Mortgages where a lender views your application as belonging to a category known as complex income mortgages
Privacy Statement
In todays ever changing climate, people may not just have one income stream and may generate their income from various sources. Working with a broker that understands complex income is vital.

Complex incomes continue to rise as many of us adapt to how the way we work changes.

From self employed income to a second job, rental income, or multiple income streams.

  • 4.2 million are self-employed in the UK in June 2022.

-compared to-

  • 3.4 million in December 2020.

A rise of 25 per cent.

(Source: Statista, Aug 2022)

Your individual financial situation

Complex income streams are often sourced from:
  • Self-employed work
  • Owning one or more businesses
  • Freelancing / contracting / gig economy work
  • Employment in creative industries
  • Professional investments
  • Landlord property rentals
  • Foreign currency income
  • Income form trusts
  • Income from dividends


An individual’s financial situation is not always straightforward or predictable. Mortgages where a lender views your application as belonging to a category known as complex income mortgages, will require more in depth understanding and justification.

Obtaining a mortgage deal can be a challenge if you have a complex income but if structured correctly manny lenders are willing to offer you a mortgage.

We always recommend speaking with a mortgage advisor to understand and discuss how your income is generated and most importantly plan and structure your case. We can highlight the problems you may face and explain what you need to do.

Income from multiple sources

Potential borrowers may have multiple sources, and varying levels of income at different times of the year.

These can often include:

  • Permanent office workers with part-time second jobs.
  • Sales executives on commission-based salary contracts.
  • Finance sector workers whose bonus package includes shares or stocks options.
  • Medical or other public sector professionals with additional private sector work or contracts.
  • Company directors who may depend mostly on investment income or dividends.
  • Professional landlords with only rental income.


n today’s hybrid working world, less predictable and sometimes fluctuating income streams require a more flexible approach to mortgage lending. It’s an approach that specialist mortgage lenders and brokers continue to be well placed to provide. Specialist mortgage brokers and lenders understand that having multiple sources of income rather than a traditional vanilla income should not be a barrier to a mortgage application.

What exactly is a complex income mortgage?

We usually define a mortgage as “complex” if:

The borrower’s personal/financial situation shows multiple income streams, where the income derived is from non-standard sources, credit impairment or purchasing a non-standard property.

In today’s changing mortgage market, first time buyers, home-movers, investors and developers are all trying to get a foothold on the property ladder.

With so many different specialist lenders, mortgage products/criteria and rates available , speaking with a mortgage broker has never been more important.

Types of 'complexity' in a new mortgage application

At the start of the application process a varying income from different sources is not the only type of circumstance that mortgage lenders can view as ‘complex’. Other types of ‘complexity’ are:

Variable income throughout the year

An irregular income level throughout the year will be classified as ‘complex’. This is because we will need to clearly see a pattern or consistent level of income generated over the course of the year to ensure your ability to meet the monthly repayments. A mortgage application normally requires a potential borrower to provide evidence that their income stream is “regular and predictable”. This becomes much harder if a person’s income varies at different times of the year.

Complex credit and complex mortgages..

  • Average personal debt in the UK rose to £33,410 in March 2022.

-compared to-

  • £1,767 in January 2020.
  • A rise of 107 per cent of average earnings per adult in the UK.

(Source: Moneynerd, 2022)

A lender understands the average borrower will normally have varying amounts of existing debt, typically credit card or unsecured loan debt.

However, mortgage lenders may view a large amount of debt as a ‘complex situation’, especially if you have multiple assets all with high exposure of debt. This can come across to a lender as your debt to income ratio is very high and poses high risk.

Is having adverse credit considered a complex mortgage?

Generally yes but it really does depend on the severity of your adverse credit.

There is a difference between having a bad or poor credit score and an adverse credit rating.

A lender defines a potential borrower with an adverse credit rating as falling below the standard acceptance rate because:

  • They have county court judgements, defaults, arrears, missed payments, are in debt management plans or either bankrupt or a discharged bankrupt.


You should seek expert mortgage advice to better understand if the amount you need to borrow will match the type of mortgage which may be made available to you.

Affordability checks

All lender work on their own unique affordability model.

A lender will look at your gross income, net income and see your disposable monthly income after regular household bills and other living costs are deducted. The concept is to understand your real budget and what is genuinely affordable for you.

Lenders also look at a “potential” rise in interest rates and a change of circumstances and how these would affect the customers.

Please note – although the minimum deposit required is 5%, you may be required to put in a bigger deposit depending on the outcome of your affordability with both the mortgage lender and Help to Buy.

The previous Help to Buy scheme ran until March 2021 and replaced by the new one which runs until March 2023.

Proof of income - what paperwork is needed?

Your mortgage application will need to show clear proof of income, fully supported by detailed paperwork. When we look at advising our clients, we always require full disclosure and paperwork to really help you and provide the best solution suited your individual circumstances.

