Looking to buy property in USA?

Overseas Mortgage

Investing in the largest real estate market in the world – the United States – can be a fantastic way to create future passive income. If you’re a non-US passport holder (foreign national) or a U.S. expat living overseas (Singapore or Hong Kong, for example), you may find it can be very complicated if not impossible when looking for a mortgage loan to buy real estate in the U.S.. Even American expats returning home and buying property in America fail to qualify for a mortgage loan from U.S. banks. Mainly because they don’t have a credit footprint or earned income in the U.S..

Read on to discover how you can easily obtain a U.S. mortgage loan regardless of your passport or place of residence.

America Mortgages happy family in front of property in the US

Meet the American mortgage loan experts right here in Singapore!

Creating a portfolio of real estate or a single property investment is a proven way to build wealth and pass down a legacy to your family. Asset appreciation, high rental yields, no stamp duty, low barrier to entry and a stable market are some of the factors that make the U.S. real estate market a fantastic investment.

However, before you go shopping for that new home with a pool in Florida or a penthouse apartment in Manhattan, the first step is getting a non-committal approval for a mortgage loan.

America Mortgages (AM) was set up in Singapore earlier this year to unlock the U.S. real estate market for buyers living outside America. The company is a subsidiary of Global Mortgage Group (GMG), the largest international mortgage ‘originator’ for U.S. real estate.

GMG was co-founded in 2019 by Donald Klip and Robert Chadwick, both ex-institutional bankers. The two Americans met in Singapore in 2018 and became friends. Robert’s professional experience was in U.S. mortgages, and he was a seasoned investor in U.S. real estate. Donald was a hedge fund manager and investment banker in Asia with global real estate investing experience.

Donald Klip and Robert Chadwick

As expats themselves, both Donald and Robert realised that obtaining a mortgage from a “traditional” bank in a country where you don’t live and/or hold a passport is frustrating and often impossible. This led to them establishing GMG. GMG now has loan options in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, UK and various locations in Europe, to name a few.

How America Mortgages helps you get a mortgage loan in America

While GMG specialises in residential, commercial, construction and bridge financing in different countries, America Mortgages’ sole focus is providing market rate mortgages specifically for the U.S. 100% of their clients are either U.S. expats or foreign nationals living overseas. Due to a very focused expertise, AM approves 97% of loans submitted.

Here are the key highlights of a U.S. mortgage loan for foreign nationals and U.S. expats:

  • For a non-U.S. citizen: maximum loan-to-value (LTV) is 75% for purchase and 70% for refinance and equity release
  • For a U.S. expat: maximum LTV is 80% for purchase and 80% for refinance and equity release
  • Minimum loan amount of US$150,000 and maximum of US$50,000,000
  • Fixed term options of 5, 10 and 30 years
  • All loans amortised over 30 years, regardless of borrower’s age
  • 10-year fixed interest-servicing-only payments available
  • Mortgage loans available in all 50 states
  • Self-employed and employed borrowers allowed
  • No U.S. credit or footprint required

So, whether you’re a global investor, buying a holiday home for yourself, an apartment for your child when they attend university or simply growing your investment portfolio to pass down to your children, it’s possible for you to buy property in America!

* Indicative values; rates are terms are subject to change

Property in the US America - America Mortgages

The biggest myth of buying real estate in the U.S.

Although AM suggests that buyers should get advice from their attorney or tax advisor on investing in any real estate market, the myth of the States being a highly taxed country for buying U.S. real estate couldn’t be further from the truth.

For one, regardless of whether you’re an American citizen or a foreign national, there’s no stamp duty when purchasing property in the U.S. There are also no government limitations or restrictions on when or where a foreigner can purchase or sell property in America. Since there aren’t any cooling measures, this means that savvy investors are able to take advantage of properly researched locations and asset types. Yields and appreciation galore!

America Mortgages has been featured in Yahoo! Finance, The Mortgage Daily, Canadian Business Journal and other notable publications for its open architecture approach as well as providing borrowers with access to both in-house AM and third-party solutions to make informed decisions.

