Buy-to-Let Mortgages in Scotland
Understand the Scottish buy-to-let market and find your ideal mortgage with ease. Get matched with a specialised broker to help you
Are you looking for a Buy-To-Let mortgage in Scotland?
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In this article we’ll explain how buy-to-let mortgages work in Scotland, how to check your eligibility and how a specialist broker can help you get the best deals.
Can you get a buy-to-let mortgage in Scotland?
Yes. However, they are not as common as buy-to-let mortgages in England or Wales. Of around 70 UK lenders who offer buy-to-let mortgages, only about half provide them to customers in Scotland.
Your choice of lender will be more limited in some areas than others. Half of the lenders in Scotland apply postcode restrictions of some kind, including only lending on the mainland or to a small number of islands. So, if you’re buying off the beaten track, it could be difficult to identify a lender who can help.
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How is the Scottish market different from the rest of the UK?
There are similarities and differences between buy-to-let rules in Scotland and England.
Registering as a landlord
In both regions, you’ll need to register as a landlord before letting your property. You do this with the local council that the property is located in, e.g. Aberdeen City or Aberdeenshire. You’ll need to pay a principal fee of £75 and a property fee of £17 per let property. Discounts are available if you own several properties in different local authority areas.
If you’re renting out a property to three or more tenants who are not part of the same family, you’ll also need an HMO license from your local council (and an HMO mortgage). This applies in both England and Scotland.
Accreditation is not a legal requirement but can be reassuring to tenants and so make it easier to let your property. In Scotland, you can apply to Landlord Accreditation Scotland. England doesn’t have a single scheme, so landlords can apply to one of many, including the London Landlord Accreditation Scheme.
Right to Rent checks
In England and Wales, you’re required to perform Right to Rent checks to confirm that your tenants are legally entitled to rent in these regions. These checks are not required in Scotland.
Tenancy deposit protection works in essentially the same way in Scotland and England, i.e. you must protect tenancy deposits through a registered scheme within 30 days of the start of the tenancy. The only difference is that you’ll need to register with the three Scottish deposit protection schemes rather than the English ones.
In England, you’ll pay Stamp Duty to HMRC when buying a buy-to-let property, while in Scotland, you’ll pay Land and Buildings Transactions Tax (LBTT) to Revenue Scotland.
The rates are different, but one thing they have in common is that second homes (including buy-to-lets) incur an additional 3% tax. In Scotland, this is called the additional dwellings supplement (ADS).
LBTT and ADS rates are as follows:
|Up to £145,000||0%||3%|
|£145,001 – £250,000||2%||5%|
|£250,001 – £325,000||5%||8%|
|£325,001 – £750,000||10%||13%|
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How to get a buy-to-let mortgage in Scotland
Due to the limited supply of buy-to-let mortgages in Scotland, it’s sensible to work with a broker who specialises in this area. Get in touch and we can match you with the right person for you. They’ll be able to guide you through the application process, including:
- Deciding whether you’ll own personally or through a limited company. Many people choose to own their buy-to-let property through a limited company special purpose vehicle (SPV) because of the possible tax advantages. Getting a Scottish buy-to-let mortgage as a limited company first requires you to register an SPV with Companies House. Your broker will be able to guide you through all the options.
- Preparing a business plan. This needn’t be complex, but should include financial projections to show your rental income is enough to cover the mortgage payments and that you have a way to fill any voids when you don’t have tenants. You’ll need to factor in the area of Scotland you’re buying in and make sure your plans reflect the local rental market rates.
- Preparing your application. You’ll need to provide various documents to your chosen lender. These include ID, rental income projections, and proof of deposit. Your broker will tell you exactly what’s required and help you complete all the paperwork.
Buy-to-Let Mortgage Calculator
Our buy-to-let mortgage calculator can show you how much your mortgage could cost you each month and overall. Simply enter the rental property value, deposit, anticipated monthly rent, interest rate, mortgage term and our calculator will do the rest.
Capital and repayment:
Loan to Value ratio (LTV):
Most lenders won't offer buy-to-let mortgages over a LTV of 80%.
Interest Cover Ratio (ICR):
Most lenders require rental income to be at least 125%-145% of the interest repayments for a buy-to-let mortgage.
Get started with a specialist buy-to-let broker to find out how much they could help you save on your monthly mortgage repayments.
