Dudley ditches upper age limits on mortgages

Dudley ditches upper age limits on mortgages

Dudley Building Society has removed the upper age restrictions across its product range in a move to help older clients with their mortgage needs.

Jonathan Moore, Dudley’s head of credit, said: “For too long, older borrowers have struggled to find mortgage availability, with options generally treating these borrowers as second class citizens by forcing them to borrow from a limited range.

“We consider all borrowers to be equally worthy of consideration, and by making our entire range available, we will demonstrate that we do not discriminate by age.”

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With a view of helping those who may have not qualified to buy, downsize or re-mortgage, Mr Moore said that older borrowers offer no more risk than younger ones, providing that underwriting was carried out by professional human underwriters.

“However sophisticated credit scoring becomes, when dealing with more complex cases, there really is no substitute for human consideration,” he said.

The UK already has 11.6m people over the age of 65, according to the Building Society Association.

By 2034 it is estimated that around a quarter of the population will be 65 plus.

Other changes to DBS’s products include:

• Property over four storeys now accepted

• Second home LTV increases from 70 per cent to 80 per cent

• Clarity on family members who can be guarantors

• Interest-only repayment vehicles to include: sale of business, cash savings and sale of other assets

Dudley’s removeal of upper age restrictions comes after last year Ipswich Building Society made changes to its mortgage products to make them available to those in retirement, as well as to borrowers up to 85 at the time of their mortgage term ending.

In November, the Building Society Association published a report that looked at the societal shift of the aging population, with the needs to fund mortgage borrowing into retirement.

Daniel Bailey, mortgage adviser at Derbyshire-based Middleton Finance, said: “Age restrictions was a big discussion last year so any move to increase the age limit is a positive step especially for those who have retired and got a pension income, which in many ways is a solid source of income so there is less risk than someone in the workforce who could be subject to redundancy.

“We will see more lenders do this over the year.”