Mortgages for Key Workers

The importance of key workers in our society has been thrown into stark relief by the pandemic. Those who staff our hospitals, emergency services, care homes etc. have been seen to be absolutely essential to the efficient functioning of our societal infrastructure.

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Welcome to Goldmanread, Mortgage Brokers For Key Workers

For many years these workers have been taken for granted by many of us and, in some ways the definition of what constitutes a Key Worker has grown as we have come to realise how dependent we are on all sorts of workers. Unfortunately these workers tend to be relatively low paid, which makes it more difficult for them to get on to the housing ladder or indeed move further up it.

There are a number of key worker mortgages aimed at first time buyers, newly qualified key workers and those who qualify for a key worker scheme. As a mortgage broker who specialises in assisting key workers with arranging a key worker mortgage, Goldmanread is in a strong position to help you find a competitive mortgage deal.

Professional Mortgage Services for Key Workers

How can Goldmanread help you secure the best key worker mortgage?

As mortgage brokers we can assist you with finding the mortgage which is most appropriate for your circumstances. We have access to a wide variety of key worker mortgage schemes to help you get your foot on the first rung of the property ladder.

We work with a broad range of mortgage providers and have access to a range of mortgage deals. As a professional mortgage advisor we will guide you through the mortgage process and ensure your mortgage application is dealt with as efficiently as possible.

We can assist you whether you’re a first time buyer looking to gain access to a shared ownership mortgage or whether you’re already on the property ladder and currently benefitting from one of the key worker schemes or other government scheme.

We will provide you with full mortgage advice and can access any homes scheme which aim to offer mortgages for key workers.

Are there key worker mortgage schemes available?

Yes, there are a number of schemes that have been set up to assist those defined as a key workers with their mortgage requirements. These include the following:

Help to buy

The Help to Buy scheme offers an equity loan where the government lends first-time buyers in England money to buy a newly built home.

The level of guarantee provided will depend on the total house price. Equity loans of this type aim to allow first time buyers to get their foot onto the property ladder. This scheme is also aimed at home movers.

This must be used to buy your main residence, and can’t be used to buy a second home or a buy-to-let property.

You need a deposit of at least 5% of the purchase price.

You can borrow 20% (40% in London) of the purchase price. This amount is interest-free for five years.

The maximum purchase price for a Help to Buy property depends on what region of England you live in. These are as follows:

Region Help to Buy price cap

  • North East £186,100
  • North West £224,400
  • Yorkshire and The Humber £228,100
  • East Midlands £261,900
  • West Midlands £255,600
  • East of England £407,400
  • London £600,000
  • South East £437,600
  • South West £349,000

Applications for the Help to Buy equity loan will run until 31 March 2023.

The Help to Buy scheme aims to encourage local first time buyers to enter the housing market through offering much more affordable borrowing.

Right to buy

Right to Buy is a scheme in England that allows most council home tenants, as well as some housing association tenants, to buy their council property at a discount. The scheme has been around for over 40 years, having been originally been introduced by Margaret Thatcher in the Housing Act 1980.

The scheme has been abolished in Wales and Scotland. It’s still running in Northern Ireland, though far fewer people will be eligible to participate as of 28 August 2022.

For those in England, you can apply to buy your council home if:

  • It’s your only, or main, home. So you’ll need to be living in the property. 
  • The property is self-contained. In other words, you don’t share any rooms – such as your kitchen, bathroom and toilet – with people outside your household.
  • You’re a secure tenant. That means there’s a legal contract between you and the landlord.
  • You’ve had a public sector landlord for at least three years. For example, a council, housing association or NHS trust. This doesn’t have to be three years in a row).
  • You have no legal issues with debt. For example a county court judgement.

If you share your tenancy with somebody else, it is possible to make a joint application under the Right to Buy scheme. Alternatively, you can also make an application with up to three family members who’ve lived with you for the past 12 months – even if they don’t share your tenancy.

See the Gov.uk website for more information on eligibility or skip to our section on how to apply.

Shared Ownership

Shared Ownership gives first time buyers and those that do not currently own a home the opportunity to purchase a share in a new build or resales property.

