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Lenders are surreptitiously tightening up affordability checks, turning down people who would have been accepted for a mortgage prior to the pandemic, brokers have said. 

Aaron Strutt of Trinity Financial told The Telegraph's Marianna Hunt that some lenders were not accepting customers who had any history of missed payments or debt consolidation. Sometimes one very minor credit card bill from years ago could mean your application is declined.

Mr Strutt said it was mainly larger lenders, such as the high street banks, that were becoming pickier. “They have a lot of cases to deal with so don’t look at the exact details of each one, whereas the smaller lenders tend to be a bit more flexible.” 

If applicants are declined for a mortgage they could try going to a different lender which may have less strict affordability requirements. However, they may charge a higher rate. 

“You don’t want to be declined by multiple lenders, as that can leave a mark on your credit history if the checks they do leave what’s called a ‘hard footprint’,” Mr Strutt said. “Try to find one that does a ‘soft’ credit check instead.”  

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