Self-Employed and Freelance Mortgages

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Are Mortgages for Freelancers and Self-Employed People Different to Regular Mortgages?

The simple answer to this is no, the mortgages are exactly the same rates terms and conditions if you are employed or self-employed. It is purely the ways different lenders calculate your income if you are self-employed that is matters.

Jones & Young are professional mortgage advisers with over thirty years of experience in helping the self-employed obtain the mortgages they deserve through high street and specialist mortgage lenders.

As specialist brokers, we look at the options open to you and how best to present your income to mortgage lenders.

Regardless of the way you earn your income we guide you through the mortgage application process, completing the mortgage application on your behalf and discussing the pros and cons of each part of the application. No more trawling through banks or building societies, sitting in endless appointments until you find a lender that can work with you. We help you at a time that works for you and ensure your mortgage application goes smoothly.

Together we have helped hundreds of customers get the mortgage they deserve. We offer a fully independent and whole of market approach, ensuring customers are able to access the mortgage deals they need without delays and with reliable outcomes.

How to Get a Mortgage When Self-Employed or Freelancing

Parameter

Self-Employed/Freelancer Mortgages

Regular Mortgages

Mortgage Products

Have access to the same mainstream mortgage products as regular employed borrowers

Access to full range of mainstream mortgage products

Income Assessment

Focus on income stability over years through tax returns, bank statements etc

Recent payslips typically sufficient

Income Sources

Multiple income streams from different sources

Mainly salary

Underwriting Process

More manual and tailored assessment of complex income situations

Highly automated based mainly on employment and credit checks

Specialist Support

Often use specialist brokers familiar with unique tax and income circumstances

Less reliance on specialist brokers

Specialist Mortgage Advice To Help You Secure The Home You Deserve!

90-95% Loan to Value (LTV)

Loan to Value(LTV) options typically 90-95%

Trusted Advice

Clear and concise advice around the best options for your needs.

Communication

Helping customers cut through the noise to understand things their way.

Gross Pay Used

The Lenders average your income over the last 3 months' GROSS pay. Not the net amount from your tax calculations.

Specialist Rates

We offer competitive rates ensuring the best price for our customers

30+ Years As Mortgage Advisers

Providing business owners and the self employed with mortgage advice

Individual Tailored Advice For Mortgage & Protection

Tailored advice recommended for your personal situation

Whole Of Market Access

Access to the whole of market mortgage market to find you the best deal

How to Get a Mortgage When Self-Employed or Freelancing

Here are some key tips for how to get a mortgage when you are self-employed or freelancing:

Maintain Consistent Income

A steady income shows lenders you can afford repayments. Avoid large gaps between contracts/clients if you can.

Prepare Documentation

Have all your paperwork in order including SA302 tax calculations, business accounts, bank statements, etc. covering ideally 2-3 years to support your application.

Check Credit Score

Review your credit report and aim for a strong score above 720 if possible. Clear any errors or defaults.

Grow Savings for Deposit

The larger the deposit you can save the lower the loan-to-value ratio. Aim for at least 15-20%.

Find a Specialist Broker

Appoint an independent broker specialising in self-employed/contractor mortgages to match your profile properly.

Types of Freelance and Self-Employed Workers Eligible for Mortgages​

Here are some examples of the types of freelance and self-employed workers that can be eligible for mortgages based on the information in the IPSE report:

Managers, Directors, Senior Officials (SOC1)

Includes functional managers, directors, production managers, financial institution managers etc. Comprise 10% of solo self-employed.

Professionals (SOC2)

Includes science, engineering, health, teaching, business/legal professionals. Largest freelancer group at 42%.

Associate Professionals & Technical (SOC3)

Includes artists, authors, media occupations, IT technicians, finance associates, paramedics etc. 18% of solo self-employed.

Skilled Trades (SOC5)

Construction trades, electricians, mechanics, printers, wood trades, textiles etc. 22% of solo self-employed.

Caring & Leisure Services (SOC6)

Includes childminders, pet sitters, hairdressers, housekeepers, travel assistants. 7% of solo self-employed.

Sales & Customer Service (SOC7)

Includes retail managers, shop keepers, opticians, pharmacists. 3% of solo self-employed.

Factors Affecting Mortgage Approval for Freelancers and Self-Employed

Credit History

Having a good credit history with timely repayments establishes you as responsible with money and reduces risk in lenders’ eyes. Aim for a strong credit score above 720.

Size of Deposit

The larger your deposit, the lower your LTV ratio, making lenders more likely to approve you and offer better rates. Save as much as possible for at least a 15-20% deposit.

