Who is Eligible for an NHS Mortgage?
Whilst there is no specific ‘NHS Mortgage’, being an NHS employee gives you access to a range of specialised offers. Some lenders offer mortgages for NHS staff at lower interest rates. There are even discounts available from some lenders.
In order to be eligible for these types of offers, you need to be an NHS clinical staff employee, in any of the following organisations:
- NHS GP Surgeries
- NHS Ambulance Trust
- NHS Direct
- The National Blood Transfusion Service
- Dental practices with NHS status
- The Health Protection Agency
- Mental Healthcare and Social Care Trusts
- NHS Primary Care and other Care Trusts
Medical staff, administrative staff and porters are not usually eligible.
Am I eligible for the NHS Key Worker Mortgage Scheme?
Unfortunately, the government key worker mortgage scheme that was once available to NHS workers, no longer exists. There are a range of other schemes in place, however, that are available to NHS workers. These schemes may provide lower interest rates if you work for the NHS.
What type of NHS mortgages are available?
As previously mentioned, there is no single NHS mortgage product. You essentially have access to the same mortgage products as everyone else. There are a range of mortgage schemes that are not specifically aimed at NHS employees, but are likely to be beneficial to them. Products like the help to buy scheme, right to buy scheme, new buy scheme and shared ownership mortgages are all valuable options to consider.
Information on Help to Buy, Shared Ownership, Right to Buy and NewBuy Schemes
Help to Buy
This government initiative is aimed predominantly at supporting first time buyers, however, can be used by homeowners in some cases. The scheme allows you to buy a home valued at up to £250k (£450 in Greater London), with a much lower deposit than a standard mortgage. You still require a minimum of 5% deposit, which is topped up by a 20% equity loan (40% in Greater London) from the government, giving you a total of 25% deposit.
This means that you will only require a 75% mortgage to buy your home. There are no interest charges on the equity loan for the first five years, meaning that you will only have to pay interest on the actual mortgage. It’s worth noting that this scheme is only available to those purchasing new build properties.
Shared ownership schemes are usually, although not exclusively, offered by housing associations. The concept is that you buy a share of a property, which will require a much lower mortgage and a much lower deposit. You then rent the remaining share of the property from the housing association or local authority. The higher percent of ownership you take, the less your rental charge will be.
Right to Buy
This option is exclusively for tenants of local authority or housing associations. It allows tenants the opportunity to buy the property that they are renting. Rental properties are usually available at a significant discount. This means the overall mortgage amount and therefore the deposit required, will be much lower than in a standard purchase.
Similarly to the ‘help to buy mortgage, the NewBuy scheme only requires a 5% deposit. You then take out a 95% NewBuy mortgage at a lower interest rate than a standard mortgage. This equates to the equivalent of paying interest on a 75% mortgage, due to a government subsidy. This option is also only available on new build properties.
Do NHS workers get discounts on Mortgages?
It’s possible to obtain a discount from some lenders, if you’re a health service employee, but this is at their discretion and terms and conditions will vary between lenders. These offers will not usually be easily accessible, so in order to find the options available to you, it’s advisable to contact a mortgage broker. This is especially true if you’re a first time buyer.
How much can NHS staff borrow?
Much like any mortgage applicant, your offer will be based on affordability. You will also need to prove that you are able to maintain mortgage payments. The salary range for NHS clinical staff is £20-£45k and therefore your offer will likely fall between £61,608 and £204,579 depending on your grade and other affordability criteria