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Mortgage lending rules

What they mean for you

Understanding the rules all mortgage lenders have to follow can help you prepare for your application. Find out how.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

How the mortgage rules affect you

The UK’s mortgage rules mean we have to be confident that you could still make mortgage payments if your income falls or your monthly repayments increase because of a change in interest rates. So when you apply for a mortgage we’ll consider your income, debts and regular spending and your personal circumstances.

Your income

You’ll need to provide documents that support what you’ve told us about your

  • Regular income from work, self-employment or pensions and investments
  • Additional payments like overtime, bonuses and commission
  • Other income like state benefits, rental income, trust funds and maintenance payments
  • Your debts, credit commitments and regular spending

We’ll consider how your current and future commitments could affect your ability to afford your mortgage repayments, including

  • Cards and overdrafts
  • Credit agreements and loans
  • Property commitments
  • Family commitments, including maintenance

We’ll also consider your circumstances today and how you think they may change in the future, including

  • A change to the interest rate you pay
  • Your planned retirement age
  • Additions to your household, like children or relatives you need to care for
  • How you’d cope financially if you became seriously ill, had an accident, lost your income or separated from a partner

Take control of your credit file

Find out what can affect your credit file and how to check it before you apply.

Even if you think you’ve managed your money properly, it’s worth making sure the details agencies hold are correct. You can ask for a report and score from most credit reference agencies. There’s no industry standard for credit scores, so each agency may hold slightly different information about you.

  • You can ask agencies to correct errors
  • Even small errors, such as in your date of birth or address history, could make a difference to the amount you could borrow
  • If you’re no longer living with a former partner or flatmate, make sure you hold no joint accounts or finances with them
  • Check your finances aren’t still linked through utility bills, store cards or other commitments you’re no longer responsible for 
  • You can do this by completing a ‘disassociation request’ with a credit reference agency
  • Remember that your credit file is just one of the things we check when you apply for a mortgage

How to apply

Use our calculators to see how much you could afford to borrow, get an Agreement in Principle to see if we could lend what you need and find out how to prepare for your mortgage appointment.

Mortgage calculators

Work out the kind of mortgage you could afford

Use our mortgage affordability calculators to work out how much you could borrow and what kind of deposit you need for a mortgage.

Agreement in Principle (AiP)

Take the first step to your mortgage with an AiP

Start an Agreement in Principle (AiP) online to find out quickly if you could borrow the amount you need – without affecting your credit score. 

Mortgage appointment

How to prepare

Find out which documents you’ll need and what you’ll discuss with our mortgage adviser at your appointment.

Need some help?

Chat to us online

Start a web chat if you a question about applying (we can’t give advice about choosing a mortgage during web chats).

Call us

Call us1 any time – lines may be closed at off-peak times on bank holidays and during Christmas.

0800 197 1081