Mortgage application GNIB stamp 1

I would appreciate it if there is anybody out on the pin that might have some facts about this. Both my husband and I are here in Ireland on a GNIB stamp 1 immigration status. We are currently seriously considering putting in an offer on house but now the broker is saying that there will be some issues for us to get a mortgage from one of the banks - something with things changing in recent months – and that only people on stamp 4 will be considered for a mortgage. He can only come back to us with more info on Monday but I would really like some answers before then.

Here is a breakdown of the different stamps from … tpreview=1

Stamp number 1: Issued to a non-EEA national who has received either an employment permit or a business permission.

Stamp number 2: Issued to a non-EEA national student who is permitted to work for up to 20 hours a week during term and up to 40 hours a week during holidays. (The student must be attending a full-time course of at least a year which is recognised by the Department of Education and Science).

Stamp number 2A: Issued to a non-EEA national student who is not permitted to work.

Stamp number 3: Issued to a non-EEA national who is not permitted to work, (for example, a visitor, a tourist, a retired person).

Stamp number 4: Issued to the following categories of people, all of whom are permitted to work without needing an employment permit or business permission:
• Spouses and dependants of Irish and EEA nationals
• People who have permission to remain on the basis of parentage of an Irish child
• Convention and Programme refugees
• Former asylum-seekers granted leave to remain
• Non-EEA nationals on intra-company transfer
• Temporary registered doctors
• Non-EEA nationals who have working visas or work authorisations.

Stamp number 4 (EU FAM): Issued to non-EEA national family members of EU citizens who have exercised their right to move to and live in Ireland under the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations 2006. People holding this stamp are permitted to work without needing an employment permit or business permission, and they can apply for a residence card under the Regulations.

Stamp number 5: Issued to non-EEA nationals who have lived in Ireland for at least 8 years and who have been permitted by the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform to remain in Ireland without condition as to time. People holding this stamp are permitted to work without needing an employment permit or business permission.

Stamp number 6: Can be placed on the foreign passport of an Irish citizen who has dual citizenship, and who wants their entitlement to remain in Ireland to be endorsed on their foreign passport.
This stamp certifies that the holder of the passport is permitted to remain in Ireland without condition.

I was on a similar level of registration (although not sure they had the ‘stamp’ system going at the time) from 1999-2006, but it would have been equivalent to stamp 1. I came over for the job…and am still in the same job. It is a state job with a relatively secure (if there is such a thing these days?) and reasonable income. I started making mortgage enquiries around 2004/2005 - when the going was good and they were prepared to give them away more easily. I had provisional approval that I renewed a few times (expired as I was looking for property), but since I was a ‘non-national’ (or ‘alien’ as I was at first officially called), I did not qualify for the full rate that an Irish/EU national would have and I was also required to get someone (Irish national) to sign as security for the loan. This despite that I had been in a ‘secure’ profesional state job for the past 5/6 years and had all my paperwork in order. As I said, this was in the ‘good’ times…as it happens around the time I found something that I liked and could afford, my citizenship application came through. As I went to talk to the broker more seriously about my application since I had found something I wanted to purchase, he grabbed my naturalisation cert and dashed off to make photocopies of it for the bank. I was offered more money (which I declined) and the requirement to have someone sign as security was dropped. This was late in 2006. I am sure that this is all much tougher now. I think a lot of it has to do with the type of profession that you are in, as this influences your general employability. Good luck…its not easy!

Dracula house prices are falling bigtime and will for sometime. There are plenty of properties to rent. DO NOT I repeat DO NOT under any circumstances attempt to buy a house in this country in the current market you are buying negative equity from the get go.

I held a similar stamp and was told the same thing several years ago, but I have several friends with similar stamps who did take out mortgages on homes here. In fact, this Nov 2005 article: that a significant percentage of recent home purchases were by new immigrants to Ireland:

*…The non-national market is a "really significant target group", according to Ronan O’Driscoll from Hamilton Osborne King.

HOK has reported that, so far this year, almost 30 percent of new homes sales were made to non-nationals, up from under 5 percent just two years ago…

While the new buyers are confident that there will be capital appreciation and know that it makes more sense to buy rather than rent, quite a few seem to be in it for the long haul and are putting down roots, with other family members joining them, says MacDonald.

