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to be furious with this mortgage company

(44 Posts)
mortgagefury Sun 11-Sep-11 07:19:53

I'll try and be brief! We're buying a house in UK. We live abroad. I have a British passport. DH has Irish passport but was born in UK so is a British Citizen and is entitled to a UK passport (but won't get one cos it's all political etc. He's from N. Ireland)
Mortgage company, after faffing around and dragging us along for 6 weeks proving way way more than they needed for their money laundering checks, have just announced that they have decided they don't lend to expats who don't have a British passport. Ok - DH is the main earner but he is a British and Irish citizen and they have known this right from the beginning when they saw our passports.
AIBU to suggest that this is discriminatory? I thought all EU passports were supposed to be equal for one thing and they are basically saying that being a British citizen means nothing unless you hold a passport!!
Apart from us living abroad (which they don't have a problem with) and now this passport thing, everything else (massive deposit, earnings affordability, good valuation on the house) is A* so it can't be that they are making excuses.
Also, AIBU to think that they must have known this when we paid for their guy to do a valuation and therefore they really should refund that money as we're now going to have to start again, potentially losing the house because other buyers are now interested and we've already taken so long!!
Am fully prepared to be told that mortgage company can do what they like but is there anything I can do to make them reconsider??
thanks for reading

mousymouse Sun 11-Sep-11 07:30:14

yanbu
but mortgage companies are just that: companies and can accept or not who they want custom with.
go somewhere else.

KathyImLost Sun 11-Sep-11 07:39:44

Well, since you asked if there's anything you could do to make them reconsider, I'm guessing they'd change their minds if your DH got a british passport.

Andrewofgg Sun 11-Sep-11 08:06:44

You can't make people do business and if your DH was born in the UK and is going to come and live in the UK and is entitled to a UK passport and it would help his family if he got one he should swallow his politics and sign on the dotted line.

SootySweepandSue Sun 11-Sep-11 08:15:21

I have a few friends who have been refused mortgages for similar nonsensical reasons. I think a lot of mortgage companies aren't really interested in the business although they can not publically come out and say it.

Tee2072 Sun 11-Sep-11 08:22:01

Yes. Your husband can get a British passport and ignore outdated ridiculous politics in order to have the house.

And I say this as someone who lives in the middle of Belfast.

He's cutting off his nose to spite his face to prove a point and will lose you a house. Just silly.

CliniqueMum Sun 11-Sep-11 08:31:23

Seems a waste of emotional energy to me. He needs to apply for a British passport. Does he honestly think anyone has noticed his stance of not applying for one. I'd have thought letters to MPs and petitions is a more noticable way of expressing his opinion.

SuchProspects Sun 11-Sep-11 08:44:51

Even if he were prepared to, he obviously can't get a passport in time to get the mortgage. It can take ages when you're abroad and the face to face meeting can be a logistics nightmare.

YANBU to think the mortgage company should have flagged this up right at the beginning. Having you pay for the valuation when the information you had already given them means they were not prepared to give you the mortgage is VU of them. But I don't know that they are being U to have a policy that they don't lend to non-passport holding ex-pats. Of the sorts of things they look at to reassure themselves they are going to be able to get their money back and make a profit, that doesn't seem unreasonable (why should someone who only relies on their citizenship elsewhere be considered to have a sense of obligation to the laws of a country he is entitled to call his but hasn't/won't?).

TidyDancer Sun 11-Sep-11 08:54:57

Yes, I think if your DH would stop being so silly over the passport issue, this probably wouldn't be a problem. So perhaps getting him to behave like a sensible adult would be a good idea first!

eurochick Sun 11-Sep-11 10:15:05

Just use another mortgage company. My husband has an Irish passport (wasn't born here so not a British citizen that way) and has had a mortgage here for years. Maybe research the alternatives and explain to your mortgage co that you will be pulling the business and going to x bank instead unless they want to reconsider their decision in [48 hrs], but you need to be prepared to see the threat through if they are intransigent!

Have you also tried going up the ladder and speaking to someone a couple of levels above the people who answer the phone who will have limited authority to waive anything that appears on the screen.

bemybebe Sun 11-Sep-11 10:18:52

Some Dutch banks won't lend to non-dutch passport holders. I think it is about difficulties to deal with loans secured to non-citizens if a party decided to leg it abroad... We are trying to buy a house in Holland.

bemybebe Sun 11-Sep-11 10:21:15

eurochick - how someone who is refused mortgage can tell the mortgage company "do xxx or we will take the business elsewhere"?

Milsean Sun 11-Sep-11 10:28:32

you can't tell people to just give up a lifetime of political belief in order to accomodate the whims of a jobsworth in a mortgage company! It isn't a non-issue.

