Mortgage using gross salary for European bank employee


At Enness, we often encounter clients who either work internationally or for multinational companies. I recently assisted a client who needed a mortgage calculated from his gross salary, as he worked for a European company which had a special arrangement with UK authorities, which created a complicated situation when my client and his wife were looking to secure a mortgage.

My clients were a couple in their early thirties with very young children; he worked for a European bank, whilst she worked in PR. They had been referred to Enness—and myself directly—by a friend. My clients were looking to buy a large home for their growing family, and had found a property in Hertfordshire for £550,000.

However, as mentioned, his employer had an arrangement with the UK authorities in which UK employees are exempt from UK income tax and national insurance contributions. This meant that his net income was the equivalent of a UK employee on a higher gross salary. He also received substantial bonuses which we needed a bank to take into full account.

Unfortunately, most high street banks were not willing to gross up his net pay. This meant he was failing affordability tests, which are usually calculated by using a multiple of a borrower’s income. As an additional complication, his wife was on maternity leave and was in receipt of statutory pay. Although between them they were on a good income, high street banks were unable to help them.


Fortunately, I was able to speak directly with an underwriter to explain the structure of my clients’ income and make the lender comfortable with assessing affordability based on the UK gross equivalent. Regarding the wife’s salary, this underwriter was happy to accept an employer’s letter confirming her return to work salary.

I secured my client’s a 5-year fixed rate of 2.14% on a capital repayment basis over 35 years. My clients were delighted with this outcome and are looking forward to enjoying their new family home.