How much equity do I need to remortgage

The amount of equity you have in your home can determine your remortgaging options.

Think carefully before securing debts against your home. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
When you choose to remortgage your existing mortgage, you should take into account the amount of equity you’ve built up in your home. If you don’t have enough equity, remortgaging could be a bad idea.

What is equity?

When you make payments towards the principal amount of your mortgage you build up equity in your home. The equity is the difference between your home’s value and what you have left to repay on your mortgage. This is the money you can expect to keep if you sell your home and repay your mortgage with the proceeds from the sale.

Graphic explaining home equity.

How much equity do I need when remortgaging?

Many loans come with a maximum loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of 95%, which means you cannot borrow more than 95% of the value of your home. What this also means is that if you wish to remortgage you must have at least 5% equity in your home.

To put yourself in the best position to remortgage, you should have at least 20% equity in your home.

Applying for remortgaging with no equity is difficult unless you can get someone to be a guarantor.

Remember that lenders look at your equity as a means to assess risk. The more equity you have, the less of a risk you are to the lender and vice versa.

What if I don’t have at least 20% in equity?

When you choose to remortgage without at least 20% equity in your home, the lender is less likely to approve your application to remortgage. If you are approved, you will likely be charged a higher interest rate than you would be if you had 20% equity. This is because the more equity you have, the less of a risk you are to the lender.

Alternative options

Before comparing remortgaging options, find out how much equity you have in your home. If you don’t have a 20% deposit saved but aren’t far off the mark, it might make sense to wait until you’ve built up a higher amount of equity.

Alternatively, you can consider applying for a guarantor mortgage or applying with specialist banks that may have less stringent lending criteria for remortgage mortgages.

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