Australian expats in Japan can qualify for the same interest rates as an Australian resident.

Home loan for Australian expats living in Japan

Here is everything you need to know about home loans for Australian expats in Japan:

What types of home loans are available for expats in Australia?

Expats in Japan can get loans to purchase, refinance, invest or buy a property or land. You can apply for a variable-rate, fixed-rate, or interest-only loan in Australia to do the above.

As expats in Japan are still considered Australian citizens, they are eligible for the same home loan rates and options as Aussies living in Australia. However, some lenders may use the tax rate of Japan, as opposed to the rates in Australia, which can greatly improve your borrowing power.

Japanese investors looking to invest in Australia may be eligible for most home loan products, although lenders may have stricter requirements and conditions, such as higher interest rates.

Loan Size and Term 

Australian citizens and permanent residents in Japan can typically borrow up to 80% of the property price, depending on their credit score and the currency they’re earning.

If you don’t have a sufficient deposit to meet the lender’s need, consider applying for a guarantor home loan. This type of loan allows you to borrow up to 100% of the property price, including any extra costs.

Home Loan Package: Offsets, Redraw and Line of Credit

Australian expats in Japan may apply for offset features and redraw facilities on their home loans. You can also apply for a line of credit (LOC) which allows you to use the loan as a cheque account to draw down and repay the loan as you choose.

The loan features are often only available to borrowers with solid credit histories. Our specialist expat mortgage broker can help you find a suitable home loan option to help you manage your loan easily.

What do banks think of Japanese Yen?

As one of the biggest trading partners in Australia, and with the Japan Australia Economic Partnership coming into effect from 2015, the Japanese Yen (JPY) is readily accepted by most Australian banks for a mortgage.

While some might not consider 100% of your income (especially if you cannot provide sufficient evidence), a fair few lenders will consider your entire income for a property loan in Australia. As a tier 1 currency, lenders can generally accept 80-100% of your income.

Additionally, Great British Pounds (GBP), Euros or United States dollars (USD) are widely accepted by Aussie lenders for home loan purposes.

Pros and cons of Australian expat home loans in Japan

Take a look at the pros and cons of Australia property loan Japan:

Pros Cons
Some Australian lenders may use the tax rates in Japan on your Japanese income as opposed to Australian tax rates. This will help improve your borrowing power significantly.
Lenders may not offer competitive interest rates to Aussies residing in Japan if you cannot provide sufficient evidence of your foreign income.
Most lenders readily accept Japanese Yen across Australia, and 80-100% of your income is generally considered for your mortgage.
Some banks require Australian expats in Japan to have a Power of Attorney (POA) in the name of a solicitor or family member.
As long as you can provide enough evidence of your income in Japan, you can qualify for the same interest rates as an Australian citizen living in Australia.
Some lenders may treat you as a foreigner if you're a dual citizenship holder or married to a foreign national, which can negatively impact your borrowing capacity.

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Features of Australian home mortgage in Japan

Here are the main mortgage features Australian expats in Japan can expect:

Feature Details
Deposit Size
As a general rule, you need at least 5% of the property value in savings. Lenders generally require a deposit of around 20%. You’ll also need to save enough for additional bank fees and charges, such as a loan application fee and stamp duty costs.
Borrowing Power
The Japanese Yen allows you to use 80-100% of your net income for the mortgage. Also, keep in mind that you are still considered an Australian citizen even if you live overseas. Therefore, Australian expats generally can apply for the same home loan options and rates as an Aussie citizen in Australia.
Repayment Options
Australian expats in Japan and Japanese residents can opt to repay their home loans monthly, weekly, or every fortnight. Additionally, Australian expats are exempt from paying penalties.
Interest Rates
Australian expats should expect the same mortgage interest rates overseas as offered to Australian citizens. keep in mind that both Aussie expats and Japanese residents might have to pay extra fees for translations and other international costs.

Key facts about Australian citizens in Japan

Almost 10,000 Australian residents live in Japan.

Japan is one of the biggest trading partners in Australia, and the Japanese Yen is considered a tier 1 currency by the Australian government.

If you’re a dual citizen or married to a Japanese resident, some lenders might treat you as a foreign borrower.

How to apply for an Australian expat home loans from Japan

When applying for Australian expat mortgages in Japan, Australian expats need to meet the lender’s eligibility criteria.

Eligibility

Make sure you apply with a lender who specialises in home loans applied by people in Japan:

  • A good credit score or history of making repayments on time.
  • Australian citizenship (if you’re an expat).
  • 20 – 30% deposit if you’re a Japanese national.
  • Over 18 years of age.
  • Some lenders might require a Power of Attorney.

Documents required

  • Two forms of income verification, such as recent payslips, an employment letter, or tax returns.
  • Form of identification, such as a passport, driver’s licence, or birth certificate.
  • Details of your expenses, such as other credit liabilities and living costs.
  • Details of your prospective property purchase (if you’ve located a property)

Other Considerations

Income Tax Convention

The Income Tax Convention between Australia and Japan was introduced in 2007, replacing the existing Australia-Japan taxation agreement signed in 1969. The convention contains provision to avoid double taxation and to prevent fiscal evasion in relation to the income flowing between Australia and Japan.

FIRB Approval

Since Australian expats in Japan are technically still Australian citizens, they don’t need to apply for FIRB approval when applying for expat mortgage Australia. Foreign investors generally need to do so, though.

Stamp Duty Surcharge

Australian expats only have to pay the normal stamp duty rate of 4-5%. You may even qualify for a stamp duty exemption if you apply with the right lender. However, if you’re jointly purchasing with a Japanese spouse, you will have to pay the stamp duty surcharge, as well as the foreign ownership land tax surcharge.

Power of Attorney

Some lenders require Australian expats to have a Power of Attorney in Australia to carry out legal actions on your behalf when applying for mortgage.

Speak with an expat financial advisor Australia today!

Expats might come across difficult lenders who cannot process foreign addresses or foreign phone numbers, causing severe delays. Speak with our specialist expat mortgage broker at Odin Mortgage to find the right lender suited for your needs.

We also provide expat mortgage services in the following countries

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, Australian expats and non residents can qualify for a mortgage as long as they can meet the lender’s criteria.

Australian expats are usually considered Australian citizens, so most lenders will offer the same rates and features as available to Australians in Australia. Non residents or foreign investors, however, need to meet stricter criteria in order to apply for a mortgage from Japan.

In the end, applying with the right lender determines what interest rates and loan sizes you qualify for. It is best to speak with a specialist expat mortgage broker before applying for a home loan. 

Australian expats in Japan can buy property with an Australian home loan. Expats can get the same interest rates, loan features, and loan terms for mortgages overseas as those living within Australia.

Generally, you are required to provide the same documents as a borrower applying for a home loan in Australia. This may include:

  • Your credit score and files.
  • Documents to verify your income, such as your two most recent payslips.
  • Your tax returns for the last two years.
  • Form of identification, such as a passport.

Yes, purchasing property in Australia comes with several extra costs other than saving a deposit. These costs can include:

  • A deposit
  • Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI)
  • Stamp duty surcharge

Other expenses may include costs for an attorney, solicitor or agent, if you decide to hire one.

We’ve got good news for Japanese citizens. Japanese residents can buy property in Australia!

However, lenders apply harsher conditions for foreign home loan applicants. Our team at Odin Mortgage specialize in mortgages for expats & foreigners and can help you find the most suitable Aussie mortgage based on your needs. Speak with us today!

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