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Mortgages for barristers are no cut and dried affair…


Mortgages for highly skilled professionals, like barristers, form a vital part of the work that mortgage brokers carry out.

There is one reason – barristers simply don’t have time.

This is due to the highly specialised nature of the work they do and the unique circumstances under which chambers operate. The assistance of broker advice on mortgage product selection, and how to present earnings as part of a mortgage application, is invaluable to them.

Barrister mortgage applications are not always simple.

Not simple, but achievable, if you’re a broker who understands what mortgage providers are looking for. One of the main hurdles for a barrister mortgage application is presenting earnings accurately.

Sounds easy? Not really, 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 qualified mortgage broker is a much more convenient option.

How can a mortgage broker help a barrister?

A qualified 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, barristers’ making mortgage applications by themselves are not adequately catered for by large financial institutions. A call centre operative at a bank for instance may not be familiar with the extra measures a barrister needs to take when presenting their application.

Mortgage brokers who have experience 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.




Too hot to handle: Speed dating for mortgage hunters

So you’re looking for a mortgage? Or perhaps more importantly you’re actually looking for a mortgage broker, although you might not realise it yet. Looking for a mortgage is a daunting task. From variables and trackers to base rates and fees. Is it a minefield? Hopefully not if you have the right broker. Our speedy guide to finding the right mortgage broker should allay imminent pitfalls.


A wide range of deals

Finding the shining star in a sea of brokers is not easy. Henry Knight, Managing Director of Springtide Capital reveals that while most mortgage brokers will have access to the percentage of the market, some will operate on restrictive panels. Choose one with a wider range of options available and they’ll be the one most likely to help.

Experience it all

What kind of experience do they boast? If you are in need of a slightly more complicated deal you need a mortgage broker who can bring a hefty level of market experience. Don’t be afraid to ask.

It pays to know

You need to know what broker fee levels you are paying. This is incredibly important to find out before you have your first meeting; because not only are you paying fees associated with the mortgage, but you need to know what advice from your broker might you be paying for too.

Are we there yet?

Mortgage applications are taking longer to process. Read our blog post on that here. You should always as your broker how quickly they think they will be able to process your application. It’s crucial to make sure your application has the best chance of being processed as quickly as possible in a market as buoyant as this.

What kind of strategy and methods does the broker and its team have in place to handle your application if something goes wrong? Ask them to be specific about their relationships with particular lenders. Make sure you note their experience in case your application gets tricky.