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As an expat, investing in a UK buy-to-let property can be an attractive option for generating rental income, building wealth and taking advantage of the buoyant UK rental market. However, securing a BTL mortgage while living abroad can be a complex process. In this guide, we will explore the steps and considerations involved in the process of securing a UK mortgage whilst living abroad.
The criteria for getting a BTL mortgage for UK expats differ from lender to lender, but here is a brief overview of what is usually looked for:
every lender will have an approved list of countries which they accept.
Lenders will typically require evidence of a stable income source, often from employment or self-employment.
A UK credit history is preferred but not essential as there are lenders who will consider applicants without an existing UK credit profile.Deposit – You’ll need to provide a deposit, usually ranging from 25% to 40% of the property’s value. The amount will vary based on the investment you are purchasing and the rental income it will generate.
again this is preferred but not essential as there are lenders who will open a bank account as part of the mortgage application process.
Not all UK lenders provide BTL mortgages to expats, and the ones that do may have different eligibility criteria and terms. It’s crucial to research and select a lender that specializes in expat mortgages or is known for working with expat borrowers. These lenders are more likely to have a streamlined process for international mortgages in the UK.
UK expat buy-to-let mortgage applications often require extensive documentation to prove your financial stability and credibility. Common documents you may need to provide include:
Payslips, employment contracts, or business financial statements.
To demonstrate your financial stability
If you have income from self-employment or investments, your tax returns can help prove your financial standing.
Passport, visa, or other relevant identification (including proof of UK citizenship or residency).
Lenders will assess the rental income potential of the property to determine if it can cover the mortgage payments. The lender will request an independent assessment of the expected market rent and will base its lending decision on this figure. It is worth doing your own research to ensure the figures align with your expectations.
Buy-to-let mortgages for expats may come with marginally higher interest rates compared to UK based applicants. However due to the increasing competition in the marketplace there lenders are regularly reviewing their rates and products to attractively price their interest rates.
In most cases, lenders usually ask for a minimum 25% deposit. So, you should be able to evidence at least that level of deposit available before you can consider securing a BTL expat mortgage. It should be noted that while this is the minimum requirement, having a higher deposit amount will broaden your lending options and may potentially open up to lower rates of interest.
The process of securing the most suitable BTL mortgage for expats can be a complex task. That is why, it is always advisable to seek professional help from Visionary Finance, an expat mortgage broker in the UK. We can help you find the right lender, understand the terms, and guide you through the entire application process. This way, you can ensure that your efforts in purchasing a rental property lead to profitable outcomes.