Expert advisors for mortgages for self-employed people.

Self-Employed Mortgages.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. When The Bank Says No is a mortgage broker, and not a lender.

Tailored mortgage advice & support for self-employed people.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. When The Bank Says No is a mortgage broker, and not a lender.

Finding The Best Self Employed Mortgage Deal For Your Circumstances

The financial crisis has hit many businesses across the globe quite hard, especially the self-employed. Nevertheless, despite the tough times, there’s still hope if you are in the market for a self-employed mortgage.

If you’re wondering about the ins and outs of getting a mortgage when you're self-employed and your chances of securing one — especially the difficulties you might face proving your self-employed income — we’re here to help. We can answer all your questions, lay out all your options, and help you secure the right mortgage deal for your circumstances.

Securing a mortgage when you are self-employed isn't always easy and there are often lots of hoops to jump through in order to convince a mortgage lender to lend to you. Though many lenders may be unwilling to consider a mortgage application for a self-employed person whose income is particularly complex, some lenders specialise in providing finance to these types of people. We can help you search the market to find deals available to someone in your circumstances, and tailor your self-employed mortgage application so you have the best chance of success.

What Is a Self-Employed Mortgage?

Several years back, there were mortgages available known as ‘self-certification’ or ‘self-cert.’ It allowed borrowers to self-certify their earnings without providing legal proof, such as tax records.

Self-certification mortgages were banned in 2009 by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) over rising concerns that loans were being approved for customers who couldn’t afford to pay them.

As a matter of fact, financial experts believe that overburdening borrowers with loans they couldn’t afford led to an unstable market. It’s believed that self-cert mortgages even had a hand in instigating the financial crisis of 2008.

Nowadays, a self-employed mortgage is basically the same as anyone else’s. The only difference is you need to provide more evidence to mortgage lenders to support your claims of a reliable, steady income that guarantees you can make the repayments on time.

Hence, since all mortgages are the same, the next step is to establish whether or not you’re actually ‘self-employed.’

What are the common categories of self-employed worker?

As a self-employed person, it is quite likely you will fall into into one of the following categories:

  • A sole trader: you work on your own, are responsible for the business, and retain all profits
  • A director of a registered limited company: you pay your salary and dividends
  • A contractor: you work for one client at a time, sometimes for months on end
  • A freelancer: you’re hired temporarily by different companies to work on specific jobs

Get Started with a Self Employed Mortgage Broker

Maximise your chance of approval with specialist advice from an expert in self employed mortgages

Types of self-employed mortgage applicants we are able to help

Even when getting a mortgage doesn't seem possible, When the Banks Says No are here to help prove that self-employed mortgages can be easier than you think. We can help you with the following types of self-employed mortgages:

Sole trader mortgages

Ltd company director mortgages

Partnership mortgages

Retained profits mortgages

Mortgages with 1 years accounts

Mortgages with decreasing profits

How long do I have to be self-employed to qualify for a mortgage?

Almost all lenders require 2–3 years’ worth of your business’s financial records. So, what happens if you haven’t been self-employed for that long? Is it still possible to get a mortgage?

Yes, it’s still possible to secure a mortgage with only a one-year account. Yet, it may take a bit longer to ensure you pass all the criteria that make you eligible for a mortgage. When the Bank Say No can help you be prepared with the right documents and answers to some additional questions the lenders may ask.

Self Employed Mortgage FAQs.

According to recent polls, over 40% of people in the UK are embarrassed when they’re denied a deal by a mortgage provider. They feel like they’ve failed to secure a loan to buy their dream home.

However, financial experts believe not being accepted isn’t always because the borrower did anything wrong or they've got a poor credit rating. It’s more likely that they’ve gotten unreliable advice, which resulted in a domino effect that resulted in their mortgage being denied. So, knowing some of the challenges faced by the self-employed can help lower your chances of a denial.

One of the biggest problems anyone who is self-employed will face when applying for a mortgage is the complexity of your overall income. Many don’t receive their salaries the same way as traditional employees. It may come as a regular pay, while other times, it may come from different sources spread out over a long period.

Another problem when trying to get a mortgage and prove evidence of consistent self-employed income is that some months may be good, others not so much. This often has to do with some of your equity being tied up in the business.

Yet, whatever the reason, having an income that fluctuates from one month to the next makes it difficult to estimate a typical budget, let alone the amount of a good loan.

There may also be times when accountants use tax loopholes to dodge some financial hurdles. Even though it’s 100% legal, it may affect how your financial statements appear to lenders.

A mortgage that you take out with 2 or 3 other people is called a ‘joint’ mortgage. It works the same way as a standard mortgage. The only difference is that all of your names will be on the agreement and that all parties involved will be responsible for making repayments each month.

While it seems pretty straightforward, applying for one with someone who is also self-employed may prove to be more challenging. Not only does the lender have to deal with one person who can’t fully guarantee a steady income, but now they have to contend with two self-employed borrowers!

Another thing to consider is that if your partner can’t make their share of the repayments for whatever reason, you’ll be the one who has to make the full payment on your own.

