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We’ll match you with an expert in the buy-to-let mortgage market and BTL property. They’ll be happy to answer your questions and help guide you through the traps and pitfalls of a buy-to-let mortgage.

What is a buy-to-let (BTL) mortgage?

To put it simply, the definition of a buy-to-let mortgage is a type of property investment in which the buyer becomes a landlord with the aim of renting the property out at a profit.

A BTL property is basically a house, flat or other type of building which has been purchased through a BTL mortgage with the intention to rent out to tenants.

The buyer cannot be a permanent resident. Most BTL mortgages are offered on an interest-only basis, with the borrower settling the monthly interest payments using the rental income generated by the property.

What is the difference between a buy-to-let and residential mortgage?

The way lenders assess this product is the main difference between these mortgage types. Residential mortgages are assessed based on your personal financial circumstances. BTL loans, meanwhile, are based on the property’s profitability, i.e. how much rent it will generate offset against the cost of the loan. While elements of personal affordability will be taken into account, the viability of the investment is often the deciding factor.

How much can I borrow?

The traditional thought process for buy to let mortgages was that they are totally self-funding. Your rental income more than covers your mortgage payments with a little profit left over. However, the reality is that rental payments can vary depending on location and may suddenly stop for any number of reasons. This, along with a need to ‘cool’ the market and respond to the recent tax changes are why the PRA stepped in.

What’s the maximum amount I can borrow?

The maximum you can borrow for a buy to let mortgage is still directly linked to the amount of rental income you anticipate receiving or that you feel is appropriate for the property you wish to buy. That said, the recent changes outlined above have ensured that lenders must carry out more stringent affordability assessments, specific to buy to let mortgages, in order to safeguard both themselves and the applicant.

What is a typical debt-to-income ratio for a buy-to-let property?

Each lender will have their own affordability criteria which governs how much they are prepared to lend. Up until January 2017, most lenders would want to see rental income achieve a minimum 125% of interest payments.

This extra amount over the interest payments is what is known as the ‘stress rate’ or Interest Coverage Ratio (ICR) and was originally designed to ensure a borrower had a safe buffer of spare income in the event of any cessation in rent payments.

Prior to 2017 lenders were able to relax their stress rates if they wished (typically to attract more custom).

What are the advantages and disadvantages of investing?

Advantages of a buy-to-let mortgage

  • Long term investment gains:
    Although the property market can fluctuate, the general trend is for house prices in the UK to rise over time. For instance, data from Zoopla suggests that property values have risen by almost 20% over the last decade, and by a whopping 263% over the last 20 years. This means there’s a strong chance your rental property will generate a profit if you choose to sell it.
  • The rental market is strong:
    Finding tenants for your buy-to-let property shouldn’t be too difficult, as Generation Rent is going nowhere. Moreover, recent government data revealed that renting among all age groups is more likely to be from a private landlord rather than a council or housing association.
  • Tax benefits:
    Some of the running costs associated with buy-to-let properties can be reclaimed when you submit your Self-Assessment Tax Return to HMRC each year. These include interest on your mortgage repayments, letting agent fees, repair costs, council tax and other bills (if you’re footing them yourself).

Disadvantages of a buy-to-let mortgage

  • Increased Stamp Duty:
    Since April 2016, BTL investors have been forced to fork out 3% more Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) when purchasing a property. This can significantly add to the overall cost involved and means some landlords have been forced to pay several thousands more than those who invested pre-April 2016.
  • The risk of an empty property:
    There’s no guarantee your property will be occupied 100% of the time, and when it’s empty, you could be forced to foot the cost of the mortgage out of your own pocket, unless you have a good insurance deal in place.  
  • Brexit uncertainty:
    Although property prices in the UK generally rise over time, it’s difficult to forecast how they will fluctuate when Britain finally leaves the European Union. BTL lenders may take this into account and offer you less favourable rates due to the increased risk – this why speaking to a whole-of-market broker (like the ones we work with) is important when it comes to finding the best deals.

Although there are some disadvantages buy-to-let properties compared to other types of investment, it’s still possible for most borrowers to score a favourable deal. Get in touch and the whole-of-market advisors we work with will help you find the right lender.

