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Specialist BTL brand enhances lending criteria

Specialist buy to let lending brand Keystone Property Finance has made a series of criteria enhancements aimed at helping both portfolio and non-portfolio landlords.

The maximum individual loan available has been increased from £750k to £1m on borrowing up to 65% loan to value. The increase has been introduced to help a growing number of landlords who are looking to secure larger loans, particularly on more expensive property. The larger loan amount is available to landlords borrowing both personally and via a limited company.

When assessing landlords’ suitability, Keystone will now accept applications from borrowers aged 21 years, down from 25 years previously. Non-home-owners will also be considered although they must own at least one buy to let property in the UK. Further, the minimum length of employment or self-employment in a particular role has been scrapped. Previously, applicants were expected to have at least one year’s track record.

Sticking with individuals, Keystone has broadened its remit on UK residency requirements. It will now accept skilled works on both Tier 1 and Tier 2 visas, whereas before, only individuals with permanent rights to reside in the UK would be considered.

From a property perspective, flats in high rise blocks will be accepted on a case by case basis, depending on the number of storeys and the percentage of private ownership within the block.

Commenting on the enhancements, David Whittaker, CEO of Keystone Property Finance said:

“We’ve announced the changes today for two reasons: Firstly, because we wanted to show both portfolio and non-portfolio landlords that we are open for business, and the new PRA guidelines will not alter our lending appetite.