The UK has a fairly liberal regime for foreign and expat buyers, compared to New Zealand and several other destinations. More specifically, however, what is required to buy a property in the UK?
Is a UK bank account needed by most lenders?
Not always. Several banks do look for proven income and a good credit rating, but a UK bank account isn’t always needed. Many lenders will accept foreign bank accounts and foreign currency.
What mortgage options exist?
A range of mortgages exist for UK expats and non-UK nationals living overseas, including fixed rate and multi-currency mortgages.
Is it getting easier or harder to get an expat mortgage?
In some ways it is getting harder as banks tighten up lending processes, but it is by no mean impossible. Moreover, many lenders, including RBS, have announced they will no longer accept expat mortgages.
How much do deposits cost?
You can get mortgages up to 95% of the value of the home, but typically you need to come up with a bigger deposit
What should be considered before buying?
The relative performance of property vs liquid stock accounts, or indeed REITS, is something few people consider with an open-mind.