Analysis of its SmartrCriteria criteria searching tool revealed that searches for lenders that will accept furloughed workers rose from 175 to 577 between October and November.
On 5 November, the government announced it would extend its Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme until 31 March. Workers receive 80 per cent of their wages for the hours not worked. At the same time, the self-employed were offered a third grant to help them stay afloat worth up to £7,500.
Following the announcement, Knowledge Bank also saw a surge in searches for lenders that still accept furloughed income. The firm reported more than 30 updates to lenders’ criteria, most to tighten or restrict borrowing, in the two days that followed chancellor Rishi Sunak’s extension to the scheme.
Kevin Roberts (pictured), director, Legal & General Mortgage Club, said: “Following the chancellor’s announcement last month confirming the government’s commitment to extend the furlough scheme, we are seeing more borrowers turn to the expertise of mortgage advisers to find furlough-friendly mortgages.
“Other incentives such as the stamp duty holiday have also made this an attractive time for furloughed workers to press ahead with their homebuying plans as they look to potentially save thousands in tax before 31 March.
“Furloughed workers still need access to mortgage products and they shouldn’t assume that their circumstances mean they are locked out of the mortgage market.”