Bad credit mortgages in Northern Ireland

Looking for a bad credit mortgage in Northern Ireland? The brokers we work with can help you get the best deal.

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Expert

Updated: December 16, 2021

While there are fewer mortgages available if you have a poor credit history and are applying in Northern Ireland, you do still have options.

This step-by-step guide is designed to provide you with all the information you will need to get a mortgage with bad credit in Northern Ireland.

Can you get a bad credit mortgage in Northern Ireland?

Yes, it’s certainly possible but it will depend upon the severity of the issues you’ve had and how they’ve impacted on your overall record. This in turn could limit the number of lenders willing to consider your application.

It’s likely that you’ll need to spend some time repairing your credit score before you apply. This will also allow time for you to build up a respectable deposit, in order to attract more lenders.  A minimum deposit of between 20%-15%, is a good starting point.

How does Northern Ireland compare to other parts of the U.K?

In a general sense, the actual eligibility requirements and mortgage process is pretty much the same for Northern Ireland (N.I) as the rest of the U.K. There are a few differences though:

  • The first and, perhaps, most obvious difference – with a population of just under 2 million, there’s fewer high street lenders to choose from
  • As a result, this can mean interest rates tend to be higher for mortgages in N.I than the rest of the U.K. This can make bad credit mortgages quite expensive, depending on which lender you choose
  • Average home loan terms in N.I  are usually arranged between 10 and 25 years, while in England they’re almost always 25 years
  • In England and Wales, lenders will normally use a multiple of 4.5 times your annual income to determine how much they will lend you, in Northern Ireland this is usually set at 4 times

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How to get a mortgage with poor credit in Northern Ireland

Here are the steps to follow to apply for a bad credit mortgage in Northern Ireland…

  1. Download your credit reports: If you’ve got bad credit of any kind, it’s a good idea to start off by getting your credit report into the best possible shape. Download your credit files from each of the UK’s main credit reference agencies and be sure to challenge any inaccuracies you find on them and request that all outdated information be removed.
  2. Prepare your documents: In addition to your credit files, there are other documents you’ll need to prepare to apply for a mortgage. These are no different to the paperwork you’d need for anywhere else in the UK, namely proof of address, proof of income and ID. You can find a full list of what you’ll need in our guide to mortgage applications.
  3. Speak to a mortgage broker: Rather than approaching a lender directly, the shrewdest move you can make next is to speak with a bad credit mortgage broker who has experience dealing with the N.I market. They’ll be able to identify the lenders who are best placed to help people who’ve had bad credit in the past secure a mortgage and also help manage your application, from start to finish.

We can help with this! Our free broker-matching service will quickly assess your needs and circumstances to pair you with a bad credit mortgage advisor with a wealth of knowledge and experience of the Northern Irish market – Make an enquiry to get started with them today.

Are there any geographic restrictions?

Not restrictions as such, but there are areas in Northern Ireland where it’s more difficult to get a mortgage; this does follow suit with the rest of the UK, although not on the same scale.

For example, demand in rural areas is less common than in cities such as Belfast and Bangor. As a result lenders are more cautious when offering mortgages in order to avoid any unnecessary repossessions.

To lessen the risk, lenders may charge higher interest rates for properties in rural areas of Northern Ireland where the applicant has a poor credit history.

The take home point is that it’s even more important to use an experienced bad credit broker if you’re applying for a mortgage in one of these areas. They could actually make the difference between you getting the mortgage you need or not.

Which credit issues might be accepted?

Typically, the credit issues that lenders might accept  in Northern Ireland are relatively in line with the rest of the UK, albeit slightly stricter.

Not all credit issues are assessed in the same way and what may be deemed acceptable or ‘passable’ will vary from lender to lender. Needless to say, some events are deemed more severe than others.

For example:

  • Bankruptcies
  • County Court Judgements (CCJs)
  • Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVAs)
  • Repossessions

All of the above would be almost universally deemed to be the most severe credit issues. Most, if not all, lenders would not accept applications if such issues had occurred in the last 12-24 months and in some cases – much longer!

On the other hand, if you’ve missed payments on credit or a utility bill, then a lender would be more willing to look at your application, particularly if you have a healthy regular income and a large deposit.

If your credit issues are severe – don’t panic! There are specialist lenders who have specific expertise in dealing with such lending requests and could still provide you with the mortgage you need.

Affordability is a key factor here. If you earn enough income to cover the mortgage costs and have spent time rebuilding your credit score and a deposit, this will demonstrate to a lender you’re now ready to meet your obligations.

Get matched with a broker who specialises in bad credit mortgage in Northern Ireland

Getting a mortgage can be difficult at the best of times but it can be even harder if you have a poor credit history. It’s important to find a broker who specialises in the Northern Irish housing market and is familiar with poor credit applicants.

We can match you with advisors who meet this criteria.  Call Online Money Advisor on 0808 189 0463 or make an enquiry to be connected to the right advisor for your situation.

We don’t charge a fee, and there’s absolutely no further obligation or marks to your credit rating.

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Pete Mugleston

Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Expert

About the author

Pete, an expert in all things mortgages, cut his teeth right in the middle of the credit crunch. With plenty of people needing help and few mortgage providers lending, Pete found great success in going the extra mile to find mortgages for people whom many others considered lost causes. The experience he gained, coupled with his love of helping people reach their goals, led him to establish Online Mortgage Advisor, with one clear vision – to help as many customers as possible get the right advice, regardless of need or background.

Pete’s presence in the industry as the ‘go-to’ for specialist finance continues to grow, and he is regularly cited in and writes for both local and national press, as well as trade publications, with a regular column in Mortgage Introducer and being the exclusive mortgage expert for LOVEMoney. Pete also writes for OMA of course!

FCA Disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms that are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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