The AM team says that it shouldn’t have to be confusing, overwhelming or foreign to obtain a U.S. mortgage to buy property in America; they have loan officers throughout Asia and around the world with the depth of experience and knowledge required for resolving complex issues foreign national and expat borrowers may have that U.S. banks and brokers don’t know how to handle.

Far from being on the outside looking in, now what real estate investors get is a front-and-centre window into the U.S. market. You can open and close a transaction all while sitting in your living room in Singapore without ever getting on a plane!

Hear from an America Mortgages client

“The service and personal attention that we received from Donald and Robert was exceptional. They were patient and took the time to answer all of our questions while leading us through the mortgage process. Everything was handled professionally, efficiently and faster than the service we usually receive from our banks. We will definitely recommend America Mortgages to our friends and colleagues.” – Janey Schueller, Singapore

Written in collaboration with:
America Mortgages

Say Yes to Using Real Estate to Hedge Against Inflation!

Hedging Inflation With Real Estate

Hedging Inflation With Real Estate

While rising inflation and increased U.S. interest rates can cause stress for many, investing in real estate can be the best approach to hedging inflation. With inflation at a nearly 40-year high and the uncertainty in the stock market, investing in real estate is decidedly one of the best approaches to hedge inflation due to the market’s lack of correlation to the volatility of stocks, bonds, and the consistent returns the investment provides.

What does it mean to hedge against inflation?

Hedging is essential to foreign national and U.S. expat investors looking to have a diversified portfolio as it provides some form of protection against losses due to the volatility of markets and inflation. An inflation hedge is an investment that attempts to offset a currency’s value or purchasing power loss. This typically means investing in a ‘real’ asset, like real estate, with a ‘real’ return, which would be your rental yield.

Real estate has an intrinsic value that can provide monthly returns, which is essential in periods of rising inflation. Therefore, as an investor, putting your money into property investment can keep you ahead of inflation and minimize losses.

Investing in real estate is your best option.

Real estate is an excellent hedge against inflation as there is intrinsic value in the property, rental yields provide consistent cash dividends, and it is less affected by the economic climate and inflation. As inflation rises, there will always be a high demand for homes, which means rental prices and yield would also increase. 

The increase in demand for rental properties and low vacancy rates allow investors to increase their rent and stay ahead of inflation. Investors looking to purchase rental properties can capitalize on the increase in demand for rent and the increase in rental prices as you have pricing power, therefore maximizing your rental yield and returns. 

Rents and property values are typically correlated with rising consumer prices, so in a period of high demand and limited supply that we currently are experiencing, real estate has shown to be a wise and profitable investment.

What about increasing mortgage and interest rates?

The rise in interest rates has shown to be beneficial to rental property owners as fewer people are looking to purchase homes and would rather rent, causing the rental demand to skyrocket, leaving real estate investors in the perfect position.

Additionally, even though mortgage rates have gone up recently, they are still historically low; this means if you are a non-resident or U.S. expat investor, now is the time to capitalize on the opportunity and invest in real estate.

With the low supply of properties and the threat of increasing mortgage rates, now is the perfect time to jump on the opportunity and purchase investment properties to add to your portfolio as the rising interest rates make it more expensive to borrow money and push people to rent rather than take out a mortgage and purchase their own property. 

If you have been toying with investing in real estate, the current economic climate shows that now is the perfect time to do so. As a company, America Mortgages’ only focus is providing U.S. mortgage financing for foreign nationals and U.S. expats. 100% of our clients live and work abroad, making us the leading expert in this space. Now is the time to make hay while the sun shines. 

If you’re considering purchasing or cashing out of U.S. real estate, we’d love to hear from you. [email protected].

Can Foreigners Buy Property in USA?

Foreigners Buy Property in USA

If you’re from Hong Kong, Singapore, China, or even India, real estate prices have increased beyond the point of where you can maintain a positive yield, but this isn’t true in the USA. So, can foreigners buy property in USA?

Yes, but no one said that trying to buy a home in America as a non-U.S. citizen, resident, or foreigner isn’t going to be tricky, at least initially.

