Are you an Australian expatriate looking to invest in the Australian real estate market? At Key Choice Lending, we’re your dedicated mortgage brokers for Australian Expat home loans. Here’s how we can make your investment journey smoother:

  • Tailored Lender Selection: We pick lenders that cater to your unique expat status, simplifying the loan process.
  • Broad Connections: We’re linked to over 50 financial institutions, ensuring diverse mortgage options.
  • Expat Mortgage Mastery: Our deep knowledge in expat home loans translates to deals that truly fit your needs.
  • Local Buyer’s Agent Access: Collaborate with our state-based buyer’s agents if you need property insights.
  • Continuous Service: Rely on our enduring support, keeping you updated with evolving finance choices.

First-time investing in Australia from overseas? Feel overwhelmed? Let us streamline the experience for you, turning it into a rewarding venture. To dive deep into the world of Expat Home Loans, either book a consultation or continue reading our comprehensive guide below.

Expat Home Loan Essentials:

  • Can expatriates secure a mortgage in Australia? Absolutely! Australian expats typically have access to similar loan amounts as those residing in the country.
  • Borrowing Capacity Insights: As an overseas Australian citizen, up to 90% of property value can be borrowed. For self-employed individuals, it’s generally up to 80%. However, factors like residency, income currency, and visa types can influence this.
  • Approval Prospects: Lender criteria vary, especially around foreign income and tax rates. Given the intricacies of expat loan policies, connect with us for a detailed review of your status.
  • Interest Rates on Offer: Attractive interest rates await you. For specifics, get in touch.
  • Which financial institutions are available? We collaborate with diverse banks and alternative lenders ready to accommodate you. Discover more about your options by reaching out.

Aussie Expat Home Loan FAQs

Can expatriates (Expats) obtain a mortgage in Australia?

Yes, it is possible for Australian expatriates to apply for a mortgage in Australia. In most cases, expats can borrow a similar amount as Australian citizens residing in Australia.

What is my borrowing capacity?

If you are an Australian citizen living overseas, you can borrow up to 90% of the property value. For self-employed borrowers living overseas (on a case-by-case basis), the borrowing limit is up to 80% of the property value. However, the country of residence, currency earned, and visa status can affect the amount you can borrow.

Will my application be approved?

Some lenders use Australian tax rates to assess your income, which can limit your borrowing capacity if you live in a country with low tax rates. Each lender has its own list of acceptable countries and currencies. Since Expat lending policies are complex, it is recommended to contact us for a detailed discussion about your situation. You can book a meeting here:

What are the available interest rates?

Competitive interest rates are available. Please contact us for more information here

Which banks and lenders are available?

We have selected banks and non-bank lenders that can assist you. Contact us now to find out more about your banking options.

Can lenders accept my foreign currency?

When earning income in a foreign currency, it is important to determine if your currency will be accepted. Commonly accepted currencies include United States Dollar (USD), Great Britain Pounds Sterling (GBP), Euro (EUR), Singapore Dollar (SGD), Canadian Dollar (CAD), United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED), Hong Kong Dollar (HKD), Japanese Yen (JPY),  Swiss Franc (CHF), and  New Zealand Dollar (NZD). However, if your currency is not listed, some lenders may still accept it, but with certain restrictions and conditions. Please contact us for more information here

Do I need a deposit?

Typically, Australian Expats buying property in Australia will need a 10% deposit, along with additional funds to cover property purchasing costs such as stamp duty, legal fees, mortgage setup costs, and Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). The deposit is usually required in the form of genuine savings. However, if you have a larger deposit or already own real estate in Australia, you can use equity as a deposit. In some cases, it is possible to buy a property with no deposit if your parents own a property in Australia and can act as guarantors for your home loan.

How can I prove my income?

If your payslips or foreign tax returns are in English, they can be provided as evidence of your income. Most lenders will also require three months of bank statements to show your salary being deposited into your account. If your documents require translation, several lenders have staff who understand various languages, so the translation is usually not a problem. Additionally, a valid work visa is required by some lenders as part of the verification process, unless you are a dual citizen or can provide evidence of permission to work in that country.

How do I find the right property if I am not in the country?

We have affiliations with many Buyers Advocates who can work with you to ensure you source, negotiate, and secure your dream future home or suitable investment.

What if I am self-employed?

If you are self-employed, there are only a few lenders who will accept your income. The assessment of income earned by a self-employed Australian Expat can be more challenging compared to assessing overseas PAYG income. Depending on the availability of an accountant, the country you live in, and your income currency, there are options available. Providing two years of personal and business tax returns, six months of business bank statements, and an accountant’s letter verifying your income may help you qualify for a loan with certain lenders.

How do tax rates affect my borrowing power?

Some lenders use Australian tax rates to assess your income, regardless of the tax rate in the country where you reside. This can significantly reduce your borrowing capacity, especially if you live in a country with low tax rates or where no tax is required, such as Hong Kong, Singapore, or the UAE. However, there are lenders on our panel who use foreign tax rates, allowing you to borrow more. These lenders consider net overseas income and do not tax it again in Australia. The acceptance of foreign tax rates depends on whether tax is withheld from your payslips. To maximize the chances of the lender accepting foreign tax rates, it is recommended to provide as much income evidence as possible. Certain countries are eligible for this offer, but it is advisable to contact us to confirm the current availability.

What if i receive income in multiple currencies?

