If you get into financial difficulties and have trouble making your monthly mortgage payments, don’t assume the state will step in.
To get even limited mortgage help, you’ll need to be eligible for Income Support or income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance.
Qualifying for Help
To qualify, you need to be working less than an average of 16 hours a week and earning a low income.
You won’t be eligible if you have a partner working 24 hours or more a week, or if either of you have more than £8,000 in savings.
And the payments will be reduced if you’ve got over £3,000.
The Help You Can Get
Even if you qualify for the full benefit, it will cover only the interest on the first £100,000 of your debt – and only up to a pre-set rate. (If your interest rate is higher, tough.)
There’s no help with repaying the capital part of the mortgage debt (in other words, the amount you originally borrowed) or any endowment or other linked savings policy.
And if you took out your loan after September 1995, you will have to wait 39 weeks to get anything.
For older mortgages, payments start after eight weeks, but for the next 18 just half the eligible interest is paid.
If you don’t have mortgage payment or income protection insurance in place, think seriously about getting some.
To find out more, read our mortgage protection insurance guide.