Islamic bank Al Rayan Bank has financed £228m in residential property finance to UK nationals living and working overseas.
In the last 24 months alone, the bank has provided £152m worth of finance to expats, an increase of 187% on the previous two-year period. More than a quarter of the bank’s expat customers (26%) reside in the UAE, followed closely by Qatar (19%) and Saudi Arabia (15%).
Maisam Fazal, chief commercial officer at Al Rayan Bank, said: “There is a large community of British expats living in the Middle East, and many want to buy a property back in the UK to either return to or to use as an investment.
“For most, they will require property financing to be able to do so, which is why our suite of home and property finance products have grown in popularity in recent years, boosting our expat asset book significantly.
“Al Rayan Bank has a keen understanding of the GCC market as a result of our close ties with Qatari parent company, Masraf Al Rayan.
“We are happy to work with eligible customers in this market to provide bespoke home finance support back in the UK, and our improved distribution channels – particularly in the GCC – mean we are able to connect and support our customers with greater ease.
“We are also experiencing significant interest from markets such as Australia and the Far East as a result of our sensible application criteria and competitive rental rates, and we are keen to grow our support on a worldwide basis.”
Al Rayan Bank offers a full range discounted variable and fixed rental rate home and property finance products for expats, such as a 80% finance-to-value home purchase plan at a discounted variable rate of 3.69% or fixed rate of 3.99%.
For buy-to-let purchases at 75% finance-to-value there’s a 3.89% discounted rental rate or 3.99% fixed rental rate.
Founded in 2004 as the first Islamic retail bank in Europe, the bank has grown in appeal to both Muslim and non-Muslim audiences alike and now has more than 85,000 customers. The bank said over a third of customers are non-Muslim.