ST. LUCIA MORTGAGES

The St. Lucia real estate market has been popular in the last decade with many overseas buyers investing on the island, primarily from North America, UK and Europe.

There are few lenders in St. Lucia geared for non-resident mortgages and the application process can be protracted. The role of the mortgage broker in this process can be invaluable as nothing happens quickly in St. Lucia.

All mortgagors require legal representation and the mortgagee also has separate lawyers acting on their behalf. The applicant/borrower pays the mortgagor legal fees and also those of the mortgagee. The legal process includes the vendor’s lawyers and the added challenge of getting three legal firms to work effectively with each other. The purchase process can be slow, as overseas property purchasers require an Alien’s Land License to own property on the island. This is applied for by the purchaser’s attorney through the Prime Minister’s office and normally takes three months to get.

All mortgage applications are subject to a satisfactory valuation report provided by a Valuer approved by the lender and paid for by the applicant.

Generally repayment terms are available up to 30 years and the maximum Loan-to-Value is 60-70% depending on the lender, but may be lower. Borrowing in US$ has been the most attractive currency in the past few years where the interest rate is linked to the three-month US$ LIBOR rate plus the lender's mark-up. Current rates are available on request.

For more information telephone Anita Ashton at 246 228 2188 or by email at anita@caribbeanmortgages.com.