Mortgage eligibility criteria explained

Along with your credit rating, there are a number of other factors that will affect your eligibility for a buy-to-let mortgage, including:

  • Your Age:
    Some BTL mortgage lenders refuse to deal with borrowers aged over 75 or under 21. Others, however, are more flexible with their limits and a minority impose no cap whatsoever, as long as the rental income will cover the mortgage. Read more about BTL age limits here.
  • Property type:
    Most lenders prefer borrowers with a standard property type, which basically means anything made from bricks and mortar. Buildings with non-standard features such as thatched roofs and timber frames, as well as listed buildings, are considered non-standard and therefore may require a specialist lender. Read more about non-standard construction mortgages here.
  • Whether you own property already:
    Some lenders require BTL borrowers to already be homeowners for a set amount of time, usually 12 months with no missed mortgage payments, while others prefer to deal with professional landlords. There are also a minority who are happy to offer credit to first-time buyers.
  • Income:
    Some lenders have a minimum income requirement of £20,000-£25,000, but others may be happy to base their decision on the strength of the investment. For applications where income is a factor, most lenders prefer it to come from secure, full-time employment, but there are specialists who are willing to offer BTL deals to self-employed borrowers, those who trade as a limited company, and those with ‘non-standard’ income, such as benefits, pensions, bonuses and commission. Rental income from other BTL properties can be factored in too, and most lenders will insist that this is declared to HMRC.
  • Deposit:
    Buy-to-let mortgages typically come with higher deposit requirements to standard residential home loans. See the next section for further information

You can find detailed information in our article dedicated to buy-to-let lenders’ eligibility criteria.

Buy-to-let LTV: How much deposit do I need?

The minimum deposit needed for a buy-to-let is now just 15% with some lenders, so you could get an 85% LTV mortgage. However, in order to achieve a mortgage with this LTV rate you would require both a suitable property and sufficient rental income. The LTV is the loan to value ratio, which means the size of the loan compared to the value of the property, expressed as a percentage.

So, a property worth £100,000 and a loan of £75,000 = 75% LTV. Typically, buy-to-let mortgage LTVs are capped at 75% with most lenders. A deposit of 25% is required, though in certain circumstances, 80-85% deals are available.

  If you were buying a £100k property, with most lenders your deposit would need to be £25,000, although the advisors we work with may be able to arrange something with just £15,000.

The impact buy-to-let loan to value has on rates is huge, as it’s a big factor for the lenders when pricing the level of risk. A high LTV equates to higher risk of them not recouping money in the event of default, which in turn means higher rates.

Can I use equity for my deposit?

The short answer is ‘yes’. If you have equity in your home, you can take out a second mortgage. The usual criteria apply such as income, affordability and credit history.

What are the associated costs and how much are they?

As a buy-to-let landlord, costs are an important consideration. You’ll find there are many running costs associated with a buy-to-let, apart from the mortgage. 

There are several buy-to-let costs to consider, including repairs, maintenance, agent’s fees and mortgage interest. One study about buy-to-let costs found that the average costs involved with buying and owning a buy-to-let property to be around £8,359 a year.

Buy-to-let mortgage fees

There are a few additional costs and fees you need to take into account when you’re considering purchasing a property to rent out. It’s important to get an understanding of all the costs you may encounter and budget for them ahead of committing.

As well as the costs of property maintenance and repairs, you will need landlords insurance and rent insurance. If you’re using a letting agent, you’ll also need to pay their fee.

Tax is also payable on your rental income. See our post to learn more about landlord’s responsibilities.

The tables below provide a breakdown of the typical mortgage costs, ongoing expenses and legal fees that usually come with a BTL mortgage.

Typical Mortgage Costs
Broker fees This depends on the complexity of the mortgage and the type of product you are taking. For example, typical fees for secured loans / second mortgages tend to be higher than those of main residential mortgages. Some brokers charge £0, others anywhere up to 4% of the loan amount.
Lender Application/ Booking Fees Every lender deal is different. Some are fee-free and others charge non-refundable upfront fees, of say £500, for example. This allows them to only take in applications from borrowers who are more committed to proceeding.
Valuation Fees This is entirely dependant on the property value, type, location, and the product you are taking – some mortgages products offer a free basic valuation report. You will usually pay more for home buyer or full structural surveys.
Mortgage Product Fees These are dependent on the product type & property value. Some lenders charge nothing, others a fixed fee of around £500 and others a % of the loan amount. For larger loans it can work out most cost effective to choose a product that has no fee or a fixed fee.
Mortgage Exit Fees Again these differ from lender to lender, and product to product. Also, if you are tied into a deal and want to leave early, there may be additional costs associated with this known as Early Repayment Charges (ERCs).
Legal Costs
Solicitor fees & disbursements Solicitor costs vary depending on their charging structure. Some charge fixed fees, others per hour, and some a % of the property (more rare nowadays). Occasionally lenders will offer free legals as an incentive for borrowers to take their deal.
Stamp duty For exact figures on stamp duty as at today’s rates, click here for the .gov articles
On-Going Costs
Property Maintenance From £0+ anything! (Depends on the state of the property!)
Letting Agent Fees Either a fixed fee or % of rental income. Common charges are 10% of the monthly rent (so £35pm charge on a £350pm rental).
Income Tax From £0-50% (Depends on your current income and rate of tax paid). For more info visit HMRC for help with buy to let tax.

