Owning a home

Last updated: 20/01/2021

Buying a property may be an option for you. If you already own a home there may be help if you are having difficulty making your mortgage payments.

Contact Money Advice Scotland

0141 572 0237

Buying a home

As well as deciding what kind of home is best for your family and where it should be you will also have to work out how much you can afford to put to a mortgage each month and how much of a deposit you have. A mortgage provider, your bank or a financial adviser can advice you how much you are able to borrow and the type of mortgage that is best suited to your needs. You can have a mortgage agreed in principle and then start looking for your new home.

Help to pay your mortgage

If you are struggling to meet your mortgage payments you should talk to your mortgage provider for help and advice.

If you are getting certain benefits, you might be able to get help in the form of a loan from the Government. This is known as Support for Mortgage Interest or SMI.

The maximum loan you will be offered is for a mortgage of £200,000. It must be repaid when you die or sell your home. You can decide if you want to take up the offer of the loan or pay the interest on your mortgage yourself.

Who gets SMI?

To get Support for Mortgage Interest you must be out of work and receive:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Universal Credit, or
  • Pension Credit.

There is a 39-week waiting period from the time you claim SMI until your first payment is made (unless you’re getting Pension Credit, in which case you can get help immediately).

If you do any paid work during these 39 weeks your waiting period will stop – and you can start it again the next time you are out of work. Contact Money Advice Scotland for details of local agencies to get free financial advice