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If you're looking for a standard mortgage, there is no universal age limit, although getting a mortgage when you're older can be more challenging. However, each lender has their own age limits which are typically applied as:
An age limit for taking out a new mortgage (this ranges from around 70-85)
A maximum age you can be when your mortgage term ends (this ranges from around 75-95)
Some lenders have both of these, and other don’t have any age restrictions on their mortgage deals at all - but the latter is quite unusual.
Most lenders offer standard mortgage deals for borrowers in this age bracket, particularly if you’re still in full-time employment or receiving a steady income.
As you get older, however, you might find you have less choice of deals available to you, especially if your income decreases into retirement. This can mean you're offered a shorter term, which means higher monthly repayments.
For example, if you take out a mortgage at 55, you may only be able to get a maximum 20 year term, as lots of lenders ask for mortgages to be repaid by the age of 75.
If you’re applying for a mortgage when you’re over 50, lenders will look at the usual criteria:
If your mortgage term extends into retirement, you’ll also need to provide evidence of your retirement income, such as a pension forecast.
Getting a mortgage over 50 might be a bit more difficult compared to when you were younger, but there are plenty of deals out there. To increase your chance of getting accepted you should:
Prove your affordability - Be prepared to evidence that you can afford to pay off the loan, whether that’s with your salary, your retirement income or both
Review your spending - Lenders will look at your outgoings so it’s wise to check your spending habits and cut back where possible three to six months before applying
Improve your credit score - Check your credit score and history, and if there are any issues or mistakes, resolve them before applying
Reduce debts - lenders will take these into consideration so try to pay them off or reduce them
Speak to an expert - It’s often best to get advice from a mortgage broker when you're an older mortgage applicant, as they know which lenders are most likely to accept you based on your circumstances and which have more flexible age limits
Some products are specifically aimed at older applicants, and in your 50s you may wish to consider:
A lifetime mortgage is a type of equity release for the over 55s that is taken out on your main home. You receive either a cash lump sum or smaller payouts and can choose whether to make repayments or allow the interest to build up.
The loan is repaid when you die or move into long-term care and the property is sold. However, you’ll continue to own the property until this point.
There is also another form of equity release known as a home reversion, but these are not available until the age of 65 in most cases.
Retirement interest only (RIO) mortgages are another option if you’re over 55 and planning on downsizing or want to remortgage to pay off your existing mortgage.
It’s not an equity release product but it works similarly to the lifetime mortgage, in that you only pay off the loan when you move into long-term care or die and the property is sold.
But unlike a lifetime mortgage, you do have to make the interest payments every month (much like a standard interest only mortgage).
If you're in your early 50s, you're not likely to have a hard time finding a standard mortgage deal. However, as you move towards retirement age it usually gets more difficult.
Once you're in your 60s or 70s, there are still lenders who will offer normal residential mortgages, but certainly fewer than at 50. At this point, specialist lenders and equity release providers may be more able to help you.
There are plenty of deals out there for those looking for a mortgage in their 50s. Some lenders allow mortgage terms to run into retirement, just be prepared to provide evidence of your expected retirement income.”Kellie Steed, Mortgage Content Writer
Yes, you should be able to access similar kind of mortgage deals as over 50s in normal full-time employment. The only challenge for you is that in a self-employed mortgage you'll have to work harder to prove to the lender that you have a reliable source of income.
To show that you can afford the repayments, you need to give evidence of at least two or three years' of accounts. It could be helpful to hire a chartered accountant to ensure the accuracy of your accounts. You also need to make sure you have a good credit score to demonstrate that you're responsible with your money.
Yes, you may be able to get a mortgage if you’re retired. The lender will want to make sure you can afford the repayments, so you need to prove that you are able to do this. If your income is set to drop significantly following retirement, you may find it trickier to be approved.
There are products targeted at older borrowers, such as retirement interest only mortgages, that you could consider. But you’ll still need to make sure you can afford the interest repayments.
It can be harder to get a mortgage if you’re over 50 compared to when you were younger. This is because banks and building societies tend to be more cautious about lending to people as they get closer to retirement.
They want to make sure you’ll be able to repay the loan in full, and if your income is set to drop in retirement, they may be worried about your ability to do that.
Speaking to a mortgage broker who knows which banks and building societies are most likely to accept you will help you find the best mortgage deal for you and your circumstances.
It depends on your age and the mortgage lender you've chosen. If you're over the age of 50, some lenders may have offered you a shorter mortgage term than the typical 25 years to make sure you’ve repaid the loan by a certain age.
This is because lenders have a maximum age cap for borrowing, typically around 65-70 years old. In some cases, you could have your mortgage continued into retirement if you've provided reliable evidence of affordability.
How much you can borrow will depend on your financial situation. The lender will take into account your income, deposit size, spending habits and credit history when determining this.
Normally you can borrow around 4-4.5 times your income. However, bear in mind that if your mortgage term will run into your retirement, you will need to also provide evidence of your retirement income which may affect how much you’re able to borrow.
Yes, you can normally still get a buy-to-let mortgage if you’re over 50. The age restrictions on buy-to-let mortgages are normally between 75-85, meaning you could get a 25-year mortgage term at 50.
If you’re looking for a buy-to-let mortgage, the lender will base how much you can borrow on the expected rental income, which normally needs to cover at least 125% of the monthly mortgage repayment.
Buy-to-let mortgages are often taken out on an interest-only basis, meaning you’ll just pay the interest each month and still owe the amount you borrowed at the end of the mortgage term.
Last updated: 05 September 2023