Bank Statements

Provide consistent bank statements, ideally 3-6 months to show stability of income. Any large fluctuations or gaps may raise concerns over repayment ability.

DTI Ratio

The lower your debts compared to income, the better in terms of risk and affordability for lenders. Reduce existing debts if possible to lower your DTI ratio.

Proof of Income

Have all income statements, tax documents, invoices, contracts in order to substantiate your freelance earnings over 1-3 years for the lender's affordability calculation.

Improve Credit Score

Actively maintain or improve your existing credit score. Dispute and correct any errors in your credit report negatively affecting your score.

Keep Good Records

Carefully maintain up-to-date records of all income sources, tax liabilities, and business expenses documentation that lenders may request to see.

Keep Tax Deductions Minimal

Reduce unnecessary business expenses that lower your net income. Lenders focus on your profit for repayment ability.

Proving Income for Self-Employed Mortgages, Freelancers and Business Owners

Self-employed people receive income in different ways, which requires different documentation to prove income level and stability. Depending on your business structure, you may need to provide:

Certified Accounts

Two or more years of certified accounts – ideally prepared by a qualified accountant

SA302 or tax year overview

SA302 forms or tax year overview from HMRC for the last two to three years

Invoices and Earnings

Income statements and invoices showing earnings

Contract

Contracts secured demonstrating ongoing work/clients

Deposits

Bank statements substantiating income deposits

Sole Traders

As a sole trader, you will specifically need to provide your annual SA302 tax calculations from HMRC. This is a key document mortgage lenders look for.

Limited Company Directors

Your salary, dividends and income forecasts will be considered in mortgage affordability assessments. So have records of these ready.

Having the right paperwork ready is key to substantiating your income from self-employment. Speak to a specialist broker for advice tailored to your situation.

Read What Our Recent Clients Say About Our Specialist Mortgage Services

How Is Self-Employment Income Calculated for a Mortgage?

Here is how self-employment income is typically calculated by mortgage lenders:
Sole Traders
For sole traders, lenders will look at your average net profit before tax over the last 1-2 years based on your submitted tax returns and accounts. Some lenders may also consider just one year’s profit/loss.

For limited company directors, lenders will assess your self-employment income based on your:

Your personal and corporate tax returns will be used to evidence these income sources. Most lenders will use a combination of your salary, dividends and other income to work out your maximum lending amount.

If your income has varied up and down:
So your particular income profile can impact how different lenders interpret your affordability. A specialist broker will advise accordingly.

Disadvantages of Freelance and Self-Employed Mortgages​

Avantages

Disadvantages

Income Assessment

Income forecasts allow higher lending potential

More extensive income proof requirements

Mortgage Rates

Specialist brokers can secure better rates

Perceived as higher risk by some lenders

Flexibility

Can overpay in good months and underpay in bad months

Harder to show repayment ability with fluctuating income

Underwriting

More personalised underwriting approach

Slower application process with extra verification steps

Tax Efficiency

Continue tax efficient business structure

Reduced net income lowers maximum loan amount

Portfolio

Easier to get subsequent investment mortgages

Restricted to lower LTV ratios for investment properties

The key trade-off is providing more upfront income evidence and paperwork in return for specialised lending deals tailored to self-employed profiles.

Related Articles For Self Employed Mortgages

Freelancer Mortgage – Can I Get a Mortgage As a Freelancer?

Can You Get Zero Hours Contract Mortgages?

How Much Can I Borrow Mortgage Self-Employed?

Mortgage For Business Owners – How to Get a Mortgage as a Business Owner

Equity Release Calculator

Your Guide To Mortgages For Self Employed with 1 Years Accounts

Happy family after getting a Self-Employed and Freelance Mortgages

Tips for Securing a Home Loan as a Freelancer or Self-Employed Worker

Here are concise answers to those self-employed and freelancer mortgage FAQs:
Can I Get a Mortgage if I Am a Freelancer?
Yes, with steady income proof.

Yes, both incomes can be considered jointly.

Typically just 1 year of self-employment proof needed.

You can get a mortgage after 1 year of trading typically.

Affordability depends on your average net income and existing debts.
SA302 tax forms, certified accounts, bank statements.
Yes, some lenders will accept 1 year of accounts.
Yes, self-employed remortgages are readily available.
Use a specialist broker to access lenders offering portfolio landlord mortgages.
Irregular incomes and limited income history create uncertainty for lenders.
Yes, they can tailor applications and lender selection to your situation.

Contact Jones & Young today to discuss the most appropriate lender for your current situation today.

Self-employed mortgage rates can be comparable to regular mortgages with the right application.
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