Shared Ownership aims to encourage first time buyers to purchase a property below the market price by allowing them to purchase a fixed percentage of the property price. These schemes are offered by local authorities and housing associations looking to retain and attract key workers.

Many large key worker employers also offer a key worker living programme aimed at offering competitive key worker mortgage schemes.

The purchaser pays a mortgage on the share they own, they also pay rent to a housing association on the remaining share. Because the purchaser only needs a mortgage for the share they are purchasing, the amount of money required for a deposit is usually a lot lower when compared to the amount that would be required when purchasing outright.

The purchaser has the option to increase their share during their time in the property via a process known as “Staircasing”, and in most cases can staircase all the way to 100%. In this instance, the shared owner will no longer pay any rent, just their mortgage along with any service charges and ground rent.

Shared ownership schemes are typically aimed at key workers as they are generally property built in area’s where housing costs are more expensive and therefore it’s more difficult for a key worker to gain access to mortgage finance.


Get specialist key worker mortgage advice

Who is classified as a key worker?

Many of us assume a Key Worker would be classified as a relatively common sense definition e.g police officers, nurses, certain local authority employees.

In fact, since the pandemic, the government’s definition of who is classified as a key worker has become much broader and includes qualifying government employed sectors as follows:

Health and social care key workers

This includes, but is not limited to,

  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Midwives
  • Paramedics
  • Social workers
  • Care workers
  • Other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers.
  • Support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector.
  • Those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributors of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.

Education and childcare key workers

This includes:

  • Childcare
  • Support and teaching staff
  • Social workers
  • Specialist education professionals

Public services key workers

This includes:

  • Those essential to the running of the justice system
  • Religious staff
  • Charities and workers delivering key frontline services
  • Those responsible for the management of the deceased 
  • Journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting

Local and national government key workers

This only includes:

  • Those employed by local councils
  • Those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of essential public services, such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arms length bodies.

Food and other necessary goods

This includes those involved in food:

  • Production
  • Processing
  • Distribution
  • Sale and delivery
  • Those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).

Public safety and national security

This includes:

  • Police officers and support staff
  • Ministry of Defence civilians
  • Contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs)
  • Fire and rescue service employees (including support staff)
  • National Crime Agency staff – those maintaining border security, prison officers and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.

Transport

This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.

Utilities, communication and financial services

This includes:

  • Staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure)
  • The oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage)
  • Information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue.
  • Key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services)
  • Postal services and delivery
  • Payments providers
  • Waste disposal sectors

Source: Key Worker List (Source DFE).
While not all mortgage lenders will share these definitions of who qualifies under their eligibility criteria, they will tend to offer a certain degree of flexibility depending your job role.

Key Worker Mortgages FAQs

Can NHS workers get help with mortgages?

Yes, the NHS offers a key worker living programme and NHS employees are amongst the key workers who will benefit from key worker mortgages.

Is mortgage guarantee scheme still available?

The government announced that the Help to Buy: Equity Loan scheme would run until 31 March 2023. There are no current plans to extend or replace Help to Buy: Equity Loan.

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Why should you choose Goldmanread for your Key Worker mortgage?

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We serve a wide range of professional clients

As well as mortgages for Key Workers, Goldmanread offers the highest level of service to other professional clients, and pride ourselves on our personal approach.

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Why choose Goldmanread for your Key Worker mortgage services?

As a professional mortgage advisor, Goldmanread will assist you with all aspects of the mortgage process. We are an expert mortgage broker regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

We will guide you through the whole process and help you find the right mortgage. We have already assisted many public sector workers gain access to affordable housing by utilising affordable borrowing.

We will assess your requirements and assist you with finding the right mortgage whether you’re a first time buyer or home mover.

As a Whole of Market mortgage broker, we can assist key workers with accessing the most suitable mortgage lender. As an independent mortgage adviser you will find us extremely helpful in providing all of your mortgage advice requirements.

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Feel free to phone or message to arrange a call back or appointment. We’d be delighted to discuss your mortgage  options and get an understanding of your individual goals.

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