DeVere Mortgages and Al Rayan Bank have announced that they have entered into a strategic partnership to offer Sharia-compliant mortgage alternatives for expats looking to purchase property in the UK.
According to deVere Mortgages’ reports, the firm has seen an average increase of 55% week on week in the number of mortgage enquiries it has received since the UK’s EU referendum result. The majority of these applications from people living in Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Oman (GCC countries), it said.
Mike Coady, managing director of deVere Mortgages, said: “We have seen growing demand from our Group’s 80,000 clients around the world for Sharia-compliant mortgages. The tie-up with Al Rayan Bank will add real value to our core market, which is Muslim and non-Muslim buyers based overseas who are looking to purchase property in Britain.”
UK’s largest Islamic retail bank
Al Rayan Bank is the UK’s largest Islamic retail bank and, accordng to deVere it has increased its expat financing by 141% since 2013.
Coady points that being an Islamic Bank, Al Rayan Bank’s home finance does not involve interest, which is prohibited in Islam; additionally they do not charge arbitrary fees to customers, meaning that up-front costs tend to be significantly lower than with many conventional banks.
“Also they do not automatically assume that those living overseas are ‘high risk’ as many other banks do; and they don’t insist on clients being employed by large multinationals,” he said.
Sultan Choudhury, chief executive of Al Rayan Bank said that the deal will focus in particular on British expats who, “for a variety of reasons, can find it difficult to obtain home finance in the UK whilst they are working overseas”.
Expat sector ‘under-served’
“We identified the expat market as an under-served sector some time ago, targeting resource towards it accordingly,” he said. “As a result we have experienced significant growth in this area of our business.”
Al Rayan Bank is founded on faith-based, ethical principles that derive from trade, entrepreneurship and risk-sharing, in which the customer and bank work together as partners towards a mutually profitable end.
Al Rayan Bank is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority, regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority, and is a member of Financial Services Compensation Scheme.