Santander Expat Mortgages | How Their Rates Compare

Santander are a leading provider of UK mortgages for expats.

But how well do their rates compare to other providers on the market? How do you compare options? And what else should you think about when shopping around for an expat mortgage?

In short: Santander are one of the leading high street banks that operate in the expat mortgage space – but they are not the only one. And just is the case with a standard UK resident mortgage, it’s important to shop around to find the best deal for you. Rates change on a daily basis across the market, and they also fluctuate based on you and your application.

The difficulty is that comparing expat mortgage rates is hard: they’re not on comparison sites because the products are too specific based on the person applying (i.e., what country you live in, what currency you earn in, what type of property you’re buying, whether you’re employed or self employed, and much more).

So, what’s the solution?

The most common route is to use a specialist expat mortgage broker – like UK Expat Mortgage.

We know the expat mortgage market like the back of our hands, and we advise clients on their best options every single day. We can actively compare rates from Santander, HSBC, Skipton BS, and many more international mortgage lenders for you, and present you with your best options. And then, we can walk you through your application step by step until you have your keys in hand.

To book a free, no-obligation call with one of our advisers, get in touch today.

In this guide, we look specifically at Santander expat mortgages, covering eligibility criteria, loan options, application process, and everything else you need to know.

Santander Expat Mortgage

What Is an Expat Mortgage?

An expat mortgage is a type of home loan designed specifically for individuals who are living and working outside of their home country.

Unlike standard residential mortgages, expat mortgages take into account the unique financial circumstances and challenges faced by expatriates, such as fluctuating exchange rates, foreign income sources, and the potential for frequent relocations.

Case Studies

Why Choose Santander for Your Expat Mortgage?

Santander is a well-established and reputable bank with a strong presence in the UK and international markets. As one of the leading providers of expat mortgages in the UK, Santander offers a range of advantages that make it an attractive choice for expatriates.

Global Reach

With operations in numerous countries, Santander has a deep understanding of the expat lifestyle and the complexities associated with international finance. This global reach allows them to cater to the needs of expats from various backgrounds and locations.

Competitive Rates

Santander is known for offering competitive interest rates on its expat mortgages, helping you save money over the life of your loan. Additionally, the bank frequently runs promotional offers and discounts, making their mortgages even more attractive. However, the best rate for you will depend on the market at the time and your specific circumstances – it’s never a catch-all solution for the best deal.

Eligibility Criteria for Santander Expat Mortgages

To qualify for a Santander expat mortgage, you’ll need to meet certain eligibility criteria. Here are some of the key requirements:

Nationality and Residency

Santander expat mortgages are available to UK nationals who are currently residing and working abroad. The bank may also consider applicants with permanent residency rights in the UK (right to remain).

Employment and Income

You’ll need to have a stable and verifiable income source from employment or self-employment. Santander typically requires a minimum income level, which can vary depending on your specific circumstances.

Credit History

As with any mortgage application, Santander will review your credit history to assess your creditworthiness. A good credit score and a clean credit report will increase your chances of approval. If you still have a UK credit history that’s traceable, this can be a huge win for your application.

Deposit and Equity

Santander typically requires a minimum deposit or equity stake in the property you wish to purchase or remortgage. The exact amount can vary, but it’s generally higher for expat mortgages compared to standard residential mortgages. The general rule of thumb is to have at least a 20% deposit or higher.

Buy to let options

Santander offer a range of buy to let expat mortgages as well as residential.

Types of Santander Expat Mortgages

Santander offers a range of expat mortgage products to cater to different needs and preferences. Here are some of the most common types:

Fixed-Rate Expat Mortgages

With a fixed-rate expat mortgage, your interest rate remains constant for an agreed-upon period, usually ranging from two to five years. This option provides stability and predictability, allowing you to budget more effectively.

Variable-Rate Expat Mortgages

Variable-rate expat mortgages, also known as tracker mortgages, have an interest rate that fluctuates based on the Bank of England’s base rate or another benchmark rate. While these mortgages may offer lower initial rates, they come with the risk of rate increases over time.

Interest-Only Expat Mortgages

Interest-only expat mortgages allow you to pay only the interest on the loan during the mortgage term, with the principal amount remaining outstanding until the end of the term. This option can be useful for expats who plan to sell the property or have alternative means of repaying the principal, for example, selling your business.

