NRI's - FAQ’s
1 Who is a NRI under the provisions of Foreign Exchange Management Act?
Generally, an Indian Citizen who stays abroad for employment/carrying on business or vocation outside India or stays abroad under circumstances indicating an intention for an uncertain duration of stay abroad or a person who is not resident in India for a period over 182 days is a non-resident Indian. Persons posted in U.N. organizations and officials deputed abroad by Central/State Governments and Public Sector undertakings on temporary assignments are also treated as non-residents.

2. Do NRI citizens require permission of Reserve Bank to acquire residential / commercial properly in India?
No.

3. Can foreign citizens of Indian origin acquire commercial properties in India?
Yes. Under the general permission granted by Reserve Bank properties other than agricultural land/farm house/plantation property can be acquired by foreign citizens of Indian origin provided the purchase consideration is met either out of inward remittances in foreign exchange through normal banking channels or out of funds from the purchasers' NRE/FCNR accounts maintained with banks in India and a declaration is submitted to the Central Office of Reserve Bank in form IPI 7 within a period of 90 days from the date of purchase of the property/final payment of purchase consideration.

4. Can they dispose of such properties?
Yes.

5. Can authorized dealer grant loans to NRIs for acquisition of a flat/house for residential purposes?
Authorized dealers have been granted permission to grant loans up to non-resident Indian nationals for acquisition of house/flat for self-occupation on their return to India subject to certain conditions. Repayment of the loan should be made within a period not exceeding 15 years out of inward remittance through banking channels or out of funds held in the investments' NRE/FCNR accounts.

6. Can Indian companies grant loans to their NRI staff?
Reserve Bank permits Indian firms/companies to grant housing loans to their employees deputed abroad and holding Indian passport subject to certain conditions. Source: Reserve Bank of India.

7. While purchasing real estate most developers demand a Power of Attorney in their favor, is there a way to avoid it?
One can choose not to grant the Power of Attorney (POA) to the developers. However this will mandate the mailing of all documents to your foreign residence and associated time delays. A good compromise is to grant the POA to the builder only for specific necessary items.

8. Can a foreign national of non-Indian origin whether resident in India or outside India transfer by way of sale residential/property in India acquired with the specific permission of Reserve Bank to a person resident in India or outside India?
A foreign national of non-Indian origin whether resident in India or outside India would need to seek prior approval of Reserve Bank for transfer by way of sale residential/property in India acquired with the specific permission of Reserve Bank to a person resident in India or outside India.

9. Under general permission available to whom can NRI/PIO transfer by way of sale his agricultural land/plantation property/farm house in India?
Under the general permission available NRI/PIO may transfer by way of sale his agricultural land/plantation property/farm house in India to a person resident in India who is a citizen of India.

10. Can a foreign national of non-Indian origin resident outside India transfer by way of sale agricultural land/plantation property/farm house acquired by him in India?
A foreign national of non-Indian origin resident outside India would need to seek prior approval of Reserve Bank for transfer, by way of sale, agricultural land/plantation property/farm house acquired in India.
11. For what kinds of property is a NRI eligible for Home loans?
A home loan is sanctioned to the NRIs for any of the following housing finance schemes: a) To purchase a house that is ready-built, under construction or from a second owner. b) To fund the purchase of a plot of land allotted by a society / development authority. c) For self-construction of a property on a plot of land. d) For renovation or improvement of an existing property in India.

12. What is the eligibility for obtaining NRI Home Loans?
Your eligibility is calculated in the same way as it is calculated for resident Indians. More emphasis is laid on the following criteria in the appraisal of a NRI case: a) Qualifications - the NRI applicant has to be a graduate b) Current job profile & Past work experience c) Probability of continuing abroad for the loan tenure d) Probability of servicing the loan with an extended tenure in case you have to return to India.

13. What are the Tax Benefits applicable to Non-Resident Indians?
No tax benefits are available for NRI customers unless you file returns and thereby become eligible to avail the tax benefits as mentioned under Home Loans.

14. What are the documents required for obtaining NRI Home Loans?
NRIs are required to submit additional documents than is normally required for a resident Indian. a) A copy of the passport b) A copy of the works contract (also sometimes referred to as the contract card/labor card) c) The power of attorney (POA) The POA is required because the borrower is not based in India and in such a scenario; the HFC would need a representative 'in lieu of' the NRI to deal with as required. Although not mandatory, the POA is usually drawn on the NRI's parents, wife or children.