Guide To American Mortgages

America has always been a popular destination for UK overseas property buyers. The similarity in culture, the consumer society and the wide variety of climate make it an easy choice for a holiday home. This guide will help you towards buying your piece of the American dream.

American mortgages: what you need to know

  • The maximum amount you can borrow is 75% of the value of the property
  • The minimum mortgage amount is $100,000
  • The market works mainly on fixed rate deals, currently around 3-4% but subject to change in line with US Treasury prices
  • The maximum mortgage term available is 25 years and the maximum age for getting a mortgage is 75
  • Both repayment and interest-only mortgages are available

How much can I borrow?

The maximum amount you can borrow as an American mortgage is 75% of the value of the property (same if you are remortgaging). The minimum mortgage amount is $100,000

What are the Interest Rates?

The American mortgage maket work mainly on fixed rate deals so we tend to talk about 15 and 30 year fixed rates. Currently these are around 3-4% but will move if long dated US Treasury prices move

What else do I need to know about American mortgages?

The maximum mortgage term available is 25 years and the maximum age for getting a mortgage in America is 75 years. Both repayment and Interest-only mortgages are available.

What is the Legal process like?

The exact terms vary from state to state so do get yourself and American Realtor (Estate Agent). We can assist you here. They will be particularly helpful with Residency and Visa requirements.

In the US, if you put an offer on a property, thus means you are accepting it in the condition seen and you cannot bring up any defects at a later date in an attempt to lower the price. It is therefore important that when you find a property you like you get a survey ("Inspection Report") done.

Once the first contract is signed a completion date is set, usually about 30 days later, upon which date the purchase will be finalised.

In the interim, it is recommended that you take some "Title insurance". This protects you in case it is found out in this period that a third party, such as a mortgage lender, has an undisclosed title on the property that may prevent the sale (referred to as the title being "clouded". This insurance covers any costs you may have incurred as a result of such "clouds".

All going well, on completion day the entire funds for the property are transferred and the process is complete

As we have the same language and a similar culture to America, it is easy to be lulled into the sense that the process is easy – this is how mistakes get made! Good advice is essential in any overseas property purchase and we can make sure you are dealing with experts. Fill in the contact form opposite and get in touch.


Lastly, to get the best rates on your foreign exchange transactions we strongly recommend you open an account with HiFX. Quite simply, they will provide a far better exchange rate than your bank and they can do one off transactions or allow you to lock in a guaranteed FX rate on mortgage payments for up to one year in advance. To find out more and sign up, visit their website here http://www.hifxonline.co.uk


Overseas Mortgages are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, nor are they protected by the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme. They may not be covered by the home regulator of the country concerned either, so you should consider the risks carefully.

Are you looking for Overseas Mortgages?

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What is needed to apply

Applying for a Overseas Mortgage is very easy. Below are listed the things you need in order to apply.

  • Eligibility Criteria Clean credit and sufficient income to make repayments is required.
  • Documents Required Initially just an application form but in time you will be asked to prove income and ID
  • Additional Comments The entire process takes 6-8 weeks depending on the country you are buying in

FAQs for Overseas Mortgages

  • What countries can I get a mortgage in?

    Almost any. Though the popular destinations for UK residents buying overseas tend to be France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and the USA, mortgages can also be achieved in Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong and many more.

  • How much can I borrow?

    This depends on your circumstances but one key factor we look at is your Debt to Income ratio. Ideally the sum total of the repayments you make on all your debts per month plus the proposed payments for the overseas mortgage you want should not exceed 35-40% of your net income. This factor tends to be the biggest constraint on borrowers raising an overseas mortgage.

  • How will I manage the language and cultural issues?

     We will ensure you have access to English-speaking experts in the country you are intending to buy in.

  • Will my UK credit record affect the success of my application?

     Yes, it is a key factor in the eligibility criteria.

  • How much will it cost to arrange my mortgage?

     The fee to help prepare your mortgage varies from country to country but will be made clear to you in advance.

Choice Loans Customer Reviews

To learn more or to apply for a Overseas Mortgages please either fill in the call back form at the top of this page or call us on 01494 410 125 and we'll walk you through your options at no cost or obligation.