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Expat Remortgages for UK Nationals
There are currently around 5.5 million British expats living overseas, and many choose to retain a UK property when relocating, as an investment asset or to generate rental income.
Remortgaging a property as an expat can be complicated. Still, the mortgage advisors team is on hand to help, with advice about remortgages for UK properties as an overseas expat, as well as remortgage a property you own abroad.
For personal advice, contact Revolution Brokers on 0330 304 3040 or email us at [email protected].
Can I Remortgage a UK Property From Abroad?
You can, yes - if you already own a home in the UK, live abroad as an expat, and want to remortgage, there are several options.
The right lender depends on whether you want to let out a UK property as a buy to let, or remortgage to keep up with more competitive rates on the market.
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Are There UK Mortgages for Expats Living Overseas?
There are, and remortgaging from abroad is more straightforward than arranging a new mortgage as your provider will already have your credit history, and the existing mortgage will have built up a credit score for new lenders to refer back to.
If you do not have a credit history or have adverse credit issues, get in touch, and we'll advise on the best specialist lenders to apply to.
Can I Get an Expat Remortgage for a Property Outside of the UK?
Generally, it's a little more complicated to remortgage from overseas. It is, therefore, crucial to understand the tax implications and legalities associated with cross-border property ownership:
- You need to understand your tax residency status, and what taxes are payable in your host country and country of origin.
- Any documents in a foreign language should be professionally translated, and you need to ensure that solicitors and advisors are conversant in legislation in both states.
- Exchange rates can make a significant difference to affordability, so you need to understand how the currencies are likely to change - your lender must inform you if the rate changes by over 20% in either direction.
Some lenders will offer an expat remortgage in another currency, which is well worth considering if you are concerned about future fluctuations impacting your income, or your regular repayments.
What are the Eligibility Criteria for an Expat Remortgage?
All lenders have their own criteria, but generally, for an expat remortgage, a lot will depend on the LTV restrictions of the UK lender, and their income policies.
This can change significantly, with lenders offering maximum Loan to Value ratios of between 60% and 90% depending on what countries are involved. You might also find that some lenders will consider 33% of your expendable income as a primary figure to use in calculating how much they can lend to you.
Most expat remortgage rejections happen because of issues in demonstrating income. Therefore, it is essential to work with an experienced broker who will ensure you only apply to lenders who are likely to be able to accept your application.
Are There Expat Remortgages Available for Bad Credit Applicants?
Bad credit will always make a complex remortgage application more difficult, but in some cases, you might not have a credit score at all.
That means that, even if you have never taken out lending in the UK, the absence of a credit record can be as detrimental as having experienced severe credit issues in the past.
It is vital to try and build up a traceable credit score or take steps to improve your rating - contact the Revolution Brokers team for more advice about how to do so.
Does My Working Situation Impact My Eligibility for an Expat Remortgage?
It can, yes, because lender criteria for expat remortgages will often require:
- Your annual income to be at least £25,000.
- You to have an employment role in an 'internationally recognised' company.
- Records of payments in English - professional translations are often accepted.
- Income paid into a UK bank account, with overseas income not considered.
Not all lenders enforce all of these criteria, but it's worth being aware of why income is so important when it comes to remortgaging as an expat.
Self-Employed Expats - You can get an expat remortgage if you are self-employed, but usually this depends on having a reference from an accountant with internationally recognised qualifications. Most lenders will require three years of accounts.
Typically, lenders will ask for a minimum deposit of 25% for employed or self-employed applicants, although this can vary depending on the circumstances.
If you have an existing UK property, you can leverage the equity, but without any form of security, a lender might ask for a deposit of 35% and above.
Expat Remortgages for Buy To Let Properties
Many expats retain a UK property to let out, and the criteria for remortgaging an expat investment property are a little different.
The first stage is to demonstrate your employment, usually through a contract. If you are self-employed, most lenders will require the same three years worth of accounts, verified by an internationally recognised accountant.
Most expat remortgage lenders will look for:
- A good, traceable UK credit history.
- Maximum age at the end of the term of 70.
- Repayment mortgages only, rather than interest-only products.
Landlord experience also comes into play, with the longer your track record, the lower risk the application and the more likely you are to have an application accepted at competitive rates.
Is There a Deposit Required for an Expat Remortgage?
Usually, if you are remortgaging, then the equity acts as the deposit, and you won't be asked to put down a further instalment. However, if you can reduce the LTV, then you are likely to be offered better rates.
If you do decide to deposit a further instalment, the following sources are considered acceptable:
- UK savings, or savings from an overseas bank.
- Stocks, shares or capital investment assets - held in the UK or abroad.
- Property sale proceeds.
- Equity held in an existing property - ideally in the UK.
- Inheritance capital.
- Gifted deposits from family or friends.
Why Do I Need a UK Bank Account for an Expat Remortgage?
Many lenders prefer expat remortgage applicants to have a UK bank account.
Regular payments and transactions can also help to build up a credit profile.
More Support with UK Expat Remortgages
If you are looking to remortgage a property at home or overseas, finding a lender as an expat can be tricky and time-consuming.
For independent support with identifying the right lender, and securing the expat remortgage lending you need, contact Revolution Brokers on 0330 304 3040 or email us at [email protected].
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The content included in our articles, blogs, web pages and news publications is based on information accurate at the time of writing. Note that policies and criteria can change regularly throughout the UK mortgage lending market, and it remains essential to contact the consultation team to receive up to date guidance. The information included on the Revolution Brokers site is not bespoke to any circumstances or individual application scenarios and therefore is not intended to be used as financial advice. The content we share is designed to be informative and helpful but cannot be relied upon to provide individual advice relevant to your mortgage requirements. All Revolution team members are fully qualified, trained and experienced to provide mortgage advice of an independent nature.
We collaborate with lenders and providers who are regulated, authorised and registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Should you require specific mortgage borrowing types, some products such as buy to let mortgages may not be FCA regulated. The Revolution team can provide further information about regulated and unregulated lending as required. Please remember that a mortgage is a debt which is secured against your home or property. Your home can be at risk of repossession if you do not keep up with the repayments or encounter any other difficulties in managing your mortgage borrowing responsibly. This also applies to any remortgage or home loan secured against your property, including equity release products.