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Single mortgages when married

Written By:
Myles Robinson - Expert Finance Advisor

Posted: Feb 21, 2023

How to get a single mortgage application passed when your are married

A mortgage can be taken out in one person’s name for many reasons.

This article will discuss the different reasons you may want a sole mortgage.

Contact us today to speak with a mortgage broker. We offer free, no obligation mortgage advice, and we have a few mortgage providers lending who we can introduce you.

We’ll also examine whether it’s the best choice or if a joint mortgage would be better in a financial sense and how to find the right lender for you, regardless of whether you apply separately or together.

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Can you get a mortgage under your sole name if you are married?

Yes. However, most lenders prefer that married couples or civil partners take out a joint mortgage. However, there are many reasons why you might want to get a mortgage without your spouse or civil partner.

These circumstances may reduce your options for lenders, but specialist mortgage providers will still be able to meet your needs.

Contact our mortgage brokers today if you are looking at getting a single mortgage. We will provide mortgage advice and introduce you to lenders who offer a single mortgage.

It’s important to realise that you may not have to apply for a single mortgage. It can be advantageous to apply with your partner in many situations, even if their circumstances may negatively impact the application. A joint savings account may help lower the mortgage repayments, make more financial sense and increase your chance of a residential mortgage.

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Common reasons to get rid of a partner from the mortgage

We’ll be looking at the most common reasons people might want to get a mortgage without their partner and whether or not it is beneficial.

  • Bad credit is a problem for your partner.

A partner with a poor credit history does not automatically mean they should be excluded from the residential mortgage.

It is possible to get a joint mortgage with a specialist in bad credit lending, depending on their credit history and the importance of the issues.

  • Unemployed or receiving benefits

Your partner should not be included in the mortgage if they are unemployed. Some lenders might consider your partner’s future income an asset, mainly if they are temporarily unemployed and have a career that you can return to.

Some lenders will consider income from certain benefits received by your partner as income for mortgage purposes. You could increase your ability to borrow money if you apply with them.

  • Low income

A low income is better than no income. However, unless their outgoings exceed their income, obtaining a joint mortgage could still benefit. You will likely be able to borrow more than you can individually.

  • They already have a property.

Your partner can still be included in a joint mortgage if they already own a property. However, they must meet the affordability criteria. You should remind them that they will be subject to a higher stamp duty rate (an additional 3.3%) as the property is their second residence.

It is possible to make your partner’s mortgage a buy-to-let. This type of mortgage does not require affordability. If the mortgage is currently residential, they could switch to a buy-to-let mortgage.

  • Your partner is not contributing toward the deposit

Your partner may not contribute to the deposit, but that does not mean you can’t buy a home together. While not all lenders will accept one partner paying the entire stake for a home, others will allow it if a trust deed is made to protect your investment. A broker can recommend a solicitor who will provide legal advice.

  • To keep stamp duty benefits.

If you are buying a property that is buy-to-let or another investment property, there are tax benefits associated with doing so under one name. In these cases, lenders are more likely to accept a single application from a married couple.

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Get expert advice if…

  • You are married and only want a mortgage under one name
  • Bad credit is a problem for you or your partner
  • One of you may already be the owner of a property
  • Although you are applying together, only one person will pay the deposit

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How to get a single mortgage for a married couple

Step 1. You will get the best advice from a mortgage broker with extensive experience arranging mortgages in the sole name of married applicants.

We can offer tailored advice on which option is best for you. We will help you find a lender that will accept your single application, or they can help you find one who will allow you to apply jointly.

Contact to get matched with one of our expert brokers.

Step 2. Prepare your documentation. Using the information from step 1, you can decide whether to apply for a joint mortgage or a mortgage in your sole name. This will help you understand the type of documentation you will need to complete your application. You are preparing things in advances, such as your proof of income or credit records.

Step 3. Pre-approval gives you a better idea of how much you can borrow. This will help you narrow your search. Estate agents are increasingly requesting a decision in principle to make an offer on a property.

Things to consider

A mortgage in your sole name is a good option if you are married or in a civil partnership and you plan to buy a buy-to-let or commercial property. However, if you are planning to purchase a residential property on your own, be aware of the following disadvantages:

  • You will have a smaller selection of lenders, as many banks, particularly the big ones, won’t be able to offer you a single mortgage if your spouse or civil partner is married.
  • The lender won’t allow your spouse to be included in the mortgage deeds. This usually means you won’t be able to borrow as much if they don’t.
  • If they don’t contribute to the mortgage, your partner will likely be considered a financial dependent. This could affect your ability to afford to house.
  • Your deposit will be considered gifted if your partner contributes towards the deposit but is not included in the mortgage. However, it is possible to get around this problem by asking your partner for a waiver of rights to the property. Not all lenders will accept this. If you are looking for such a complex arrangement, it is essential to seek the advice of a broker.
  • Check out how our customers could borrow more money after being matched with a specialist mortgage broker.

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Match you with an expert broker

We can match you with an experienced broker in this area, no matter your circumstances or needs. We can connect you with a broker specialising in bad credit mortgages if you are concerned about your partner’s credit history. We can help you find a lender that will accept a gift deposit from your partner.

No matter if you decide to apply solo or jointly, our trusted whole-of-market brokers will be able to help you find suitable lenders. They also have strong relationships with the industry, allowing them to get the best rates for you.

Our broker matching service and your initial consultation are completely free and without obligation.

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Are you married, or is it more challenging to get a mortgage?

It all depends on your situation. If you are married or in any relationship with someone with whom you share a mortgage or home, they could be considered dependent if they don’t have an income. This can impact your ability to afford your mortgage.

It is easier to get a mortgage if you have two incomes than one, but it won’t be any easier or more difficult if you are married.

What do I have to tell my mortgage lender if my spouse moves in?

You are not legally required to notify your mortgage lender if your partner moves into your home. However, if you have been married or entered a civil union, you should inform them that they will inherit some property ownership, even if they do not contribute to it.

What rights do I have as a partner if the house is my property?

You have the legal right to live in your spouse’s or civil partner’s home, regardless of whether or not you are contributing to the household. While you may not always have 50% of the property, this is something to discuss with your partner or a solicitor.

You do not have any legal rights to the property if it is in the sole name of your cohabiting partner. You can have a cohabitation agreement drafted. This will provide legal protection if you are required to contribute to the household for a specific period and then decide to move on.

If I divorce, can I still take out a mortgage?

You can transfer equity to change the name of your mortgage if you are divorced. You will need to prove you can afford to buy out your partner and that you can still afford the remaining mortgage payments on your only income.

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