Bank Of Ireland Pulls the Plug on Non-resident Mortgage Market

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In recent years, the team at Victoria Homes has helped many expats with their move back home to Ireland. It is always great to work with new home buyers as they prepare to move into, what is usually, their very first home. However, this even more special when the home hunters have been watching the market from foreign shores, biding their time and waiting for the big move home.

Until recently, mortgages have been available to people living abroad with the intention of moving home. While lenders have always imposed notably stricter lending criteria when giving mortgages to those living abroad, at least they were lending. We noticed a change over the past two years since the introduction of an EU mortgage credit rule restricting lending in foreign currencies – this effectively ended lending to people living outside of the eurozone or those who do not earn their income in euro.

At the start of the year, the only banks lending to returning ex-pats – with some exceptions – were AIB and Bank of Ireland.  A deposit of 30% of the purchase price, and up to 50%, was not unusual.

According to RTE reports earlier this month, Bank of Ireland has now “pulled the plug on non-resident mortgage market”.  Simply put, the bank has stopped lending to Irish people living overseas who are looking to buy a property back home.  It remains to be seen how this will impact the market in 2019, however, for now it appears that AIB is the only  game in town for returning home-hunters.

Bank of Ireland will now only process mortgages for applicants resident in the Republic of Ireland at the time of application. Anecdotally, we understand that would-be applicants might well be precluded from applying for a mortgage for a period of six months (minimum) once they return home.

We would be interested to hear your experiences of this…


To discuss this and other housing matters in Dublin, please contact me directly on +353 (0) 87 937 0896,  or check out all of our current developments at