Declined for a mortgage

Why Would I Get Declined for a Mortgage?

Why Would I Get Declined for a Mortgage? Learn common reasons for mortgage decline and tips to mitigate risks. Seek professional advice.


Aspiring homebuyers often rely on the expertise of mortgage advisors to help them secure the financing they need to purchase their dream home. However, not all mortgage applications are approved, and being declined for a mortgage can be disheartening and confusing.


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Understanding Mortgage Decline

Mortgage decline refers to the situation where a lender rejects a mortgage application due to various reasons.

Lenders carefully assess several factors, including credit score, income, affordability, employment history, and property valuation, to determine the risk associated with lending money to a borrower. If any of these factors do not meet the lender’s criteria, the mortgage application may be declined.

Common Reasons for Mortgage Decline

There are several common reasons why mortgage applications get declined. These include:

Low credit score

A low credit score is often a red flag for lenders, as it indicates a borrower’s creditworthiness. If the credit score is below the lender’s threshold, the mortgage application may be declined.

Insufficient income or employment history

Lenders assess a borrower’s income and employment history to ensure they have a stable source of income to repay the mortgage. If the borrower’s income is insufficient or their employment history is unstable, the mortgage application may be declined.

High debt-to-income ratio

Lenders calculate a borrower’s debt-to-income (DTI) ratio to determine their ability to manage additional debt. A high DTI ratio, where a significant portion of the borrower’s income goes towards debt payments, may result in mortgage decline.

Poor affordability

Lenders assess a borrower’s ability to afford the monthly mortgage payments based on their income, expenses, and other financial obligations. If the borrower’s affordability falls short of the lender’s requirements, the mortgage application may be declined.

Inadequate down payment

Lenders typically require borrowers to make a down payment as a percentage of the home’s purchase price. If the borrower’s down payment is insufficient, it may result in mortgage decline.

Property valuation issues

Lenders assess the value of the property to ensure it meets their requirements for lending. If the property’s valuation is lower than expected, it may result in mortgage decline.

Past financial issues

Previous financial issues, such as bankruptcy or reposession, can impact a borrower’s creditworthiness and may result in mortgage decline.

Happy mortgage broker giving free mortgage advice over the phone


Mitigating the Risk of Mortgage Decline

While mortgage decline can be disappointing, there are steps borrowers can take to mitigate the risk. Here are some tips:

  1. Improve credit score: Maintaining a good credit score by paying bills on time, reducing credit card balances, and correcting any errors on the credit report can improve the chances of mortgage approval. You can view your credit report via Check My File
  2. Build a stable employment history: Demonstrating a stable employment history by staying with the same employer or industry can increase the likelihood of mortgage approval.
  3. Reduce debt-to-income ratio: Paying down existing debts and avoiding new debts can help lower the debt-to-income ratio and improve the chances of mortgage approval.
  4. Save for a larger deposit: Saving for a larger deposit can not only increase the chances of mortgage approval but also lower the monthly mortgage payments.
  5. Choose an affordable property: Opting for a property within a budget that comfortably fits the lender’s affordability criteria can increase the likelihood of mortgage approval.
  6. Resolve past financial issues: Taking steps to resolve past financial issues, such as paying off outstanding debts or working with a credit counselor, can improve creditworthiness and increase the chances of mortgage approval.

What to Do If Your Mortgage Application Gets Declined

If a mortgage application gets declined, it’s important to understand that it’s not the end of the road.

Here are some steps you can take:

Ask for feedback

Reach out to the advisor or lender and ask for feedback on why your mortgage application was declined. Understanding the specific reasons can help you identify areas that need improvement.

Address the issues

Once you know the reasons for the mortgage decline, take steps to address them. This may include improving your credit score, increasing your income, reducing debts, or resolving past financial issues.

Seek alternative options

If one lender declined your mortgage application, it doesn’t mean that all lenders will do the same. Explore other options, such as different lenders or different types of mortgages, to see if you can secure financing elsewhere.

Consider a co-signer

If you have a trusted family member or friend with good credit and stable income, you may consider adding them as a co-signer on your mortgage application. This can increase your chances of approval. Always take professional advice here.

Work with a mortgage professional

A mortgage professional can provide valuable guidance and help you navigate the mortgage application process. They can review your financial situation, provide advice on improving your chances of approval, and assist in finding alternative financing options.


Mortgage advisor giving mortgage advice


In conclusion, getting declined for a mortgage can be disappointing, but it’s not the end of the world. By understanding the common reasons for mortgage decline and taking steps to address any issues, you can increase your chances of getting approved for a mortgage.

Remember to seek guidance from a mortgage professional and explore alternative options if needed. With determination and careful financial planning, you may still be able to achieve your dream of homeownership.

The information on this page is not tailored to any individual readers and should not be considered financial advice under any circumstances.

If you are seeking advice about a mortgage, you should consult a qualified professional.

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