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Maximum mortgage term

Written By:
Myles Robinson - Expert Finance Advisor

Posted: Feb 15, 2023

Maximum mortgage term in the UK

The UK average mortgage term is 25 years. However, it’s possible to get one for longer periods. Some lenders will even allow you to extend your mortgage anytime during the mortgage term.

Our guide for a maximum mortgage term will help you understand the best terms for your situation, what it means to take a longer-term mortgage, how to extend your mortgage, and much more.

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What is the longest term for a mortgage in the UK?

When writing, the maximum term for a residential mortgage is around 40 years. However, as mortgage brokers, we have a few mortgage providers lending who offer retirement-interest-only (RIO) mortgages with a longer term.

The average UK mortgage term is 25 years. While some lenders won’t offer a long term, others will consider terms up to 35 years. A smaller number of mortgage providers will extend to 40 years.

An independent mortgage broker will offer mortgage advice and introduce you to a lender who offers a longer-term mortgage.

Why not get a mortgage for a longer period?

People choose to have a mortgage for a longer term than 25 years because they want to reduce their monthly payments. The monthly amount due is lower if the cost is spread over a longer term than if the agreement was shorter.

Anyone trying to reduce their monthly outgoings and have more money to save or invest in other financial investments can benefit from this. A 30-40 year mortgage term could be feasible in these situations, provided you are comfortable with the idea of keeping your property and having a mortgage that will pay for many decades.

A longer-term mortgage will usually result in higher long-term costs. You will have to make capital and interest payments over the term. This is despite the lower monthly mortgage payments.


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How to get a mortgage for a longer period

Your mortgage lender will talk with you about term length and offer you the chance to request a longer-term agreement than 25 years. However, it is possible to be unsure if your lender offers longer terms.

This is why you need to choose the right lender first. A decline by a mortgage provider for a longer-term arrangement can damage your credit and jeopardise future finance applications.

A mortgage broker is your best option if you require a mortgage agreement with a term of more than 25 years. A mortgage broker has access to all lenders and can help you find the best deals for retirees.

How a mortgage broker could help you find the right lender

The following are some of the ways a mortgage broker can help you obtain a longer-term mortgage:

  • For every deal that has a term longer than 25 years, we search the whole market
  • Matching your personal and financial circumstances to a longer-term loan deal. Make sure you are introduced to the right lender the first time.
  • Discuss the potential consequences of a longer-term loan with you. Also, discuss possible alternatives so that you are confident you are making the right choice.
  • To ensure you receive the best rates, negotiate with the lender
  • Guide you through the application process and help you with the paperwork
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What impact does age have on your mortgage term

The eligibility requirements for a long-term mortgage are the same as for one with a standard term. However, some mortgage lenders will scrutinise your age if you want an agreement that lasts longer than 25.

The mortgage provider will keep an eye on the loan’s duration into retirement; This is because most people see a decrease in their income at this time. Your lender must feel confident that you can afford your mortgage payments when you retire.

Some lenders won’t lend you a mortgage if your term exceeds 70 years, while others will offer you a loan if the term is 75. However, other mortgage lenders will not mind if the term runs past your 80th, 90th, or 90th birthdays. A small number of them will also lend without age restrictions if the circumstances are right.

For those who are too old to qualify for a long-term mortgage, there are many options for retirement mortgages.

Extension of a mortgage existing loan

Refinancing with the current mortgage lender or replacing it with a new one is an option to extend the term. The lender will decide if you are eligible to extend your term. They will also reevaluate your eligibility and affordability to determine if anything has changed since the original debt.

Some lenders may refuse to approve your application if you are not eligible for a term extension.

  • The term will end when you are a predetermined age (70-90 depending on which lender).
  • More than one month behind on your mortgage payments
  • A part-and/or interest-only mortgage is available.
  • The property is currently being rented.
  • A guarantor mortgage is available.
  • It is a leasehold property with less than 50-55 years remaining on the lease.
  • The lender’s maximum mortgage term is not exceeded.

