Non-Resident Indian – Buying and Selling and Repatriation Guide


Non-Resident Indian – Buying and Selling and Repatriation Guide

It’s most important for an NRI to buy and sell properties are to keep their Bank Statements in order and engage a Chartered Accountant and keep your taxes up to date in order to sell or lease their properties and repatriate the funds. 

“The proof of the Pudding lies in the eating”, as the old saying, says. So the same goes for any investment made in the real estate sector, as you must be able to realize your gains when the investment matures or you make substantial profits on your base investment.

A few Non Resident Indians, who either have stayed abroad for the longest time and primarily have not had a direct exposure and understanding in the real estate market, shy away due to complexity of the laws and transaction issues of buying and selling property in India., It’s also seen that not only they are not able to exit at the opportune moment but also that the properties remain Non Performing Assets even after the possession.

It’s not only important to understand the legal and taxation issues while you want to buy and sell your property in India but essential to know and understand the process and tax liabilities etc.

Highlighted below are the important points, which you would need to buy

NRI’s, PIO and OCI Card Holders Can buy Homes & Offices in India

Any one who is holding an Indian Passport or a Foreign Passport with OCI or PIO Card is allowed to buy property in India without the requirement of approaching the Reserve Bank of India and can freely buy and sell property as any other Indian Citizen in India can. If you are holding a foreign passport and you are of Indian Origin or your spouse is Indian then you can apply to the Indian High Commission in your Country for an OCI or a PIO Card. Once you submit your proper proof of an Indian descent or the marriage certificate etc. as per the documents prescribed by the High Commission, you can get the OCI cards in a couple of months at max.

Docs Required for Buying a Property in for Example – Mumbai City or Most of the Metros

The documents required for buying a property would be the following:

NRE – Non Resident External and Non Residential Operational account

In the NRE accounts, you can send the money from overseas but you cannot deposit the money in India in these accounts. You can issue payments from these accounts.

In the NRO accounts, you can deposit the amounts you generate as Income by way or Rent, Interest or any other income or sale proceeds.

Tip – You should open a bank account with a reputed Indian Bank in your country, where they can service you with your needs of funds remittance, transfer to the developer etc. and have good online banking facilities.

Pan Card – Permanent Account Number – Income Tax

You would require this mandatorily if you are buying or selling a property in India, and since most of the values are above Rs.500,000/- this is a must for property buying. You can get this within 15 days to a month and you can apply this online on the website at the NSDL website.

Address Proof

If you have a local address then its great, else, it is a good idea always to hire a Chartered Accountant, who can help you with the Pan Cards, POA – Power of Attorney etc., or your Real Estate Advisor who can help you begin the buying process.

Power of Attorney to Sell and Buy

In India, you can give the Power of Attorney to buy to any of your Relatives, Friends, Chartered Accountants, Lawyers and Friends.

Process for the same is quiet simple:

Draft the POA and put in the property details. A standard POA is available on

you can fill the details of the Property, the Buyer and the person you wish to make as the attorney.

Then you need to go to your local Indian High Commission and get the document attested at the Indian High Commission in your City/Country.

You need to send the documents back to Mumbai for adjudication and stamping. This needs a stamp duty of Rs.500/- and a copy of your passport and this is ready in a few days.

Once, the POA is adjudicated, your POA holder can execute the Agreement for Sale and Register the same with the Registrar and pay Stamp Duty etc.

Kindly note for Selling the property, you only can give this POA to a Blood Relative like – Father, Mother, Sister, Brother, Son, Daughter and Wife.

Bank Loans

If you are looking for a property in India, it’s advisable that you take a Home Loan against the same. Banks do a very strong due diligence on the property and it safeguards you completely. Even if you take a small home loan of say 20% of the property value, its good enough, if you have income in India, you can set off up to Rs.2,50,000/- per year against that and also you don’t have to worry about keeping your original docs safe as they are kept in the safe custody of the bank in any case.

Furthermore for NRI’s it makes it most important, as sometimes, the commitment by the Developers on Legal Clearances may be in the pipe line, having a bank in the transaction gives an immense comfort to the home buyer and if there is a grey area it would come up very quickly rather than the NRI sitting overseas realizing after a pint of time.

Who can apply for NRI Home Loans?

  • ProfilesNon Resident Indian (NRI), Person of Indian origin (PIO), Overseas Citizen of India (OCI), except Citizens of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, China, Iran, Nepal or Bhutan.
  • Age – Minimum age of the applicant should be 24 years. Maximum age limit is 60 years or retirement age (whichever is earlier), at the time of loan maturity.
  • Work experience – Applicant should have a minimum overseas work experience of six months with total work experience of 2 years
  • Minimum Income
    For GCC Countries – AED 5000/- p.m. (or equivalent)
    Other Countries & USA – USD 3000/-p.m. (or equivalent)
    For Merchant Navy – USD 2000/- p.m. for 9 months

Home Loan Documentation for NRI

  • Complete Passport copy and Work Visa copy
  • Overseas address proof e.g. utility bill, card statement, House lease agreement, bank statement etc.
  • Salary Slip for three months
  • Appointment letter or Contract Copy
  • Salary a/c and NRE/ NRO a/c statement for six months
  • General Power Of Attorney

Once the property is ready, there are 3 Options an NRI has:

Hold for Personal Use

If the property is used for Personal use, there is nothing to be done, but just pay the regular monthly society charges and municipal taxes.


If one has to lease, then the Income from the same is taxed after a standard deduction of 30% on the rent.

You can repatriate the rent income whenever you like by obtaining a Chartered Account Certificate.


This is the part, which needs a detailed attention, if you are selling a property the first thing you need to do is compute your Capital Gains, if you fall in the Short Term Capital Gains (STCG) category or Long Term Capital Gains (LTCG).

The STCG is equivalent to your income tax current slab and the Long Term Capital Gains is calculated based on the inflation index and usually the tax amounts to any where lesser than 20% if you are holding for 3 years.

The most important part about NRI selling is the TDS – Tax Deduction at Source

As per the Income Tax laws, any one buying a property held by NRI or NRI’s has to mandatorily deduct TDS of 30% of the consideration amount.

To void this, the NRI Seller has to obtain a Lower Tax Deduction Certificate from the Income Tax office. The Chartered Accountant of the NRI has to submit a detailed computation of the Capital Gains based on the Purchase and Sale value and if the proceeds are re-invested again into the real estate.

To initiate this, it is must that the NRI has filed the Income Tax Returns for the last 2 years.

It is important that the NRI is filling the regular returns here so that once they are closer to any property transaction, they should not get hassled due to excessive paper work at the last minute.


After all the taxes are computed and paid to the Government of India, the NRI Seller can repatriate the proceeds to any foreign bank abroad and this can happen only once the Chartered Accountant issues a certificate.

It’s most important for an NRI to buy and sell properties are to keep their Bank Statements in order and engage a Chartered Accountant and keep your taxes up to date in order to sell or lease their properties and repatriate the funds.