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stevie-s

Expat from UK starting BTL journey

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Hi all,

I'm an expat from Liverpool currently living in Qatar. I'm 29 and work in aviation.  

I'm planning to buy my first BTL in the next few months all being well. I currently just have one property in the UK which was my residential property but I now rent out as a result of living abroad. That's sort of how I decided to get into this. I realised that I was making a magic profit every month from renting my property and doing very little work for it, whilst also achieving capital growth... I have no other experience in property. 

Until now, we have only invested in low cost index funds which are essentially our pension as we aren't provided with a pension plan out here, we will continue to do this, but plan to subsidise it with BTL. So my plan is to focus predominantly on yield. I plan to buy properties in the £70,000 - £90,000 range in Liverpool and I am aiming for a ROI of around 9%. I am hoping to buy 1-2 properties a year using savings. I intend to get all properties on a 30 year BTL mortgage. All being well I aim to be in Qatar for the foreseeable future. I plan to then return to the UK and continue to work full time as I enjoy my job, but by this point we would hopefully have around £25,000 gross in BTL income too (not adjusted for inflation). 

I'm currently in the middle of reading 'The Complete Guide To Property Investment' and I am also working my way through the podcasts and this forum. This has been a massive help so far so thanks to everyone for the contributions I really appreciate it. I would be really interested in having a chat to any other expats who have invested in BTL or even anybody who has BTL properties in the Merseyside area.

Cheers all, 

Stevie

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Hey Stevie

Great plan and a great time to get stuck in with low interest rates and a potential slowing of growth for a bit.

My path is almost parallel one to yours. I too am an expat airline employee set on the property investment journey. A bit further down the road at 36 years old I would be happy to share/ advise on anything you may need to help you avoid the mistakes I have made along the way. From reading your post it sounds like you are already well on your way to success with such a defined achievable goal. Good luck to you! You will get to £25,000 gross quickly and im pretty sure your goals will grow as did mine.

My airline has just gone into administration and a good chance of being furloughed. Although sooner than I would have hoped, the cash flow from the BTLs have afforded us options go into property full time should we so wish.

 

Best regards,

Wes

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Hey Stevie,

I’m in a similar boat. Not in aviation and living in Singapore but am a first time investor none the less and doing it 100% remote. Also in low cost funds and want to supplement with property. About to go in for my first purchase, pending mortgage offer now. I’m weighting more towards capital growth so have picked slightly higher value properties in city centres at the sacrifice of yields.

Good luck to you mate, would be interested to compare notes as we go. Where are you in the process with researching your first?

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@stevie-s

I too am in almost exactly the same boat as you, expat from London living in Singapore like @sijfish, im at the very early stages of speaking to mortgage brokers about remortgaging my current property to release some equity to fund other BTL's in the UK.

What I have found so far from only 1 conversation with a mortgage broker is that lending for properties under £100k for expats can limit the number of lenders.

Have you or anyone else on this thread decided how you will manage the property from overseas e.g. a fully managed service provided by the letting agents or something else?

Interested to hear peoples learnings on any of this, this forum is such a great wealth of knowledge and information.

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Hi @rookiep, will have to be fully managed for me. I don’t have family or contacts in the growth cities I’m focussed on and I need to be as remote and hands off as possible. 

Early days for me because I’m still completing on my first but I did ring around lots of local estate agents when doing my initial due diligence and there are 2-3 I feel comfortable dealing with on the letting and management side. Let’s see... only time will tell!

Would be interested to hear from other expats who manage out as well.

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12 hours ago, rookiep said:

@stevie-s

I too am in almost exactly the same boat as you, expat from London living in Singapore like @sijfish, im at the very early stages of speaking to mortgage brokers about remortgaging my current property to release some equity to fund other BTL's in the UK.

What I have found so far from only 1 conversation with a mortgage broker is that lending for properties under £100k for expats can limit the number of lenders.

Have you or anyone else on this thread decided how you will manage the property from overseas e.g. a fully managed service provided by the letting agents or something else?

Interested to hear peoples learnings on any of this, this forum is such a great wealth of knowledge and information.

Hi mate, 

Good to hear, sounds like we're at similar stages. 

Yes, I've also been told that you are going to be limited for properties under £100k. My initial strategy was to go even lower than £75k, but have been told since that as an expat, mortgage companies just aren't interested below this amount. If anybody knows different, please reach out.

I'm planning to go fully managed as I just don't see another viable way with living abroad. Still in the process of finding an agent.

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Hi all,

Nice reading that there are expats at the beginning of the journey. I'm a Brit in Singapore too, maybe we should a little property hub group in Singapore to help each other out. I was in the middle of my first property purchase before the UK lockdown hit, it's still on hold but actually I've learnt so much more since then so currently reviewing options. Can you guys recommend a good UK mortgage broker for expats?

Thanks!!

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Hi, 

I'm also in Singapore (and no plans to return UK in the near future) 

Also looking to get a BTL for cashflow

It has been a struggle at times to get things moving whilst overseas but it can be done. 

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Hi all,

Great to see people in the same boat and sharing similar goals! I'm an expat currently living in Spain, no real plans to move back to the UK any time soon however I work remotely so work doesn't require my Spanish residency... more of a lifestyle choice.

I have no property at this time but am educating myself and working numbers to work out my long term + short term goals. 

Briefly: I want to invest in UK BTL's, with the end goal of having the option to replace my current job in approx 10 years time. (34yrs old as we speak)

I'm aiming to buy at least one, possibly two per year...depending on my own salary and buying costs.

These properties will be 100% managed by an agency.

Fortunately, I'm not concerned about creating extra income right now so will keep rental profits within the plan, re-invest most likely. 

Right now I am calculating the average difference in expenses that the Expat BTL's will cost me as opposed to resident's BTL's, over 3/5/7/10 year period, along with the potential long term costs if I move back to the UK and want to re-organise things.

Lots to do...

If anyone wants to chirp in, please do so! :)

Good luck + i'll stay in touch,

Cheers,

Jon

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