Mortgages for barristers – brokers to the rescue

Due to the highly specialised nature of the work they do and the unique circumstances under which chambers operate, barrister mortgages constitute an important subset of the work that mortgage brokers carry out.

Specialist advice on both the selection of mortgage product and how to present earnings as part of a mortgage application are invaluable for professionals who often don’t have the time to fully research the complexities of the market.


Why do barristers need specialist mortgage advice?

There are a number of factors working against barristers when it comes to making a mortgage application. Foremost among these is the difficulty of presenting earnings accurately to a mortgage lender.

While lenders must be satisfied that an applicant can afford their mortgage, the remuneration of barristers in private practice is rarely a cut and dried affair. A barrister’s cash flow is often restricted by lengthy cases, debt owed by solicitors, the costs of chambers themselves as well as travel expenses and legal subscriptions.

All these act to cause significant underestimation of the net worth and earnings potential of a barrister and can cause mortgage applications to be rejected.

Of course, if barristers had the time to thoroughly look into lenders’ requirements and preferences, to craft their mortgage applications accordingly, and then to follow up their applications with further responses to lenders’ concerns, then none of this would be a problem.

But long working hours and heavy caseloads often means that seeking expert advice and help from a specialist mortgage broker is a much more convenient option.

How can a mortgage broker help a barrister?

A mortgage broker can help a barrister with their mortgage application in three main ways:

  • By recommending suitable mortgage products and advising on the likelihood that the barrister’s application for a particular product will be approved;
  • Presenting the barrister’s mortgage application to the lender in a way that emphasises the barrister’s true earnings;
  • Advocating on the barrister’s behalf in cases where the lender requires further evidence.

Because of their unique method of remuneration, barrister’s making mortgage applications by themselves are not adequately catered for by large financial institutions. A call centre operative at a bank for instance will not be familiar with the extra measures a barrister needs to take when presenting their application.

Mortgage brokers who specialise in mortgages for barristers on the other hand will have existing relationships with such organisations, will know how each lender likes to be presented with evidence of earnings, where each draws the line between an accepted and rejected application and how much room for negotiation there is.


Photo credit: Chris Downer