Expats are increasing their portfolios in the UK

This year has seen a record level of expat buy-to-let mortgage approvals as expat landlords look to increase their portfolios. Recent surveys of expat landlords clearly reveal they are in the market to increase their holdings as quickly as possible.

The reasons are numerous for this trend, but it felt within the industry that Brexit has a lot to do with it. The survey revealed that over 50% of current landlords are achieving net returns of between 5% and 8% on their current portfolios. This is obviously a much larger return than any traditional savings account can currently offer.

With house values still on the increase year on year expats are also seeing the equity within their properties increasing at a very steady rate. So with all this positivity it is little wonder buy-to-let mortgages are increasing rapidly.

Home ownership in the UK has fallen to its lowest level for over 28 years which may well shock some people. When you look at the overall cost of buying a property in the UK perhaps it is not quite so surprising.

Buy-to-let mortgages

Expat landlords are reaping the rewards of relatively low mortgage interest rates and set up costs which look like rising in the near future.

We always recommend being very selective before deciding on what mortgage best suits your needs. With so many deals on offer it always pays to look at all the options, for example a long-fixed rate deal may be very prudent with the fear of a rate rise looming.

Need some help?

If you need assistance when choosing your next mortgage call one of our experienced advisers and they will be pleased to assist.

Expats do you know your mortgage?

As many as one in three expat homeowners in the UK don’t know what mortgage rate they are on, potentially costing them thousands of pounds each year, according to new research. Are you one of these?

The survey covered over 1500 expat homeowners with a mortgage in the UK and found that one in three (34%) didn’t know what rate they were on. A further four in ten (41%) only knew the approximate figure.

One in four (25%) of those who took part in the survey were on their mortgage lender’s standard variable rate (SVR), usually costing more than other products available from the same provider. The survey showed that only 35% of expat homeowners were on a fixed rate deal.

Looking deeper into the findings they reveal that borrowers with an average-priced home could end up paying as much as £450-£800 a month (over £4000 per year) more on their lender’s SVR.

Of those on SVR who had been on the same mortgage for at least the past five years, when asked why they hadn’t switched one in five (22%) said it wasn’t worth the hassle and one in seven (15%) claimed that they hadn’t thought about it.

There is a clear level of apathy when it comes to mortgage deals, over 70% said if re-mortgaging was made easier they would change immediately.

The re-mortgage market is competitive at the moment, so there’s a good chance that re-mortgaging will save you money. Speak to an independent expat mortgage adviser is a great place to start to find out your options, they will help make the prosses run smoothly and limit the paperwork you have to do.

Can we help?

If you would like to know more about a new or re-mortgage please do make contact and one of our qualified advisers will be happy to help.


Expats on standard variable rate mortgages (SVR’s)

Expats on standard variable rate (SVR) mortgages could potentially halve their monthly payments by switching to a fixed rate mortgage, according to the latest research.

Research shows the monthly cost of an average expat standard variable rate mortgage for a £150,000 home loan rose from £720 in September to £735 in October. This follows the increase in the bank base rate from 0.5% to 0.75% in August.

In January, the average monthly payment stood at £702 according to the calculations. This means expats on variable rate mortgages are typically paying £33 more per month for their mortgage than they were at the start of the year.

The research found that expat switching from a variable rate to a fixed rate mortgage could save themselves between £200 and £400 per month.

Obviously the increase in bank base rates has affected standard variable rates the most but it does appear the situation is more mixed amongst fixed rate loans. Whilst some have crept up others such as the more popular fixed rate 2-year loans have fallen back slightly since last month.

Re-mortgaging figures for expats look very healthy at present and this trend should continue if more review their current deals. The good news is there are a number of attractive fixed rate mortgages on offer currently for expats.

Help required?

If you would like to review your current expat mortgage please do make contact and one of our expert advisers will be happy to guide you.

Really positive outlook

A panel of industry experts has agreed that the outlook for property investment in the UK remains positive, despite the uncertainty around continued Brexit negotiations. Although there’s much uncertainty, the ambiguity has not dampened the spirits of prospective homebuyers and property investors.

