Mortgages FAQs

Residential Mortgages

Self-build FAQs

Do I need to provide planning permission for my self-build?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do I need to progress a mortgage application?

You’ll need to have a specific plot and build in mind which needs to be supported by detailed plans, including a breakdown of material and labour costs and an indication of the energy standard you are building to.

What deposit do I need for my self-build?

You need a 20% minimum deposit to buy the land and a further 15% – 20% of total build costs to start your build.

Do I still need a deposit for my self-build if I already own the land and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land to start the build, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

Do you lend on buying the plot/land only?

We don’t just lend on a plot/land purchase. Any project we support needs to show planning details of the proposed build with an indication of the energy standard you are building to, and how the build costs are expected to be funded with savings and mortgage finance.

How long do I have to complete the build?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the self-build, although we encourage you to complete earlier to benefit from our C-Change sustainable homes discount which is applied to our Standard Variable Rate from the date we receive evidence that both the work has been completed and the Energy Standard rating required has been achieved.

Do you offer stage payments for a self-build?

Yes, although the Ecology self-build mortgage does not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc.). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can I have interest-only during the build phase?

We offer an interest-only mortgage only when you have a qualifying repayment vehicle to support this for example an established ISA, endowment policies or Pension Plan.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my self-build?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Does the self-build property have to be my main residence?

Yes, although we do offer a buy to let mortgage. Please bear in mind that the property can’t be a second or holiday home or classed as mobile planning.

Do you do mortgages for property renovations or conversions that are eco-friendly?

Yes, we do mortgages for other types of projects. Find details on what we lend on for conversions and renovations.

Renovation FAQs

Do I need to provide planning permission for my renovation?

Planning permission is required from your Local Authority if you are extending or altering the property and this requires formal planning permission.

What information do I need to progress my renovation mortgage application?

You’ll need to have a specific property renovation in mind and provide details of material and labour costs, the current Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) of the property and the projected EPC rating when you complete your renovation.

What deposit do I need for my renovation?

You need a 20% minimum deposit to purchase the property and a further 15% – 20% of total build costs to start your renovation.

Do I still need a deposit for my renovation if I already own the property?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your property to start the renovation, providing you already own the property and it’s mortgage-free. Also, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the property if you need it.

Do borrowers who are planning to renovate need to show how they plan to improve the property’s energy efficiency?

Any project we support needs to show details of the proposed renovation with an indication of the Energy Standards you are renovating to, and how the renovation costs are expected to be funded with savings and mortgage finance. We don’t just lend on the property purchase.

How long do I have to complete the renovation?

We allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the renovation, although we encourage you to complete earlier to benefit from our C-Change retrofit discount which is applied to our Standard Variable Rate from the date we receive evidence that both the work has been completed and the Energy Standard rating required has been achieved.

Do you offer stage payments for a renovation?

Yes, we release funds as and when the renovation progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can I have interest-only mortgage during the renovation phase?

We offer an interest-only mortgage only when you have a qualifying repayment vehicle to support this for example an established ISA, endowment policies or Pension Plan.

Does the renovation property have to be my main residence?

Yes, although we do offer a buy-to-let mortgage. Please bear in mind that we don’t offer mortgages for second homes, holiday homes or homes classed as mobile planning.

Conversion FAQs

Does Ecology require planning permission for my conversion project?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do I need to progress a mortgage application?

You’ll need to have a specific property conversion in mind which needs to be supported by detailed plans, including a breakdown of material and labour costs and an indication of the Energy Standard you are converting to.

What deposit do I need for my conversion project?

You need a 20% minimum deposit to buy the property and a further 15% – 20% of total conversion costs to start your project.

Do I still need a deposit for my conversion if I already own the property and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your property to start the conversion, providing you already own the property and it’s mortgage-free. Also, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the property if you need it.

Do borrowers who are planning to convert their property need to show how they plan to improve the property’s energy efficiency?

Any project we support needs to show planning details of the proposed conversion with an indication of the Energy Standard you are converting to, and how the project costs are expected to be funded with savings and mortgage finance. We don’t just lend to purchase the property.