What are rental returns?

A simple example is that if your rental return was equal to the interest payments, then the rental coverage would be 100%. It should be noted that most lenders prefer the rental cover to be at least 125% or higher – if that’s the case, you’ll stand a better chance of getting the best rates for buy-to-let finance.

The latest PRA regulations dictate a minimum stress rate of 125% tied to an interest rate of 5.5% must apply, which most lenders now use (lenders can look to use a lower rate if the borrower opts for a 5-year fixed rate). However, some lenders use a higher rate of up to 145% and a few go up to 160% in order to cater for high-rate taxpayers.

What is a stress test?

It’s simply a way that lenders assess the viability of a property you’re hoping to buy and let out.  Buy-to-let stress tests are a way to check that you have the ability to repay the interest on the mortgage. 

For instance, if you have a £150,000 mortgage and a 5.5% interest cover rate is applied, this brings your monthly interest payments to £687.50.

The equation is £150,000 x 5.5% = £8,250 / 12 months = £687.50. By factoring in the rate for the rental income of 125%, for the purposes of stress testing, this brings the real monthly costs to £859.38.  

What is buy-to-let rental yield?

Put simply, the rental yield is the amount of cash that your rental property generates, calculated as a percentage of the property’s value.  This can be broken down into gross yield and net yield. It lets you see your buy-to-let returns on investment at a glance.

How do you work out the yield?

To calculate the yield on your buy-to-let divide the purchase price of your property with yearly rent. If the purchase price is £100,000 and the rent is £200 per week, then the annual rent is £10,400 and your buy-to-let property yield is 10.4%. 

This calculation should give you a good idea how much you’ll need to make to finance your buy-to-let mortgage.

What yield should I expect from a ‘buy to let’?

There are several factors that will influence the buy-to-let average yield, with location and tenant demand being prime drivers.  Ideally, you should look for a property that will generate a rental yield of around 8% or higher which would be a good buy-to-let yield.

Fixed vs. tracker rate: which should I choose?

Unfortunately, as the market changes, nobody can predict what will happen with rates, and with the increased pressure on the economy and the effects change of parliament will have, mortgage rates could remain low for the foreseeable future, or increase as house prices continue to rise.

It’s important to consider the difference in cost between the two, and decide if it’s worth paying more for the known costs of a fixed rate or if you’re happy with the fluctuation of a tracker rate, even if this means your costs may increase.

Fixed rate mortgages

Buy-to-let fixed-rate mortgages are currently very well priced, and often the difference between fixed and tracker rates is negligible – sometimes lenders’ fixed rates are even cheaper than trackers.  For the best buy-to-let rates see today’s best buys here.

Tracker mortgages

When compared to fixed buy-to-let mortgages, trackers tend to be priced slightly cheaper because if rates and costs increase to the lender, they pass that on to the borrower, whereas fixed rates eat into the lender’s margin. For the best buy-to-let rates see today’s best buys here.

Can I get an offset mortgage?

Yes, it may be possible. Offset mortgages are hard to come by at the moment, and with savings rates being so low, instead of keeping cash in the bank, many investors are choosing other ways to save. 

However, there are a few specialist lenders that offer offset mortgages secured against main residential properties in the conventional sense, and one or two who offer offset accounts on buy-to-let properties.

With so few lenders offering them, the choice of product is limited and you’d often do well to consider the cheapest buy-to-let rate elsewhere, and investing your cash into accounts with the best savings rates or in secure stocks and shares.

Is there a buy-to-let mortgage finder?

