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Topic: Mortgage woes!  (Read 1799 times)

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Mortgage woes!
« on: July 28, 2019, 10:00:19 AM »
I've been on a spouse visa for nearly two years and am self-employed as an actress. My (permanently employed, UK citizen) husband and I have been living with his parents and saving our butts off for a house, and finally have enough for a healthy deposit. We found  a place that ticks every box for us this week, and after speaking to our mortgage broker, put an offer in which was accepted. Yay!!!

The problem is, our broker is now having loads of trouble finding us a mortgage, after initial affordability checks came in way above what we need (which is why she told us to put that offer in; she was sure she's be able to get us an agreement in principle easily based on our incomes and deposit). She's said many mortgage lenders will not consider lending to applicants on visas without indefinite leave to remain, or if they do, they require a 25% deposit (we have 14%) and will only take into consideration 75% of my income.

Has anyone else gone through this? Any recommendations for lenders who are  more flexible with applicants on a spouse visa? Any words of wisdom or comfort or rage at the injustice of it all? ;)

Thanks in advance!
Met: March 2014
Married: May 9, 2016
Submitted application online: September 20, 2017
Biometrics: September 21, 2017
Package sent via UPS: September 21, 2017
Email from Sheffield (online application received): 9/22/2017
UPS tracking says package received in Sheffield: 9/25/2017
Decision email from UKVI: 10/1/2017
Visa approved!


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2019, 01:56:08 PM »
Each lender has their own requirements for people on visas. Loads of people here have mortgages but there are various boxes to tick. Our mortgage broker says the best rate we can get is from Halifax (esp as my husband has had a banking relationship with the group for many years) but I need to have either 2.5 years left on my visa for the mortgage in principle, or have been here for 3 years already. But it's different everywhere, there doesn't seem to be one hard and fast rule for all banks.
Spouse Visa:
Received by Sheffield 19 Nov 2016
Decision Made 26 Jan 2017
Visa Received 30 Jan 2017
Arrived in UK 15 Feb 2017
FLR (M) Biometrics 16 Sep 2019
FLR (M) Approved 17 Sep 2019 (Super Priority)


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 08:54:30 AM »
My husband and I went through a similar experience a little over 3 years ago.  I came over in 2013 and we immediately pooled our money and ramped up our savings.  We got to a point where we thought we were ready (20% deposit, reasonable combined income) and contacted some banks for an agreement in principle.  We didn't go through a broker, but just checked with banks ourselves.  Everybody we spoke to said they will not consider my income because I was on FLR, not ILR.  My husband pushed back a little bit, asking "why not?"  They said, basically, "You have her income to help you now, but what if she has to leave?  We can't be sure she will continue to pay for a house that she isn't able to live in."

At the time it was a devastating blow.  We thought we were ready, and we thought we could afford a certain price point, but taking my income out of it reduced the price we could afford.  But we still had our pile of savings, and so we just kept looking... a little bit cheaper than before is all.  We did get an agreement in principle based on my husband's income and our combined savings, and we eventually found our house.  When we made our offer, we had the confidence to know that if our offer was accepted and the house passed the survey, the bank would approve us.

Some things to consider:
  • There are some lenders out there who will extend a mortgage to you before you get ILR, so keep looking if you really want THIS house, but
  • Being on limited leave to remain makes you a higher risk borrower, so you will pay a much higher interest rate until you get ILR (but you can refinance after ILR and you'll love the rate drop).
  • If your partner's income alone is enough to base a mortgage on and you can find a house that fits that budget, it's really nice to borrow less than your means and still have an extra income to actually live on.  We were forced to buy a more affordable home, but we got all the things on our must-have list (except a view) for less, and now we have more money to enjoy our life with EDIT: one day build a kitchen with.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2019, 08:57:16 AM by jfkimberly »
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 09:14:48 AM »
Feel free to PM me for my mortgage broker's details.  She's truly spectacular and gives great service.  She will only show you options that she knows will approve you.  You don't pay her, she gets paid by the lender.


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2019, 12:33:35 AM »
Thanks everyone, for the information and wisdom! We're going to keep trying with this particular house, as it's just dreamy, but are open to the possibility that we might have to go cheaper. Fingers crossed!
Met: March 2014
Married: May 9, 2016
Submitted application online: September 20, 2017
Biometrics: September 21, 2017
Package sent via UPS: September 21, 2017
Email from Sheffield (online application received): 9/22/2017
UPS tracking says package received in Sheffield: 9/25/2017
Decision email from UKVI: 10/1/2017
Visa approved!


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  • Location: End of the M4 and then a bit more.
Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2019, 08:54:15 AM »
Thanks everyone, for the information and wisdom! We're going to keep trying with this particular house, as it's just dreamy, but are open to the possibility that we might have to go cheaper. Fingers crossed!

Very best of luck!  I really hope you get a house you love.
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2019, 08:30:33 PM »
I've been on a spouse visa for nearly two years and am self-employed as an actress. My (permanently employed, UK citizen) husband and I have been living with his parents and saving our butts off for a house, and finally have enough for a healthy deposit. We found  a place that ticks every box for us this week, and after speaking to our mortgage broker, put an offer in which was accepted. Yay!!!

The problem is, our broker is now having loads of trouble finding us a mortgage, after initial affordability checks came in way above what we need (which is why she told us to put that offer in; she was sure she's be able to get us an agreement in principle easily based on our incomes and deposit). She's said many mortgage lenders will not consider lending to applicants on visas without indefinite leave to remain, or if they do, they require a 25% deposit (we have 14%) and will only take into consideration 75% of my income.

Has anyone else gone through this? Any recommendations for lenders who are  more flexible with applicants on a spouse visa? Any words of wisdom or comfort or rage at the injustice of it all? ;)

Thanks in advance!

You could try Lloyd's? That's who we're going with. I've had to prove I'm applying for ILR soon with my Life in the UK test pass certificate, but our mortgage advisor reached out directly to the underwriters to make sure we can get the mortgage. I can let you know soon if we get it or not.
The usual. American girl meets British guy. They fall into like, then into love. Then there was the big decision. The American traveled across the pond to join the Brit. And life was never the same again.


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Re: Mortgage woes!
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2019, 08:36:44 PM »
We're both self-employed, though I had citizenship when we applied for a mortgage.  As a percentage we had a descent sized descent sized deposit (18%) and we both have good fairly steady income.  It was a bit of shock when we were turned down for a mortgage.  I got our advisors name from a friend because she'd helped numerous self-employed people in the orchestra my friend worked in at the time.  She came back to us within 2 hours with a mortgage offer (is that what it's called?).  Anyway, after calling her it was smooth sailing - a great relief following that hectic phone calls and broken hearts with trying on our own.

Definitely shop around for your mortgage broker.  Ours has taken so many self-employed London based musicians that we knew even though we were a different type of self-employed that we were in very good hands!

Any updates for your dream home and mortgage since you last posted?


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