Hello, this is the first time I have used the forum, here's my story.
I attempted to apply for a mortgage in feb 2011. I had a sufficient deposit, but I didnt really know much about the ROA act so, I thought it best to take my crb check with me to the mortgage advisor.
I am a political campaigner (anti war, climate change that type of thing) and consequently I have quite a few minor offences stretching back over the past few years. I thought that these would remain unspent for 5 years (i have never been in prison)
I showed the crb check to the mortgage advisor and was told that it would be impossible for me to get a mortgage because of my convictions. I got a second opinion and was told the same thing by a different broker.
Because I really needed a house for my mum and myself, I asked my sister to apply for the mortgage, which she did. However, I am not comfortable with this situation and neither is my sister- she sufferes from bouts of depression and is worried about officially owning the house.
In light of this, I attempted to find another mortgage in july 2011 with the britannia, as I have been a member of the co-op bank for several years and this entitled me to a decent interest rate on a mortgage from them.
At first I was told that the criminal convictions did not count and it was all hunky dory. It gets alittle complicated here:- I am self employed, but I had cancer 2 years ago which meant I was on employment support allowance for almost 1 year. This meant my income for 2008/2009 was very low. This obviously would have lowered the amount I could borrow. However i was told that the britannia were happy to look at only the last 2 years (2009/10 2010/11) because of my special circumstances (ie being ill).
when the solicitor started the process of doing all the checks etc, i was asked why i wanted to buy a house off my sister that she purchased just a few months ago. i explained that at that time, i had been told by other mortgage advisors that i would not get a mortgage because of my criminal record.
That seemed to send the solicitor into a bit of a spin, and she asked for full details of my criminal record which i gave her- i had nothing to hide, as the mortgage company knew about my record already. Unfortunately the solicitor then advised the mortgage company that because of my criminal record i should not have been treated as having special circumstances, and therefore my income should have been assesed over 4 years not 2, which, beause of my time on benefits and my low earnings prior to getting cancer (i only worked part time then) meant that i should not have been offered the mortgage in the fist place.
here is the ironic bit
i have read up a little on the Rehabilitation of offenders act and i think that all my convictions were actually spent even beforre i tried to apply for the first mortgage. My last couple of offences were in 2009 (i stopped when i got ill) and i got conditional discharges which ran out at the start of feb 2011. i had to pay costs of around £300 to the court, but although fines stay on your record for 5 years, i cant find anywhere that says costs stay on your record. if that is correct, my record was already spent when i first applied for the mortgage.
i am finally getting round to my questions:
firstly , am i right in thinking my convictions are spent?
secondly, as all the details of my convictions are now out there in the mortgage broker ether, if i try to apply for a mortgage and dont declare my convictions will they be common knowledge anyway, and will this mean i will be likely to be turned down again?
i realise this is a long post, but if i am correct in thinking my convictions are spent i am very annoyed that the solicitors and mortgage advisors who i had imagined would know about these matters did not realise that they should not have taken my convictions into consideration when i was looking for the mortgage.