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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Consider Real Estate Options


When faced with an international move, property owners are also faced with what to do with the property they own. The decision to rent or sell a home takes time.  At least six months before departure, take the following steps:

  • If selling, interview at least three real estate agents. If you decide to upgrade your existing kitchen, bathrooms, make improvements to the heating or air conditioning system, clean up the yard or make other repairs, create a planning calendar for getting these tasks accomplished. 
  • If renting, decide who will manage your home while you are away.  Take time to interview property managers and select a company.  The Transition Center offers an annual workshop Managing Your Rental Property from Overseas at the Foreign Service Insitute in Arlington, VA.  If you are unable to attend the workshop, a video (DVD) of the presentation is available through the Overseas Briefing Center.  The evening workshop  features experts describing all aspects of becoming a landlord, renting your property, and the tax implications.
  • Plan ahead to prepare your property for sale or rental. For more information, email a Resource Specialist at the Overseas Briefing Center.

To view items you will need to consider once you receive an assignment, see Make Real Estate Arrangements.

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