If you have a mortgage, you do not have to tell your mortgage lender about your cancer diagnosis. But it’s usually better for you to let them know, and to tell them about the possibility that you may have trouble with your payments, as soon as you can. The earlier you tell them, the more likely it is you’ll be able to find a solution together.
The best solution will depend on the following:
- The type of mortgage you have – You should be able to find this out from your lender or your mortgage documents. Read more about different mortgage types.
- Your age – For example, if you are older and close to retirement age, lenders may be less willing to take steps such as extending the mortgage term. If you are aged at least 55 and have some pension savings, you may be able to use these to pay off your mortgage. However, this will reduce the amount of retirement income you have later on. We have more information on pensions.
- Your personal circumstances – This includes how much you owe, how much you can afford to pay each month and how many years are left on your mortgage.
If you are on a low income and qualify for certain income-based benefits, you may be able to receive help towards your mortgage interest and service charges. It’s important to get specialist guidance about your particular situation by contacting Macmillan or another organisation such as Citizens Advice. But the general points below may be helpful.