Some of the paperwork we can request:

  • Current, valid passport and driving licence – required as proof of identity.
  • Utility bills – dated within the last 3 months, clearly showing your name and current home address.
  • Council tax bill – most recent.
  • Personal bank statements – last three months.
  • Business bank statements (if applicable) – last three months
  • Payslips or similar payroll advice – normally last three months, potentially more may be required if paid weekly or we are looking bonuses etc
  • Latest years P60 – This will be required to confirm year end income
  • Tax calculations and tax overviews – statements produced by HMRC as evidence of total earnings (and tax) per each year. Always required for self-employed, company directors and landlords with rental income.
  • Last 2 years accounts (if self employed) – this is used to see how you are conducting your business. that you have a strong and robust business.

Overtime payments, bonuses and/or commissions

If you receive regular income earned from overtime payments, bonuses or commissions, then so long as we can prove and document this income we can find a lender who will accept this. Lenders criteria on this varies as some may only accept a certain percentage and some may accept 100% if provable.

Generally bonus income will need to evidenced for 2 years to be taken into account in your income affordability. This can be evidenced through last 2 years P60’s or year end payslips and confirmed by a letter from your employer.

If bonuses vary year on year then lender will generally average over the last 2 years.

Government benefit income

In addition to your normal salary, potential support for your mortgage application could also be accepted by your lender, in the form of government benefits, such as:

  • Child maintenance
  • Child tax credits
  • Disability benefits

To be considered for inclusion in an income assessment lenders may also need to see:

  • original issued documents by the relevant council or authority.
  • Bank or building society statements.

Please note: Most mortgage lenders are unlikely to consider an application if the only source of income is limited to government benefits.

Self-employment and freelance income

Self employment working has increased by a third (33 per cent) in the last ten years.

  • 4.25 million are self-employed in the UK, in June 2022.

-compared to-

  • 3.2 million in December 2000.

(Source: Statista, September 2022)

There has also been a corresponding rise in the number of mortgage providers who will consider an application from self-employed workers.

If you have only been self-employed for one year…

Some lenders might consider making their assessment based upon just one year’s accounts although this might affect the interest rate and loan to value.

Additional income from a second job

A complex mortgage lender will consider a second job in their assessment if it is shown to provide you with a regular, predictable source of additional income.

It’s important to know… you were employed at your second job:

  • More than 12 months.


  • You will continue to be employed at your second job.

Self-employed overseas income

Different documents and supporting paperwork will be needed. Recommended mortgage advice is to ask your accountant to collect and combine all necessary tax information and speak with us to ensure you have everything needed.

Rental Income

Lenders will take rental income as part of your main income if it can be evidenced for 2 years and proven through tax calculations and tax overviews.

We strongly advice professional landlords, where your income is solely generated from UK real estate to speak with us so we can discuss, plan, speak with your accountant to ensure you achieve your objective and secure the right lending.

If you are trying to secure a residential mortgage and have buy to let properties in the background a lender will likely want to ensure the rental properties are self-funding and the rental income is declared to HMRC and you are paying the necessary taxes.


Confirming employee income, salary, bonuses and commission is normally quite straightforward, compared to self-employed income. Lenders will require you and your accountant to provide the necessary paperwork to validate your income.

Additional income sources from dividends to investment income and even foreign income. Each will need to be clearly shown and verified through either the UK and equivalent tax returns.

  • Dividends
  • Foreign currency earnings
  • Investment monies
  • Trust fund payments

Pension income

As your broker our priority first and foremost is to ensure affordability and that you have a clear understanding of what your trying to achieve and the cost implications. Potential borrowers who only have pension income may find it difficult to secure a mortgage as:
  1. Your age will play an important part in the lending term available and
  2. The affordability will need to ensure you can cover the mortgage repayments on the shorter term. This may require you to have a larger pension income.


Repayment vehicle

How you will repay your loan to the provider is all-important to the structure of your mortgage. Mortgage options for repayment are usually:

  • Repayment mortgage – less risk, monthly payments made in full until loan is completely repaid.
  • Interest only mortgage – higher risk, only interest is repaid on the loan with loan fully repayable at the end of the mortgage term.

Mortgage products

The amount you will pay off on the loan each month will depend on the type of mortgage will best suit your circumstances.

The most common type of mortgage products are:

  • Fixed Rate mortgage – repayment rates are fixed for 2,3,5 or 10 years.
  • Variable mortgage – repayment rates are not fixed. This arrangement can sometimes be be more affordable. However, the rate can go up or down depending on market conditions.

What loan to value will I get on my complex income mortgage?

Loan To Value ‘LTV’
The loan-to-value ratio or ‘LTV’ is defined as:

  • Percentage of the loan amount you need to borrow compared to the amount of deposit you put down.

Lenders will also set a maximum LTV for each mortgage deal offered. The actual mortgage rates you’re offered by a complex mortgage lender will, therefore, depend upon:

  • Your personal circumstances and the amount of deposit you have

What deposit amount do I need for a complex income mortgage?

Mortgage lenders consider a number of factors when assessing the amount of deposit you will need to put down, such as:

  • Your circumstances, purchase price, income and property type.

We always recommend the higher the deposit the better but lenders offer mortgages from 5 and 10 per cent deposits.

A mortgage lender’s risk-based approach to pricing means:

  • Every additional 5 per cent deposit – is seen to lower the risk and therefore, reduce the coast of the loan. The higher your deposit, the higher number of lenders who will consider your application.
  • 25 per cent or more – is viewed as a low-risk borrower.
  • 40 per cent deposit – often produces the most significantly low interest rates



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