Getting a mortgage is a significant milestone on the path to homeownership, but if you’re self-employed in the UK, the process can be a bit more complex. Lenders often view self-employed individuals as higher risk due to fluctuating income and varying financial stability. However, with careful planning and preparation, securing a mortgage as a self-employed person is entirely possible.
On the Bromley Property Company blog today, we’ll share valuable tips and advice to help you navigate the mortgage maze in the UK…
Build a Strong Financial Profile
Before you even start looking for a mortgage, it’s essential to have a strong financial profile. This includes maintaining a healthy credit score and managing your personal finances responsibly. Lenders will scrutinise your financial history, so make sure to pay bills on time, reduce outstanding debts, and avoid taking on new credit commitments before applying for a mortgage.
Keep Accurate Records
One of the challenges self-employed individuals face when applying for a mortgage is proving their income. Lenders typically request at least two years’ worth of financial records, such as tax returns, bank statements, and profit and loss statements. To improve your chances of approval, keep accurate and organised financial records from the start of your self-employment journey.
Work with an Accountant
Hiring a certified accountant can be a game-changer when applying for a mortgage. They can help you navigate complex tax regulations, maximise allowable expenses, and ensure your financial records are in excellent shape for lender scrutiny. An accountant can also provide you with a self-assessment tax return, which is often required by mortgage lenders.
Save for a Larger Deposit
A larger deposit can significantly improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage as a self-employed individual. Lenders typically require a deposit of at least 10% to 20% of the property’s value. Saving for a substantial deposit not only increases your chances of approval but may also secure you better interest rates.
Maintain a Stable Income
Consistency in your income is crucial when applying for a mortgage. Lenders prefer to see a steady and reliable stream of income. If your earnings have been fluctuating, it might be wise to wait until you have a few years of stable income to increase your chances of mortgage approval.
Consider Specialist Lenders
Mainstream lenders may be more cautious when dealing with self-employed applicants. Therefore, it’s worth considering specialist lenders who have experience working with self-employed individuals. These lenders may have more flexible criteria and a better understanding of your unique financial situation.
Before you start house hunting, consider getting pre-approved for a mortgage. Pre-approval not only helps you determine your budget but also demonstrates to sellers that you’re a serious buyer. It can also help speed up the mortgage application process once you find your dream home.
Be Prepared for a Bigger Financial Commitment
Self-employed individuals often need to provide a larger deposit and may face higher interest rates compared to salaried employees. Be prepared for these potential challenges and factor them into your budget and financial planning.
While getting a mortgage as a self-employed individual in the UK may present some additional hurdles, it’s certainly not impossible. By building a strong financial profile, keeping accurate records, working with professionals, and being prepared, you can increase your chances of securing the mortgage you need to achieve your homeownership dreams.
Remember that patience and persistence are key in navigating the mortgage maze successfully!
See more more property tips and advice over on the Bromley Property Company blog