Last reviewed on 8th February 2022
Trying to find a mortgage as a police offer can be difficult, simply due to the demand the role has. The good news is that your employment with the police can give lenders confidence in your mortgage application.
Being a police officer in the UK has strong career prospects with the possibility of promotion. As a result, you may find your mortgage assessment to be straightforward. Nonetheless, approaching a lender at random is rarely advised. You’ll still want to shop around for the best mortgage deals to ensure you’re saving money where possible. Our experts can help you to compare mortgages across each lender.
- What is a police mortgage?
- How much can I borrow as a police officer?
- Can I get a mortgage if I’ve just joined the police force?
- How are police mortgages assessed?
- Can the police use the Help to Buy scheme?
- Should I take mortgage protection because I work for the police?
- Can bad credit stop me from getting a police mortgage?
- Will I still need mortgage advice before applying?
What is a police mortgage?
In all honesty, there are no dedicated mortgages for the police force. That being said, your profession as a police officer can improve your mortgage chances. Lenders understand that those in certain professions pose less risk and are more likely to repay a mortgage on time.
Those working in other areas of the emergency services may also find it easier to get a mortgage when compared to other professions. Furthermore, you don’t have to be an active officer on the front line. As long as you’re employed by the police, you’ll be viewed by lenders with the same confidence.
Employment within the police is often structured in a way that’s simple for lenders to assess. This is especially true when compared to applicants with a variable income, or income from self-employment.
How much can I borrow as a police officer?
Mortgage lenders will typically lend between three and five times your annual income. As a career with the police can support your mortgage, your income may be calculated using the upper threshold of five times your annual income.
It’s also important to note that some lenders will include income from overtime and bonuses whereas other lenders won’t. Applying with a well-suited lender can therefore have a positive effect on the amount you can borrow as a police officer.
Can I get a mortgage if I’ve just joined the police force?
It’s possible to get a mortgage if you’ve just joined the police force. That said, you’ll need to have a mortgage deposit of at least 5% and a contract of employment.
Mortgage lenders will still view you as low risk compared to other newly employed applicants. This is because the police force offers ample opportunity for career progression and it’s likely your salary will improve as a result. Nonetheless, the longer you’ve been in your career, the stronger your application becomes. Your career with the police also doesn’t guarantee you a mortgage so you’ll still need to apply with caution.
How are police mortgages assessed?
As a police officer, your mortgage will be assessed on the following:
- Your contractual income
- Bonuses and overtime (subject to your lender)
- The type of employment contract you have (full time, part-time)
- How long you’ve been working in the police for
- Are your earnings continuous or are there any gaps?
- Your regular spending habits – can you afford to repay a mortgage?
- Is your credit score good enough for a mortgage?
Depending on your circumstances, some lenders will be better suited than others.
Can the police use the Help to Buy scheme?
Getting a mortgage using the Help to Buy scheme is possible. Being a police officer won’t affect your eligibility of using either the equity loan or the shared ownership scheme.
With the Help to Buy equity loan, you’ll be provided with a government loan of up to 20% to help with your mortgage deposit. This means you’ll only need a mortgage for 75% of your property’s value. If you’re a police officer living in London, equity loans can go up to 40%. So, with a 5% deposit, you’re able to get a 55% mortgage.
Shared ownership is also another scheme that police officers can use. With the scheme, you’re able to buy a share of a home and pay rent on the remainder.
You can then buy more shares once you’re able to, eventually owning the house outright. There are terms and conditions that you’ll have to abide by that are set by your housing provider.
Should I take mortgage protection because I work for the police?
Being on the front line of the police force does pose a risk, especially when compared to other career choices. As a result, having a form of mortgage protection is often recommended for police officers.
If you work in an admin department and not necessarily on the front line, you may feel that your role is low risk. That doesn’t mean to say you won’t need mortgage protection.
There are various forms of protection that offer different levels of cover. Your mortgage advisor will explain the insurance options available and assess your risk levels in relation to your role with the police. This is because levels of cover will be unique to your own circumstances.
Can bad credit stop me from getting a police mortgage?
Even though lenders tend to be more flexible when assessing police mortgages, you’ll still need a fairly good credit score. Your career may give lenders confidence, but your credit score can suggest otherwise. Lenders will assess the type of credit problems you’ve had and how recent they were.
If you joined the force after your credit problems occurred, the underwriter may see past your credit problems. That said, if you’ve had severe issues such as an IVA or bankruptcy, then you may be declined. This doesn’t mean to say that it isn’t possible to get a mortgage, you’ll just need a suitable lender along with credible mortgage advice.
Will I still need mortgage advice before applying?
Your profession as a police officer can give you an advantage when applying for a mortgage, but it doesn’t guarantee you’ll be approved. As a result, getting mortgage advice is still highly recommended. Not only will your mortgage chances improve, but you can save money on the rates that are offered.
The emergency services sector covers a vast variety of careers. Even within the police, not all roles are built the same. Furthermore, the mortgage world is full of different options and hundreds of lenders. You can make an enquiry to speak to our experts and start your mortgage today.