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Flying freehold mortgages

The key information you need to know about flying freehold mortgages

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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: 25th June 2019 *

How do I secure a mortgage on a flying freehold?

We receive quite a few enquiries from people who are considering a mortgage to buy a flying freehold property and want to understand what implications may be involved.  

Whether you simply want to know which mortgage lenders would consider flying freehold properties or if there are any problems getting a mortgage for a flying freehold, hopefully, this article will provide the information you need.

In this guide  we will cover:

Once you’ve read through the details below in this article, make an enquiry so we can arrange for an advisor we work with to contact you directly and find out if they can be of any assistance.

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What is a flying freehold mortgage?

Mortgages on flying freehold properties are, essentially, the same as any other mortgage but with the exception of being linked to a specific type of property.

The term ‘flying freehold’ is used in English law to describe a section of a freehold property which overhangs or underlies another freehold.

Classic examples include a room situated above a shared passageway, garage(s) or a balcony extending over a neighbourhood property. Other more rare examples may include old city townhouses where an upstairs bedroom belongs to the next door property because a previous owner sold it to raise money.

The owner of a flying freehold doesn’t own the structure which supports that part of their property. The phrase only applies if that part of a building can be occupied. Overhanging drain pipes or guttering do not fall into this category.

What should I look out for when buying a flying freehold property?

If you’re buying a flying freehold house (or any other type of flying freehold property) it’s important to check it has been established correctly. The flying freehold would need to have been reflected in the title deeds regardless of whether they are registered or not at the Land Registry, for both the overhanging and underlying properties.

Appropriate covenants would need to exist to provide the rights to enter into the neighbouring property to inspect or repair as required. These covenants should also prevent your neighbour from any alterations to their property which may affect the structural integrity of that which underlies or overhangs.

If you’re thinking of buying a flying freehold house and want to understand more about what they are, make an enquiry with us and we will ask an expert to get in touch with you.

Can I get a mortgage on a flying freehold property?

If you’re looking to use a mortgage for a flying freehold property the good news is most lenders will consider your application.

However, this is usually subject to the area of flying freehold covering a certain amount of space - typically most lenders will allow no more than 20% of the total gross floor area of the property, although some will go as high as 25% and others only as high as 10%.

What issues may arise when applying for a flying freehold mortgage?

The approach and attitude taken towards flying freeholds will vary from lender to lender. As mentioned above, most lenders will consider an application for this property type depending on the proportion of the flying freehold element that covers the total floor area.

Problems can also occur where some lenders will want to delve much deeper into the wording of the property title deeds to ensure that the flying freehold element has been appropriately documented and all the relevant covenants are in place.

Do lenders usually insist on flying freehold indemnity insurance to cover any possible issues with the deeds?

Yes, most lenders will normally ask for this. Flying freehold Indemnity insurance is widely available from specialist insurers and typically costs no more than a few hundred pounds.

The indemnity insurance provides appropriate cover and financial compensation for any legal defects or omissions relating to the flying freehold element within the title deeds. Your conveyancing solicitor will be able to advise you in more detail on this.

Most lenders will probably request this insurance as part of their approval for a mortgage, however, some lenders will not consider flying freehold properties even if indemnity insurance exists.

If you’ve had any issues securing a mortgage for a flying freehold property, get in touch and we can arrange for a specialist to contact you to offer assistance.

Is buying a flying freehold flat possible?

A flat or apartment would not typically be classed as ‘flying freehold’. Most flats, apartments and maisonettes are sold as leasehold properties as the owners would not own the land they are built on. Some freehold flats do exist, however they can be much trickier to secure mortgages on.

If you are considering buying a freehold flat, get in touch and we can arrange for a specialist to contact you to discuss further.

Which mortgage lenders would consider flying freehold properties?

As mentioned above, most lenders will consider mortgages for flying freehold properties depending upon the amount of flying freehold element which covers the floor area.

To give you a brief overview of which lenders accept applications for flying freehold mortgages, please see the table below.

Lender Name & Product Flying Freehold Criteria
Santander Flying Freehold Mortgage Subject to solicitors confirmation property title deeds cover flying freehold element
Nationwide Building Society Flying Freehold Mortgage Will lend on houses and bungalows only
Natwest Flying Freehold Mortgage Subject to solicitors confirmation property title deeds cover flying freehold element
Mansfield Building Society Flying Freehold Mortgage Maximum 25% freehold element
Ipswich Building Society Flying Freehold Mortgage Maximum 25% freehold element

The table above is merely for example purposes and shows only a small sample of the lenders who offer flying freehold mortgages. The market is vast and the best way to find the right lender for your needs and circumstances is to apply through a whole-of-market broker.

Looking for a flying freehold mortgage, with all the legal permutations that come with it, can be arduous and lenders with expertise in this niche area are difficult to come by.

This is why is important to use a whole-of-market broker, like the ones we work with. They are experts in flying freehold mortgages and they arrange them every day. Not only does this mean they’re best placed to offer you bespoke advice, they can also introduce you to the best flying freehold lender for your needs and circumstances.

Why you should speak to a mortgage broker that understands the  complexities of flying freehold properties

At OMA, we can offer you a first-class service tailored to your own specific needs with access to the most experienced flying freehold brokers available that:

  • Have access to every flying freehold lender on the market
  • Have excellent relationships with flying freehold lenders
  • Are OMA accredited advisors with specialist knowledge of flying freehold
  • Have completed a 12 module LIBF accredited training course

You should apply through this channel because…

  • The whole of market brokers we work with can offer bespoke advice on flying freehold mortgages
  • They can introduce you to the right lender first time
  • They can save you the legwork of making multiple lender enquiries, which can also have a negative impact on your credit rating
  • Approaching the wrong lender comes with the risk of getting bad advice, unfavourable mortgage rates or being turned away altogether

Speak to a flying freehold mortgage expert

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

Then sit back and let us do all the hard work in finding the broker with the right expertise for your circumstances.  – We don’t charge a fee and there’s absolutely no obligation or marks on your credit rating.

Updated: 25th June 2019
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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.