So, before you decide on taking out a joint mortgage, first make sure your partners won’t bail out on you. Also, make sure you can cover those monthly payments on your own if the need arises, so you’re not left high and dry.

The alternative is to apply for a joint mortgage with someone who is not self-employed, which may actually be less of a hassle. It can also help increase your chances of getting accepted because your partner will provide stability in terms of a dependable, fixed income.

All the strict affordability criteria and various attempts to establish your creditworthiness may seem unfair. Yet, it’s ultimately designed to guarantee responsible lending on the mortgage lenders’ part, while at the same time certifying that you can afford the repayments.

Luckily, there are a handful of things you can do to help you secure a good mortgage that all start with getting on top of your finances, such as the following:

  • Improve your credit score
  • Don’t let your credit card reach its limit
  • Save up for a larger home deposit
  • Check and correct any potential mistakes on your credit report
  • Reduce any existing debt
  • Get an accountant to get your business accounts in order

As long as you provide the necessary documents that allow you to meet the requirements for a mortgage, then most lenders will have no problem considering income from abroad as part of your self-employment salary.

Yet, you’d need to show proof that you’re staying in the UK long enough to purchase a home. In many cases, you’ll also need to be paid in GBP to qualify.

Mortgage lenders will undoubtedly have their own set of criteria they use to gauge borrowers’ eligibility. Some of these criteria include your credit score, whereas others will look at your deposit.

Don’t be put off if you don’t fare particularly well in one or both of these areas as we can help you access specialist lenders who are more willing to consider lending to those that have the affordability, even if they come up somewhat short in some of the other eligibility criteria.

To help put your mind at ease, we rounded up some of the more common rules that mortgage brokers typically apply to determine if you’re self-employed before they can issue a mortgage.

Take a look.

  • You own more than 20%–25% of the business
  • Provide documents prepared by a qualified accountant that prove your income is generated from your business
  • At least 2–3 years’ worth of accounts and proof of income that guarantees you can afford the repayments
  • Profit generated by the business and if you’re able to earn similar amounts in the upcoming years
  • If you’re permanently employed at a company, but have a source of additional revenue, this may be categorised as ‘self-employed’ and that extra income can be treated similarly to the income of someone who is 100% self-employed.
  • If your business has been experiencing some rapid growth recently compared to previous years, the lender will generally look at the average incomes of the last three years rather than just the latest profits alone
  • If your income has been lower than in previous years, the lender may decide to base affordability on that figure alone

If you have one or more business partners, lenders will ask to see your share of the profits

Some people worry that being self-employed means they have to pay higher mortgage rates. Fortunately, that’s not always the case.

As long as you are able to provide the lender with proof of income, they’ll be happy to offer you a mortgage that you can afford with the same rates as someone working in a full-time, permanent position. Nevertheless, it’s worth noting that the interest rate on your mortgage may vary depending on other factors besides your employment status.

For starters, if you are able to produce a large deposit upfront, your mortgage rate will be lower.
Another determining factor is your credit score. The better your score and overall credit rating, the lower the interest rates. Plus, you can get more options when it’s time to pick out a suitable mortgage deal.

To apply for a mortgage, you need to provide your lender with various documents to support your claims. These can vary depending on the type of business you run and your personal circumstances, but they generally include the following:

  • Proof of identity, which can be an ID, driving license, or passport
  • Proof of address in the form of utility bills dating back to the last four months
  • Evidence of a home deposit
  • Tax overviews from the past two years
  • 3 SA302 forms showing tax calculations for the past 2–3 years or a couple of tax year overviews obtained fromHMRC
  • Business bank statements from the previous 3–6 months detailing your spending habits
  • If you’re a company director, you need proof of retained profits or dividend payments
  • If you’re a contractor, you need to provide evidence of upcoming work contracts

As specialist mortgage brokers, we can help you present your earnings and earning potential in the best possible way to lenders who are more likely to understand and accept your circumstances.

Ultimately, it boils down to knowing how to establish reliable data for the purpose of figuring out exactly how much you can borrow. We can help you find this out.

There’s no difference in how much the self-employed can borrow as opposed to someone who works a full-time job with a steady income. The only difference is how much you can afford to put into the repayments for the entire duration of the mortgage, be it 10, 15, 20, or 30 years.

We’re sure that neither you nor the lender would want you to take a loan only to find several months later that you can no longer afford it. Unfortunately, if you can’t keep up with the repayments on your mortgage, the lenders will be forced to repossess your home.

Monster static on grey

Self-Employed Mortgage Calculator

Final thoughts.

Being your own boss comes with many perks, but can also make getting a self-employed mortgage difficult. When the Bank Says No specialises in helping self-employed clients achieve the right mortgage for them.

Whether you don't have enough years of accounts to satisfy some lenders, or you are experiencing a temporary blip in your profits, or there is some other reason for the lender to doubt your ability to meet your mortgage repayments, our advisors can guide you so that the right mortgage deal is still a genuine possibility.

Let's get the ball rolling.

We can support you and help you to make yourself as attractive to banks as possible, ready for your next application!

Check your credit file.

In order for us to assess your credit history and suitability for different mortgage products, you will need to check your file.