Buy-to-Let Expat Mortgages

If you’re an expat looking to invest in a rental property in the UK, Santander offers buy-to-let expat mortgages. These mortgages are designed specifically for those who plan to generate rental income from the property.

The Santander Expat Mortgage Application Process

Applying for a Santander expat mortgage can be a straightforward process if you have all the necessary documentation and meet the eligibility criteria. Here’s a general overview of the application process:


Before formally applying, it’s advisable to seek pre-approval from Santander. This involves providing basic information about your income, employment, and the property you’re interested in. Pre-approval can give you a better understanding of how much you can borrow and the potential interest rates.


Santander will require a range of documents to support your application, including:

  • Proof of identity (passport, driving license)
  • Proof of residency and employment (contract, pay slips, employer’s letter)
  • Income verification (tax returns, bank statements)
  • Credit report
  • Details of the property (valuation report, title deeds)

Application Submission

Once you have gathered all the necessary documents, you can submit your expat mortgage application to Santander. This can be done online, through a Santander branch, or with the assistance of a mortgage broker.

Underwriting and Approval

Santander’s underwriting team will review your application and supporting documents to assess your eligibility and creditworthiness. If approved, you’ll receive a formal mortgage offer detailing the terms and conditions.

Property Valuation

Santander may require a professional valuation of the property you wish to purchase or remortgage. This is to ensure that the property’s value aligns with the loan amount requested.


After accepting the mortgage offer and completing any remaining tasks, such as securing insurance and finalizing legal paperwork, your Santander expat mortgage will be ready for completion. At this point, the funds will be released, and you can proceed with the property transaction.

Tips for a Successful Santander Expat Mortgage Application

To increase your chances of securing a Santander expat mortgage, consider the following tips:

Improve Your Credit Score

A strong credit score is essential for any mortgage application. Before applying, review your credit report and take steps to improve your score if necessary, such as paying off outstanding debts or correcting any errors. This is especially true of your UK credit score if you still have a report here in the UK, but also check your credit score in the country you’re living in.

Gather Comprehensive Documentation

Ensure that you have all the required documentation ready before starting the application process. Incomplete or missing documents can lead to delays and potentially jeopardize your application.

Seek Professional Advice

Navigating the expat mortgage landscape can be complex, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the UK property market. Consider seeking the advice of a reputable mortgage broker who specializes in expat mortgages and can guide you through the process – such as ourselves.

Maintain a Stable Income

Santander places a strong emphasis on stable and verifiable income sources. If you’re self-employed or have a variable income, be prepared to provide additional documentation and justification for your earning potential.

Consider Your Long-Term Plans

Before applying for an expat mortgage, carefully consider your long-term plans and the potential for future relocations or changes in your circumstances. This can help you choose the most suitable mortgage product and avoid unnecessary fees or penalties down the line.

How UK Expat Mortgage Can Help

Our Service


Specialist Expat Mortgage Broker


Independent, Whole of Market Advice


Dedicated Support From Expat Specialists


Complex Income Accepted


Residential & Buy to Let Options


Access to High Street Banks, International Building Societies & Specialist Lenders


We Compare The Market For Every Client

How It Works


Book a free call with one of our expat mortgage brokers so we can explore your borrowing potential. We’ll need to know where you’re based, your income situation, and your property aspirations.



If you’re eligible, we will compare options from multiple expat lenders, from high street banks to international building societies, to find the best fit for your situation. We are whole of market and fully independent.


Agreement In Principle

When we’ve found the best terms for you, we’ll present you with your options and provide your Agreement in Principle to solidify your buying position.


We’ll submit your full mortgage application. We do the heavy lifting, keeping it as simple and stress-free for you as we possibly can – and we’ll keep you updated every step of the way.


Enjoy your new UK property, with the peace of mind that you got the best deal on the market for your mortgage.

Residential Expat Mortgages

​ Borrow from £100k

 Up to 80% LTV

 New purchases and refinancing

Complex income accepted

Buy to Let Expat Mortgages

Borrow from £100k

Up to 75% LTV

New BTL purchases and refinancing

Rental income and salary accepted