Help with your mortgage | Sevenoaks District Council

Help with your mortgage

If you are struggling to pay your mortgage, your first step should always be to contact your lender. They will want to help you to meet repayments.

Support for Mortgage Interest

Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) helps you make the interest payments on your mortgage for up to two years.

If you are unemployed or working fewer than 16 hours a week, contact your local Jobcentre Plus to enquire about eligibility for the Government Support for Mortgage Interest.

Visit the support for Mortgage Interest scheme page on GOV.UK for information and how to claim.

If you are facing homelessness, please see our homelessness prevention and advice page.

Missed mortgage payments

A shortfall equivalent to two or more months' repayments means you are officially in mortgage arrears.

As soon as you know you will struggle to make repayments, you should contact your lender. Within 15 working days of falling into arrears, your lender must:

  • Tell you how much your arrears add up to
  • List the missed payments
  • Explain how much is outstanding on the mortgage
  • Outline any charges

Your lender must consider any requests about changing how you pay. This could include lower repayments or letting you pay just the interest for a short period of time or extending the term of the mortgage.

Any arrangement you agree with your lender will be reflected on your credit rating affecting your ability to borrow money in the future.

In extreme circumstances, your lender could take action to repossess your property. There are lots of stages before a lender can take such action and the process may take around two years.

For advice, see the Financial Services Authority (FSA) website and Government help available if you cannot pay your mortgage.