What US$500,000 Houses Look Like Around The World

By   |   Updated 10 Aug 2023

Turkey 500k house

Originally published in 2009 on our Money Choices blog, part of Boyd Creative Pty Ltd.

The international housing market has practically stalled over the past year and in some countries prices have fallen through the floor. With a considerable drop in prices, now is the ideal time to buy that new home or holiday house.

Let's imagine you get a home loan for AU$770,000 (equivalent to US$500,000) to invest. It may not stretch as far as it used to, but you can still get some stunning properties in exotic locations. Take a look at these gorgeous properties in across the globe and see just what you can get for your money.

Turkey: Kalkan, Mediterranean Sea

Turkey 500k house

Local Price: €393,000
USD Price: $505,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 4
These newly built villas are located at Kiziltas overlooking the stunning Kalkan bay. The pool-side sea views are incredible. While the villa is situated on the hill it's only 5 minutes drive to the town centre below. Everything in the house is designed to be able to soak up the views. The master bedroom, open plan kitchen/dining and lounge layouts lead out to the poolside terrace.

Thailand: Bang Saray, South Jomtien

Thailand 500k house

Local Price: 17,000,000 THB
USD Price: $485 640
Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 3
This luxury villa captures old world charm with its authentic design. It offers all the modern amenities Europeans would wish for in a holiday home, including a swimming pool. Situated in the picturesque fishing village of Bang Saray, it has access to the unspoiled beach on the eastern seaboard of Thailand. The main town of Pattaya is also very close by, just a mere 15 kilometers away.

Indonesia: Canggu, Bali

Bali 500k house

Local Price: IDR 6,000,000,000
USD Price: $495,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2
Only 175 m from the beach, this beautiful Balinese villa on 5.5 acres of land, surrounded by the rice fields of Canggu. From the villa there is spectacular sunset and ocean views with Bali’s mountain range in the distance.

USA: West Rice Street, Chicago

Chicago 500k House

Price: $499,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2
Giving trendy a new meaning, the lumiere are forward thinking from the outside in, unlike anything on the market in Chicago, Caesarstone kitchens w built in sushi/breakfast bar, frosted glass & ebony sabbiata horizontal grain cabs, viking appliances, built in speakers and ent ctr. Baths imported porcelain w steam shower, rain, and body sprays. 8 ft solid birch doors, 4 in birch floors. Elevator building, 1 gar space & roof deck.

Costa Rica: Playa Tamarindo

Costa Rica 500k House

USD Price: US$499,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 3
Costa Rica is famed for its sun, surf, climate microsystems, beautiful valleys, volcanoes, jungles, excellent security, good infrastructure, low costs and choice of climate. Property wise, Costa Rica is Latin America’s answer to Switzerland! Buying property here isn’t cheap anymore but $500,000 will buy you a luxury villa like this one. It was built only in 2007 and is set 10 minutes from Playa Tamarindo. There room to sleep seven people, a gorgeous swimming pool and an outdoor living area with room for all with a new big Webber gas grill to cook your favorite foods.

New Zealand: Albany, Auckland

New Zealand Auckland 500k House

Local Price: NZU$939,000
USD Price: $480,000
Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 3
On average, real house prices declined 35%, with the decline stretching over six years meaning that now mightn’t be a bad to purchase in New Zealand. This gorgeous two level cosy 276 sqm home exudes warmth and character no matter the day, time or season. The home is well appointed for sun and stunning views every day of: luscious bush, changing weather moods and magnificent sunsets! The two levels offer their own indoor to outdoor flow to decks. The lower level takes you down to a charming pool complex and spacious garden. The block of land is 6028 sqm. Offers: 4 double bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 3 living areas, rumpus/office/games room, a studio/ hobbies room above the garage, ample off street parking, several deck areas.