Many Australians living abroad earn income in multiple currencies. If both currencies are on the preferred or secondary currency lists mentioned earlier, there are banks that will consider these income sources. However, it’s important to note that each currency type may have a different foreign currency exchange rate, which can affect your overall borrowing capacity. Even if the currencies you earn in are not on the list, we may still be able to assist you in obtaining an Australian expat home loan. Borrowing power calculations can be complex due to exchange rate fluctuations, foreign tax rates, negative gearing benefits, and repayments on foreign debts. Different lenders have different methods of assessing borrowing power, so we can find a solution based on your specific circumstances.

What exchange rate do lenders use?

When converting your foreign currency into Australian dollars, most lenders use their own exchange rate, which is typically more conservative than the current market rate for your currency. If your foreign currency is not on the preferred or secondary currency lists mentioned earlier, the lender may either not accept your currency or apply a reduced rate from XE Live Exchange Rates. This can have a significant impact on your borrowing power depending on your currency. We can discuss with the lender which method of foreign exchange they use and whether negotiation is possible.

Can I get a home loan from a foreign citizen?

If you are married to or in a de facto relationship with a foreign citizen, it can affect how some banks assess your loan application. There are three ways in which they may evaluate your application: considering both of you as Australian citizens, treating both of you as foreign investors, or using the nationality of the higher-income earner to determine the loan assessment. Being assessed as a foreign investor may result in a smaller portion of your income being considered and a larger deposit requirement. In some cases, you may also face higher interest rates. To avoid these challenges, it is best to apply with a lender that has favourable lending policies for your situation. Our panel includes lenders who accept bonus and commission incomes as well. Contact us to discuss which banks will accept your specific circumstances.

What about my foreign partner’s salary?

Most lenders disregard the income of a foreign partner who is not an Australian citizen or permanent resident. However, there may be exceptions to this policy. Some lenders may consider your partner’s income if they have a valid visa for Australia, are living in Australia, have ties to Australia such as family or close relatives, have children together, are married or have been in a de facto relationship for over two years, and you are the main income earner. It is recommended to discuss your situation with our Expat mortgage brokers to explore potential options.

Can one person be on the title while both are on the loan?

It is possible to structure the loan where only the Australian Expat or citizen is on the title while still including a foreign citizen or non-resident on the loan. However, this is a complex structure and involves higher risk. Lenders typically only accept borrowers who are in a spousal or de facto relationship. You can find more information about the criteria and benefits of this type of loan on our “One on title, two on loan” page.

Do i need a power of attorney (POA)?

If you’re residing overseas, it can be beneficial to have a trusted individual, such as a family member, friend, or solicitor, who can sign documents on your behalf. A Power of Attorney (POA) enables them to do so. Some lenders may require a POA that meets their specific requirements, which could involve having a POA with a solicitor or a family member. In such cases, your current POA may not be accepted. It’s important to note that certain lenders do not accept a POA at all. This can create complications if you need to send documents overseas and then visit the Australian consulate to have them witnessed. To navigate these requirements effectively, it’s recommended to consult your mortgage broker and understand the lender’s specific requirements before finalizing your choice of lender.

When do I need to visit the Australian embassy?

Regardless of the situation, you’ll need to have your identification certified at the Australian embassy or consulate in the country where you reside. If the lender doesn’t accept a POA for your mortgage loan documents, you’ll have to visit the Australian embassy to witness the signing of the mortgage title.
If you’re purchasing a property jointly, only one person needs to visit the embassy as long as you can provide your partner’s passport. It’s important to understand that the embassy’s role is to certify the document as true, not to verify the identity of the person seeking certification.

Will the Australian embassy charge me?

Yes, the Australian embassy will impose a service fee for certifying or witnessing these documents. The specific fees vary depending on the country where you reside. To obtain accurate information, it’s advisable to consult the specific fee schedule of the Australian embassy in your country of residence. Please be aware that these fees can be significant, sometimes amounting to hundreds of dollars.

Is Australian government approval required?

No, Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval is not necessary, even if you are purchasing property with a spouse who is not an Australian citizen. For more detailed information, please refer to the FIRB guidelines.

Will I have to pay the foreigner stamp duty surcharge?

Certain foreigners and visa holders may be subject to a surcharge on stamp duty and, in some cases, land tax, depending on the state in which the property is being purchased. Fortunately, Australians living abroad are exempt from these surcharges, even if they are not in the country at the time of contract exchange.
It’s important to note that the rules surrounding these surcharges can vary, so it’s advisable to double-check with the relevant State Revenue Office for accurate and up-to-date information. If you are purchasing property with a non-Australian citizen partner, it may be worth considering buying the property solely in your name to avoid these surcharges. If you are a permanent Australian resident, it is even more crucial to consult your state revenue authority for guidance.

When is the right time to invest in Australian real estate?

Deciphering the Right Time to Invest In real estate, longevity often trumps precise timing. While events like recessions and pandemics might seem dire, Australian property markets have showcased resilience, with periods like COVID-19 even registering property value hikes. With regional variations, predicting exact market swings can be complex. Remember: it’s less about predicting the ‘right’ time and more about maintaining a lasting presence. Quick action in burgeoning markets can also be a prudent approach.

Flexible Meeting Options

To dive deep into your options and chart out the best course, please book a meeting in the format and time convenient for you. Whether it’s virtual, phone, or in-person at one of our offices, we’re here to assist.


Every financial journey is unique, and yours deserves our tailored approach. Let’s start the conversation.