There are many websites offering the ability to search for buy-to-let mortgages and these are available for anyone to use. However, since these are very basic searches, it may not be easy to see the terms and conditions or know whether you will meet the lender’s criteria, which can be quite exacting.

To find a mortgage you will be eligible for at the best possible rates, talk to a whole-of-market mortgage broker with expertise in the buy-to-let market. 

We work with the very best mortgage advisors in the industry. Each one is an expert in their field and they have access to the most up to date mortgage information.

Make an enquiry for a free, no obligation chat and we’ll match you with a buy-to-let expert.  They will be happy to answer your questions and use their tools and experience to ensure you get the best mortgage deal available, regardless of your circumstances. We have helped all kinds of customers get the right mortgage, even if they have a bad credit history.

See our article for more information on what you should look for in a buy-to-let broker.

Making a buy-to-let mortgage application

When it comes to applying for your buy-to-let mortgage, it’s important to understand the criteria a lender will look for.

Every lender has different criteria when it comes to assessing your application, but lenders will only accept your application if they believe you can afford the payments. To make an assessment, lenders will want to know about:

  • The expected rental income from the property
  • Your personal financial circumstances

Rental income will generally need to be at least 125% of the mortgage repayments. So you need to ensure that the rent you can charge covers the entire monthly cost of your mortgage with an additional 25% over.

Lenders will check that you can achieve the rental income you project by looking at how much similar properties in the same area are achieving. As well as the rent you can get from the property, lenders will also want to assess your personal financial circumstances.

To do this they will ask about:

  1. Your credit history – how much current debt you have and how well you have maintained repayments will help lenders decide if they are willing to lend to you. A few specialist lenders may consider you even if you have a poor credit history, but you may be charged higher rates and require a larger deposit to offset the risk. 
  2. Your income – most lenders require that you earn a minimum of £25,000 a year. Although a few select lenders may accept an income of £20,000
  3. Your expenditure and existing debts – all lenders will want to see what you spend on a regular monthly basis, including your mortgage payments for your home, any loans and your credit cards.
  4. Your deposit – the higher your deposit the easier you’ll find it to get a mortgage at the rate you want. 

If you want help finding the best mortgage rate for a buy-to-let or help with the application process, make an enquiry and we’ll match you with one of the experts we work with. All the experts are whole-of-market mortgage brokers with access to lenders across the entire UK mortgage market.

They will work with you to make sure you understand a lender’s criteria and find the best available rate for you.

Are buy-to-let mortgages more expensive?

The costs involved in buy-to-let mortgages can be a little more expensive, usually about one percentage point higher, while some have higher arrangement fees. 

How much more expensive is a buy-to-let mortgage?

A good rule of thumb is that a buy-to-let mortgage is usually about one percentage point higher, while buy-to-let finance costs can also include higher arrangement fees. 

Why are buy-to-let mortgages more expensive?

The costs of a buy-to-let mortgage is higher because the lender sees customers who are planning to buy a property for let as more of a risk.

This is because many landlords rely on the rental income to cover the mortgage, so if a tenant gets into financial difficulties and cannot pay their rent this, in turn, can make it difficult for the landlord to meet the mortgage repayments.

If you’re concerned about how much a buy-to-let mortgage might cost, talk to one of the expert advisors we work with and find out some facts about the true costs of setting up a buy-to-let mortgage.  The service we offer is free, there’s no obligation and we won’t leave a mark on your credit rating.

Should I purchase a buy-to-let with tenants in situ?

The upside of buying a property with current tenants is that it could mean an income from day one. However, bear in mind that you may inherit the previous landlord’s obligations too. 

Generally, lenders will be OK with tenants in situ if there is a proper tenancy agreement in place.

How does an assured short-hold tenancy affect a buy-to-let?

Provided sufficient notice has been given, a landlord who has tenants under an assured short-hold tenancy has the right to regain possession after an agreed period.

This can work in your favour, because if you want to do renovations to increase the rental return, then you’ll have a set date the tenants will have to move out.

Can I get a sitting tenant mortgage?

This is a difficult area as sitting tenants, under the Rent Act of 1977, have the legal right to remain in the property for life.  Some can even pass on the right to a family member upon their death.

They also have the right to a ‘fair rent’ which is often well below the market value.  For this reason, lenders are reluctant to agree a mortgage as they classify properties with sitting tenants as a poor risk.