You can contact your lender to extend your mortgage term. However, a broker is a better option. You can have them search the whole market to see if there is a better deal for you. In this case, you might be able to secure a longer agreement with a higher interest rate.


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Is it a smart idea to extend your mortgage?

It might be for some people. For example, a term extension may be a good option if you have to take a pay cut or are having trouble paying your mortgage bills. It could lower the monthly amount and help make it more manageable. You may also find it beneficial if your immediate goals are to save money or have more income.

However, there are important caveats you should be aware of. You will be responsible for more mortgage debt. But let’s not forget the consequences: paying higher interest rates over a longer period can pay more overall for your mortgage.

If your circumstances change, or you feel it is the right decision for the future, some lenders will allow you to modify your term to a lower one.

Consider that your monthly payment will be lower, but this is a factor to consider.

What is the cost of extending?

Remortgage fees may be required if you are refinancing your mortgage to extend its term. These fees can vary from one person to another and from lender to lender. However, you can get a comprehensive overview of all possible charges in our guide to remortgage expenses and fees.

Extension of the term for an interest-only mortgage

Sometimes, this is possible at the lender’s discretion. Some choose this option to stop their current repayments from falling apart and extend their term. For more information, see our guide on how to extend an interest-only mortgage term.


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The maximum term for a buy-to-let mortgage

Buy-to-let mortgages typically have a term limit of 25 to 35 years. However, some mortgage providers offer them with a term of up to 40 years. This is subject only to the borrower’s maximum age at the agreement’s end.

Buy-to-let mortgage extension

It can be difficult to do this as not all mortgage lenders allow it. This is especially true if your investment property generates rental income for a longer period. With the help of a specialist in buy-to-let mortgages, your chances of finding a lender that will allow you to remortgage on a longer-term deal are greatly increased.

The standard criteria will evaluate your request to extend your term. Buy-to-let mortgage age restrictions may apply. You are unlikely to get approval if the term is more than 40 years.

Match with an expert mortgage broker today

If you want to extend your mortgage term or take out a longer-term loan, it is a good idea for a mortgage broker to help you. Some mortgage lenders do not offer longer-term agreements than 25-30 year terms. Others have age restrictions you may be unable to meet.

These pitfalls can be avoided with the help of a mortgage broker. You’ll also be introduced to the perfect lender the first time you go.

Our free broker matching service matches you with the best advisor for your situation. Call today to begin the steps of a mortgage deal to suit you.


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Maximum term mortgages FAQ

Is it possible to extend a mortgage term easily?

You can simply call your lender and request approval. If there aren’t any issues regarding your eligibility, chances are good that you will be approved.

This is an excellent opportunity to see if there are better deals with other lenders. A mortgage broker can conduct a thorough market search to confirm this is true. You won’t even have to move while they are doing it.

They will also help you navigate the remortgage process, from beginning to end, if they can find you a better mortgage deal with the term length that you require.

What is the maximum term for a Help-to-Buy Mortgage?

The maximum term for a mortgage taken out under the Help to Buy program is 35 years. The maximum term for a mortgage taken out through the Help to Buy scheme was 35 years, an increase from the 25-year limit when the government updated the scheme in 2019.

See our Complete Guide to Help to Buy Mortgages for more information.

Can I extend my fixed-rate mortgage?

Yes, it is possible to extend a fixed-rate mortgage. However, you should know that the exit fee may apply if your remortgage involves a longer term with a new lender. You may be able to switch to a fixed-rate agreement with a longer term from your current lender.

Can I extend my mortgage term past my 65th birthday?

Yes. However, your lender will need confidence that you can continue making your mortgage payments even after you turn 80. This could be because of your pension income or your job. Lender age restrictions are another factor. Some lenders have a maximum age you can reach at the end, typically between 70 and 80.

However, some lenders have a higher maximum age, and some don’t have any age restrictions. Our mortgage advisors know these people.

Is there a mortgage calculator that I can use?

Yes, a mortgage calculator can be used to calculate the implications of your mortgage extension.

Simply adjust your interest rate and mortgage balance to find out how this affects your monthly repayments.