Military Mortgages

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If you’re in the armed forces and currently looking to buy a home, it can be difficult to find a lender who fully understands your circumstances. 

The good news is there are lenders out there who specialise in offering mortgages specifically tailored to military personnel.

What is a Military Mortgage?

Although a military mortgage isn’t actually a product available for borrowers, there are lenders who are increasingly welcoming to people in the armed forces and offer more flexible approaches.

These lenders are aware of the nuances that can come with army life and how this may make it difficult to get a mortgage. This may include challenges such as short notice postings and living abroad. 

Some military personnel can find it difficult to get a mortgage, especially since moving frequently can give you a poor credit rating.

Can you get a mortgage in the army?

Yes, you can get a mortgage in the army. However, you may not be able to go down the standard route that non-military personnel can. 

Fortunately, members of the army services are able to use specialist lenders, which enables them to purchase a house whilst they are serving.

Are there mortgages available specifically for military personnel?

No, there are no specific mortgages for military personnel, but specialist lenders will take a more open and flexible approach to these applications. 

Applicants in the forces can face a number of difficulties when house-hunting, including having a poor credit history due to moving so often or having an uncommon source of income through allowances. 

Certain lenders provide additional mortgage features designed for the military, including:

  • Your property being unoccupied for certain lengths of time;
  • Allowing you to buy a property in the UK while stationed overseas;
  • The ability to rent out your property on a standard mortgage while you’re overseas, which would normally require a buy to let mortgage.

What is the Armed Forces Help to Buy scheme?

The Armed Forces Help to Buy scheme has become a permanent scheme by the Government as part of their ongoing efforts to support the UK armed forces. The scheme helps you borrow up to 50% of your income and use it as a deposit to buy a home, interest free. 

The maximum amount you can borrow is £25,000, which can cover both a deposit and other-home buying costs. The loan is repayable at the point when you leave the forces or at the end of the 10 year loan, whichever comes first. 

When you only have a few months left on your service, you could choose to remortgage in order to repay the debt, or you can slowly repay the loan over the 10 years. 

To be eligible for the scheme, you must:

  • Be in the Forces (Navy, Army or RAF);
  • Have at least six months left on your service;
  • Have completed the required length of service relevant to your field;
  • Meet the right medical requirements;
  • Be buying your first home or another property, due to being posted, over 50 miles from your current house;
  • Buy a home under £600,000.

In addition to your eligibility, there are a couple of factors to consider before applying. If your loan exceeds £10,000, you must pay tax on it, and if you’re making a joint application with another serving person, you can only have one loan on the scheme.

How does a Military Mortgage work?

Mortgages for military personnel are not too dissimilar to those offered to the majority of the public and the eligibility criteria tends to be the same. However, lenders may not be as strict on some conditions when considering your application. 

Eligibility criteria can vary from lender to lender, but in general, the lending requirements are dependent on:

  • Age: The youngest you can apply for a mortgage is 18, although many lenders prefer you to be at least 21. 

  • Income source: Not every lender will accept an allowance as an income source. However, many lenders are increasingly making exceptions for military personnel and will use an entire income as part of an application, including living overseas allowance. 

  • Credit score: Lenders usually provide the best rates to those with clean credit histories. If moving regularly has negatively impacted your credit score, some lenders may be willing to make an exception. 

  • Deposit: The lowest deposit needed is 5%, but some lenders may require at least 10%. 

How can a mortgage broker help me with an Armed Forces mortgage?

Armed Forces mortgages is a very specialist, professional mortgage subject, so we always suggest seeking our professional advice. At Go2Mortgage, our advisors have years of experience in helping members of the armed forces buy a home. 

We will take the time to understand your specific situation, property goals and your career progression. We will then seek out the best lenders who will offer a military mortgage which is right for you. 

If you are currently in the Armed Forces, and you’re looking for a home in the UK, feel free to get in touch with us today to see how we can help you.

Military Mortgages FAQs

Can I get a military mortgage if I am deployed?

Yes, if you’re deployed during the mortgage process, we can continue to act on your behalf to keep the mortgage process moving. We will keep in contact during the process in order to gather and submit all the necessary documentation. 

If you are deployed once you own the property, you have a few options. You can choose for your family to stay in the property while you’re on tour, or leave the property empty while you’re away. 

Alternatively, you could talk to your lender about letting it out and using the rent to cover mortgage repayments. 

Can I get mortgage support if I am ex-service?

Yes, there are mortgage lenders out there who specialise in ex-service personnel. These lenders can offer special products for those who have a poor credit history due to their military background, and will review each mortgage application on an individual basis. 

There will still be certain eligibility requirements you need to meet, but lenders may be more lenient with their restrictions. 

Can you use the Armed Forces help-to-buy scheme when you are retired?

No, you can only use the Armed Forces help-to-buy scheme when you are still actively in service. 

If you have never owned a property before due to your active service, you may be able to use the regular help-to-buy scheme to get on the property ladder. 

A specialist mortgage lender will be able to help you to navigate a mortgage application in your unique situation.

Can you get a buy to let mortgage if you are in the military?

Yes you can get a buy to let if you’re in the military, as long as you do not plan on using the Armed Forces help to buy scheme. 

The criteria for the buy to let would be the same as a standard buy to let mortgage application, but a lender who specialises in military mortgages will be the best at helping you here. 

If you’re planning on switching your current mortgage to a buy to let one so you can let out your property whilst you’re deployed, you may not need to if your current lender provides consent to let.