If you’re wondering whether a non-resident can buy US real estate, the short answer is “yes”, but it’s easiest if you pay cash. If you need financing to purchase US real estate as a non-citizen, getting a mortgage is challenging, which is why America Mortgages ONLY specializes in these types of mortgages.

Can Foreigners Buy Property in USA?

Anyone may buy and own property in the United States, regardless of citizenship. Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Indonesia, and other countries in Asia focus on the U.S. when investing in real estate. Since there are no laws or restrictions that prevent individuals with foreign citizenship from purchasing or owning property in the USA, it is the perfect place to invest.

Besides investment in real estate, many foreign nationals /non-US residents purchase vacation homes in the United States. Many wealthy foreign investors purchase investment property such as multi-unit apartments or condos, single-family homes, and even business properties like shopping malls.

Getting a US mortgage as a non-resident

Purchasing a house in the U.S. as a foreign citizen is simple if you plan to pay in cash (or having all the money saved to buy the home in one lump sum). If you’re not in the financial position to purchase a home with cash or find leverage is a better option for you, you’ll need to obtain a mortgage loan to purchase a property. This is where the process becomes tricky. Fortunately, America Mortgages’ primary focus is on the U.S. market, and its only focus is these types of mortgages.

Most U.S.-based mortgage lenders look at a borrower’s U.S. credit history to determine their eligibility for a mortgage loan. As a non-U.S. citizen, you don’t have a U.S. credit report, making it difficult for lenders to analyze the risk of loaning you money to purchase a home. That means your lender will elevate your risk factor as a borrower. This doesn’t have to be the case. Nor do you have to stay up late at night in Asia, calling lenders, brokers, and banks trying to find someone that will understand your situation. It may take you longer to find a lender who is willing to work with you, and it may take longer to get approval for your mortgage loan. You might also pay a higher interest rate.

We understand the complexity of analyzing risk, calculating foreign income, and alternative sources of acceptable credit verification. We do it all day, every day. It’s not difficult if you know the terrain, and in most cases, we can find a U.S. mortgage loan for every client.

Implications for Selling a U.S.-based Property as a Foreigner

Eventually, you might decide to sell your U.S.-based property. Before you purchase property in the U.S., it’s good to be aware of the rules and requirements should you choose to sell your property in the future. The IRS requires that buyers of property from foreign citizens withhold 15% of the amount realized on the disposition. If the buyer does not withhold this amount, they may be responsible for additional taxes. The rules surrounding this are somewhat complex but are outlined in the IRS FIRPTA publication, and more information can be found in the International Tax Gap Series.

It would be best if you worked with an agent you trust who won’t push you beyond what you’re comfortable offering or rush you into making a bad decision. Although we do not sell Real Estate ourselves, our network within the Real Estate world, especially within the U.S., is not only strong but also vetted. We are happy to point you in the direction of agents we have worked with in the past.

One of our associates or partners will be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding mortgage financing for your investment.

For more information, please contact [email protected].

What is the ‘Term’ in a mortgage?

America mortgages

A mortgage term indicates the total duration of a mortgage. You will pay the lender monthly installments during this period and finally own the home after clearing off the last installment. The term of a mortgage starts from drawing the funds from the lender institution and ends on the expiry date when you need to repay the lender.

America Mortgages offer loan terms as long as 30 years (for fixed-rate mortgages) and as short as 5 years (for adjustable-rate mortgages). There are even shorter terms available, known as Bridge loans. These special loans can be as short as six months to up to one year and are excellent for procuring immediate cash-flow.

Most financial institutions offer these loans to commercial bodies like investors and constructors, but America Mortgages serves individual clients and the guarantee of some form of collateral.

If you can afford the higher monthly installments, a short-term mortgage saves plenty of money down the road. The explanation is quite simple: the longer the mortgage term, the more is the sum of the payable interest. As the interest rate is primarily front-loaded, the interest amount of a 30-year mortgage would be higher than that of a 10-year loan during the early years.

Similarly, ARM is more financially beneficial than fixed-rate loans if you can pay off the loan during the first interest cap. However, fixed-rate loans are better for people with a limited income. So, you should choose a mortgage term carefully, considering your future plans and current income sources.