How long do I have to complete the conversion?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the conversion, although we encourage you to complete earlier to benefit from our C-Change discount (C-Change sustainable homes or C-change energy improvement). The applicable discount is applied to our Standard Variable Rate when we receive evidence that the work has been completed and the Energy Standard rating required has been achieved.

Do you offer stage payments for a conversion?

Yes, although the Ecology conversion mortgage does not release payments at set construction milestone stages. We release funds as and when the conversion progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can I have an interest-only mortgage during the conversion phase?

We offer an interest-only mortgage only when you have a qualifying repayment vehicle to support this for example an established ISA, endowment policies or Pension Plan.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my conversion?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Does the conversion property have to be my main residence?

Yes, although we do offer a buy-to-let mortgage. Please bear in mind that we don’t offer mortgages for second homes, holiday homes or homes classed as mobile planning.

Mooring FAQs

Do you lend on moorings with a licence?

No we only lend on freehold or long term leasehold moorings with planning permission rights to moor a houseboat.

Do you lend for both the purchase of the mooring land and houseboat?

We only provide mortgage finance for the purchase of the mooring land.

Buy-to-let FAQs

Do you lend on holiday let accommodation?

No we do not provide our buy-to-let mortgage for holiday let or second homes, any letting must be conducted on a 6 or 12 month shorthold assured tenancy agreement.

Is there a maximum number of buy-to-let properties I can own?

We will not lend to an individual who has a portfolio of more than 4 buy-to-let properties.

Is there a limit on the number of units I can have in a single property?

The property must not have any more than 3 self-contained units.

Can the property be let to a family member?

No the property cannot be let to a family member.


Community & Commercial Mortgages

Community-led housing FAQs

Do we need to provide planning permission for a new build development?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do we need to progress a mortgage application?

You’ll need to have a specific project in mind which needs to be supported by detailed plans, including a breakdown of material and labour costs and an indication of the energy standard you are building or renovating to. We will also ask for recent financial accounts and bank statements where appropriate, along with financial projections to show how your project will service your mortgage repayments and other ongoing financial commitments

What deposit do we need for our mortgage?

You need a minimum deposit of 20% of the purchase price or value of the property/ies being mortgaged, whichever is the lower.

Do we still need a deposit if we already own the land and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land or property, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

How much will our mortgage cost a month?

As soon as we know that we can help, we’ll provide you with an indicative illustration, showing how much your monthly repayment will be for the amount you want to borrow, over the term you require

How long do we have to complete the build or renovation?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the build or renovation, although we encourage you to complete earlier to benefit from our C-Change sustainable homes or C-change retrofit discount which is applied to the Variable Rate from the date we receive evidence that both the work has been completed and the Energy Standard rating required has been achieved.

Do you offer stage payments?

Yes, although we do not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc.). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can we have interest-only during the build or renovation phase?

Yes, we can offer an interest-only period during the construction or renovation phase until rental or sales income can service capital repayments.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my project?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Do we need to have been established for a minimum period before you will lend to us?

No, we can consider lending to new groups in support of their first project, subject to receipt of a robust business plan.

Do we need to have a minimum number of properties or members?

We can consider projects with a single property. If you are a housing co-operative, we require that you have a minimum of four independent resident members, and that a minimum of 50% of members are in paid employment.

Housing developers’ mortgage FAQs

Do we need to provide planning permission for a new build development?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What deposit do we need for my mortgage?

You need a minimum deposit of 30% towards the purchase price or value of the site, whichever is the lower.

Do we still need a deposit if we already own the land and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land or property, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

How long do we have to complete a new build or renovation project?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the project.

Do you offer stage payments?

Yes, although we do not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc.). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can we have interest-only during a new build or renovation phase?

Yes, our mortgage for housing developers is an interest-only facility. Capital repayments are expected to be made from the proceeds of the sale of mortgaged property when completed in accordance with the terms detailed in your mortgage offer letter.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my project?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Do we need to have been established for a minimum period before you will lend to us?

No, we can consider proposals from applicants undertaking their first development project.

How much will our mortgage cost a month?

As soon as we know that we can help, we’ll provide you with an indicative illustration, showing how much your monthly repayment will be for the amount you want to borrow, over the term you require.

