Help To Buy Mortgages With Bad Credit

Get specialist help securing a Help-To-Buy mortgage even with Bad Credit with help from a dedicated Bad Credit broker

First of all, are you looking for a ‘Help to Buy’ mortgage?

Home Help To Buy Mortgages Help To Buy Mortgages With Bad Credit


*UPDATE 02/11/2022: The deadline to apply for a Help to Buy: Equity Loan has passed. Whether you applied on time and now need a mortgage, or missed out, find out what other government schemes are available.

If you have a history of adverse credit and little savings, homeownership can feel out of reach. You might be surprised to learn that you’re still eligible for government help to buy a home, even if your credit is less than perfect.

The Help to Buy scheme is open to all but a few first-time buyers, regardless of past credit issues. Getting a mortgage is another matter but, with the help of a specialist, you might stand a better chance than you think. We’ll explain more and answer the key questions.

Can you get a Help to Buy mortgage with bad credit?

Yes. To buy a home through the government’s Help to Buy scheme, you must qualify for both a Help to Buy equity loan and a mortgage. While bad credit can be a barrier, it’s usually possible to overcome.

Help to Buy equity loans are designed to be accessible for most people, even ex-bankrupts and others with poor credit. The only issue that is likely to stand in your way is an undischarged bankruptcy, a bankruptcy that has been discharged in the last year or a recent repossession.

Mortgages aren’t quite as easily accessible, and you could be declined based on defaults, county court judgements (CCJs), or individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs). However, there are still specialist lenders willing to consider your application despite these adverse credit issues.

Maximise your chance of approval with a dedicated specialist broker

Get Started

Ask Us A Question

We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with mortgage brokers who are experts in all different mortgage subjects.

Ask us a question and we'll get the best expert to help.

Feefo 5 Stars
1 of 3
2 of 3
3 of 3 Send!

What credit checks are there for Help to Buy mortgages?

Applying for a Help to Buy mortgage involves a full credit check (as any mortgage does). Your lender will see all the times you’ve applied for credit and any problems you’ve had with repayment in the last six years. You can read more in our guide to mortgage credit checks.

What to do if you’ve been declined for a Help to Buy mortgage

If you’ve been declined for a mortgage due to bad credit, the best thing to do is just take a pause and think about the next steps. The shrewd move at this point is to speak with a mortgage broker who has experience helping people secure a mortgage after they’ve initially been declined.

Using our free broker-matching service you can speak straight away to the right mortgage broker by simply making an enquiry online. They’ll be able to help with:

  • Downloading all your credit reports so you can establish what the main credit issue is
  • Outlining the steps you can take to resolve and/or remove the specific credit issue from your report
  • Identifying the right lenders who have a strong track record of looking favourably on applicants who have previously been declined

We're so confident in our service, we guarantee it.

We know it's important for you to have complete confidence in our service, and trust that you're getting the best chance of mortgage approval at the best available rate. We guarantee to get your mortgage approved where others can't - or we'll give you £100*

Happy approved couple

Lenders who offer Help to Buy with bad credit

There are around 30 UK lenders who offer mortgages compatible with a Help to Buy equity loan (2021-2023). How many will consider your application with poor credit depends on which type of credit issues you’ve experienced.


If you have a discharged bankruptcy that is over a year old (and, therefore, meet the minimum requirement to qualify for a Help to Buy equity loan) there is just one lender who will consider your application. If three years have passed, you’ll have access to several more.


Two or three years after your IVA is satisfied, you’ll have multiple mortgage lenders to choose from, including Aldermore and Nationwide. If your IVA has been satisfied for less than three years, speak to a broker about specialist lenders.


You can apply for Help to Buy with a CCJ, but your chances of approval will depend on:

  • The amount (CCJs under £500 are more likely to be overlooked)
  • The quantity (a single CCJ is more likely to be overlooked than multiple CCJs)
  • The recency (CCJs over three years old are like to be overlooked)
  • Whether they have been satisfied, i.e. paid off

Nationwide, Halifax, TSB, and NatWest will all consider your Help to Buy mortgage application with recent CCJs. However, they each have different restrictions, e.g. with TSB, you’ll be declined if you have a CCJ over £100 in the last 12 months.


As you’re a first-time buyer, mortgage defaults won’t be an issue. Other defaults are usually considered less serious and may be overlooked, but this will depend on the amount, quantity, recency, and whether they have been satisfied.

For example, Newcastle Building Society is potentially willing to accept satisfied defaults under £250 for a utility company, communications supplier or mail order, if you can provide an explanation and the rest of your application is good.

Access your credit report through a free trial

Credit rating illustration
Get my FREE report

Can you still apply for Help to Buy with a low credit score?

Yes. There is no minimum credit score for Help to Buy, so a low credit score will not prevent you from getting an equity loan unless it is accompanied by a recent bankruptcy. A low credit score could, however, affect your chances of mortgage approval, so you should look into exactly which credit issues are affecting your score.

Other reasons a Help to Buy application might be declined

Help to Buy equity loan applications can also be declined if you don’t meet the eligibility requirements of the scheme.

These requirements are that:

  • You’re 18 or over
  • You’re a UK resident
  • You’re a first-time buyer
  • You’re buying a new-build home in England
  • That home is within the price cap for your area
  • You have a 5% deposit

For example, you might be declined because you don’t meet the scheme’s definition of a first-time buyer, which is quite strict. You must never have owned a home or residential land in the UK or abroad and you cannot have had any form of Sharia mortgage.

You might also be declined based on affordability. While many lenders will allow you to borrow up to five times your salary, the Help to Buy scheme requires you to borrow no more than 4.5 times your salary.

Get matched with a bad credit mortgage broker

Everyone can benefit from expert mortgage advice. When there are two compounding complexities with your application, e.g. poor credit and a Help to Buy equity loan, a specialist with experience in both can make the application process much quicker, easier, and less stressful.

That’s why we offer a broker-matching service that aims to connect you with exactly the right specialist. If you’d like to schedule a free, no-obligation chat to try it out, just give us a call on 0808 189 2301 or enquire online.

Ask a quick question

We can help!

We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with mortgage brokers who are experts in bad credit mortgages.

Ask us a question and we'll get the best expert to help.

Our Brokers

Get in touch today

Make an enquiry and we'll arrange for an experienced mortgage broker we work with to contact you straight away.

1 of 3
2 of 3
3 of 3 Send!

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

Whatever your circumstances, we've got it covered. Find a mortgage with a bad credit expert

By browsing our site you consent to our use of cookies.