Why is the right buy-to-let mortgage essential?

Whether you are investing in Buy-to-Let properties for the rental income or for the potential capital appreciation, choosing the right mortgage is essential. Not least because it is fraudulent to either let a property while only paying for a residential mortgage, or to move into a property that you have told the lender you are renting out.

Before applying, use our Buy-to-Let mortgage calculator to estimate how much you can borrow to fund your property purchase.

If you're not sure how Buy-to-Let mortgages differ from residential mortgages or need more advice on how to get a Buy-to-Let mortgage see our guide page.

Buy-to-Let Mortgage Brokers

As an independent mortgage broker with over 40 years’ experience, we are perfectly placed to advise you and find a Buy-to-Let mortgage that matches your property needs. John Charcol has access to the whole of market and is experienced in finding the most suitable mortgage product for less conventional situations. With the recent changes to Buy-to-Let and Let-to-Buy, it’s never been more essential to get the right advice.

What is the criteria for a Buy-to-Let mortgage?

Buy-to-let mortgage lenders typically assess an applicant on the following criteria: age, borrower status, location of residence and credit history.

  • Age
    You can be a first-time buyer, first time landlord, experienced landlord or professional landlord. Which lender you use depends on individual lenders’ preferences, but typically first-time buyers will find fewer lenders agreeing to a buy-to-let mortgage. Not all lenders accept large portfolios either.
  • Borrower status
    You can be a first-time buyer, first time landlord, experienced landlord or professional landlord. Which lender you use depends on individual lenders’ preferences, but typically first-time buyers will find fewer lenders agreeing to a buy-to-let mortgage. Not all lenders accept large portfolios either.


  • Location of residence
    Buy-to-Let lenders will normally require borrowers to reside in the UK as they have no mandate to lend to applicants resident overseas.  Some lenders accept expat applicants, and their underwriters may apply slightly stricter overall criteria. requirements.
  • Credit history
    Poor credit history can make it particularly difficult to obtain a buy-to-let mortgage, but there are some lenders that are more flexible than others.

Are buy-to-let mortgage interest rates different from residential rates?

Buy-to-let mortgages often have slightly higher fees and interest rates associated with them compared to residential mortgages to reflect the higher risk for a lender. The minimum deposit for a buy-to-let mortgages also tends to be higher at 25% compared to 5-10% for normal residential mortgages.

How many buy-to-let mortgages can I have?

Different lenders have differing limits to the number of buy-to-let mortgages you can take out with them, and some also set limits based upon your entire portfolio including properties mortgaged with other lenders. Many high-street lenders cap the number of buy-to-let properties at 3 to 5, however there are lenders available that work exclusively with portfolio landlords (those owning 4+ buy-to-let properties).

Find the answer to more commonly asked Buy-to-Let mortgage questions in our Buy-to-Let FAQs section. 

Compare Buy-to-let mortgages

John Charcol

John Charcol 0330 057 5173 £

Cutlers Exchange, 123 Houndsditch London EC3A 7BU

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Our free tool lets you compare the best Buy-to-Let mortgages on the market. Whether you are a professional landlord or are just getting started in the Buy-to-Let market, our comparison tool provides an indication of the best Buy-to-Let mortgage rates around. 

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We recommend you sort by True Cost Comparison find out more

We recommend you sort by True Cost Comparison

We suggest you use our ‘True Cost Comparison’ filter. This allows you to accurately understand how different mortgages compare by ordering results based on the total cost over a ‘deal period’, such as a two, or five-year fixed rate mortgage.

Some low interest rate deals might seem attractive, but if fees are higher they might not be the best value for you. When comparing mortgage deals our true cost comparison factors the lender fees over the length of the deal as well as your monthly mortgage payments.

For example, if your repayments are £2,000 per month on a two-year fixed-rate mortgage, plus £500 in lender fees, the total cost of the deal is £48,500.

We've found 952 buy-to-let mortgage deals that match your search

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Product code 001WIY
Initial rate 1.69% then 5.09% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £282 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/12/2020 ?
Scheme fees £2,304 ?
Cost comparison £9,096 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,995
Valuation fee £274
Other fees £35
Cashback £250

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Dec-2019; then 1.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Dec-2020

Other info

Exit fees £0
Basic legals £0

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 25 months at 1.69% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.09%, for the remaining 22 years and 11 months would require 25 payments of £281.67 and 275 payments of £848.33. The total amount payable would be £242,387 made up of the interest (£240,083) and fees (£2,304 which includes exit fees of £0). The overall cost for comparison is 4.7% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 002AXG
Initial rate 1.69% then 5.24% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £282 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/01/2021 ?
Scheme fees £1,705 ?
Cost comparison £9,028 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,495
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £15
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 3.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2020; then 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2021

Other info

Exit fees £195
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.69% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.24%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £281.67 and 274 payments of £873.33. The total amount payable would be £248,321 made up of the interest (£246,616) and fees (£1,705 which includes exit fees of £195). The overall cost for comparison is 4.7% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code ZKN
Initial rate 1.78% then 5.24% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £297 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/01/2021 ?
Scheme fees £1,205 ?
Cost comparison £8,918 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £995
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £15
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 3.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2020; then 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2021