Charities and community groups FAQs

Do we need to provide planning permission for a new build development?
Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do we need to progress a mortgage application?
We will need to be satisfied that you have enough income or surplus to meet the mortgage repayments. We’ll also need to see a business plan showing the forecast income and expenditure for the organisation, together with copies of your past three years’ accounts.

What deposit do we need for our mortgage?
You need a minimum deposit of 20% of the purchase price or value of the property(ies) being mortgaged, whichever is the lower.

Do we still need a deposit if we already own the land and have planning permission?
No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land or property, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

How long do we have to complete a new build or renovation project?
Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the project.

Do you offer stage payments?
Yes, although we do not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc.). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can we have interest-only during a new build or renovation phase?
Yes, we can consider an interest-only period during the construction or renovation phase.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my project?
A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Do we need to have been established for a minimum period before you will lend to us?
Yes, you need to have a minimum of three years’ trading or accounting history

How much will our mortgage cost a month?
As soon as we know that we can help, we’ll provide you with an indicative illustration, showing how much your monthly repayment will be for the amount you want to borrow, over the term you require.

Sustainable business FAQs

Do we need to provide planning permission for a new build development?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do we need to progress a mortgage application?

We will need to be satisfied that you have enough income or surplus to meet the mortgage repayments and we’ll need to see a business plan showing the forecast income and expenditure for the organisation together with copies of your past three years’ accounts.

What deposit do we need for our mortgage?

You need a minimum deposit of 30% of the purchase price or value of the property(ies) being mortgaged, whichever is the lower.

Do we still need a deposit if we already own the land and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land or property, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

How long do we have to complete a new build or renovation project?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the project.

Do you offer stage payments?

Yes, although we do not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can we have interest-only during a new build or renovation phase?

Yes, we can consider an interest-only period during the construction or renovation phase.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my project?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Do we need to have been established for a minimum period before you will lend to us?

Yes, you need to have a minimum of three years’ trading or accounting history.

How much will our mortgage cost a month?

As soon as we know that we can help, we’ll provide you with an indicative illustration, showing how much your monthly repayment will be for the amount you want to borrow, over the term you require.

Part Residential FAQs

Do we need to provide planning permission for a new build development?

Yes. We need at least outline planning permission to start the application process and detailed planning permission before the mortgage is released.

What information do we need to progress a mortgage application?

You’ll need to have a specific project in mind which needs to be supported by detailed plans, including a breakdown of material and labour costs and an indication of the energy standard you are building or renovating to. We will also ask for recent financial accounts and bank statements where appropriate, along with financial projections to show how your project will service your mortgage repayments and other ongoing financial commitments.

What deposit do we need for my mortgage?

You need a minimum deposit of 20% of the purchase price or value of the property(ies) being mortgaged, whichever is the lower.

Do we still need a deposit if we already own the land and have planning permission?

No, you don’t always need a deposit; we can lend based on the value of your land or property, providing you already own the land and it’s mortgage-free. Also, if you need us to, we can help you repay any outstanding finance on the land.

How much will our mortgage cost a month?

As soon as we know that we can help, we’ll provide you with an indicative illustration, showing how much your monthly repayment will be for the amount you want to borrow, over the term you require

How long do we have to complete the build or renovation?

Subject to planning constraints, we allow a maximum of 2 years for you to complete the build or renovation, although we encourage you to complete earlier to benefit from our C-Change sustainable homes or C-Change retrofit discount which is applied to the Variable Rate from the date we receive evidence that both the work has been completed and the Energy Standard rating required has been achieved.

Do you offer stage payments?

Yes, although we do not release payments at set construction milestone stages (e.g. foundation, wall plate etc.). We release funds as and when the build progresses and release up to a percentage of the increased value of the property.

Can we have interest-only during the build or renovation phase?

Yes, we can offer an interest-only period during the construction or renovation phase subject to an acceptable repayment vehicle.

Does Ecology require a particular build warranty on completion of my project?

A build warranty is not a mandatory lending requirement of our mortgage and we are happy with a Building Regulation Completion Certificate. However, if you wish to take out a build warranty for the completion of the property then this is acceptable to the Society.

Do we need to have been established for a minimum period before you will lend to us?

Yes, we need to see the last three years’ accounts for your business, or the business you are purchasing.