How does buy-to-let rent guarantee work?

A tenant who can’t or won’t pay the rent can be your worst nightmare. There are landlord insurance policies available; but be aware that these usually don’t pay out if the tenant falls into arrears, they only pay out for lost rent if the property becomes uninhabitable.

To protect against tenants defaulting, you’ll need specialist rent guarantee protection. Buy-to-let rental cover usually requires certain conditions, including that the landlord has an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement in place and that the tenant has passed the appropriate credit and reference checks.

Should I buy a leasehold property?

Whilst a cheaper proposition in the short term, there are pitfalls to be aware of with buy-to-let leasehold properties.

Ground rent can be prohibitive and, worse, the costs can spiral upward into the thousands each year. If this happens, it can make a property unsaleable, primarily because some lenders won’t grant mortgages for homes with high ground rent.

Most lenders won’t lend on a property if the lease has 60 years or less remaining, or under 40 years remaining on completion of the mortgage term. They generally want the lease to extend 40 or more years after your mortgage ends, as values begin to plummet as the lease gets shorter.

Can I get a buy-to-let if I have bad credit?

All lenders are different and have different criteria when it comes to bad credit.  The important thing to keep in mind is that it isn’t only your credit file which will affect the decision to lend to you.

When you apply for a mortgage with a history of bad credit, affordability will be of utmost importance to any lender assessing your application.

As with any other mortgage application, if you can comfortably demonstrate that you can easily afford the payments and the property you are purchasing is a viable proposition with a strong rental yield, it’s possible to find specialist lenders who will grant you a buy-to-let mortgage.

For many lenders, if you are a basic rate taxpayer or buying with a limited company, the rental income has to cover at least 125% of the mortgage, assuming the mortgage is charged at 5.5%. For higher rate taxpayers, this increases to 145% or 160%.

Buy-to-let affordability models are based on a combination of the rental income the property can achieve and your circumstances.

Deposit requirements tend to be higher for buy-to-let mortgages and if you’re applying with a history of poor credit, you may need an even higher deposit to help the lender offset their level of risk. 

As with any bad credit history, finding a lender will depend on the circumstances of your case, how long ago the bad credit was listed on your file and the severity of the bad credit situation. 

Read more about the subject here or make an enquiry and talk to one of the experts we work with. They will be able to answer all your questions and work with you to help you find a lender and a mortgage to suit your needs.

Do I need a buy-to-let mortgage to rent out my home?

While it’s not exactly illegal to rent a house on a mortgage which isn’t buy-to-let, it can get you into trouble with your lender if you don’t have their prior permission. Many people find themselves ‘accidental landlords’.

This may happen when someone moves in with a partner or perhaps inherits a bigger property leaving their old property with the original standard mortgage to be rented out without a buy-to-let mortgage. It can be solved by asking your lender for ‘consent to let’. Many lenders may grant approval without raising the interest rate.

It’s important to remember that failure to notify your lender that you’re letting out your home without a buy-to-let mortgage, would be considered a breach of your contract and some could demand full and final repayment, which would be financially disastrous.

Are buy-to-let mortgages available for non UK nationals (foreign nationals)?

This can be a tricky area, but it can be simplified if you talk to one of the experts we work with. As a foreign national, your buy-to-let options will be fewer, but by no means non-existent.

Residence is the main issue, but if you’ve been a resident in the UK for at least two years and have a work permit, then it will be relatively straightforward. If you’re an EU citizen, then lenders will have access to a credit history they can trace, so you should be able to get a buy-to-let mortgage just like any other UK citizen.

The good news is that you don’t actually have to be living in the UK to purchase property here. In fact, some lenders have now started to offer mortgages designed specifically as buy-to-let for foreign investors, although the background checks are even more stringent.

Are there buy-to-let mortgages for British expats?

If you’re living abroad and you’re looking for a UK buy-to-let mortgage as an expat there are a number of things you need to be aware of. EU ruling means that if you’re paid in a foreign currency, then you come under closer scrutiny if you’re looking for a buy-to-let mortgage for expats.

There is another problem facing expats in Australia, as a treaty between the Australian and British governments essentially bans lending to each other’s residents. Such a minefield needs an expert, so you should talk to one of the advisors we work with who are highly experienced in buy-to-let expat mortgages. Make an enquiry for a free, no obligation chat.

