Frequently Asked
Questions

General

What do you call a ladder with no rungs?

The housing ladder!

What is Unmortgage?

Unmortgage is a new way to own a home up to ten times your income using the rent you already pay. We make this possible through part ownership and we make it feel like its all yours.

Who is it for?

Unmortgage is for anyone who doesn't have a big enough deposit to get a mortgage or who can't get enough house for their money with a mortgage. We see particularly strong demand from young families who want to have a place they can call home but who can’t afford to buy a property outright.

How does Unmortgage make money?

We make money from charging institutional investors for managaging their investment. We do not charge you anything for the service we provide.

How is Unmortgage different from Shared Ownership?

The main difference is choice, with Unmortgage anyone can apply to live in any property that is for sale and within your budget. Whereas with Shared Ownership not everyone is eligible and you can only buy a properties newly built by Housing Associations.
As of February 2017: A family with a £75,000 budget looking for a 3 bedroom property in London would have 113 Shared Ownership properties to choose from compared to nearly 5,300 properties with Unmortgage.

Where does Unmortgage get the money to invest in my home?

Unmortgage is able to buy homes with the capital from large institutions like pension funds and insurance companies. This capital is locked in for the long term through our fund.

What's the catch?

There isn't one. We always say that if you can afford to get a mortgage then you should do so, because the more of your home you own, the better off you will be financially. However, for those who can't, we created Unmortgage as a stepping stone between renting and a mortgage.


Buying Your Home With Unmortgage

How did you come up with my Unmortgage Estimate? How can I afford so much?

Your estimate is determined by the rent you pay each month on the part of the property you don't own. We have followed housing association and charity guidelines which suggest that your monthly outgoings for accommodation (including service charge) should not exceed 30% of your gross (i.e. before tax) household income.
You can typically afford more than a mortgage because in some areas of the country you can afford to rent a house which is worth up to ten times your income. This is why we say if you can afford to rent, you can afford to own with an Unmortgage.

Why does my Estimate vary by area?

Since your estimate is based on your income and what properties rent for in that area, you will find that you can afford more in some areas than others. Specifically you will be able to afford more in areas where a property’s rent is low compared to its sale price. Use the calculator to find out how much your affordability varies in the areas you are interested in.

What information do I need to provide to get an Unmortgage In Principle?

We need roughly the same amount paperwork as if you were getting a mortgage. We simply ask you to provide us with 3 months bank statements, proof of ID, an employer reference OR at last 12 months proof of Income if you are self employer and landlord reference.

What are your investment criteria?

We assess all properties you submit against our three investment criteria:
1) Affordability
Provided you have selected a property within the Estimate we have given you, it should pass our affordability criteria - 30% of Gross Income.
2) Desirability
The level of long term demand for the property. It is based on the fundamentals of the property, including its location, size and space (inside and outside) and when it was built.
3) Value for Money
A property that is good value for money is a good investment for the both of us.

This means there will be properties that are right for you but don't make sense for us.

How do I know if a property I've found meets your investment criteria?

Please submit links to any properties you like to us. We will give you instant feedback on the property based on our investment criteria.


Living In Your Unmortgage Home

Am I free to do whatever I like with my Unmortgage home?

It's your home. You can decorate it as you wish, keep pets and to do all those things you have to ask permission to do when you're renting a property! We only ask that you don't complete any structural work, because this significantly impacts the value of the property.

Do I have to pay all the maintenance costs?

With an Unmortgage you take care of day to day costs of living in your property, including any service charges. The exception is major maintenance items, such as a replacement boiler, which we would help fund.
For example, if you owned 5% of the property, you would pay 5% of the costs. We provide an app which you can report any issues around the home to check if it qualifies for our support.


When It's Time To Move On

Can I buy the property outright?

Unmortgage is designed to help people live in the home they want until they can afford a mortgage.
When you get a mortgage the value of the remaining share will be calculated by an independent chartered surveyor. To avoid property speculation, you may not buy out the property in full for a value which is lower than that which you purchased it.

How do I sell my stake in the property and move out?

You will receive market value for your share on the day the sale goes through. We ask you to give us 6 months notice so that we can make plans for when you move out. We will obtain an independent valuation for the property and it will be sold on the open market. We ask you to help conduct viewings of the property before you move out.


What If?

What if I can no longer afford my monthly payments? Can I be evicted from the property?

We ask you to talk to us as early as possible so we can work through your options together. These include:
1. Government funded local housing allowance, which would cover part or all of your monthly rent
2. Look for other ways to generate income, potentially by renting out a room in the property whilst you find another job
3. Selling your stake in your property and reducing your outgoings which is more affordable for you
The last thing we want is for anyone to be evicted from their home. In the worst case scenario you would recieve your stake in full, after any rent payments that have been missed.

What if Unmortgage wants to get it's investment back? When you buy more of your home, that is how we get our investment back.

By signing a partnership agreement with you at the outset, we have agreed that we have no right to force a sale of the property in order to get our money back.

What if Unmortgage goes bust? What happens to my home?

In the unlikely event that Unmortgage becomes insolvent, the legal ownership of your property remains unchanged - you still remain a part-owner in the home. We have contingency plans in place to ensure you can continue to live in your home and pay rent on the part you don't own.

What can I afford?

Unmortgage gives you more choices compared to buying and renting

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