Historically, real estate has proven itself to be a safe and secure asset by offering stable, long-term returns. As a result, demand for property remains high. Recent figures revealed that the average house prise in the UK rose by 3% in the 12 months to June 2018 and this positive trend has been met with enthusiasm from landlords and expats alike, with new research saying that more than half feel positive about the current state of the market.

This attitude is inspiring confidence throughout the expat sector and signifies a positive outlook for the future of the property market over the coming year, particularly in light of the fast approaching Brexit deadline.

So, despite wider market uncertainty, the returns available from owning, investing in and developing the right type of real estate continue to be favourable versus other asset classes, something that is expected to continue moving forward. This is for a number of reasons including: the supply/demand imbalance (not enough houses being built), the continued availability of cheap credit and a healthy economy. Never forget the fact that the UK remains a great place to do business.

All this has led to even more product innovation expats and landlords as lenders compete in this increasingly popular market.

Mortgage advice?

 If you are looking for an expat mortgage please do make contact, we have a team of experts waiting to help.

Expat mortgage approvals hitting new highs

This year has been the year to break numerous records and now we have seen expat mortgage approvals reach new heights.

Records show expat mortgage approvals are 36.7% higher than this time last year. It is no surprise to us as enquiries have been on the rise since the Brexit vote was announced. Property in the UK is still without any doubt a very good long-term investment unlike property in most of the Euro zone.

Buy-to-let mortgage approvals are showing the greatest increase and account for 41% of the total expat business. Buy-to-let business this year has been very buoyant as more expats look to secure property and at the same time earn extra income.

With a potential interest rate rise on the horizon re-mortgages are now becoming very active as clients look to secure a longer-term fixed deal.

If you are an expat and have not reviewed your current mortgage it would seem a very good time to do so as this could save you a great deal of money on your monthly budget.

Buy to let expat mortgages

UK and expat landlords are reaping rewards from lower mortgage charges and longer fixed rate deals. If you have an existing expat buy-to-let mortgage it may be a very good time to review its status.

We are hearing of a potential rate rise which could seriously hit profitability of your rental income. Remember it is not always best advice to change your mortgage mid-term so seek help from a professional adviser to see if this could be best advice for you.

Need some assistance?

If we can help with your new mortgage please call one of our fully experienced advisers we are here to help!

Expats should review and save thousands

There is very little doubt in the expat mortgage market 2018 is the year of the expat re-mortgage. You only need look at the rates being offered by lenders – particularly in the lower Loan To Value (LTV) bands. The rates currently on offer are not going to stay this low for much longer so if you are an expat and have a current variable rate mortgage review it sooner rather than later.

Research confirms that over 50% of all expat borrowers who move to their lender’s standard variable rate after their initial deal terminates don’t re-mortgage or product transfer for 3-5 years.  Also the report shows a quarter of re-mortgagors said they find the whole re-mortgage process difficult, with 42% saying they didn’t have time to shop around.

The “shopping around” mentality is clearly far more embedded in the UK consumer than ever before; however this doesn’t always translate to mortgage borrowers, even when the savings that can be achieved are substantial.

Expats need to get the message that re-mortgaging is where significant savings can be made – especially with rates as they are now. Rates are unlikely to remain this low for much longer so acting now could save thousand in the future. If you are an expat on a standard rate mortgage would you like to save upwards of £2000 PER YEAR? These savings are of course dependent on the size of mortgage you have but surely it’s worth checking.

Warning – A re-mortgage is not always suitable for everybody as your existing deal may well have penalties attached to change within the discounted period. It is always recommended to seek professional help as to what is best advice to suit your needs.

Can we help?

If you are looking to secure a new or re-mortgage please do make contact and one of our advisers will be happy to assist.

UK property growth slowing

Experts believe UK property values will rise between 2.5% & 4.5% across the UK next year according to figures released by one of the major high street mortgage lenders. This prediction does come with a “health warning” due to the Brexit uncertainty, but facts are the UK property market has seen off far more challenges than this in the past.