Frequently asked questions

Can you have a buy-to-let AND a residential mortgage?

Yes. In fact, the BTL lending criteria at most lenders requires that you own a residential property (usually for at least 6 months, although some lenders will be happy with less) before they will accept an application for a buy-to-let mortgage.

Can I get a buy to let mortgage with income below 25K?

This could be possible – as not all buy to let lenders have a minimum salary requirement of £25,000 per year. With the help of the whole-of-market brokers we work with, it may be possible to find a BTL provider who’s willing to base the mortgage offer entirely on the projected rental income.

Whilst most lenders offer buy to let mortgages as interest only, nowadays there are some lenders who will also offer capital and interest buy to let mortgages and a few who will offer a combination of both types of lending.

How much buy to let mortgage can I get if I’m a higher rate tax payer?

Every lender will approach this differently and use their own calculations. It’s likely that the stress rate used for high-rate taxpayers will be higher than the one used for low rate taxpayers, meaning low rate taxpayers may well be able to borrow more.

Are there lenders available for buy-to-let landlords with large portfolios?

Yes, though some mortgage lenders will consider a large, already heavily mortgaged, portfolio more high risk when considering further lending than a smaller one. Changes made by the PRA have made it clear to lenders that portfolios with four or more properties should receive much closer scrutiny when considering further lending.

Rather than showing an overall profit and loss figure across the portfolio as a whole a portfolio landlord may be asked for the Interest Coverage Ratio (ICR) position across each property they own separately.

Some lenders may also place a maximum number of properties where they are prepared to consider further lending (eight, for example) or a maximum loan to value.

The brokers we work with have access to the entire mortgage market so they are able to look at the specialist lenders who have more experience and comfort in lending to portfolio landlords.

What is income top-slicing?

This is when a buy to let mortgage lender uses a borrower’s personal income to top up a shortfall in rental income so they can qualify for a mortgage product that would have otherwise been out of their reach.

If a lender is concerned about the interest cover ratio (ICR) of a buy to let application, some are prepared to take into account your earned income as part of a top-slicing exercise. If you have a strong income from your employment you can use this income to bridge the gap between an ICR shortfall.

Can you live in a property you have a buy-to-let mortgage on?

Not usually. Buy to let mortgages are for properties that you plan to let out to tenants. If your circumstances change and you need to move into your buy to let, most lenders will require you to remortgage onto a BTL deal.

Does a second mortgage have to be for buy to let?

Not at all – these products are by no means buy to let only. You can take out a second mortgage on a property you already for a variety of purposes, from home improvements to consolidating debts.

This is often known as a homeowner loan. It is also possible to take out a second mortgage on a residential property you plan to live in part time or use as a holiday home.

Is a joint ‘buy to let’ mortgage allowed?

Yes. Most married couples are considered to have a joint mortgage. Many lenders’ buy-to-let mortgage terms allow up to four applicants and sometimes more on a buy-to-let.

You can have a joint mortgage on a buy-to-let property with a parent, friends and siblings, but you need to be sure you all have the same expectations from the property.

Can I have one in my wife’s name?

Yes, you can. There are various tax advantages to be had, especially if you are the higher earner, with a correspondingly higher tax bill.

If your partner earns less, then putting the property into their name for tax purposes makes sense. We work with expert buy to let mortgage intermediaries who can advise you.  

What is a concessionary buy-to-let mortgage?

This is when you buy a property from your parents or other family member for less than its market value.  It’s important that you tell your lender that you’re borrowing for a concessionary purchase buy-to-let from the word go. One of the advisors we work with can guide you on getting a BTL mortgage with the most favourable rates.

Can I gift a buy to let property to my child?

The short answer is ‘yes’, although there are pros and cons to gifting a buy-to-let property.  If you decide to gift your rental property or BTL properties to one or more of your children, this could potentially be an exempt transfer as far as inheritance tax is concerned. 

However, there would be stamp duty to pay when your child takes over the property based on the value of the BTL loan.

For more information on this or anything to do with arranging buy-to-let mortgages, get in touch and we’ll connect you with one of the buy-to-let experts we work with. All the experts we work with are whole-of-market mortgage brokers with access to lenders across the entire UK.

They will be happy to answer your questions and use their knowledge, tools and expertise to ensure you get the right mortgage at the best available price.

What is a mortgage trust?

