Can Foreigners Get Mortgages or Home Loans in Georgia?
The good news is that – yes – it is possible for foreigners to get mortgages in Georgia. This is possible for either projects that are still under construction (most developers have relationships with one of the major banks in Georgia) and also for resales.
Usually Georgian banks will lend up to a maximum of 70% of the value of the property, for a maximum duration of ten years.
The not-so-good news is the interest rates in the country, which are high compared to the rates that you will find in most First World countries. Currently TBC Bank (which is the largest bank in the country, only rivalled by Bank of Georgia) is offering interest rates of min 8% on loans denominated in Euro, min 9% on loans in USD, or 10.9% in loans in Georgian Lari (5 year fixed rate).
More bad news is that the banks will only lend in foreign currency (Euro or USD) if the minimum loan is GEL 200,000. So if you are borrowing less than this amount, the only option is to borrow in Georgian Lari at a significantly higher interest rate. Interest rates on Georgian Lari are so high because the currency has slowly been depreciating against the USD and Euro over the past years. This is good news for anyone who makes their income in a stronger currency because, in effect, this means that every percentage point that the Lari devalues reduces the percentage of interest that you are paying in real terms.
Another potential downside for some buyers is that it is not going to be able to arrange the mortgage without visiting Tbilisi and meeting with the bank in person. If you are buying direct from a developer that already has an existing agreement with one of the major banks, the process should be relatively straightforward. However, you should still plan on spending one working week (Monday through Friday) in Tbilisi to choose your apartment, open an account and to agree on the mortgage with the bank. If you are planning on purchasing a resale, then it is recommended to spend at least two working weeks in Tbilisi. This is because, not only does it take more time to view a number of resales, but also because the bank will need to send an appraiser to check on the property before they agree on the maximum loan amount.
In terms of documentation, you should bring some proof of earnings with you, such as bank statements as the bank will probably require such documents.
You can find up-to-date information on the current terms and conditions offered by TBC Bank from their website at the following link: