arrowright roundtick plus plus house 66 . 7 % cornercurve

What is the Maximum Age for a Mortgage?

Are you too old to get a mortgage? Not necessarily - find out here.

Get Started

No impact to credit score

Feefo logo

By Pete Mugleston  | Mortgage Advisor Pete has been a mortgage advisor for over 10 years, and is regularly cited in both trade and national press.

Updated: 10th October 2019 *

Am I too old to get a mortgage?

If you’re an older borrower you may wonder how easy you might find it to get a mortgage, especially if you’re a pensioner, or approaching retirement age. 

Many older people think they’re too old to be accepted for a mortgage, but  this isn’t necessarily the case. While some lenders impose a maximum age for a mortgage, with the right advice, a specialist mortgage broker may be able to find a mortgage which would work, no matter what your age.

Although there are mortgage schemes available specifically aimed at pensioners such as equity release, with mortgage arrangements like lifetime mortgages and retirement interest-only mortgages, this article discusses standard mortgage options for retired people, which can be either repayment plans or interest-only.

Read on or use the links to save time and jump ahead:

If you're short of time and you'd prefer to talk to an expert about your own set of circumstances, get in touch on 0808 189 2301 or make an enquiry. We'll match you with one of the expert brokers we work with, ensuring they have experience in dealing with customers in a similar situation.

All the experts we work with are whole-of-market brokers with lenders across the entire UK market. They have the knowledge and the tools to find the specialist mortgage lenders, no matter what your age or circumstances. 

The service we offer is free, there's no obligation and we won't leave a mark on your credit rating.

We’ll find the perfect mortgage broker for you - for free

Save time and money with an expert mortgage broker who specialises in cases like yours

  • We've helped over 98,000 get the right advice
  • Our form only takes a minute, then let us do the hard work
  • Save up to £400 per year with the right advice (source: FCA)
  • All the brokers we work with have whole of market access

How does age impact mortgage eligibility?

So, at what age can you get a mortgage? And is it ever possible if you’re a pensioner? 

While many lenders impose maximum mortgage age limits, it is certainly possible to get a mortgage if you’re retired.

One reason why older people are typically seen as higher risk when it comes to getting a mortgage is that after retirement, you no longer have a regular salary coming in. Your income is likely to decrease, which makes it more difficult to assess whether you will be able to keep up with mortgage repayments. 

As well as decreased and potentially unpredictable income, older borrowers can often be less less healthy and, because of their mature age, less likely to survive the full term of a 25 year mortgage. This all adds up to older borrowers generally being viewed as more of a risk for mortgage lenders. To help protect this risk, many lenders impose a maximum mortgage age limit for all older borrowers.

What are the main factors affecting mortgage eligibility if you’re retired?

There are several factors which affect eligibility for anyone getting a mortgage but the three which matter most for older borrowers are affordability, the term length and the loan to value or LTV. We explain each one in more detail below...

Affordability

As with any standard mortgage, one of the most important factors for all mortgage lenders is your affordability. 

If you’re not yet retired but plan to be in 10 years, say, for example, you’re 45 and plan to enter retirement age 55, some lenders may consider your mortgage application based on your current income from employment and limit the mortgage term accordingly.

As a retiree, you will need to be able to prove that your pension income can comfortably cover your repayments, on top of all your other outgoings. This will typically work out the same as that of a standard mortgage, with most lenders allowing a loan of 3 - 4x your annual income, and some potentially up to 5x - 6x.

If you’re applying for an interest-only mortgage, some lenders may consider a figure that exceeds this sum. If you’re using a secured loan to release cash, in the right circumstances, a few lenders may be happy to exceed up to 10x your income.

Contact us today for more information on secured loans or any other affordability queries.

The term length

Since some mortgage providers won’t lend to anyone over a certain age, being in your retirement years could limit your options when it comes to term lengths.

Some lenders have an age limit so if, for example, the provider has an age limit of 75 on a standard residential mortgage and you’re 60, you might be limited to a restricted term. If this were the case, you'd likely end up with high monthly repayments.

However, while some lenders will restrict the term to prevent a mortgage from running into your retirement years, there are providers who have no problem offering mortgage products that will not be paid off until after you retire.

Whether you qualify for these deals will depend on a number of factors, including:

  • Your expected retirement date
  • The current value of your pension pot
  • Your forecast retirement income

Loan to Value (LTV)

LTV is the balance between the amount of the mortgage and the value of the property. The higher the deposit you can pay, the lower the LTV. This is the measure all lenders will use to decide the mortgage interest rate they will offer you.

How much deposit you have is a key consideration for all mortgage providers. For retired people on a standard mortgage plan this is no exception.

For repayment mortgages, most lenders are happy to approve with 80%+ LTV, which would require a 20% deposit. This LTV will give you more options so you’re likely to end up with the best interest rates. Some lenders will consider you with 85% LTV, and a handful may accept 95% LTV (5% deposit). This is all based on the lender’s affordability and subject other eligibility checks.

For standard interest-only plans, the minimum LTV is usually around 15%. For older applicants it tends to be higher, at around 25% LTV minimum. An interest-only agreement is also usually based on the sale of the property acting as the repayment vehicle.

Unlike a retirement interest-only mortgage, these plans will have a fixed end date by which the capital would need to be repaid.

If you'd like to talk to an expert to find out what sort of mortgage deal you might be able to get based on your age and circumstances, make an enquiry for a free, no obligation chat with one of the whole-of-market experts we work with.

What is the maximum age for a mortgage?

While the above factors will play a significant role on eligibility, different providers tend to have a set age limit on the oldest age you can get a mortgage, regardless of your other circumstances.

Generally, the older you are the fewer lenders will be willing to lend to you due to the associated risk. The following table illustrates the likelihood of being approved for a mortgage as a pensioner, broken down by age.

Table of maximum age limits for mortgages

Age of borrower applying for mortgage Likelihood of acceptance Lender considerations
Getting a mortgage age 50 High Lots of providers are happy to lend to borrowers up to the age of 70, when many impose an age restriction mortgage cap. Provided you meet the other eligibility criteria, you may be able to borrow on a fixed term of up to 30 years
Getting a mortgage age 55 High
Getting a mortgage age 60 High
Getting a mortgage age 65 High
Getting a mortgage age 70 Fair
Getting a mortgage age 75 Moderate While many limit borrowing at age 70, some will lend up to age 75 and a handful up to 80 years old if you meet all their criteria
Getting a mortgage age 80 Moderate
Getting a mortgage age 85 Low Contrary to belief, it is possible to get a standard mortgage over the age of 85, and a few lenders have no age limit. While you will be more limited in choice of lenders, rates should still be competitive across those that do consider you. Other factors that will count in your favour is affordability, having a clean bill of health, clean credit, low LTV, and a shorter mortgage term.
Getting a mortgage age 90 Low
Getting a mortgage age 95 Low
Getting a mortgage with no age limit Low

Find out what kind of mortgage deal you might be able to get by talking to one of the expert mortgage brokers we work with. As whole-of-market brokers they have access to specialist lenders you won't find on the high street. Make an enquiry and we'll match you with a broker with the right experience to help.

Other factors impacting getting a mortgage if you’re retired

Having established the ways it is possible to get a mortgage at an older age, there are some factors which may make things more complicated, although some specialist lenders may still offer you a deal. 

Bad credit

As is the case with all mortgages, every lender is different when it comes to what they will or won’t accept in terms of bad credit.

The majority may decline if an instance of adverse has occurred recently, or if it’s a particularly severe issue.

Others are happy to consider a wider range of issues, from late payments, to IVAs to bankruptcy - it all depends on the lender and your other circumstances.

However, bad credit can be more of an issue when borrowing later in life, especially if you are well past retirement. This is because there are already fewer lenders willing to lend to older applicants due to the risk they pose, meaning even fewer will be accepting of more serious instances of adverse credit on your file.

Visit our bad credit section for more information on how different forms of adverse impact mortgage eligibility.

Interest rates

Since there are a smaller number of lenders offering later life mortgages, it stands to reason that rates are likely to be higher due to lack of competition. The rates you might get will depend on what rates are on offer at the time of your application.

If, however, you’re seeking a standard mortgage rather than a specific product for pensioners or older people, rates should be as competitive as they would be with any application. Speaking to a whole-of-market broker will help ensure you get the very best rates on the market.

Property type

Lenders tend to be more cautious when it comes to non-standard constructions because they are seen as higher risk, and therefore harder to sell when the term comes to an end. 

As we’ve mentioned above, not all lenders think the same way and a whole-of-market mortgage broker will know of specialist lenders who are happy to accept certain types of non-standard property. 

Visit our non-standard property page for more information on this or talk to one of the expert brokers we work with.

Speak to a retirement mortgage expert today

We’ve helped over 98,000 people find the right mortgage for their circumstances, even those with bad credit. In fact our customers regularly rate us 5 stars on Feefo, mainly because we offer access to expert brokers who are:

  • Whole of market
  • Already know the lenders to go to 
  • Experts on retirement mortgages
  • Are OMA Accredited advisors
  • Have completed a 12 module, LIBF certified training course

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

We’ll match you with one of the whole-of-market brokers we work with, making sure they have specific experience of helping other customers in a similar situation to you.

The service we offer is free, there’s absolutely no obligation and we won’t leave a mark on your credit rating.

Updated: 10th October 2019
OnlineMortgageAdvisor 2019 ©

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of 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 info 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.

Find out more about retirement mortgages

Retirement Mortgages