Getting a Mortgage on a Single Brick Construction Home

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Home Property Types Getting A Mortgage On A Single Brick Construction Home
Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Advisor, MD

Nathan Porter

Reviewer: Nathan Porter

Independent Mortgage Advisor

Updated: March 18, 2024

How we reviewed this article:

Our experts continuously monitor changes in the financial space and work closely with qualified mortgage advisors for factual verification.

March 18, 2024

If a property is built using single brick construction, it means that the exterior wall is simply one brick deep. Single brick, or single skin, construction properties are buildings deemed as ‘non-standard’ for mortgage purposes.

Here, we investigate if getting a mortgage is more difficult for these properties and why. We identify lending criteria you may have to meet and how a broker can prove invaluable for these types of mortgage applications.

Can you get a mortgage on a property with single skin construction?

Yes, it’s possible. There are a number of lenders who will consider an application for a mortgage for this type of non-standard construction. However, their final decision will usually be dependent on the findings of a surveyor’s report. They will want to ensure that the property is structurally safe to minimize the risk of the loan as well as any other potential issues the building has.

Most people purchasing properties with single skin construction need the services of a specialist broker to boost their chances of approval.

Why it can be more difficult

Lenders see single skin properties as posing more risks. With more risks, comes decreased market interest which affects the resale value of the property. As a result, lenders are more hesitant to lend as they want to recoup their investment in the unfortunate event of a repossession.

There are a number of reasons that single skin properties have more risks attached to them.

  • Structural integrity – This type of construction has been identified as weaker than more modern, standard construction properties. The risk, and added expense, of rectifying any issues is an area of concern for lenders.
  • Damp – These properties are more prone to damp as water can penetrate the home more easily. Modern properties, with an air cavity, allow far more ventilation so damp is less of an issue.
  • Energy inefficient – The amount of warm air that can escape a single-skin property makes them thermally inefficient. Potential buyers may be put off by this, preventing them from making an offer.

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What about for a property with a single skin extension?

If the only part of your potential property with a single skin construction is an extension, you may find it easier to get a mortgage than if the entire property was built in this way. The risks that are usually posed with single skin constructions are perceived to be far less if it only applies to a small portion of the house.

You may find that your range of lenders is wider than if the entire property was a single skin construction. However, a broker is still a good bet as they’ll know what lenders offer you the best rates given your circumstances and the property itself.

How a broker can help you get approved for a single brick mortgage

The brokers we work with will weigh up all of the above factors in your specific situation. They will then assess which lender is most likely to accept your application. That’s down to their experience and detailed knowledge of the mortgage lending industry. They’ll give you the right advice when it comes to single skin properties and how your specific property’s characteristics can affect which lenders will extend you a loan.

As a specialist broker will know all the lenders which will accept your application, you will have more options from which to choose. You can therefore pick between a better range of products – which may include a lower rate or a longer term which would reduce your monthly payments.

They could consequently save you money as sometimes lenders place a higher interest rate on these mortgages to offset the higher perceived risk.

Get in touch with us so we can connect you with an expert with plenty of experience in this area.

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Lending criteria for properties with this construction

Every lender has a different approach when considering mortgage applications.

When it comes to single skin constructions, providers will have their own stance on the following factors:

  • Number of storeys – Many lenders specify how many storeys they are happy for the single skin part of the property to be. Those offering these products may require the single skin portion to be one storey only, some may go higher. Others will solely depend on the outcome of a surveyor’s report.
  • Type of room – Lenders may want the areas with a single skin to be non habitable rooms. For example, kitchens, bathrooms, storage rooms or porches and not a bedroom.
  • Property location – Some providers will want these properties to be in sheltered areas.

Other more generic factors that could impact your eligibility are:

  • Age – Lenders usually only extend to those between 21 and 70. Some may go higher.
  • Income type – Some lenders specify how income is earned. For example, not all lenders consider bonuses and commissions within their eligibility assessments. Instead they may only use salary income.
  • Credit history – Past bad credit issues won’t automatically stop you from getting a mortgage. Lenders weigh up the severity of the problem, and when it was, on a case by case basis.
  • Deposit and LTV – The larger your deposit, and the better your loan-to-value ratio, the more providers you will find consider your application. This is due to the lower risk of lending to you.

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Get matched with a non-standard construction mortgage specialist

With many mortgage providers saying they will potentially offer a mortgage on single skin construction properties, using a broker to find the right one for you can be invaluable. A non-standard construction mortgage specialist will have in-depth market knowledge so that they know which lender will accept your application considering your own specific financial situation and the house you want to buy.

Call us on 0808 189 2301 or enquire online with us today so that we can connect you with one of the specialists we work with.

FAQs

There are a number of ways you can tell. Firstly, if possible, look at the wall pattern outside your house and inside. If they’re different, it’s not single skin. Or, you could measure the width of one wall inside your property, and the width of the property outside. Measure the width of a single brick on the exterior wall too. If the exterior wall width, minus the single brick width, is the same as the interior wall’s width, you likely have a single skin wall. A surveyor should be able to confirm either way for you.

Be aware of the pitfalls of this construction type and the implications it might have on the property’s saleability before pressing ahead with any plans to use single skin materials.

You should also consider seeking professional advice to make sure your extension meets current building regulations and is as energy efficient and structurally sound as possible.

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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

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