Updated: March 07, 2022

High Net Worth Mortgages

Looking for a high net worth mortgage? Trying to get a feel for which lenders are out there? Find out if you can get one and exactly what to do next in our guide!

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Expert

Updated: March 07, 2022

While high net worth mortgages may be a little more complex than a standard mortgage, there are plenty of borrowing options, both with high street banks and private lenders.

In this guide we’ll explain exactly what a high net worth mortgage is, how asset-backed mortgages differ and how a broker can help you secure the best deal, whatever your needs.

What is a high net worth mortgage?

A high net worth mortgage is a particular type of mortgage for individuals who qualify for a high net worth exemption. A high net worth exemption is a special provision from the Financial Conduct Authority that allows anyone with an annual income of more than £300,000 or assets of over £3 million to be assessed more flexibly by lenders.

This means that the usual borrowing rules don’t apply and every mortgage is arranged on a case-by-case basis. Income multiples can be higher than six or even seven times annual salary and other factors can be taken into consideration such as projected income and bonuses.

Although there are high street banks offering high net worth mortgages, more typically they are arranged through either the private arm of a mainstream bank or a private lender. In the case of a private lender, introductions and negotiations are normally made by a third party and so working alongside a mortgage broker who specialises in high net worth mortgages is key.

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What criteria you need to meet to get one

You’ll need to meet the requirements for high net worth exemption, but beyond that, there are no strict eligibility criteria for this type of mortgage. The deal you’re offered will be bespoke and everything from the rates to the mortgage term can be negotiated from scratch.

The usual risk factors such as bad credit, non-standard income or borrowing in later life aren’t as restrictive to anywhere near the same degree compared to traditional lending. With things like bad credit, the lender might ask you about the circumstances behind any adverse information on your file, but it is unlikely to be a deal-breaker if you’re a high net worth person.

Deposit requirements

Deposit requirements are typically higher on high net worth mortgages. For mortgages around the £2 million mark, expect to be asked for 25% as a deposit. The higher your mortgage, the higher the deposit required, so once you get up to £5-6 million you’ll probably be looking at more like 40%.

Not being able to meet the 25% deposit requirement doesn’t mean a mortgage is impossible however. There are some lenders who are prepared to go lower and the beauty of the high net worth exemption is that lenders are able to take a more flexible approach if they feel like you’re a good fit. Find the right broker and they can help you identify the most appropriate lender for your circumstances.

Asset-based mortgages

If your income is low but your assets are high, then an asset-based mortgage could work for you. Asset-based mortgages are a particular type of high net worth mortgage where, as the name suggests, the loan is secured against existing assets rather than just the property itself. This could include physical assets such as stocks, shares, property, machinery or equipment, or intangible assets such as intellectual property.

Asset-backed mortgages can be flexible, competitively priced and they mean you don’t have to sell your assets in order to finance a new property. The risk of course is that you can lose the assets if you default on your mortgage.

A broker with expertise in asset-backed mortgages can help you to decide whether this is a good option for you and negotiate with lenders on your behalf.

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How a broker can help you

In the case of high net worth mortgages, using a broker really is an essential requirement as most private lenders will only deal with an intermediary and not directly with the borrower. Without a broker you’ll be cutting yourself off from most of your options.

Teaming up with a broker who has expertise in the high net worth mortgage market immediately opens doors for you to lenders and products that you otherwise wouldn’t have access to and many of these specialist brokers will have existing relationships with key contacts.

These mortgages offer a lot more flexibility and a broker can help here too by taking the lead on negotiating the very best terms and conditions for you. They’ve had years of experience of doing this for people in similar circumstances and can take all of this pressure and stress off your shoulders.

A specialist broker will be able to take an expert overview of your whole financial situation and offer tailor-made advice on the best course of action.

Which lenders offer high net worth mortgages?

Although there are high street lenders offering high net worth mortgages, more typically it would be arranged by a private bank. Private banks are less ‘tick box’ than the mainstream banks in terms of what they can offer and their assessment criteria and so are often a more appropriate option for those with complex finances.

Another potential route is through the private banking arm of a high street bank such as…

  • HSBC Global Private Banking
  • Barclays Private Bank
  • Lloyds Private Banking

In other cases you might find a private bank as part of a larger group – Coutts for example, which is part of the NatWest Group.

There are always pros and cons to any type of lender, but a broker who has particular expertise in high net worth mortgages will have in-depth knowledge of the whole sector and be able to help you assess your options and choose the best route for you.

The advisors we work with have contacts in the private arms of mainstream banks as well as specialist private lenders who aren’t usually approachable directly. This means they can compare and contrast what’s available from both types of lender to help you make the right choice.

Get matched with a specialist high net worth mortgage broker

Because high net worth mortgages are often arranged through private lenders, getting advice and support from an expert broker is really invaluable. Our free broker matching service can connect you with a high net worth mortgage broker who will be able to make use of their contact network and guide you through the application process.

Call us on 0808 189 0463 or make an enquiry and get matched with a high net worth mortgage broker today. All of the expert advisors we work with have been through a rigorous vetting process and have the blend of knowledge and experience you need to get tailor-made advice for your unique circumstances.

FAQs

Can I get a high net worth mortgage on a low income?

Yes, it may be possible. While typically they’re offered to those on a high income, the high net worth exemption can apply if you have assets over £3 million, so there may be lenders who will be willing to secure the debt against your assets instead.

High net worth mortgage borrowers also have more flexibility when it comes to income multiples. Whereas a standard mortgage tends to be capped at 4.5 times your annual income, a high net worth mortgage could be offered on more than 7 times your income, as well as having personalised terms.

There are also lenders in this sector who will allow you to use a portion of your assets on top of your income, to bolster your affordability.

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We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with mortgage brokers who are experts in all different mortgage subjects. Ask us a question and we'll get the best expert to help.

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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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