Some lenders have adopted new rules that make it harder for older people to get a mortgage. Many are also struggling to get credit cards and loans too, even when their finances are in order. What about you?
Some lenders now flat-out refuse to offer a mortgage to any customer who would reach the state retirement age during the length of the term.
Others will demand evidence that the customer is saving into a private pension in order to approve this sort of mortgage.
Even the highest-earners with decades of sensible borrowing behind them could be left unable to secure a deal for a new home, as this couple recently found out. Victoria Wallace, 48 years old, was reportedly turned away by banks and building societies for a mortgage because her husband was deemed ‘too old’ at 61.
Lack of flexibility
Getting hold of a credit card can be just as difficult. Many credit card companies will decline applications from even the wealthiest pensioners, if they no longer earn a substantial salary.
In fact, Lloyds Bank recently issued an apology to an 80-year-old customer after staff mistakenly informed her that she was too old to even apply for a credit card. I can only imagine how insulting this must feel to someone who has been careful with money their whole life.
This might be a necessarily cautious approach with many applicants, but there appears to be a lack of flexibility when it comes to older generations applying for credit, especially when you consider that the average retiree now earns more than those still in work.
Time for change?
Older people have traditionally been given a rougher ride when applying for financial products.
Thankfully, they appear to be getting better access to car insurance, travel insurance and other financial products in recent times.
Do we need similar changes to ensure that the seniors who are clearly creditworthy are given better access to borrowed money? Let us know if you’ve been unfairly declined credit or a particular financial product due to your age.