In a recent move that is set to simplify the mortgage application process for non-UK nationals, NatWest has unveiled a new policy change concerning the use of share codes in conjunction with passports. This new change to NatWest’s criteria opens up new possibilities for foreign nationals living in the UK already, and looking to invest in the UK property market.
New NatWest Criteria For Non-UK Nationals Residing in the UK
Under the newly released criteria, government share codes are now deemed acceptable alongside a valid passport for non-UK nationals seeking to purchase property in the UK. Borrowers will still need to be living and working in the UK already, however this innovative approach eliminates the requirement for showing a physical visa as part of the mortgage documentation process. Hopefully streamlining the entire mortgage application process for borrowers and their brokers.
The share code, which is a unique code linked to an individual’s immigration status, can now be presented alongside the mortgage applicant’s passport, effectively removing the need for a physical Visa. This change not only reduces the complexity of the application process but also accelerates the processing time for mortgage applications with underwriters, benefitting both applicants and the bank that sometimes has huge delays due to residency status queries.
How To Get Your Share Code Prior To a Mortgage Application
To access and process a share code as a foreign national, NatWest provides a step-by-step guide:
1. Visit the official UK government website at https://www.gov.uk/view-prove-immigration-status and click on the ‘Start Now’ button.
2. Access to this service requires a UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) account. If you have applied to the EU Settlement Scheme, used the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app, or created a UKVI account during a visa application, you are eligible to use this service.
3. Provide details of your identity document used for your UKVI account (passport, national identity card, or biometric residence card/permit), your date of birth, and the mobile number or email address linked to your UKVI account.
4. Click on ‘Start Now’ and follow the subsequent steps to receive your unique share code.
How To Access and Process a Share Code For Your Client As a Mortgage Broker
1. Visit the official UK government website at https://www.gov.uk/check-immigration-status and click on ‘Start Now’.
2. Enter the share code provided by the client and click ‘Continue’.
3. Enter the client’s date of birth, ensuring it matches the details on the account application.
4. Provide your job title and the organization or company name, then click ‘Continue’.
5. Select ‘a new bank or building society account’ for the question ‘why are you checking this person’s status’, and click ‘Continue’.
NatWest Criteria For Non-UK Nationals Mortgage Applications
Here is a breakdown of NatWest’s current criteria for Non-UK nationals already residing in the UK and looking to purchase a home. For applications without a permanent “right to reside,” a maximum Loan-to-Value (LTV) ratio of 75% on a Capital & Interest repayment basis is enforced. Applicants are required to use their own resources for the deposit and ensure that their visa has at least six months’ validity. In the case of non-British or non-EU national applicants, NatWest mandates the submission of both a passport copy and valid Visa or share code documentation during the application process. Joint applications are subject to specific criteria, with different LTV ratios depending on the permanent right to reside status of each applicant.
Notably, the policy also addresses the treatment of EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen customers with “Settled” or “Pre-Settled” status. Customers falling under this category are subject to standard residential and buy-to-let policies and lending criteria. For those EU, EEA, or Swiss citizens who resided in the UK before December 31st, 2020, confirmation of their settlement status is a prerequisite for entering into a mortgage application for new lending. This confirmation, indicated in the EU settlement status letter, is now part of NatWest’s packaging requirements.
Speak To a Mortgage Broker
In conclusion, NatWest’s newly released criteria surrounding share codes represents a significant step forward in simplifying the mortgage application process for non-UK nationals. By accepting government share codes alongside passports, NatWest have opened up a lot more doors for a smoother mortgage application process for people residing in the UK. If you are a foreign national currently living and working in the UK and are looking to get a residential mortgage, please feel free to drop us an email or give us a call to see how we can help you.