Mortgage lenders start to look at online profiles

Mon, 22 Jun 2015

Mortgage lenders start to look at online profiles
There has been a lot of criticism about the new regulations placed on mortgage lenders to stop them from handing out money irresponsibly to people who may struggle to pay it back, and forcing the lenders to strictly scrutinise all prospective customers.

It is difficult for customers to be accepted for a mortgage, and there are a lot of factors up for consideration before applications are accepted.

Social media sites like Instagram may be under scrutiny for people who are seeking to become a home owner, something that one would-be mortgage borrower has found out the hard way.

Having claimed to be a UK resident on his mortgage application, he was found to be living in Dubai after his Instagram feed showed only pictures uploaded from the middle eastern country.

Some people are tempted to lie on their applications to make themselves look more appealing to lenders. It should go without saying that this is a bad idea and no one should do it.

House prices are high and far out of reach for the vast majority of first time buyers (excluding the 100,000 first time buyers who have been aided by the Help to Buy scheme), and mortgage lending has been reigned in over the last year to make it stricter.

This is making it a lot harder for people to get their own home through a mortgage lender.

Now our online lives may be used to uncover any lying on applications.

Dominik Lipnicki, from Your Mortgage Decisions, has been reported saying "Clients should be aware that lying on an application form is committing mortgage fraud. It's not just a case of being turned down, it could be much more serious."

One possible example of having lies uncovered by online profiles put forward by the co-owner of the mortgage broker, was: "If you are posting about a messy separation on Facebook, but you told the lender you're applying on a joint income."

A simple way to avoid any trouble is to not lie on mortgage applications, but it is not surprising that some people are risking it to make themselves appear more eligible to borrow considering how inhospitable the housing market has become. However, when talking about the hundreds of thousands of pounds which are used in mortgage deals, lies are not going to go uncovered by lenders, especially when our lives are now so public online.
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