If these figures are achieved it follows the trend of this year, the report also states increases in values could be stifled by the possibility of a Brexit fallout early in 2019. Another factor that could possibly slow growth down is first time buyers being unable to get onto the property ladder. First-time buyers still find it difficult to raise the necessary deposits levels to meet the mortgage lenders requirements.

If you are an expat with property in the UK compare this annual growth to what could be achieve from an investment in any high street bank, property still looks a very good bet in the long term.

The report states they expect growth to slow more in the London area than elsewhere due to the initial high costs. It is likely properties in the North and East of the country will see the largest growth due to their current affordability levels. Read more

Expats, when did you last review your mortgage?

A former Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee member has predicted that interest rates could rise significantly in the next few years. This forecast is based on the lack of progression of the Brexit negotiations and what effect that could have on interest rates.

Inflation has now caught up with wage growth causing a sharp consumer slowdown and the weak pound has also squeezed consumers and the expectation is that households will adjust their spending downwards.

More and more expats are looking for ways to reduce their monthly outgoings. One of the biggest expenses most people have every month is their mortgage payment.  Keeping this in mind it would be a wise move to review your current mortgage so as to establish if it is still the best deal for you.

This will not be the case for everybody, your current deal may well be very good, but it is most certainly worth checking.

With all the uncertainty the Brexit situation is having on the UK currently a prudent move may be to fix a term for your current mortgage, this would take out all the uncertainty over that period.

It is highly recommended to seek professional independent advice as to what new deal could suit your current situation.

Reasons to re-mortgage

  • To save money.
  • Raise extra cash for a project you have planned.
  • Your current deal is ending soon
  • Transfer to a fixed medium/long term deal

Help required?

If you would like to review your current mortgage deal please do make contact and one of our advisers will be happy to assist.

Expats are well in profit

Despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit negotiations the “dire shortage” of homes is still pushing prices upwards, according to a recent surveyors report. Brexit negotiations continue and all the news coming out at present is hardly of a positive nature, but still, throughout all this, the UK property market is holding firm.

Recent reports show expats are returning to the UK residential market in large numbers, but the lack of supply means there are not enough quality properties available.

Property values continue to rise albeit at a slower rate than years gone by, with 29% more surveyors seeing growth in July compared to 18% the previous month.

Interest from prospective expat homebuyers increased for the sixth consecutive month.

The dire shortage of available housing across the UK is continuing to push prices upwards, regardless of the uncertainty linked to the ongoing discussions surrounding Brexit.

Surveyors are predicting a rise in prices over the next 12 months, with price expectations now positive in the majority of areas in the UK. These results show that confidence within the housing market continued to sustain momentum in the last few months.

With interest rates still very low, many expat buyers are realising that now is an affordable time to borrow. As a result, the market remains resilient and we are seeing a growing number of mortgage approvals for first-time expat buyers in particular.

If you are an expat and currently own a property in the UK with a mortgage now would be a very good time to review your current deal. Interest rates are currently low, but it has been muted this could change in the near future.

Mortgage help?

If you are looking for a new or re-mortgage please do make contact and one of our advisers will be pleased to assist.

Expat mortgage applications increasing daily

Rising levels of mortgage enquiries, applications and completions show that a significant number of expat first-time buyers are still both willing and able to get a foot on the UK property ladder.

The industry feels this surge of interest is partly down to the Brexit situation, expats are very keen to acquire property in the UK due to the ongoing uncertainty. The other main factor is the poor returns received when investing in property in other European countries.

UK property values remain stable which is a testimony to the long-term potential growth this market offers. Even with all the uncertainty in Europe and the UK, the market remains resilient and profitable, which is why expats see this area as good financial security.

It seems that expat first-time buyers are the ones having the most luck. Over two-thirds of mortgage applications by expat first-time buyers were successful in the first six months of 2018. The average number of expat enquiries has also risen dramatically this financial year as expats look to get a foothold on the UK property ladder.

Mortgages are not as easy to obtain as in the past but there are still good options open to the new investor and people wanting to re-mortgage.

It is strongly recommended using an independent broker as the application process can be somewhat stressful. An independent broker will have access to all products available and will advise accordingly.

Can we help?

If you are looking to invest in the UK please do contact us and one of our qualified advisers will be happy to assist.