Mortgage lenders and typical rates
Lenders who offer buy-to-let mortgages in Scotland include high street banks such as NatWest, Barclays, and HSBC, and smaller lenders including Accord Mortgages and Skipton Building Society. The rates they offer are identical in Scotland and England.
The table below illustrates what interest rates are currently available.
Looking for more rates and deals?
We can match you with a mortgage broker who can provide you with up-to-date bespoke rates and deals from across the entire market.
Last updated October 2023
The rates quoted above were correct at the time of writing and are subject to change at any time at the lender’s discretion. Speaking to a mortgage broker is the best way to keep track of the rates available at any given time.
You’ll find it easier to get a buy-to-let mortgage in Scotland if you already have experience as a landlord in Scotland, as it shows you understand the local market and how to successfully manage a rental property. New landlords still have options, but you may need a higher deposit or have access to fewer lenders.
It’s rental income rather than your personal income that matters with buy-to-let mortgages, so lenders will want to see projected rental income of between 125% and 145% of your mortgage payments, to include a safety net.
Property type and location
Some more risk-averse lenders may prefer not to lend against properties of non-standard construction, such as timber or steel framed houses or concrete homes. The area you’re buying in can also be important in terms of how much rent you’ll be able to charge and how much demand for housing there is. Some parts of Scotland, like areas around Glasgow for instance, have seen higher than average rental yields in recent years, making them a more attractive option to landlords and lenders.
You’ll usually need a deposit of at least 20% of the property value to get a buy-to-let mortgage. This will give you access to around half of the lenders in Scotland. To access the rest, you’ll need a deposit of at least 25%.
Not all lenders in Scotland have a minimum income requirement, but some require an annual income of £18,000, £20,000 or £25,000.
Most lenders in Scotland have a minimum age of 21 or 25 for buy-to-let mortgages. However, around a dozen offer them to anyone over 18, so you could still be able to get a mortgage at this age. A lot of lenders don’t impose maximum age limits as buy-to-let mortgages are more about the profitability of the property than your personal income. Read more about buy-to-let age limits.
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Can you get a let-to-buy mortgage in Scotland?
Yes you can. Almost all lenders in Scotland offer this type of mortgage, including the likes of TSB and Metro Bank. A let-to-buy mortgage is for homeowners who want to buy a new home but also keep their current home to let out. The mortgage is secured on the current home.
What are the best areas to buy-to-let in Scotland?
Return on investment for buy-to-let properties is often measured in terms of rental yield, i.e. the percentage of the property value that you receive each year in rental income. Some of the highest average rental yields in Scotland are in West Dunbartonshire (9.05%), Renfrewshire (8.96%) and East Ayrshire (8.58%).
However, there are always other factors to bear in mind. You might want to buy a property in an area that’s convenient for you to reach, or that you know well. So, there are no particular areas that are best for everyone.
Use our calculator below to work out the potential rental yield you could make from the property you’re looking to purchase:
Rental Yield Calculator
This calculator will show you the rental yield on your buy-to-let property using either the original purchase price, plus associated costs, or the current value. All you need to do is choose which option you want to base your calculation on and your monthly rental premiums.
Gross Rental Yield:
Net Rental Yield:
Now you've worked out what your current rental yield is, why not speak to a broker to see what buy-to-let mortgage/remortgage opportunities are available? With their expertise in this market they'll be able to identify a range of new deals which could reduce your mortgage payments and, as a result, improve your overall rental yield.
Get matched with a buy-to-let specialist familiar with the Scottish market
If you’re ready to start the process of getting a mortgage, you’ll need to find the right broker. You’ll definitely want to find a specialist in the buy-to-let market, and you might be keen to work with someone based in Scotland, or who knows the market up there well.
We work with numerous brokers who fit these criteria, so get in touch if you’d like to try our free broker-matching service. You can call us on 0808 189 2301 or simply fill out a form online.
Speak to a Buy-to-Let expert
Maximise your chance of approval with a specialist in the Scottish property market
Your taxable property income is the total rental income minus your allowable expenses (e.g. maintenance costs and letting costs).
Your taxable property income will be added to your taxable income from all other sources (e.g. salary, pension) to determine the rate you’re taxed at. In the 2022-23 tax year, the income tax bands in Scotland are:
|Up to £12,570||Tax-free|
Yes. However, you’ll have a very limited product range to choose from, as there are only 10 lenders who offer holiday let mortgages in Scotland. These include Hodge Bank and Together Mortgages.
See our page on holiday let mortgages for more information.
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