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Halifax expands lending to contract workers

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22/05/2013
Workers on short-term contracts are eligible to apply for any Halifax mortgage via income verification for the first time.

The lender has widened its income verification process to include all professional contract workers who have at least a year’s experience and meet a minimum income requirement of £500 per day or £75,000 per year. Previously only IT contractors were eligible.

Springtide Capital managing director Henry Knight said the move was good news: “We find a lot more people operating through contracts nowadays and while there have been lenders helping, the options have been limited. There is no doubt this opens things up.”

The rule change applies only to workers with a contract. Self-employed workers or freelancers without a contract must apply as self-employed and affordability will continue to review affordability based on the last three years’ tax assessments.

Contract workers were among those hit hardest after lenders tightened criteria in reaction to the financial crisis.

Self-certification vanished from the market and Mortgage Market Review requirements for income verification means it has been effectively banned.

However, earlier this year, Saffron Building Society launched a niche mortgage range which included products aimed at self-employed borrowers. It will lend up to 80% loan-to-value based on one year of the borrower’s accounts and a projection of their earnings.

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