Concrete Construction Mortgage

“We tailor our advice to you and manage everything with the lender from that initial application all the way through to your mortgage offer. Then we work with your solicitors right through to completion.”

Mike Haupt – Mortgage Adviser 

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Concrete Construction Mortgage

We explore mortgages on a concrete construction home, with Mike.

Can you get a mortgage on a concrete house? Is it harder to get a mortgage on a house made with concrete?

Yes, you absolutely can get a mortgage on a concrete house. However, concrete homes are classed as non-standard construction, and therefore they fall outside many lenders’ acceptable property criteria. 

We’ve done a number of podcasts on non-standard construction properties, so please go back and have a listen to some of those – there’s some really useful information in there. 

Many concrete construction homes were built at the end of the Second World War, as a quick and cheap way to build housing for returning soldiers and meet high demand. They were never designed as a long-term home. But a lot of people are still living in them, they’re still standing and are mortgageable. 

The challenge is that sometimes the concrete and steel within them can unfortunately erode. Those homes become unmortgageable, but you can get specialists to come in and repair a concrete home. Once done, these properties get a new certificate to show they are structurally habitable. 

There are also very new, modern concrete homes being built. We’ve all seen them on Grand Designs – and they are in a very different category. With anything like this, be prepared for it to be a little bit more challenging. There are absolutely options out there for you,  but let’s start talking early. 

I can talk to the individual lenders and work out who will and won’t lend – we can get a really good understanding of the options from there. 

Can you get a mortgage on a concrete ex-council house?

There are different types of concrete construction. You’ve got large panel construction in situ and pre-reinforced concrete. Large panel systems tend to be the harder ones to mortgage. 

Examples of these are Wimpey No-Fines, Cornish units, Woolaway Construction, Reema,  Hawksley, Airey Houses, Unity PRC, Durran, Orlit and Wates – that list just carries on and on.

Once you’ve found one of these, let’s start talking about it early on. Hopefully the agent who’s selling the house knows a lot about it already. The current owners may be pretty clued up on that property, so we can gather as much information as possible, talk to the lenders and know exactly where we are. 

If it’s an ex-council house, you’ve got good options. Council houses were built in a similar way to most concrete houses. We’d go to a lender that’s comfortable to lend on ex-local authority housing – and a lot of them are. 

We would just make sure we fully understood the construction, location, and desirability of that property. But from my experience it’s no different to a standard concrete property in the availability of mortgages.

Is it easy to get a mortgage on a refurbished concrete property? 

It depends what we mean by refurbished – has someone put a new kitchen or bathroom in and made the interior up-to-date, or has the property been repaired and reinforced to make sure it stands for a long time?

A lot of companies do repair work to the steels or treat the concrete. They then provide certificates to prove that that property is structurally sound. If you’ve got those certificates, properties are generally a lot easier to mortgage than the ones without.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of concrete properties?

Concrete properties tend to be a little bit cheaper than standard construction properties. But on the flip side of that, they’re slightly harder to sell – because not everybody’s going to be comfortable living in a concrete property. 

The other disadvantage is potentially lender availability. As much research we do, not every lender is going to accept a concrete property, which reduces your options. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t a wide range of lenders available to you. It just might not be every single lender in the marketplace.

Are non-standard concrete properties more expensive?

Generally speaking they will be cheaper. Obviously those brand new, modern construction ones may be different. But the vast majority of concrete properties built after the Second World War do tend to cost a little less than average.

Do many lenders accept this kind of property? What eligibility criteria do I need to meet?

A wide range of lenders will look at lending on concrete properties. The way I go about this is very much about the preparation. It’s about talking to the client about the house they’re looking to buy, really understanding the concrete construction and asking whether any repair work has been done to it. 

We talk about location and desirability, gathering as much information about that property as possible. Then, when I talk to the lenders, I can position the property with them so they’re fully aware. 

It will then be very much down to the valuer who goes to visit the property. They have the final decision on whether the lender will be happy with the property or not. 

Criteria-wise, as long as you fit the normal eligibility around credit score, affordability and deposit, there should be no problem.

How can a mortgage broker help me with a mortgage on a concrete construction property?

The main thing is that knowledge and our ability to go to multiple different lenders. We save any potential applicant a huge amount of time. If you do this yourself, you may never get the answers you want. 

Our experience with concrete properties means we can hopefully find absolutely the right mortgage for your situation. As I say in all these podcast episodes, preparation is key, so let’s start early. Let’s make sure we talk through everything up front and I can tell you whether to go for the house you’re considering. 


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