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What Are your options?

Professional Mortgages

On this episode of the Mortgage and Protection Podcast we’re talking all about professional mortgages with Ian Symmonds from Easy Street Financial Services.

Are there specific mortgages tailored to professionals?

Yes, there are currently some mortgages tailored to professionals. They are usually provided by standard lenders with a standard product range, but they also offer products that could be more favourable for professionals.

These might offer higher income multiples, potentially lower interest rates, reduced fees or perhaps a specialist approach to underwriting, with more niche criteria.

The principle behind it is that some lenders view professionals as lower risk, due to perceived long term job security or increasing salary levels.

How do I know if I qualify for a professional mortgage?

Each lender has their own criteria regarding what they consider to be professionals or key workers. They may also have criteria around the relevant qualifications required for each profession.

It varies depending on the lender, so you need to check the criteria to make sure you qualify. There are sometimes options for trainees as well – particularly trainee accountants or solicitors.

As a really rough guide, if you are a medical professional, key worker, business executive, financial services expert or legal professional, it’s worth looking into whether you could qualify for a professional mortgage.

Do all professionals and key workers get better mortgage rates?

Not necessarily, and it can be a potentially awkward one because there are many people out there who consider themselves to be professional – but wouldn’t necessarily meet the definition stated by each lender.

Firstly, you need to approach a lender that has a specific product designed for professionals and key workers. If not, then although you may be viewed more favourably, you would pay the same rates and fees as everybody else.

Secondly, each lender has a specific list of what they consider to be professionals. So if your profession is not accepted by one lender, it’s worth shopping around as it may be included by another. Speak to a specialist adviser – we can give you advice on your options.

Can I get a mortgage worth five times my salary?

You can potentially get a mortgage for five times your salary as a professional at the moment. There are some lenders that consider up to 5.5 times your salary and I actually had an email today from a lender saying that they could potentially consider up to six times salary for professionals.

But there are a couple of key points here. Firstly, the higher income multiples tend to be available for those with relatively high earnings and people that can take a relatively long mortgage term. Secondly, and more importantly, just because you can borrow a high amount, doesn’t mean you should.

Everybody’s circumstances are different in terms of their financial position and how they manage their money. It’s important to go through a detailed budget planner to make sure that you can comfortably afford the mortgage payments both now and in the future.

How can a mortgage broker like Easy Street help?

There are so many ways we can help – including doing a budget planner as mentioned earlier. A good mortgage broker will give tailored advice based on each person’s individual circumstances. As we said, everybody’s different.

Once we’ve got an idea of what you’re looking to achieve, we look at lenders across the market on your behalf, saving you time, effort and money.

In addition, for professionals, we will check which lenders will have special products for you and which qualifications are required. We also know the niche criteria for lenders around areas like affordability. For example, a lender may not publish that they would accept one year’s accounts for self-employed, for instance, but they may consider this for professionals.

The lender’s website may not tell you that, but an experienced specialist broker will have this knowledge through previous dealings or conversations with business development managers. So it’s always worth having a conversation with a specialist adviser.

We will shop around the lenders to compare what different products will mean to you. It might be that the cheapest rate is not necessarily the best in terms of the maximum loan that you could potentially get. We never assume things: if you’re on a zero-hour contract or have only been self-employed for a year you may not meet the standard criteria – but a lender may make an exception because they consider you to be a professional. It’s always worth double checking with a specialist broker.

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