Perils of buying property in the UK as a US citizen

Buying a property in the UK as a US citizen can be a bit complicated because it is also about the matter of dual nationality. You may need to cover miles of a bumpy road to buy a property in the United Kingdom.

Here are the prime perils of buying a property in the UK with dual nationality –

The nationality

Before you buy a property in the UK as an American, you have to take the citizenship of the UK. It is vital if you are planning to stay on British land. However, the process takes time, and that may not match your needs if there is a hurry to buy a property.

The US citizens have to fulfil many formalities on the tax part in their own country; otherwise, unnecessary issues occur in the name of tax obligations. On the other hand, the UK Government can never let you buy a property on its land until there is no green flag on the tax part of your country.

Closing an offer at the right time is difficult

A big issue that the US citizens face is they fail to close their offer on the desired property at the right time. They accept the offer and then rush to get a property loan, which takes time. The prime reason behind this is the improper back up of finances.

The mortgage conditions are a bit complicated for the Americans due to the dual nationality factor. It usually takes a minimum of 18 to 40 days in mortgage procedure, but for a US citizen, conditions can be different. It is not discrimination, but the necessity to confirm a few more things as the person belongs to some other country too.

The pace of house buying is slow in the UK

As compared to the USA, the UK home buying walks slowly, which may be a bit frustrating for a buyer. However, in some cases, the procedure is not lingering, but most of the time, it takes time for an American to cross all the stages. It is not a perception, but even the UK brokers mention the same thing.

Home valuation, house survey, agreement in principle and then final mortgage agreement takes time. Conditions change with the personal situations of the borrower. The maximum time that takes is 40 days, which sounds like a long journey to the Americans. The conditions can be even more annoying for the applicants of the mortgage with bad credit. Dual nationality and that too with low credit rating?? Oh! That is sufficient to make the situation messy.

Wealth managers avoid house buying of American clients

You may have the best financial advisor or wealth manager of the UK, but when it comes to home buying, they cannot help much. They refrain from getting involved in the hose buying of their American clients. A big reason for this is the lack of the expertise of the finance professionals in the field of home buying financial decisions.

They can suggest you the best mortgage brokers in the UK or may give a hint of the lenders that but they cannot assist during the buying process. It may cost you more money due to hiring a broker or going thing on your own. It obviously gives a feel of what is the use of hiring the personal financial advisor, if he/she cannot guide in a big decision of life.

The estate agents have fewer options ALSO

They majorly represent the vendors

In America, the homebuyers are more pampered and have more number of options in the property market. Estate agents play an essential role and ensure ease. But in the UK, the conditions are just the opposite.

The estate agents in the UK have less number of properties to show. The reason is, they organize the viewing for only those properties that are available in their books. Also, more than the buyers, they represent the priorities of the vendors. The buyers get small or no assistance from the estate agent.

Smaller duration of fixed-rate mortgages

In the UK, the maximum duration of a fixed rate is five years, a contradiction to what Americans exploit in the USA. There this duration can go up to 10 to 30 years. They have a much longer tenure of the fixed rate as compared to the British mortgage market.

It is like a big shock of the US citizens because they are not financially prepared for the flicker natured variable rates. They have to manage their finances in a completely different manner, and many compromises are required. If you are also looking for a fixed-rate mortgage, then it is better to get in the habit of changing rates and instalments. The UK mortgage market cannot serve your wish of having the same rate of interest for a very long time.


The above issues are prevalent in the UK property market and make the home buying complicated. If you are, an American and looking forward to buying a home then get ready for the above conditions. After corona, the affordability check has become stringent, and you have to be on your toes.