We regularly have people coming to Enness requesting mortgages for unusual properties – from lighthouses to castles, to barn conversions and islands off of the UK coast, or even to build their own property without any prior experience.
The good news is that if you do have your eye on a less-than-typical property then today’s mortgage market is to your advantage. Indeed, mortgages for unusual properties are more likely to be approved than at any time since the credit crisis of 2008. This is indicative of the mortgage market at large growing.
However, in order to help mortgages for unusual properties be approved, it pays to take specialist advice in order to know which bank to approach as your mortgage being approved is no sure thing. This is because the more generic or high street lenders are not willing to lend on those properties which can be considered “non-standard” or difficult to sell. The general rule is the more complicated the mortgage requirement, the harder it is to raise finance unless all the “normal” criteria are met. This is particularly true of those properties which combine a residential and commercial use.
At Enness we have a lot of clients coming to us who have struggled to obtain a mortgage on their unusual properties with other brokers. Indeed, according to industry statistics around eight out of ten applicants were rejected for a loan that can be considered “unusual” but with the help of specialist advice were able to source finance for the loan.
For example, we recently raised finance for a castle in the south west of England that needed to be converted into different dwellings – most lenders would veer away from that the moment you even broach the topic of turrets and listed sites!
Underneath the category of ‘mortgages for unusual properties’ also falls self-build projects, church conversions, homes in multiple occupations and small-scale development finance.