A trust holds an asset, in this case a buy-to-let property, for the benefit of another. Putting buy-to-let property into trust can have certain tax benefits, but you should always obtain expert advice on the pros and cons of such a scheme.

Can I get a fast track buy to let mortgage?

Every application is different, but the reality is that the average time from your first enquiry to completion, is somewhere around 4-6 weeks.

Can I get a buy-to-let new build?

Yes, and there generally won’t be any differences to consider compared to a buy-to-let mortgage on an older property, as far as the lender is concerned. Property type will only come into play if you’re getting a buy-to-let mortgage on a flat rather than a house, or if the property has elements of non-standard construction.

Can I get a buy-to-let mortgage on more than one property?

Absolutely, but a specialist BTL or commercial lender is often recommended for these applications.

To secure a second buy-to-let property, the lender may require equity or a deposit of at least 20% to safeguard themselves against the increased risk.

If you’re a buy-to-let landlord with 4 properties or more, you’re considered a portfolio landlord, and they require lenders who specialise in this niche sector of the market.

Can I get help to buy?

In a word. No. The government Help to Buy schemes, such as the Lifetime ISA, are specifically designed to help people get onto the property ladder, not build rental portfolios. The Help to Buy: ISA closed to new applicants on 30th November 2019. Read more here.

They have a clause that states the property ‘must not be rented out’ after you buy it. If your circumstances change (such as losing your job or being transferred overseas), you may be able to rent the property out but, essentially, you cannot use a Help to Buy scheme for a buy-to-let.

Can I buy at auction?

Sometimes you can pick up a real bargain at an auction. You still need to do all the checks and preparations for a buy-to-let at auction, just as would do when buying any other property. 

You’ll need to have 10% of the whole value ready at the fall of the hammer and then a set time (usually 28 days) to pay the full amount. Failure to pay the full amount in time may mean you lose the house and your deposit.

One of the advisors we work with will be happy to discuss the options available to you if you’re keen on buying a buy-to-let house at auction. Make an enquiry for a free, no obligation chat.

I’m an expat, could I get a buy-to-let mortgage?

Yes, there are expat mortgages for buy-to-let properties. These are not as straightforward as a standard buy-to-let mortgage, though. Some lenders offer expat buy-to-let mortgages, but you’ll need to have a broker compare the market for the best deals.

Your best option is to talk to one of the expert advisors we work with and let them find the best expat buy-to-let mortgages in the UK.

What is a buy-to-let with no redemption policy?

A redemption penalty is another name for early repayment charges. The idea behind a property without a redemption penalty is to allow it to be sold on quickly without incurring the early payment charge.  The downside to buying a UK buy-to-let property with no redemption policy is that you will pay a higher interest rate for the privilege.

What are conveyancing fees?

These are essentially buy-to-let solicitors fees that cover the costs of ensuring that everything is above board. These include searches (this finds out if there are any potential problems with the property you’re planning to buy for let), title deeds, transferring ownership etc.

Are there solicitor’s fees?

You can do your own conveyancing and while this can provide cheap buy-to-let conveyancing, it’s inherently risky. If you’re looking at investment and buy-to-let properties, solicitors fees can be worth every penny for the peace of mind they offer. 

Some lenders will use the same solicitor as the buyer (as long as the practice has at least two partners) for efficiency. Read more about buy-to-let costs and fees.

What is meant by porting a mortgage?

This is simply the process of transferring, or ‘porting’ your existing buy-to-let mortgage loan from one property to another. The advantages are that you won’t have to pay an early repayment charge and you can keep the interest rate (assuming it’s lower than current rates). Read more about mortgage porting.

Speak to an expert

We’ve helped over 120,000 people find the right mortgage, in fact our customers consistently rate us 5 stars on Feefo, mainly because of the level of service and the fact that we offer 5-star service-, with access to leading brokers who:

  • Are industry experts – they’re OMA and LIBF Accredited
  • Cover the whole market
  • Have relationships with all buy to let lenders
  • Can offer bespoke advice to BTL landlords and aspiring landlords

If you have questions and want to speak to an expert for the right advice, call 0808 189 2301 or make an enquiry.

We’ll connect you with one of the expert brokers we work with who will be happy to answer all your questions and find the right buy-to-let mortgage at the best available rates for you. We don’t charge a fee, there’s absolutely no obligation and we won’t leave a mark on your credit rating.

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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