The challenges of getting a mortgage as a professional sportsperson

22/01/2021

There are a few issues that make some lenders nervous when lending money to sports professionals, including the fact that they are deemed riskier due to shorter career lengths and the risk of injuries. All good lenders are keen to ensure that the mortgage loan is affordable for the sportsperson and, crucially, remains so. 

Responsible lending means an Affordable Mortgage.
Mortgage lenders and brokers make sure that the loan they are providing is affordable for the client. The nature of professional sports contracts means that there is often a range of income sources that need to be considered and proven over time. Being able to afford your repayments now, and crucially in the future, is central to securing mortgage finance for sportspeople.

Shorter career lengths and earlier retirement.
There are many advantages to being a professional sportsman or woman. Depending on your age and experience you are probably well paid, you may also retire significantly earlier than other professions but, it is that early retirement that can make lenders uneasy. 

Mortgages are typically taken over 20+ year terms, and if you are not going to be “working” (playing) past the age of 35, how are you going to afford the mortgage then? Proving to a lender that you have a plan for when you stop playing can be an important step to take during your career. It might be worth starting those coaching badges or helping your club with some scouting work.

Inconsistent income due to bonuses and contract lengths.
​With professional sports contracts ranging typically from 1 to 5 years, lenders can feel concerned about providing a mortgage over 20+ years. Furthermore, a good proportion of your income may be made up through performance-related bonuses and there could be clauses involved to reduce the income if relegation occurs for example. There is also the realistic possibility of injury to consider. The reality is that it could end at any point. Lenders need to be happy that you will be able to pay your mortgage should that happen

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