Can You Get a Mortgage if You Have No Credit Score?

Expore your options in getting a Mortgage if you have no credit history, with the help of a specialist mortgage broker

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Home Bad Credit Mortgages Can You Get A Mortgage If You Have No Credit Score?
Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Advisor, MD

Nathan Porter

Reviewer: Nathan Porter

Independent Mortgage Advisor

Updated: March 15, 2024

How we reviewed this article:

Our experts continuously monitor changes in the financial space and work closely with qualified mortgage advisors for factual verification.

March 15, 2024

We’ll look at why lenders are reluctant to say yes to mortgages for people with no credit history, what you can do to improve your chances of approval and how a specialist mortgage broker can help you secure the finance you need.

Can you get a mortgage with no credit history?

Yes, it’s possible, although it’s not straightforward. Lenders use your credit report to assess risk by checking your identity, how well you manage credit, whether payments are made on time, and if you’re using your credit facilities responsibly.

If you have no credit record at all, not even basic personal details, then lenders have no information to go on, so it’s harder for them to get an idea of how you would manage a mortgage and whether you’d be reliable as a borrower.

That said, it’s not impossible, it just means you may need to find a more specialist lender who can consider your application on its own merits. Most lenders will look at credit history in the context of your wider personal and financial circumstances, so your income, employment history and overall wealth will all be important.

What if you’re a first time buyer?

Being a first time buyer isn’t the same as having no credit history – even if it’s your first mortgage you may still have had credit cards, loans or other borrowing in the past, all of which contribute to your credit profile.

So, getting a mortgage as a first time buyer is certainly possible and you’ll improve your chances even more by enlisting the help of an experienced broker who can guide you through the process.

Maximise your chance of approval with a broker who's a specialist in no credit mortgages

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Reasons for having no credit history

There are many reasons why someone might not have a credit score and identifying which ones apply to you is a good first step in rectifying the situation.

Reasons include, but are not limited to:

  • Having only just turned 18
  • Recently moved to the UK
  • Moving back to the UK after a long period of living abroad
  • You don’t have a UK bank account
  • You’re not named on any utility bills of mobile phone contracts
  • No permanent UK address
  • Not having any employment history in the UK

How to get a mortgage with no credit history

If any of the categories described above matches your current situation, getting a mortgage could prove difficult without assistance from an expert who has specific experience helping people in similar circumstances get the approval they need.

So, rather than approaching lenders direct and risk the prospect of being declined – which can harm your credit position further – make an enquiry with us so we can match you with a broker who specialises in securing mortgages for people with limited or no credit history.

They will guide you through the following steps to full application…

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What steps can you take to establish a credit rating?

If you’re worried about the lack of credit history on your ability to get a mortgage then there are some simple steps that you can take to start building up your rating before you make your application, many of which don’t involve you having to apply for credit.

  • Open a bank account – If you have no credit score because you’ve been living abroad or dependent on parents or other family members then a good first step is to open a UK bank account in your own name. It helps to have regular money coming in and going out to show good account management.
  • Register to vote – Getting yourself listed on the electoral register is a quick and easy way to prove where you live and you can do it even if you share a house with friends or live with family.
  • Take responsibility for utility bills – If you contribute to household utility bills but aren’t named as the account holder then you’ll have no evidence of paying these responsibly. Make yourself the account holder if possible and set up direct debits to make regular payments from your own bank account.
  • Show evidence of regular payments – Some credit reporting agencies have specific services that can help to build your credit rating using information from your bank account. Experian Boost for example, can record things like council tax or subscription services like Netflix as evidence of regular, timely payments. This information can then be shared with lenders.
  • Mobile phone contracts – If you have a mobile phone but via a family member, consider taking out your own contract. This will show on your credit file and is a good way to demonstrate that you are a reliable bill payer.
  • Take out a credit card – This is a very effective way to show that you can manage borrowing and it doesn’t have to mean unwanted expenditure, simply use a credit card for your regular spending such as food shopping and then pay it off at the end of every month. It’s best to only use a small percentage of your overall credit limit (ideally no more than 30% of the limit) rather than maxing it out regularly. You may need a specialist credit card with a higher APR while you build up your credit history, but this won’t be an issue if you’re paying it in full every month.

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Which lenders will consider your application?

This will depend on the reason why you have no credit history and specific eligibility criteria will vary from lender to lender. The following is a snapshot of which lenders are available and what type of information they may require:

  • HSBC and Virgin Money will both consider applicants who are not currently on the electoral register.
  • Santander and Skipton Building Society would need to be able to credit score someone before they can take their application any further. Others may require an alternative proof of address, such as three year’s worth of bank statements.
  • Precise Mortgages normally require applicants to have been living in the UK for a minimum of 36 months, but may make an exception where a temporary, overseas posting has been necessary as part of the applicant’s employment.

If you’re returning to the UK after living abroad there are other lenders who will consider your application, but most prefer it if you are going straight into employment or have been living back in the country for a specified amount of time.

Lending criteria

For a standard mortgage with a strong credit record, you could expect competitive interest rates, a 90% LTV (loan to value) and potentially income multiples up to 5 times your salary, depending on your circumstances. With no credit history, the risk to lenders is significantly higher, and this can impact lending criteria in several ways:

  • Deposit – Lenders may ask for a higher deposit to balance out the risk. It’s unlikely that you’d qualify for a 10% deposit, so be prepared to need good levels of savings before you start.
  • Income multiples – Most lenders will offer mortgages based 4-4.5 times your salary, but sometimes this can be pushed as high as 5. For mortgages with no credit history, the number of lenders willing to offer higher mortgage income multiples will be very limited.
  • Interest rates – You should budget for higher than average interest rates for a no credit mortgage, at least initially. A good broker should be able to help you remortgage to a cheaper deal once you’ve established a period of regular mortgage repayments.

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Get matched with a broker who specialises in applicants with no credit

It’s crucial that you proceed with caution when applying for a mortgage with no credit history as having an application declined at this stage could have serious consequences. Luckily the bad credit and no credit brokers we work with have experience of exactly these scenarios and so will be able to find you the lenders most open to your circumstances.

Give us a call on 0808 189 2301 or make an online enquiry now and we can quickly assess your situation and match you with the right broker for your needs. All of the advisors we work with have been pre-vetted so you can be confident in their track record and ability to help you secure your mortgage.

Maximise your chance of approval with a broker who's a specialist in no credit mortgages

Get Started Phone Icon 0808 189 2301

About the author

Pete, an expert in all things mortgages, cut his teeth right in the middle of the credit crunch. With plenty of people needing help and few mortgage providers lending, Pete found great success in going the extra mile to find mortgages for people whom many others considered lost causes. The experience he gained, coupled with his love of helping people reach their goals, led him to establish Online Mortgage Advisor, with one clear vision – to help as many customers as possible get the right advice, regardless of need or background.

Pete’s presence in the industry as the ‘go-to’ for specialist finance continues to grow, and he is regularly cited in and writes for both local and national press, as well as trade publications, with a regular column in Mortgage Introducer and being the exclusive mortgage expert for LOVEMoney. Pete also writes for Online Mortgage Advisor of course!

Read more about Pete

Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Advisor, MD

No credit history? No problem! Find a mortgage with an expert in no credit history mortgages

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