Other info

Exit fees £195
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.78% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.24%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £296.67 and 274 payments of £873.33. The total amount payable would be £248,211 made up of the interest (£247,006) and fees (£1,205 which includes exit fees of £195). The overall cost for comparison is 4.6% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 0021N4
Initial rate 1.79% then 4% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £298 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/02/2021 ?
Scheme fees £1,759 ?
Cost comparison £9,516 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,499
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £35
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 3.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 02-Feb-2021

Other info

Exit fees £225
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.79% and then on a variable rate, currently 4%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £298.33 and 274 payments of £666.67. The total amount payable would be £192,183 made up of the interest (£190,424) and fees (£1,759 which includes exit fees of £225). The overall cost for comparison is 3.8% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 002H7O
Initial rate 1.79% then 4% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £298 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/02/2021 ?
Scheme fees £1,759 ?
Cost comparison £9,516 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,499
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £35
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 3.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 02-Feb-2021

Other info

Exit fees £225
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.79% and then on a variable rate, currently 4%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £298.33 and 274 payments of £666.67. The total amount payable would be £192,183 made up of the interest (£190,424) and fees (£1,759 which includes exit fees of £225). The overall cost for comparison is 3.8% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 003RXA
Initial rate 1.79% then 5.19% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £298 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/03/2021 ?
Scheme fees £2,350 ?
Cost comparison £9,905 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,995
Valuation fee £275
Other fees £30
Cashback £500

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 1.50% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 01-Mar-2021

Other info

Exit fees £50
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 27 months at 1.79% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.19%, for the remaining 22 years and 9 months would require 27 payments of £298.33 and 273 payments of £865.00. The total amount payable would be £246,050 made up of the interest (£243,700) and fees (£2,350 which includes exit fees of £50). The overall cost for comparison is 5% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 004IPQ
Initial rate 1.84% then 5.24% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £307 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/01/2021 ?
Scheme fees £2,175 ?
Cost comparison £10,148 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,795
Valuation fee £265
Other fees £35
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2021

Other info

Exit fees £80
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.84% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.24%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £306.67 and 274 payments of £873.33. The total amount payable would be £249,441 made up of the interest (£247,266) and fees (£2,175 which includes exit fees of £80). The overall cost for comparison is 4.8% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code R24
Initial rate 1.85% then 5.09% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £308 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/03/2021 ?
Scheme fees £2,295 ?
Cost comparison £10,928 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,995
Valuation fee £300
Other fees £0
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Mar-2020; then 1.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Mar-2021

Other info

Exit fees £0
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 28 months at 1.85% and then on a variable rate, currently 5.09%, for the remaining 22 years and 8 months would require 28 payments of £308.33 and 272 payments of £848.33. The total amount payable would be £241,674 made up of the interest (£239,379) and fees (£2,295 which includes exit fees of £0). The overall cost for comparison is 4.6% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 002PQY
Initial rate 1.86% then 4.99% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £310 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/01/2021 ?
Scheme fees £2,132 ?
Cost comparison £10,192 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,999
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £8
Cashback £0

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 2.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2020; then 1.00% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Jan-2021

Other info

Exit fees £125
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 26 months at 1.86% and then on a variable rate, currently 4.99%, for the remaining 22 years and 10 months would require 26 payments of £310.00 and 274 payments of £831.67. The total amount payable would be £238,070 made up of the interest (£235,938) and fees (£2,132 which includes exit fees of £125). The overall cost for comparison is 4.6% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

Product code 002VC2
Initial rate 1.89% then 4.99% (variable) ?
Monthly repayments £315 ?
Type/Duration Fixed  until 01/03/2021 ?
Scheme fees £1,585 ?
Cost comparison £10,155 ?

Fees & Charges

Booking fee £0
Arrangement fee £1,495
Valuation fee £0
Other fees £0
Cashback £250

Flexibility

Max LTV 75%
Overpayments allowed? Yes
Early Repayment charges 2.5% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Mar-2020; then 1.5% of loan amount redeemed to be paid until 31-Mar-2021

Other info

Exit fees £90
Basic legals Payable

Representative example: A mortgage of £200,000 payable over 25 years on a repayment basis, initially on a fixed rate for 28 months at 1.89% and then on a variable rate, currently 4.99%, for the remaining 22 years and 8 months would require 28 payments of £315.00 and 272 payments of £831.67. The total amount payable would be £225,869 made up of the interest (£224,284) and fees (£1,585 which includes exit fees of £90). The overall cost for comparison is 4.3% APRC representative.

More info

Speak to a mortgage expert on 0344 346 3672 or Enquire now

View more mortgages

When choosing the best Buy-to-Let mortgage, expertise counts

You can only qualify for a Buy-to-Let mortgage based on the amount of rental income that you generate. Our mortgage experts at John Charcol will help you by researching the market to find the best Buy-to-Let mortgage rates for you.

We compare thousands of Buy-to-Let mortgages in the market. Many of the deals you find through this comparison tool are not available on the high street, but only through independent brokers like John Charcol.

Whether you are investing in the property market for the first time or you are a professional landlord, get in touch to see how we can save you time, effort and money.

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