Atom bank updates Mortgage Lending Criteria, opening up Near Prime to more customers

07 October 2021

Atom bank, the UK’s first app-based bank and recently named What Mortgage’s Best Online Lender for the fourth year in a row, has today (7 October) announced it is making changes to its lending criteria for both Near Prime and Prime mortgages.

Offered through Atom’s extensive network of intermediaries, its Near Prime mortgages are designed to help customers secure a loan when they have less-than-perfect credit. The updates to lending criteria announced today mean Atom’s mortgages will now be opened up to a wider range of customers who may find it challenging to secure loans elsewhere.

Changes to Near Prime will include: Defaults and CCJ unsatisfied limits increased from £500 to £1,000 Maximum arrears allowed of 2 in the last 12 months on any item of credit (previously non allowed in the last six months) Maximum of four CCJs per applicant in the last three years (down from six years)

Changes to Prime mortgages will include an increase in the maximum loan size for 95% LTV mortgages from £300k to £500k.

For both Prime and Near Prime, there will be a reintroduction of variable income which accepts 50% of bonus, overtime and commission.

Paul Elliott, Head of Mortgages at Atom bank, said: “We launched our Near Prime mortgages - a market we are looking to really establish ourselves in - in June and by bringing something new to the table, like being app-based and offering exceptional speed from application to offer, we’ve made a really great start.

“Broker feedback has been pleasingly positive but at the same time, we have received constructive suggestions too. We have really listened to this and are happy to announce improved changes to our Near Prime lending criteria as a result.

“The past 18 months have been incredibly tough and we know that as a result people are likely to have faced some financial difficulties. That’s why we are changing our criteria to give greater options to customers for example who may have missed payments in the last six months or for whom overtime is now more important to their income.”

Since November 2016, Atom has provided over 19,000 mortgage offers worth £3.5bn and has helped more than 17,000 households complete on new mortgages to a total of £3.2bn.


Note to Editors

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About Atom bank

Atom bank launched operations in April 2016, offering market-leading Fixed Saver accounts and secured business lending for small and medium-sized enterprises (‘SMEs’), followed by its automated mobile mortgage proposition in December 2016. Atom launched an Instant Saver in September 2020. With a competitive rate, no short-term bonus, no limits on withdrawals and no minimum amount required at opening, the instant saver offers people much-needed flexibility while their cash works harder for them.

Atom is a mobile only and customer first bank. Based in the North East of England with a team of over 400 people, they’re here to do the right thing by their customers with outstanding levels of customer experience whilst taking the fight to the incumbents with exceptional levels of efficiency. At the heart of the bank is the app, with an award-winning customer support team on hand to help with any queries through phone, chat, email and social media