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UK mortgages for South Africans

If you’re a South African looking to purchase property in the UK, we can assist you with applying for a UK mortgage. Whether it’s a residential property, buy-to-letindustrial property or a remortgage, our team of mortgage advisers can assist you with your UK property purchase.

Understanding our classifications

If you are a that borrower lives outside the UK, mortgage lenders will tend to attach a higher risk factor to your transaction. We divide all non-resident applications up into standard and non-standard cases. The terms of your mortgage will be determined by this classification.

1. Standard cases

Standard” cases are classified as those cases where:

  • You (as the borrower) have Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK or possess a British or EEA passport

  • You are employed or, if self-employed, have two years’ tax returns that fit the borrowing requirement

  • The loan-to-value (the mortgage as a percent of the property value) is 80% or less

Your circumstances are likely to fall within the lending policy of most lenders; this allows us to conduct our research without needing to make special arrangements with any lender.

We will provide you with a range of deals that best meet your criteria, advising you on your best options going forward.

2. Non-standard cases

"Non-standard" cases are those cases where:

  • You (as the borrower) are not a British passport holder and do not hold ILR

  • Your earnings cannot be backed up by two years' P60 employment income in the UK

  • The proposed mortgage amount exceeds your annual employment income

  • You are a contractor using a limited company and/or umbrella company structure

  • The loan-to-value (the mortgage as a percent of the property value) is more than 80%

  • You are purchasing a shared ownership property

  • The proposed mortgage is greater than £1,000,000

  • You are not a resident in the UK

The "non-standard" route is followed where a case falls outside of standard lending policy. In these instances, we are required to spend additional time researching your case as well as time to argue it with underwriters.

Although our research is chargeable, we try to ensure that we don’t do chargeable work if the result is unlikely to yield anything. If we believe your mortgage will not be approved at this time, we will inform you at no charge and suggest that the research be performed at a later stage. In some cases, we cannot confirm whether the mortgage will be approved without doing the research. In these cases, we will give you the option to proceed or not before we begin researching.

Are you a South African looking to purchase property in the UK?

Mortgages for South African residents

There are a few things we need to know before we can recommend the best mortgage to you. Briefly these are:

  1. Your income and tax position in your country of residence
  2. A detailed understanding of your personal assets and liabilities in your home country and globally

What happens next

We will allocate a mortgage adviser to you to conduct research. They will establish the relevant factors and determine a set of search criteria with you. Following this, they will search the market to find you the best mortgage for your circumstances.

It’s important to note that non-resident lenders are required to lend in the absence of a credit score or credit search. As such, they lend on the basis of the documentation available.

In most cases, lenders require tax returns from the country of residence to prove income and also require that any business accounts or personal asset statements are verified by a local accountant. The accountant will need to be from one of the big four accounting firms or from a local accounting firm that is part of a global alliance. These lenders do not accept any accounts or income proofs from accountants who fall outside of these criteria.

The advice that you receive

We will prepare an analysis of your mortgage options, these may include multiple scenarios. In all cases, you will get to see the best in market options in the variable and fixed mortgage duration ranges.

What our report contains

The report provides a reference so that we can further advise you on your options. Once a decision is made on the best option for your circumstances, we will then send you a detailed key facts document for that particular mortgage product, as well as a suitability report setting out the rationale for our advice.

View an example of one of our client reports.

report analysis

Our fees

For non-resident mortgages, we charge a non-standard research fee of £375. This includes completing a fact-find for you and researching your case with all the lenders. If we find that it is not possible to proceed with your case at the outset, we won’t progress to research and will not charge you any fees.

Please note: In some cases we can only identify if you qualify by doing the research; in these cases, a fee will be charged regardless of outcome.

Upon your application for the mortgage (i.e. after a property has been found), we will charge an application handling fee of £200. This is payable regardless of the outcome of the application.

Mortgages for UK properties made simple

We provide a comprehensive and thorough approach to ensuring your get the right mortgage for your circumstances. Find more information on our mortgage process here.

Other mortgage services

We also offer other mortgage-related services, including solicitors and conveyancing, insurance and financial advice. We can source mortgages for UK properties for those with unique and unusual requirements - whether you live in the UK or abroad.

Have a question about the UK property market? Find the answer to your question in our UK mortgage frequently questions and answers section.

Contact our wealth team

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South Africa

Cape Town

Regent Square
Doncaster Road
Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120


25 Richefond Circle
Umhlanga 4320 +27 (0) 31 536 8844

United Kingdom


One Croydon
12-16 Addiscombe Road
Croydon CR0 0XT +44 (0) 20 7759 7514



9 Yarra Street
South Yarra
VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services Licence issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS Licence number 335 126).

Our United Kingdom business, Sable Private Wealth Management Ltd, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Our Companies House registration number is 222501. Our authorisation can be checked on the FCA register here: Our South African business, Sable Private Wealth (Pty) Ltd, is an authorised FSP, regulated by the Financial Services Conduct Authority under licence number 48122.

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