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At What Age Is It Hard To Get A Mortgage? Experts Answer Your Questions

Posted 6 June 2023 by Andrea Dean

We ask mortgage professionals about the freedoms and restrictions on home loans for people of different ages...

Whether you’re buying your first home, upsizing or downsizing, we’ve asked some experts what you need to know about age limits for securing a mortgage.

What’s the minimum age for buying a house?

By law, you have to be at least 18 to buy property and get a mortgage in the UK. However, most lenders require borrowers to be at least 21 before they’re considered for a mortgage. “While a person may be eligible for a mortgage at 18, they may face more stringent requirements and higher interest rates due to their lack of credit history and financial stability,” said Rupi Hunjan, managing director at Censeo Financial.

Can I get a mortgage if buying for the first time at age 50/55/60, and will it cost more than if I was younger?

“It is possible to get your first mortgage at age 50, 55 or 60. However, the availability of mortgages at these ages may be limited and lenders may have stricter requirements, such as a larger deposit or shorter repayment term,” advised Rupi Hunjan. “Additionally, the cost of the mortgage may be higher for older borrowers as they’re seen as a higher risk due to a reduced income period and a shorter time to repay the loan. As a result, the lender may charge a higher interest rate or require a larger deposit, increasing the overall cost of the mortgage.”

Is there an age limit for securing a mortgage on a new home with a 5% deposit through the Mortgage Guarantee scheme?

“Lenders decide in line with their general eligibility criteria. Each will vary: for example Santander and NatWest have age limits whereas others have no maximum age limit,” said Nicholas Mendes, mortgage technical manager at John Charcol.

Can I get a mortgage at age 40,50 or 60 that I’ll still be paying off at 70, 75 or even older?

“A 40-year-old can typically obtain a 30-year mortgage - lenders consider factors such as income, credit history and affordability assessments rather than focusing solely on age,” explained Pete Mugleston, managing director and mortgage advisor at Online Mortgage Advisor. “While it may be more challenging, a 60-year-old can still potentially secure a 25-year mortgage. However, lenders might have stricter criteria, and affordability assessments may involve considering retirement income or pension plans to ensure repayment ability. As individuals approach or surpass retirement age, mortgage options can become more limited. In such cases, specialist mortgages designed for older buyers may be necessary. These often offer extended loan terms or alternative eligibility criteria, catering to their unique financial situations.”

What is the age limit for a 35-year mortgage?

“The age limit for a 35-year mortgage in the UK can vary among lenders,” said Pete Mugleston. “Some may impose an upper age limit of 70 or 75 at the end of the mortgage term. It's crucial to explore different lenders' policies as some may have more flexible age limits.”

Is there a maximum age for obtaining a mortgage?

“There is no universally set age limit for getting a mortgage, as it ultimately depends on the lender. Some do not impose an upper age limit,’ said Steve Humphries, proposition director at Mortgage Advice Bureau Later Life. “Eligibility criteria can vary depending on the lender, the specific product, and the individual circumstances of the customer.”

Can I get a lifetime mortgage?

“An applicant is typically required to be 55 or over and while there is no maximum age limit for equity release, individual providers may establish their own upper age limits,” advised Steve Humphries. “There are generally three simple eligibility criteria to be met to qualify for equity release. Firstly, the youngest applicant must be over-55. Secondly, they must be a homeowner with property in the UK. Thirdly, the property must have a minimum value of £70,000.”


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