Lenders will look at what you earn from a wide range of sources as well as your world-wide assets. You will need to earn or have a high level of knowledge of the currency you wish to borrow in.
This is where we come in. Our experts will advise you which lender, whether High Street, Private Bank or Specialist Offshore lender, and which foreign currency mortgage is right for you.
We don’t just pick a mortgage product, we provide expert advice and exceptional service throughout the whole process. And we’ll always be there should you ever need us for any other (foreign currency or not!) mortgage or any other property related matter.
There are two main types of foreign currency mortgage. By far the most common is a UK mortgage on an overseas property. However, it is also possible to take out a foreign currency mortgage on a UK property.
So, instead of lending you money in sterling, a UK bank may advance you the mortgage in another currency, for example, Euros, Japanese Yen or US Dollars.
The way it works is that while the mortgage itself is converted into pounds, allowing you to buy your property in the UK, the actual value of the debt (two different things, if you like) remains in the denominated foreign currency and interest is charged on it in that currency.
The mortgage itself is then paid off by making monthly payments, as usual, in pounds sterling, which are converted into the chosen currency on the foreign exchange.
The main advantage of foreign currency mortgages is that they may enable the borrower to benefit from a lower interest rate than is available in the UK. Over the term of a mortgage, this can save tens of thousands of pounds, especially if, as is the case with some foreign currency mortgages, the mortgage debt is actively switched between currencies to take advantage of the lowest interest rates.
This “active management” can be handled personally or, if you do not have the time to track the exchange rate changes yourself, through a highly experienced Currency Manager.
Some lenders will only lend foreign currency mortgages to those who are paid in that particular currency, for example if you work for a US Law Firm and earn your income in dollars, or a European company and you are paid in Euros.
Other factors that affect your eligibility for a foreign currency mortgage include:
Self Employed vs being employed
There are far more lenders on the market that are willing to lend to people who are employed rather than self-employed, and this is especially true for a foreign currency mortgage. This is due to the extra difficulty lenders face when verifying disposable income and calculating affordability. Another reason is the difference in tax systems across the world which means the lender has to understand another tax system to check if there are any tax liabilities you might face.
The currency you’re paid in
The currency you’re paid in will affect the number of lenders out there who are willing to lend to you. All UK lenders will consider income paid in sterling however there are fewer lenders out there who are willing to offer euro, dollar or yen mortgages.
The country the work is carried out
The country where you work/receive income will affect your eligibility for a foreign currency mortgage. For example, if you work in France, Germany or The Netherlands there’s a higher chance your mortgage would be accepted compared to if you work in Belize, Morocco or Bolivia. This comes down to the fact that they have strong, stable economies and lenders will have a better understanding of the EU’s tax system, fraud prevention and anti-money laundering requirements.
The Size Of The Business
The size of the business you work for can impact your mortgage application. A large multinational company based overseas with a strong reputation in the UK will improve your chances compared to a small startup. This is because large multinationals are less likely to put themselves or employees under any tax or revenue scrutiny.
The account you’re paid into
If the bank account your salary is paid into has branches in the UK this will improve the chances that your application will be approved. For example, you could be working for a Spanish business and your earnings are paid into a Santandar account. This is because lenders may consider this a lower risk as the bank has an understanding of both the UK and Spanish market and tax systems, as well as reliable audit trails of where the money is coming from.
The usual host of factors that affect your mortgage eligibility also impact your eligibility for a foreign currency mortgage. These include things like:
Otherwise the lender will expect you to do a job or have a level of expertise in the currency markets.
As a rule of thumb, foreign currency mortgages are favoured by higher net worth clients or more sophisticated borrowers who understand the mechanism and inherent risks of the currency markets.
After all, while the value of Sterling can go up against the currency your mortgage is being paid in, so it can go down, which can mean you pay considerably more each month on your monthly payments and in some cases end up owing more on your property than when you started!
Managed currency mortgages offer potential benefits over regular foreign currency mortgages. However, these should only be considered by people who can afford the financial implications of a permanent increase in their loan, if things don’t go to plan. This is because a managed foreign currency mortgage works by trying to “beat the market”. There are three main advantages to a managed foreign currency mortgage which are:
Foreign currency mortgages require a professional adviser who has experience in understanding the needs of clients like you. Knowledge of how foreign currency lending works, the type of documentation lenders are likely to ask for as well as having the tenacity to negotiate the very best rates on your behalf are key.
Many of our brokers in foreign currency mortgages have been doing this since 1993 and have established relationships with Currency Managers and banks over the years which mean we can cut through the noise and obtain quick decisions which can be relied upon. This is essential in the high demand UK property market and especially in London.
Our advisors will guide you through the intricacies of the foreign currency mortgage market, being with you to help negotiate both the property price and your financial terms, as well as recommending trusted partners such as Property Finders, Surveyors and Solicitors.
And it doesn’t stop there. Our team will be on hand to smooth the whole process through to exchange, completion and beyond.
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on a mortgage or any debt secured upon it.
A fee of up to 1% of the mortgage amount may be charged depending on individual circumstances.
A typical fee is £495.
How much can I borrow?
"We worked with Alex from Coreco and our experience was amazing, he literally was the best..."
Read full review
"Hannah Lee gave us all of the advice we needed as first time buyers, and patiently..."
Read full review
"Alex Dowding from Coreco is a great mortgage advisor. You can fully trust that he will..."
Read full review