Australia: Surrey Hills, Sydney

Australia Sydney 500k House

Local Price: AU$740,000
USD Price: $487,438
Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 2
The ultimate in luxury city living, this two bedroom apartment is modern in design and offers top quality finishes throughout. The layout is spacious and airy; a must have for minimalist living. This is a great lock-up and go property for enthusiastic travelers, although be warned you’ll be reluctant to go anywhere after seeing the spectacular views from the balcony. A reminder for Aussies at this juncture, always get a home loan to enter the market because you can actually afford to, not just because Prime Minister Rudd is offering the first time home buyers grant.

Brazil: Bombinhas, Santa Catarina

Brazil 500k house

USD Price: $481,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 4
Located in the hilltop overlooking the breathtaking views of the mountains, the ocean and Bombas Beach; this designer home is ideal for those wanting to live in the lap of luxury. This split-level home has three bedrooms, each with its own en-suite and it has more than enough living space with 2 living areas and an outdoor patio with a swimming pool. Part of a gated community, it is secure and you can get full access to all the communal facilities including: tennis courts; two clubhouses; volleyball courts and even a jogging trail.

Caribbean Islands: Bon Accord Estate, Tobago

Caribbean 500k house

USD Price: $465,000
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2
A spacious Caribbean island retreat can be yours for less than $500,000 and it comes fully furnished. Located on a quiet estate, this air-conditioned 3 bedroom is pleasantly decorated and has ample indoor and outdoor living space. It even has its own lovely swimming pool set in a manicured garden. Best of all the beach, bars and shops are all within walking distance.

France: Mazemat, South Tarn

France 500k house

Local Price: €395,000
USD Price: $505,442
Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 2
This beautiful 19th century manor house is in magnificent condition and simply oozes charm. Set near a quaint village, it offers the peace and tranquility of a rural property and is still only 5 minutes away from the local shops. This spacious home has 5 bedrooms; a study; large reception room and huge family kitchen.

Malaysia: Damamsara, Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia 500k house

Local Price: RM1,800,000
USD Price: $501,000
Bedrooms: 3 +1 Bathrooms: 4
This modern, semi-detached condominium provides a sanctuary away from the busy city centre of Kuala Lumpur while still being only moments from the commercial centre. High ceilings and clean lines makes this home feel spacious and cool. The complex offers all the amenities a busy family could require including a gym; playground; swimming pool and of course 24 hour security.

South Africa: Camps Bay, Cape Town

South Africa Cape Town 500k House

Local Price: R4,395,000
USD Price: $450,300
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2 & a Swimming Pool
Own a slice of paradise, in this sought after area of Cape Town. This gorgeous 3 bedroom house is perfect for entertainers. The entertainment area flows directly from the living rooms, through to a beautiful swimming overlooked by the mountain. Secure and spacious, it even has an additional storage room.

Spain: Sierrezuela, Andalucia

Spain 500k house

Local Price: €395,000
USD Price: $505,442
Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2 Swimming Pool
Spend some time in the sun in your very own traditional Spanish villa. This charming three bedroom property is set within a mature garden, complete with its very own swimming pool. Make the most of the mild climate by dining alfresco on the shaded porch. Quiet and rustic, this is a great getaway for busy people.

UK: Canary Wharf, London

London 500k house

Local Price: £340,000
USD Price: $502,600
Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 2
Get spectacular river views with this modern apartment in the heart of the Docklands. This stunning property offers a large reception area; 2 good sized bedrooms and a stylish semi-circular balcony. It even comes with a concierge service.

USA: Manhattan, New York City

USA New York Manhattan 500k house

Price: US$499,000
Bedrooms: 1 Bathrooms: 1
Manhattan properties are notoriously expensive; however it is still possible to find little gems like this one bedroom apartment. Completely renovated it has all the complimentary services that buyers would expect in a Manhattan property. It has a 24 hour doorman; laundries on every floor; a parking garage and even a garden.

USA: Lower Pacific Heights, San Francisco

USA San Francisco 500k house

Price: $450,000
Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 2
This gorgeous Victorian Condo is in perfectly located for easy access to Japantown, as well as the shops and bars on Fillmore Street. Much of the period features have been retained, however this cosy 2 bedroom property has all the modern amenities required for today's lifestyle.