TheRealTillyMinto Sun 11-Sep-11 10:35:46

I would not lend a large sum of money to someone who did not live in the UK at the moment & did not have a UK passport. they dont sound likely to stay in the country for the term of the mortgage. if anything went wrong with repayment (either fraudulently or down to cirsumstances) it would be more likely they exit the UK.

lending money to people who were bad risks was one of the reaon the western economy is screwed.

you look like a bad risk to them so they dont want to lend you their money. that does not mean they are right, but what it in it for them taking the greater risk you represent?

redexpat Sun 11-Sep-11 10:44:00

I don't think that the law is the same over Europe. Germans can't buy summer houses in Denmark, but Danes can buy them in France and Spain.

bemybebe Sun 11-Sep-11 10:44:03

btw, still think YANBU to be furious at the situation

Tortu Sun 11-Sep-11 10:44:13

Oh good grief, he's being really thick. Another one born in N Ireland here and can't believe people are still so stubborn. Suspect he wouldn't be if he was living there now. Attitudes are definitely changing.

Having said that, it is EXTREMELY difficult to get a mortgage at the moment. Anything slightly risky and they just won't lend. Are you buying in N Ireland? If so, their house price crash has been far beyond anything elsewhere. As I understand it, houses are now worth roughly a third of what they were worth a couple of years ago. I've heard of a few people having problems with buying houses there.

Milsean Sun 11-Sep-11 10:52:08

Thick? hmm Its not being stubborn, its called having principles. Attitudes aren't changing that much you know, plenty of people still choose to have Irish passports, and there is nothing wrong with doing so.

TidyDancer Sun 11-Sep-11 10:59:35

There's nothing wrong with him having principles, but he can't expect to be treated the same as someone who does have a British passport if that is the determining factor here.

Andrewofgg Sun 11-Sep-11 11:02:05

He can have both passports. He is a British citizen if he was born in the UK - even if he does not like the idea - so he is not compromising his principles by having a document which says so.

Milsean Sun 11-Sep-11 11:02:44

But if you have an Irish passport and are a British citizen, you could argue that this stance is both discriminatory and illegal, since he is legally the exact same as someone with a British passport.

Either way, not much of a principle if you give it so easily for someone elses arbitrary notion.

clappyhands Sun 11-Sep-11 11:03:52

another northern ireland person - get him to get a UK passport (can he not have both?) - is this going to be an issue with other mortgage lenders?

just out of interest - what passports do any dc have?

is house in england or northern ireland?

CailinDana Sun 11-Sep-11 11:06:13

It's just an excuse, they make things up when they don't want your custom. It happened to us a couple of times for equally spurious reasons.

mortgagefury Sun 11-Sep-11 11:16:13

Well I was expecting to get told off (it's my first thread!) but you're all lovely! I needed to vent as I only heard on Saturday afternoon (and have been steaming ever since!) and can't do a thing until tomorrow.

I totally agree about DH not having a UK passport being stupid - and he has now agreed to get one (a little late to be of any use!!! but at least he has finally agreed). To give him his due I totally respect that he feels Irish and not British - though he's not usually in the least bit political! and he married me (and I'm as English as they come!) so he's not prejudiced or anything like that..... just stubborn!! But in any case he is a UK citizen (whether he wants to be or not!) I don't understand how the passport can be the issue.

I just wonder how they would treat someone who is a British Citizen but who doesn't have a passport because eg they never leave the country?

Admittedly the being abroad thing makes us higher risk, but we are still domiciled there (as HMRC likes to keep reminding me!) and in all other ways we're v v low risk (house is v cheap - esp compared to prices a few years ago, salary multiples etc all v good, valuation and job security where we are is better than if were in the UK now..... just frustrating!) - I would go elsewhere happily except that it means starting again from the beginning and the delay could well mean the vendor goes to the other people and asks them (cash buyers!) how quickly they can exchange! There is also not a great deal of choice for expats (quite rightly - it's a real minority of people of course) so I'm terrified of getting into the same situation. (though I guess at least by that point DH should have a bloomin passport!!!)

I know the mortgage situation is not the same all over europe but are they allowed to discriminate like this? My DH thinks its in contravention of the good friday agreement! I don't really think they were thinking of this situation when they were brokering that deal though!

I will have another go at the bank tomorrow and see if we can pay a deposit or something to keep the vendor happy.... I adore this house and really don't want to lose it!!

thanks for listening everyone - bank holiday weekend here this weekend and DH is travelling so haven't even got him here to whinge at! If anyone has any advice, I'd be very happy to hear it.

catsareevil Sun 11-Sep-11 11:17:01

Can you not go to another mortgage company? They dont usually take a long time to arrange and you will have all the required paperwork together now.

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