Sun, sea & mortgages
Sun, sea and mortgages – why it pays to consult the experts
Sun, sea and mortgages, why it pays to consult the experts – The strong pound, bargain prices and historically low interest rates mean that it may never be more affordable to invest in a little slice of life overseas. And when you compare the cost of a home abroad with overheated parts of the UK market, there are plenty of buyers who are willing to explore overseas opportunities in their search for better investment potential.
Crucially, the cost of mortgage borrowing is at a historic low and it may never be more affordable to take out an overseas mortgage, particularly in the popular European locations. But it pays to consult the experts if you’re thinking of financing your property purchase in this way.
While much of the front-end administration can be similar, each country presents a multitude of legalities, customs, and foreign exchange requirements, as well as language barriers of course, and this is only the start of what can be a long and complicated process if it’s not managed properly. And for that to happen, you need to truly understand each country’s lending requirements.
Sun, sea and mortgages
Using a specialist overseas mortgage broker, however, can ensure that the whole process is taken care of, from start to finish. Having an expert involved can help enormously as they’ve got great knowledge as well as plenty of experience of the overseas markets and are able to source the best possible deal for the buyer. They can also ensure that they’re put in touch with specialists in the country in question, to enable you to comply fully with planning and legal conditions and assist with currency exchange.
There are a few examples of where the expertise of a specialist mortgage broker has really made a big difference to the experience of overseas buyers.
In one recent case, the process of securing a French mortgage took several months and there was a lot of paperwork and administration involved. This is not unusual, of course, but having someone who knows the ropes take care of the process can really take the pressure off the buyer. There was one issue towards the end, which involved the French lawyer having to track down the previous tenant of the property in question to offer them first refusal of the purchase, a legal loophole that the British buyer would ever have been aware of had they not approached the experts. Thankfully, this ended up being just a formality as the previous tenant was not interested in buying the property and the buyer could therefore tick that legal box. During this time the mortgage broker kept the mortgage offers in date otherwise the deal would have fallen like a stack of dominoes.
In another recent case, someone was taking out a mortgage for a ski property in the Alps and there was a minor hiccup which involved the completion date having to be moved due to a legal ‘cooling off’ period taking the buyer beyond the original entry date. And in a third case, also relating to a French mortgage (this is no reflection on France – it just so happens that France is one of the biggest property hot spots for British buyers at the moment), the buyer was totally unaware that life assurance is a requirement of securing a mortgage in France, and that the term of the policy needs to be longer than the mortgage term. Again, this was something identified and taken care of by the overseas broker.
All of these issues were not huge problems in the end; they simply illustrate how things work very differently in other countries and how you can’t afford to make any costly mistakes by trying to go it alone. Using one of our experienced mortgage brokers is often the glue that keeps everything together.
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