What Documents Do I Need To Get A Self-Employed Mortage?

Save time and ensure your mortgage application proceeds smoothly by collecting all relevant documentation in advance.

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Graham Cox - Founder & Cemap Mortgage Advisor | SelfEmployedMortgageHub.com
Graham Cox
CeMAP Mortgage & CPSP Specialist Finance Advisor

Before starting the process of applying for a mortgage, it's vitally important your advisor has access to all the relevant paperwork.

Not only will it allow them to fully understand your circumstances and seek clarification where required, but it means you'll receive your mortgage offer more quickly as well.

With that in mind, we've put together this handy checklist of self-employed mortgage documentation. We recommend you bookmark it for easy access.

Income proof for a self-employed mortgage

To get a self employed mortgage, you must be able to prove both your business profits, and individual income. Most lenders want to see at least 2 years worth of accounts, though a few will work with just one.

Standard documentation to verify income

If you're a sole trader, LLP equity partner or company director, you'll need to provide the following documents for each of the past 2 years , where you've been trading that long:

*If you don't use an accountant, let us know so we can advise you.

Accountant's certificates

A few lenders will accept an accountant's certificate, in lieu of the SA302 and Tax Overview documents.  The certificate is a form signed by your accountant verifying business turnover, gross and net profit before tax for sole traders, and post-tax profit, salary and dividends for directors.

Documentation to provide if you're a contractor

Contractors must provide their current contract, sometimes in addition to the documents listed above.  

If your earnings are high enough, and/or you fit the lenders other criteria, it's often possible to be treated as employed for income assessment. In which case, your contract and bank statements can be sufficient to evidence your income.

If you contract through an umbrella company, you'll need to provide your contract and P60s for the past 2 years (where available).

What's an SA302?

An SA302 is an official tax calculation document produced by HMRC after you submit your personal tax return (SA100).

Aside from showing how much tax you owe, the SA302 summarises your declared earnings for the tax year, including pre-tax profits for sole traders, and salary and dividends for company directors.

Other income streams such as investments or rent are also included.

How do I get my SA302?

If your accountant uses commercial accounting software to submit your self-assessment tax return, they should provide you with the tax calculation, or tax computation as it's also known.

This is essentially an unofficial version of the HMRC's SA302 tax calculation, but it's widely accepted by lenders for mortgage purposes.

Even though they are not strictly the same thing, you'll often see the terms SA302 and tax calculation/computation used interchangeably. The latter is often, but not always, referring to the accountant supplied version. Rule of thumb: if you have an accountant, ask them to provide your tax calculation.

If you or your accountant filed your tax return directly via HMRC Online, your SA302 should be ready to print as a pdf file 72 hours later.

To print your SA302:

  • Sign into your HMRC Login account
  • Go to 'Self Assessment'
  • Scroll down the page to 'Previously filed returns'
  • Click Get your SA302 tax calculation
  • Select the SA302 for the relevant year
  • Select 'Save as PDF' and click Save
Image showing where to view and print SA302 tax calculation and Tax Year Overview documents
Inside your HMRC Online portal

What's a Tax Year Overview?

The Tax Year Overview (TYO), or Tax Overview as it's sometimes called, is a document produced by the HMRC. It verifies the figures in your SA302 are correct, and shows the tax to be paid by yourself or refunded by HMRC.

The SA302/tax calculation and TYO go hand in hand, and for mortgage purposes, most lenders will want to see both documents for the relevant year(s).

How do I get my Tax Year Overview?

Downloading your TYO documents from HMRC is very similar to how you accessed your SA302s.

To print your Tax Year Overview:

  • Sign into your HMRC Login account
  • Go to 'Self Assessment'
  • Scroll down the page to 'Previously filed returns'
  • Click 'view your tax year overview'
  • Choose the year from the 'Tax year ending' dropdown menu and click Go
  • Click 'Print your tax year overview'
  • Select 'Save as PDF' and click Save

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Verifying your identity and address

As you'd expect, proving your identity and address is a mandatory requirement to get a mortgage. Fortunately, it's very straightforward:

Identification documents

Mortgage providers require a certified copy of one of the following identity docs:

  1. A full, in date, UK photocard driving license or...
  2. A valid UK passport, showing your photograph, name and passport number

The lender may also require your National Insurance number so it's best to keep it handy. If you don't know it, and you're drawing salary as a company director via PAYE, have a look at your:

  • latest payslip
  • P60 (aka End of Year Certificate)

You can also view your NI number online by signing into the Government Gateway and viewing your personal tax account. Alternatively, as a last resort, contact HMRC.

