Switching your mortgage

You'll need to be both frank and honest with your lender and explain your situation if your circumstances change. Your lender should always try to assist you.

For example, your lender may suggest that you look to switch your deal to an interest only mortgage, which should reduce your monthly repayments.

Alternatively, they may offer you a repayment holiday of a few months, or offer to extend the length of your loan.

Contacting any lender when you first experience financial problems will always pay dividends, rather than if the lender has to chase you.

Top tips

  • You'll need to be frank with your mortgage lender if you're having problems keeping up your mortgage payments
  • Don't forget the importance of your credit rating - a series of late or non-payments could soon damage it
  • Being financially linked to someone else could affect your credit score. If your partner has poor credit history, keep your finances separate

Clean credit rating

It's important you don’t forget the importance of keeping a clean credit rating on your credit file. 

A series of late or non-payments will soon damage your credit rating, and for the foreseeable future you may struggle to obtain credit, including being able to remortgage at a competitive rate.

If you’ve had a County Court Judgement which has now been settled, you need to ensure the settlement is recorded on your credit file.  

If it’s not, get the confirmation details from the court and inform the credit reference agencies.

Check your credit file

If  there's a default is on your file unfairly, then write to the lender asking them to get it deleted from your file. 

If this doesn’t work you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) who can have it wiped from your file if they agree it’s unfair.

If you can’t get the default wiped from the file and you still believe that it’s unfair, then ask for a Notice of Correction to be added to your file.  

A Notice of Correction is your explanation of why you think the default is unfair, and any potential lender will then be able to see your explanation.

Credit score

If you're married  or living with someone with a bad credit score this shouldn't affect your credit score. But if you're financially linked this may affect you.

If your partner has a poor credit history, then try to  keep your finances separate to avoid damaging the your score, or vice versa.

If you're no longer financially linked to someone then it’s up to you to contact the credit reference agencies and tell them.

You should also ensure the addresses for any open accounts on your credit file are up to date.  Having multiple addresses can hamper credit checks.

Which? Money Compare

Taking out a mortgage is a complicated process. Visit Which? Money Compare to compare hundreds of mortgages and find those with the best rates and best customer service.

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