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Mortgages for Barristers

Arranging mortgages for barristers can be a complex process as lenders have a surprisingly blinkered attitude to the legal profession especially with regard to how barristers operate and are paid.

We deal with barristers every day, from those recently out of pupillage through to Queens Counsel. This experience, together with our reputation among the specialist lenders, puts us in a unique position to be able to assist you. We consider below some of the issues that barristers come up against when arranging mortgages together with some of the solutions.

Most barristers establish and then continue to progress their business and their income therefore develops in an exponential curve over time. For this reason, it can be difficult to arrange a mortgage for younger barristers who are starting out in their careers. Lenders are really only interested in what has happened in the past and will look for a two to three year earning history with full accounts provided. Most lenders do not understand the complex environment that barristers work in.

Barristers’ costs, profit and affordability

High expenses and unpredictable income are facts of life for barristers. We understand the pressures of the profession and that when we arrange a mortgage for our barrister clients, we need to save them time, hassle and money.

Barristers need to be able to satisfy a mortgage lender that their loan is affordable. However, for most barristers, gross earning receipts are significantly higher than their actual income, what with the cost of Chambers, travel, legal subscriptions and subsistence reducing the net figure down to perhaps half of the gross amount. The result of standard mortgage income multipliers being applied to the net income of barristers can therefore be unfair as this does not reflect true earnings’ capacity. We find that by using our relationships with lenders and introducing factors such as aged debt to give a more accurate reflection of earning capacity, we can arrange lending where others fail.

Barristers letting out property

Other complications that arise when we deal with barristers are issues involving properties that they own which are either let or about to be let. This scenario is not always acceptable to a lender and can sometimes restrict the affordability calculation to the extent that a mortgage is declined. As barristers tend to purchase at the higher end of the housing market,  there are also fewer lenders operating at this level of mortgage, representing a further restriction of choice.

Put simply, a barrister arranging their own mortgage is as impractical as a mortgage broker conducting their own defence in a legal matter.

We strongly suggest that you use your time doing what you do best and let us use our time doing what we do best – arranging mortgages for barristers.

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