Australian Expat Home Loans



As an Australian citizen living abroad, obtaining an Australian property loan as a non-tax resident of Australia is available but gone are the days when banks would hand out loans to anyone who asked.​ Processing Australian expat non-resident home loans have changed with additional policies.

The tightening of credit policies for Australians expats has been gradually increasing over the last four years. The high levels of restriction we see today are the results of the Australian regulators’ actions to control the influx of foreign investments into residential property and minimising money laundering risk.

Read on to see how the lending landscape has changed and what this means for you, and get the answers you need on home loans on a foreign income in Australia.

The current lending situation for Australian expat home loans

What’s still possible for an expat home loan in Australia?

  • You can still get a loan term of 30 years regardless of age. There have been talks to limit this to the retirement age, but for now, your grandma can still get a loan for the full 30 years.
  • Variable-rate and Fixed-rate mortgages are available as standard. With the option to do split rate loans, i.e. a combination of variable and fixed.
  • No interest rate margins/penalty by being overseas. You’ll get the same interest rates as those residing in Australia will – assuming the same bank/product.
  • No early repayment penalties by law. This cost was abolished years ago and replaced with a one-off discharge (admin) fee when you pay off your loan – typically around AUD 300.
  • Interest Only repayment loans are still available. Great for those seeking minimal monthly repayment and maximum cash flow flexibility.
  • Able to cash out / release equity from existing Australian properties you own to borrow more for investment purposes such as buying another property, renovations etc.

What’s not possible for Australian expat home loans?

  • Australian based banks no longer offer multi-currency loans – only AUD now. With the AUD depreciating since 2011 you were better off borrowing in AUD anyway, now you don’t have of choice, sadly.
  • Australian banks based Overseas. E.g. ANZ Hong Kong, NAB Singapore, CBA UK etc. No longer offer residential mortgage services. You’ll see them around, but they’re only serving corporate institutions now.
  • Relying on policy exceptions to get your expat home loan approved. The lenders have now become very, very policy-driven. I.e. These are all our rules. Do you meet them? Y/N “But I’ve banked with you lot for 20 years!” doesn’t get you very far nowadays I’m afraid.

In truth, the banks are still hungry to lend Australian property loans to Australian expats, but it’s the regulators, namely the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority that is imposing harsher restrictions on bank lending that is keeping a lid on foreign investment lending, which includes you, as Aussie expats.

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Australian Expat Home Loans FAQs

You are not required to be in Australia to obtain an Australian property loan.
There are, however, parts of the mortgage process which would be easier if you were in Australia—such as verification of your identity, liaising with all parties involved, witnessing your mortgage documents, or trying to get a hold of the bank.
With Odin Mortgage, we make getting an Australian expat home loan overseas easy, providing you with a seamless experience as if you were back in Oz.
Australian expats can borrow up to 95%, including Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI). If you do not want to pay LMI, the maximum LVR is 80% and is the most popular option.
Currently, most banks are lending between 60-80% LVR of the purchase price or valuation (whichever is lower).

This is a simple question with a complex answer. Each individual will be different, and we go into detail with examples on how much you can borrow, how to increase your borrowing power, and more in this article ‘How Much Can You Borrow?’ for Australian expats looking for a home loan.

The better question the lenders will be asking instead is, can the applicant prove his/her income? By way of payslip, formal bank statements, and employment contract?

If yes, then it’s very likely your type of foreign currency will be eligible and accepted to get an Australian property loan.

In short, yes, you can. Being self-employed overseas adds a layer of complexity (and therefore risk) to the lender which they don’t like so most won’t accept this type of employment.

The few that do will have additional requirements. Contact us or start an online application, and we’ll be happy to advise you about Australian expat home loans for self-employed individuals.

When you apply to the banks, early in their assessment phase, a credit check will be performed but only in Australia. The banks in Australia will not be able to do a credit check for the country you reside in.

In some rare cases, (seen more in foreign national applications), the banks may ask to see a credit report in your country of residence. Odin Mortgage will be able to advise ahead of time if this is the case.
A POA may be necessary if you’re staying in a country where there isn’t an Australian Consulate/embassy or if circumstance prevents you from getting certain documents signed and witnessed.


With specific lenders, a POA may be necessary, and we would let you know in advance if that is the case.


Aside from that, the majority of Australian expats applying for a home loan do not need a POA, and we will assist you with the signing process.

If the Australian citizen is the one producing the majority of the income, this won’t be an issue. However, if the foreign national is the one working and the Australian is unemployed, your application will be treated as foreigner lending. Your options to get an Australian property loan will be limited, and interest rates will be less competitive.


The lenders will view what type of loan this is by who is contributing the majority of the income towards servicing the mortgage.


There’s also a critical tax consideration for those purchasing with foreign citizens which we will address in the latter part of this article.

For more FAQs such as those relating to buying a home, refinancing, fees and expenses, please visit our FAQs page here

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