Can a temporary resident get a home loan in Australia?

Finance May 3, 2023

3 min read


A question we get from time to time is from temporary visa holders and whether they are able to get approved for a home loan. The short answer is yes. However, there are quite a few terms and conditions that temporary visa holders need to be aware of.

You are required to get government approval.

Even if you are buying the property to live in, the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) will need to approve your application before you can purchase. You’ll also need to pay a fee when you complete your application to the FIRB for you property purchase.

You are limited to how much you can borrow.

You should be able to get a standard home loan, however lenders will only lend a maximum 80% of the value of the property. This means you will need a minimum 20% deposit plus stamp duty, plus foreign investment duty and in some cases land tax plus your FIRB application fee and your legal costs.

If you are buying with an Australian citizen or permanent resident these costs may be significantly reduced.

There’s no specific list of allowed temporary visa types.

The banks don’t have a list of approved temporary visas, however most applications are on a case by case basis. If you are on a bridging visa and have applied for permanent residency (PR)then it’s best to wait until your PR comes through.

You may be able to access stamp duty and first homeowner concessions.

This would not apply to you specifically, but if you are married to and buying with an Australian citizen or permanent resident then they may be able access things like stamp duty concessions and first home owner grants.

You would also be able to avoid the foreign stamp duty surcharge, which can make it very expensive for foreigners to buy in Australia.

Is it better to buy now or to wait until you’re a permanent resident (PR)?

Whilst it’s possible to buy a property as a temporary resident, if you are planning to become a permanent resident then we’d recommend you wait until you receive your PR. The process will be much easier for you, the lending options much greater and the costs far lower if you are a PR in Australia as opposed to temporary residents.

Confused? Get in touch, our team of brokers can help you understand what’s possible for you.

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