Vulnerable Customers @ Mortgage Success

Earlier this month we made some changes to our process with regards to Vulnerable customers. This post will just go into that in a little more detail.

What is a Vulnerable customer?

This might be a less obvious answer than you think.

Vulnerable can mean many things to different people. In short anyone can be classed as a vulnerable customer. There are a number of reasons for this. Examples could be that you may be classed as vulnerable all of your life due to English not being your first language. Maybe there are disabilities such as Dyscalculia or Dyslexia for example.

Other people may fall in and out of being classed as vulnerable throughout their lives. First time buyers may be classed as vulnerable due to their lack of knowledge and understanding. Maybe you have just split up with a partner and are still grieving over that.

In essence being Vulnerable just means you could be in a position to have your situation abused or you may make poor choices due to your circumstances.

Will being a vulnerable customer affect my mortgage?

This is a tricky question to answer as on the one hand it could (which I will go into). On the other hand we need you to be open with us in order for us to do the best for you.

Theoretically being vulnerable should not prevent you getting a mortgage. A difficulty understanding words, numbers or going through a lifetime event (such as ill health, relationship breakdown etc) is not going to prevent you obtaining a mortgage. The idea of finding out if you are classed as vulnerable is so that we can put extra support in place to help you. This is to ensure you understand what you are signing up for and there are no nasty surprises.

What support is available?

As examples, we could find a different way to communicate. You may wish to talk it through or you may prefer it in writing or you may prefer both. Another option could be to include a friend or relative in our discussions, someone you trust. Being vulnerable is not a way to prevent you getting a mortgage, it is just to ensure we go the extra mile for you.

But it could affect your ability to obtain a Mortgage…

The flip side to this of course is where we may not do what you are requesting due to a vulnerability. A good example here could be where you have run up credit cards gambling and now want to remortgage to pay off the credit cards. In this example, we would look to find an alternative to obtaining a mortgage. The reason being is that this then secures debt against your home. If not paid you could lose your home. It could be that obtaining a mortgage is a short term fix but actually we are enabling you to run up more debt. This is obviously not good for you in the long term. We will still of course work with you to help, but we may look for alternatives.

What has Mortgage Success done?

I dont think we have made massive changes. As a small business we always had our customers best interests at heart. However we now have a process rather than taking it on case by case.

We now ask if you think you may be classed as vulnerable or if you would like to discuss it before we start the research stage. Accepting or declining will not alter anything. You will not be looked on more favourably or worse regardless of what you decide. We just want you to know it is not uncommon and to feel more comfortable discussing it if you think you may need extra support.

Before we start any application process we will agree any extra steps or precautions with you. This can be things like involving a relative in the process should you wish. Alternatively you may have other thoughts on how we can help that have helped in the past. We will always try to work with you on the best way forward where possible.


Ultimately we are just putting more safeguards in place to protect you if you need that extra support and trying to make the process easier for you. If you do need the extra support, thats fine. We are here to provide it where possible. If you do not need it thats also fine. There are 2 additional questions in our factfind but nothing else will change unless wanted.