Anybody can benefit from a French mortgage, regardless of nationality as the French banks will look at country of residence, income source and income / debt ratio to ascertain whether
they can lend to you.
Certain countries of residence figure on “black lists” and French banks will not lend to you if you reside in them. These countries include places which are currently experiencing political or
economic unrest such as Syria and Libya.
Banks require transparency when it comes to assessing your mortgage application so they will prefer residents of countries with a clear taxation system and uniform accounting standards. This is especially true for self employed applicants.
Expats in countries where the taxation system or economic outlook is less standard will find that the lenders will look at which company they work for and may ask for additional information concerning the employer. Working for a large, international, corporate structure when based in a more exotic country is definitely advantageous to the borrower, more so than being self employed.
Other factors include age. There is often an upper age limit for the duration of the mortgage due to the life insurance cover restrictions but also due to reduced income levels generally once retirement age is achieved. The upper age depends on the bank, sometimes it can be age 70, sometimes age 85 although the life insurance premiums do become more expensive after a certain age is attained.