Consent to let is required for anyone wanting to let out their property on a residential mortgage – not a buy-to-let mortgage. Before renting the property, those landlords should get permission from their mortgage lender – otherwise known as consent to let. In this article, we cover what consent to let is, how to obtain it, and what happens if you let your property without it.
- What is consent to let?
- Why do I need to get consent to rent out my property?
- When do I need to get consent to let?
- How do I get consent to let?
- How much does consent to let cost?
- Are consent to let fees tax deductible?
- How long does consent to let last?
- Can consent to let be refused?
- What happens if I don’t get consent?
What is consent to let?
Simply put, consent to let is permission from a mortgage lender to let out a property. If a property’s mortgage isn’t a buy-to-let mortgage, the landlord must get consent before renting it out. In some circumstances, landlords may also have to get consent from:
- Any housing association or other organisation with regulations applying to the property e.g. shared ownership
- Any adult who has been living in the property with the landlord as husband, wife or partner who may have occupancy rights
- The landlord’s insurance provider, who must confirm that cover will be maintained if the property is let
Why do I need to get consent to rent out my property?
If you purchase a property on a residential mortgage, living in the property yourself will be part of your mortgage conditions. Letting the property without permission from the mortgage lender is a breach of your contract, which could result in financial penalties, such as extra interest or additional payments.
If you want to rent out your property but haven’t got the right mortgage, you need to get consent or switch to a buy-to-let mortgage.
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When do I need to get consent to let?
As soon as you know you want to rent out your property, you should contact your mortgage lender to arrange permission to let. There are a few circumstances where consent to let is a good choice:
If you currently have a fixed-term mortgage but want to leave, getting consent and renting out your property is a good way to avoid early repayment costs. You can get consent to let for the remainder of your fixed-term, then switch to a buy-to-let mortgage, or sell the property.
If you’re moving away for a while but plan to return, getting consent to let would allow you to rent out your home whilst you’re away. This provides extra income to cover the costs of staying elsewhere too.
How do I get consent to rent out my property?
You can obtain permission to let by contacting your mortgage lender directly. Each lender’s process is slightly different, but they will discuss your options with you.
- Halifax Consent to Let
- HSBC Consent to Let
- Barclays Consent to Let
- Nationwide Consent to Let
- Natwest Consent to Let
- Santander Consent to Let
- Royal Bank of Scotland Consent to Let
- TSB Consent to Let
How much does consent to let cost?
Consent to let fees differ depending on the lender. Some will charge a one-off fee; others may increase the interest rate or not charge at all.
These costs may also depend on the type of mortgage, when the mortgage was taken out, and any applicable early repayment charges.
2023 UK Consent to Let Fees
Related Article: How to Choose a Property Management Company For Your Buy-to-Let
Are consent to let fees tax deductible?
Consent to let fees are considered a pre-letting expenditure and are tax-deductible. The general rule is that a deduction is allowed for expenses that are incurred wholly and exclusively for the purposes of renting out the property. Other expenses that can be tax deducted are:
- Letting agent fees
- Accountant fees
- Utility bills
- Buildings and contents insurance
- Services e.g cleaner or gardener
- Maintenance and safety e.g. gas inspections and electrical reports
- Telephone calls
- Stationery and postage
- Ground rent and service charges
- Council tax
Landlords can no longer deduct any mortgage interest payments from their rental income before paying tax. Instead, landlords receive a 20% tax relief on all mortgage interest payments.
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How long does consent to let last?
When your mortgage lender grants you consent to let, it will be for a specific amount of time. Typically, they will grant consent to let until the end of your fixed-term mortgage, but some lenders work on a 6 or 12-month basis. Once your consent to let ends, you should contact your lender to discuss next steps. They may offer to extend consent, or encourage you to switch to a buy-to-let mortgage.
Can consent to let be refused?
Most lenders are flexible when applying for a consent to let, so it’s unlikely. However, some restrictions may apply.
Income and equity
You may require a minimum income to get permission to let. You may also need to have a certain amount of equity in your property and earn a rental income that will cover the mortgage.
Some lenders won’t give consent to let until you’ve been with them for a certain amount of time. If you have held your mortgage for less than six months, you may struggle to get consent to let, but you should talk directly with your lender to find out.
Getting consent to let will be more difficult if you haven’t kept up with your mortgage payments.
Help to Buy or shared ownership
Shared ownership and Help to Buy mortgages usually have restrictions on letting the property. Any shared equity or government loan would have to be paid before converting to another type of mortgage.
What happens if I don’t get consent?
If you let your property without the proper consent from your bank, you may be in breach of your mortgage contract. The lender may threaten to repossess your property and could charge financial penalties such as:
- Additional interest charged on top of another rate you’re paying
- A regular additional payment
- Backdated payments on any extra interest or additional payments made whilst letting
Read more: Landlord’s Right to Access In UK 2023: Property Entry Rules for Renters
Want to let out your property?
Thinking about letting your property but don’t have a buy-to-let mortgage? Talk to your mortgage lender to find out what your consent to let options are. To find out how much rent you could charge, get a FREE instant rental valuation today or talk to a member of our team.