If you can’t meet your mortgage repayments, or you are worried you might fall behind, you must contact your lender as soon as possible. Lenders are required to treat people fairly, and must consider what they can do to prevent borrowers losing their homes.
Switch to an interest only mortgage, or extend your mortgage term
If you are currently on a repayment mortgage, your payments may reduce if you switch to interest-only.
You might also be able to remortgage or extend the terms of your mortgage to reduce your monthly costs.
All of these options don’t reduce the amount you will repay overall, and remortgaging or extending your mortgage term may mean you will pay much more for your property over the long-term. That said, they may reduce your monthly payments to a manageable amount and might be worth considering.
You should seek independent financial advice before changing to an interest-only mortgage. With this type of account, you are not paying anything off the amount borrowed and will still owe the same amount at the end of the mortgage term as you owe today.
Apply for help to pay the interest on your mortgage
You may be able to get help with mortgage interest payments if you claim income support, income-based jobseeker’s allowance, income-related employment and support allowance or pension credit. This is called Support for Mortgage Interest (or SMI).
You will only get help to pay the interest on your mortgage. It will not help to repay your mortgage, insurance policies or mortgage arrears.
The money is normally paid directly to your lender. There is no guarantee that you will get support, as there are various exclusion and limits that will apply.
To find out more visit DirectGov website or contact Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688 or The Pension Service on 08456 060 265. Ask for the leaflet IS8 ‘Home owners – help with housing costs’.