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Mortgages for Individuals

Is it possible to secure a mortgage as a single applicant? Uncover all the pros and cons, and find the best lenders to apply to.

Almas Uddin
Almas Uddin

Founder and Mortgage Advisor

Almas Uddin2024-07-17
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Mortgages for Individuals

Buying a property as a single applicant isn't unusual. Many first-time buyers purchase a property by themselves, and there is no reason to wait until you are married or in a long-term relationship to get onto the property ladder.

Here we'll explain what you need to get mortgage approval as an individual applicant and what a lender will look for when assessing your application.

For help with your single mortgage application, or to find the most competitive rates on the market, give us a call on 0330 304 3040, or email the Revolution Brokers team at [email protected].

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How Much Can I Borrow on a Sole Applicant Mortgage?

Lenders will look at what you earn and what you spend. Acceptable income forms vary between lenders; for example, some will include only 50% of income received as bonuses or commission payments.

If you are self-employed, you'll also need a broker to advise on the right lenders to apply to. Some will require three years worth of tax returns or accounts, whereas others will consider applicants with much shorter trading history.

The below illustration shows how three different lenders might assess their maximum mortgage offer. In all cases, the applicant earns £25,000 a year, with a £5,000 bonus, and all lenders offer a mortgage capped at 4.5 times annual income.

  • Lender A includes 100% of bonus income. They calculate annual earnings as £30,000 and offer a mortgage of £135,000.
  • Lender B includes 50% of bonus earnings, so calculate the annual income as £27,500. Their maximum mortgage offer is £123,750.
  • Lender C does not permit bonus payments in their affordability assessment. They offer a maximum loan of £112,500.

Affordability also considers your outgoings and other debts such as credit cards or personal loans.

Regular debt repayments are deducted from your income to assess your expendable income and how much you can afford to pay each month.

Can I Use a Single Person Mortgage Calculator to Estimate My Mortgage Payments?

You can, but we'd recommend exercising caution when relying on a mortgage calculator.

These only give a rough idea about what you can borrow and are very generic, so they cannot tell you whether your circumstances will meet the lender's eligibility criteria.

Are There Mortgages for Single Self-Employed Applicants?

There are indeed! Lenders will want to know your trading style, so whether you are a sole trader, or a limited company director, for example.

The affordability assessment will look at your average net profits or your salary and dividends drawn from the business if you are a director.

Most lenders will need three years of self-employed accounts, although some will accept one or two years. The longer the trading history, the more stable your income is perceived to be, and the better an idea the lender has about your average annual earnings.

Can I Use Right to Buy on My Own?

Yes! If you are eligible for the Right to Buy and want to purchase a council property, you can apply.

You will need to demonstrate that you can afford the mortgage repayments on your own and will usually require a clear credit history.

Are There Single person Mortgages for Applicants With a Low Deposit?

Many first-time buyers have a low deposit and can usually borrow up to 95% of the property value, so they need a 5% deposit.

Help to Buy is an option here, whereby you can borrow 20% of the property value (or 40% in London) and use that to increase your deposit value to 25%.

Can I Get a Joint Mortgage Just in My Name?

This mortgage is called a joint borrower, sole proprietor mortgage. It allows joint applicants to take out a mortgage, but only one person is named on the deeds and owns the property.

Usually, the joint applicant is a parent or close family member.

If you consider a joint mortgage due to credit history issues, you might be interested in learning that there are surprisingly competitive specialist bad credit lenders out there. Having a low credit score or adverse credit history doesn't mean that you won't be approved for a mortgage.

The key is to work with an independent broker who can recommend the best-suited lenders and negotiate the mortgage terms for you.

What Can I Do About a Joint Mortgage After Divorce or Separation?

Where you have a joint mortgage, one option is to ring-fence the share you purchase in the home by applying as tenants in common on the mortgage paperwork.

That means you can sell your stake in the property as you wish, and this doesn't automatically transfer to the other joint owner if you part ways.

Another option is to remortgage from a joint mortgage to a single mortgage. In essence, you are applying for a mortgage as a single person to buy out the share an ex-partner owns.

Remortgages are available either through the same lender or through a new mortgage provider. The best option depends on what rates you are paying and what sort of terms are available on the market.

What are the Benefits of Taking out a Secured Loan as a Single Applicant?

There are lots of reasons you might decide to apply for a mortgage or home loan individually:

  • You can borrow more cash against a property you own through a mortgage, second mortgage or complete remortgage.
  • Secured loans are a more flexible option, whereby you can usually borrow a larger multiple of your annual income.

However, if you have a joint mortgage on a property, it isn't usually possible to apply for a secured loan just in your name.

Can I Get a Buy to Let Mortgage as a Sole Investor?

Yes, there is no reason you need to have more than one applicant on a buy to let mortgage application. There are minimum income thresholds with some lenders that you will need to meet, usually £25,000 a year.

Specialist Advice on Single Applicant Mortgages

As we've seen, there are lots of considerations to applying for an individual applicant mortgage. The biggest challenge is ensuring you can demonstrate affordability on one income and have a suitable deposit.

For help comparing mortgage products or home loans for sole applicants, give Revolution Finance Brokers a call on 0330 304 3040, or email the team at [email protected].

Almas Uddin
Almas Uddin

Founder and Mortgage Advisor

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FCA disclaimer

The content included in our articles, blogs, web pages and news publications is based on information accurate at the time of writing. Note that policies and criteria can change regularly throughout the UK mortgage lending market, and it remains essential to contact the consultation team to receive up to date guidance. The information included on the Revolution Brokers site is not bespoke to any circumstances or individual application scenarios and therefore is not intended to be used as financial advice. The content we share is designed to be informative and helpful but cannot be relied upon to provide individual advice relevant to your mortgage requirements. All Revolution team members are fully qualified, trained and experienced to provide mortgage advice of an independent nature.

We collaborate with lenders and providers who are regulated, authorised and registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Should you require specific mortgage borrowing types, some products such as buy to let mortgages may not be FCA regulated. The Revolution team can provide further information about regulated and unregulated lending as required. Please remember that a mortgage is a debt which is secured against your home or property. Your home can be at risk of repossession if you do not keep up with the repayments or encounter any other difficulties in managing your mortgage borrowing responsibly. This also applies to any remortgage or home loan secured against your property, including equity release products.

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