Case Study: British Expat In Cameroon Buying Dream Home In Wales
Our client – a British expat living in Cameroon – wished to purchase a six-bedroom country home on the outskirts of an idyllic Welsh village. The property on which he had set his sights was up for sale for £750,000, and he had a deposit of £250,000, meaning that in order to purchase his desired property, he needed a mortgage of around £500,000.
By the time he came to us, our client had already approached a number of high-street lenders in the hopes of acquiring the finance necessary to facilitate his home-buying ambitions. These ambitions, however, were quickly deflated when he found that he was unable to secure the funding he required because he failed to satisfy the standard high-street criteria demanded of borrowers.
The reasons for this decline were numerous. Firstly, our client was living in Cameroon, which was – and is – regarded by lenders as a high-risk jurisdiction. This fact alone was sufficient to deter many of the high-street lenders from considering his case, because such lenders are often categorically unwilling to entertain applications from residents of such jurisdictions – but this was not the only factor working against our client.
At the time that he came to us, our client was working for a Swiss Oil company and getting paid in Swiss francs. This presented an additional obstacle, because lenders are often unwilling to accept certain kinds of foreign currency as income. And as if these two realities were not sufficient on their own to thin out the field of lenders to almost nothing, our client was a portfolio landlord, which reduced his chances of obtaining a mortgage even further, because lenders stress background portfolios with strict criteria, so if the rent from portfolio properties is low or if they are highly geared then they are counted as commitments.
As a whole of market broker, Private Finance has close working relationships with a huge pool of lenders, of whom many are often willing to consider the applications of highly atypical mortgage-seekers. In this instance, our client was about as atypical as it is possible for a prospective borrower to be, which reduced his chances of being able to obtain the mortgage he desired drastically. That said, after locating the lenders that we knew had a precedent of offering mortgages to individuals located in high-risk jurisdictions, and after running the specifics of our client’s situation past these lenders, we were able to find a lender who was willing to offer our client the mortgage he needed in order to purchase his dream property.
We were able to secure our client a two-year fixed-rate mortgage of £500,000 at a rate of 3.14% with a loan to value of 70% and with no assets under management.