Note the quotes I’ve highlighted in bold, we immigrants are a target group for property sellers in 2005 and many new buyers were confident that there would be capital appreciation. Unfortunately, since 2005 many of these properties being pushed on immigrants depreciated almost 2000 Euro every month in 2007:

Mortgage terms really depend on the bank. Banks are becoming more nervous about what can go wrong. They know now that if a buyer isn’t able to make payments, they may not be able to sell a house quickly to recover the outstanding loan value. You might be able to find a bank willing to lend to someone on stamp 1, but one of the many reasons I decided to continue renting even back when house price increases seemed certain and neverending is this:

I don’t think it is wise to sign a 30-40 year mortgage contract on a property in a country which only allows me the right to live in that property for the next 1 to 2 years. If you’ve lived here long enough, you know Ireland has often changed its immigration laws. These changes tend to make it more difficult for us to stay here long term. You might know that when an economy turns, immigrants are first blamed, then sent home. There are a number of Polish nationals now stuck in Iceland, with no jobs and now owing mortgages on houses that can’t be sold for the value owed. I don’t wish this on anyone. It nearly happened to one of my friends here, it could happen to others and it almost happened to me.

I certainly understand the desire to own a bit of Ireland if you have long term plans here, as I do. However, we are living in a time when Irish property values are falling (despite what vested interests in government tell us, we are nowhere near bottom). We have time, the number of rental properties available continues to rise. The number of properties for sale continues to rise, the prices continue to fall. With each day I become more comfortable with my decision to wait until buying is cost competitive with renting, or the ratio of property value to average income falls back towards long-term averages.

In normal times “owning” (a mortgage loan) can provide a sense of stability, but during these disturbing times, I believe the mobility provided by renting provides far more personal security. If you should decide to buy, please be careful. Just because we are new here doesn’t mean we are “born yesterday” and can be fooled into becoming the “greater fool” who can keep this property bubble/pyramid going for another few months. Good luck!

Thanks geld and dochasach for that wise advice and food for thought. It’s great to hear from people that is/were in similar situations. Both my husband and I are professionals that used to own a property back where we come from. We have been renting for a year and have been keeping a close eye to the property market and the pin. We also saved a substantial deposit and manage to finally find a “bargain”. But like you say – the reasoning behind the urge to buy is very emotional and sentimental: A need to have somewhere to call “home”, somewhere to make your own etc.

But I’ve got a feeling my husband and I will be talking and thinking about this for a little longer before rushing into anything – thanks!!!

Sorry, meant to say in my original post that I found something to buy in 2005, not 2006…I can truly understand how you feel…I decided to buy at a time when I was getting increasingly fed up with house-sharing (I was single at the time). My job involves a lot of work that needs to be taken home, long hours at the computer, and this was just not working out when I was confined to one bedroom in a houseshare. It was also increasingly frustrating that when I wanted family from abroad to come and visit (I have close family in 3 countries now), they could not really stay too long, as I was very aware that this was a space invasion issue for my housemates, so none of us could really relax, so I wanted a place to be able to set up a desk to work in peace and have my family come visit without having to go away for a few days or feel guilty about them being there. So, I bought. Fortunately prices were not at their peak (although definitely on the up) and I did not borrow the full amount that I was offered. There were looooooooong completion delays with the place. So, although I signed for it in 2005, I only moved in in early 2007. By then my life had changed completely. Still same requirements as before (desk, family space), but also now had another desk to accommodate and also a cot, as we were then 3 moving in. Now space is too tight, and we are looking out for a chance to move, but not jumping into anything too quickly. I would say that if it is just the two of you renting, then stick at it for a while (we rented together before moving into the place that I had committed to purchasing) and keep a close eye on properties in the area that you are looking at. I have noticed that there are price wars emerging in some areas, where the same house type (specs almost identical on daft/myhome), now has houses priced from 475 000 to 565 000. And still no-one is buying the house at 475 000, so I really do think (and hope!) that prices have a way to fall yet. Good luck and happy house hunting!


Good luck. We’d need to stay in the same house for 20+ years for buying to beat renting financially, but if you have a special desire to paint your own house or modify it, or if you can’t find what you’re looking for as a rental, you might decide to buy regardless of the financial downside.

You’ll make the decision that is best for your circumstances given the information you have at the time. We’re just here to provide an alternative point of view to those who said house prices could never go down and who are now just as certain we’re definitely at bottom.