Address documents

As long as it's dated within the last 3 months, the most recent certified copy of one of the following is usually acceptable as long as it clearly shows your name(s) and current home address:

  1. Bank statement (all pages of the latest months statement , not just the front page)
  2. Council Tax statement
  3. Utility bill

How do I certify my ID documents?

Your local post office or a solicitor can certify your ID and address documents. If you're making a joint application, both of you must attend so they can verify your ID.

Documents to prove your current trading performance

Even though your company accounts and SA302/tax calculation evidences historical profitability and earnings, lenders will want to be satisfy themselves that current trading performance is not deteriorating. If it's actually improving, so much the better.

Download your latest 3 months business bank statements

We recommend downloading the three most recent months business bank account statements. Most lenders will want to view three months worth, though the odd mortgage provider may request six. The latest statement should be dated within 30 days of the mortgage application.

Accountant's projections

To assess the sustainability of your business going forward, some lenders will request an accountant's projection of your likely trading performance in the current year.  Usually the bank or building society provide a form for your accountant to complete and sign.

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Evidence of current personal income & expenditure

Each lender will have their own requirements, but your three most recent current account bank statements is usually sufficient.

If there's evidence of heavy credit card usage, the lender may also want to check your card statements. It's always a good idea to reduce or clear your credit card balances before applying for a mortgage if you can.

Proof of deposit

All lenders require proof you have sufficient finance in place to pay the deposit.

What constitutes an acceptable deposit source depends on the lender, but the most common are:

  • Personal savings in a bank account
  • Investments such as an ISA, or Premium Bonds
  • An inheritance
  • Liquidated funds from a property sale
  • A gifted deposit from a family member

A pdf statement from your personal current bank or investment account is normally sufficient proof.

Non UK nationals: Proof of permanent right to reside

Where a non-UK national is applying for a mortgage, lenders often require proof of the applicant's permanent right to reside in the UK, either with settled status, pre-settled status, or indefinite leave to remain (or enter).

Republic of Ireland nationals are exempt from this requirement as they have automatic permanent right to reside in the UK.

EU settlement scheme: Proving settled or pre-settled status

To prove your immigration status under the EU settlement scheme, visit https://www.gov.uk/view-prove-immigration-status and follow the instructions to get a share code. The code is valid for 30 days and the lender can use it to verify your status.

Non EU citizens: Indefinite right to remain

Banks, building societies and other specialist lenders ‎will accept a clear photo of your passport, including the indefinite leave stamp. Right of abode, indefinite leave (or right) to reside in the UK, or where it;s clearly stated: 'There is at present no time limit on the holder's stay in the United Kingdom' are all acceptable.

Alternatively, please provide one of the following:

  1. A clear photo of your Biometric Residence Permit (visa) with the appropriate verbiage to show indefinite right to remain.
  2. A letter from the Home office confirming your indefinite right to remain in the UK.

Got questions or need help?

If you need help with collating your mortgage documentation, or need clarification on anything, please contact your SEMH mortgage advisor who will be happy to help. Or call 0117 205 0655 during our office hours of 9am - 5pm Monday - Friday or email us here.

Graham Cox - MLIBF CeMAP Mortgage Adviser & Director of Hub FS Ltd

About the author

Graham Cox is the founder of Self Employed Mortgage Hub, the trading name of Hub FS Limited.

Based just north of Bristol, SEMH is an independent, whole of market broker and a true specialist in self employed mortgages, helping business owners across the UK get great mortgage and protection deals.

Graham's market commentary and analyis is regularly quoted in the national press and media, including The Guardian, Telegraph, FT Adviser, and BBC Radio Bristol.