1 The bank/s you contact directly do not cater for expat home loans: Credit policy amongst the lenders varies substantially with some banks requiring as much as a 40% deposit. If you go directly to the banks not only are you spending your time in doing the research that MAP would do for free, the outcome is you may have to provide more funds upfront for your home loan than would normally be necessary.
2 The broker you contact is inexperienced and does not understand expat home loan policy and the practical issues surrounding buying a home when living overseas. Simple things like identification whilst living overseas and the witnessing of mortgage documentation when living in a foreign country. The result of using an inexperienced broker is either having your loan declined, delayed, having to input more funds to complete or a combination of all of the above.
3 Application is submitted to a lender where lender policy reduces income used to determine borrowing capacity: Bank policy for expat home loans when working out income for serviceability purposes varies widely. Some lenders will for example discount your income by up to 20% and/or apply Australian tax to your income. Outcome is your borrowing capacity is severely reduced meaning you cannot buy the property you wanted affecting rental returns and capital growth.
4 Underestimate purchase costs and loan funds available – This is not expat specific but there are many horror stories out there where inexperienced banks or brokers have underestimated the funds required to complete purchase. This can result in having to input more of your own capital or having to rescind the contract forfeiting your deposit.
5 Select a product based on lowest interest rate: Interest rate is always important but it is not the only factor to consider when choosing a lender. You need to consider fees and charges that may be payable.
6 Refinance without considering all the costs resulting in any benefit that was to be obtained by refinancing is negated by the fees incurred in doing so.