnesota and Alaska see a lot of snow. So, houses here are typically built with steep roofs to stop snow piling up. 

  • In Arizona, the weather is dry and hot. This has made adobe-style homes popular, as they keep the inside cool. 

Let's get started!

As you can see, there are several aspects to consider when it comes to housing options in America. Whether you decide to rent or buy a property, the most important factor is that it meets your needs and fits within your budget. If you take the necessary steps to understand the housing market and do your research before taking either route, real estate can be a great experience every single time. Don’t forget, we’re always here at Relocately to provide support in each step of the process – just give us a call and we’ll be happy to get started!

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