Likeliness of getting accepted for a mortgage

Me and my wife would like to apply for a mortgage in around one year to buy a two bedroom apartment in New Taipei City. We are probably looking to buy a property somewhere around the NT$8.5 million mark. I have two jobs totalling a salary of around NT$95,000 per month, and my wife is a stay at home mom. By the time we apply for the mortgage I will have been in my current jobs for just over a year. We have about NT$1.5 million saved up, but ideally would be putting as little as possible into the down payment so we still have some emergency money. I am British and my wife and daughter are Taiwanese. I have lived in Taiwan for almost six years, but have not had continuous residence so no APRC yet. What is the likelihood of being accepted for a mortgage? Has anyone done it?


Whatever you do. Do your best to try to get your name on the house, either joint or alone. If you do the traditional route of making everything in her name, it could bite you in a divorce.


I was offered a mortgage at a bank that I’ve banked at for a few years. I went in about once every few months to transfer money back to the States, so they kinda knew me and obviously knew how much money I was making (all that cash being raked in teaching at a public school…). One day they asked if I was transferring the money back to the States in order to buy a house, and if so, if I wanted to take out a loan. I don’t think I would have gotten anywhere with the process, but I regret not trying. If I could take out a Taiwan interest home loan and purchase property in the US…

Anyway, your wife is Taiwanese and you have a downpayment, there’s no way you’re going to run into problems. But make sure you can jointly purchase that house. So many discussions here about perfectly happy marriages needing to end but not wanting to end for no reason but the house is in the spouse’s name…
Edit: @Marco just said the second part


You probably need 30% downpayment, that seems to be more or less the norm.

Fubon bank seems to also be the most accommodating in my experience, and hsbc the easiest to deal with but they are rather strict on which properties they accept(got recently turned down on a mortgage due to the property being too old/earthquake risk)

  1. Have you checked prices? $8.5m won’t get much (or anything) in Taipei.

  2. Are your jobs reporting your real earnings to the authorities? Alot of cram schools report than you’re making minimum wage, so that they and you can pay less tax. But the taxes amount will be the figure used to apply for the mortgage.

He said he’s buying in new Taipei, not Taipei.

In my experience you can file documentation showing other income than your taxable income, the banks will take it in to consideration

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NT$8.5 million is more than enough where we live.

Yes I made sure they reported my real salary.

That seems high. In the UK I know people who only had a 5% down payment. Can anyone else confirm this?

You can get away with 20% if it’s in a very price stable location (if it’s your first or second home). Talk to different banks. 5% not possible by law.

If it’s your third home (or more) the minimum downpayment has been raised to 40% (recent change at the beginning of the month).

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Random thought: Combining the Taiwanese love of real estate with 5% down payments would be an interesting spectacle to watch.

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Last time (2018) I was checking to buy an apartment, mostly if not all were down payment around 30% (new apartment), second hand apartment the value increase.

That’s what I hear in Taiwan too. You had to have 30%. So you really need a few million to start assuming you’re looking at 8 million.

Honestly I don’t even know why anyone bother buying anymore. A place selling for 10 million in new Taipei rents for 15,000 a month. A place selling for 30 million in Taipei city rents for maybe 30,000 a month. At the rate of rental payment it would take 100 years to pay off a loan. Realistically you’re going to be paying 3x rental value of the property for the loan.

I’d buy less expensive land if I were you and have actual freedom rather than a room in some building.

I think if you got some products to manufacture that will sell I would invest money there. You’d make a lot more in 10 years with that investment and you’d be able to buy a flat outright.


Thinking in a short term, you are very right, it is better to rent something than buy! But in a long term, like you will give the place to your kids etc, may be worth it. If it is investment, I would prefer to invest in a retirement plan instead of buy properties here. If I could choose, I would go down south, bigger places, better life quality and better prices. Taipei and New Taipei is way too crazy the price, and if you start to go to Wugu or Linkou, things are not that different.

But seriously if the price of the house is similar to the total after paying rent for 20 years, it’s probably how much it should cost.

If rent for the house takes over 100 years to pay it off, then it’s in a bubble.

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which is exactly what happened to me (after paying for most of it). you absolutely MUST get your name on the mortgage, and on the title!

I still wonder whether that was her plan all along…