What is the Average Length of Mortgage in the UK as of 2023

  • July 7, 2023
  • January 8, 2024
  • Shaz Nawaz
  • 8 min read

When stepping into the world of property, you are often met with the struggle of understanding mortgage terms. Which is quite understandable. First-time buyers may find it challenging to deal with such complexities. There is no need to stress. This guide will thoroughly explain the average length of mortgage in the UK and if you should go for an extension.

Of course, everyone wants to know exactly how long they must commit to a mortgage. You will want to budget according to the repayments and the length of the mortgage. So, let’s get straight to it.

What is the Average Length of Mortgage in the UK 2023?

The range of a typical mortgage starts from 25 years and goes all the way up to 35 years. In the past, the average was 25 years, but now 30 years is a more common length. Recently, 35-year mortgages have become popular amongst buyers. Speaking in terms of expense and longevity, mortgages hold the top rank in loans. 

Most lenders will only agree on the average, but some will accept a longer term. Even though it is difficult, but a lender may agree to a 40-year term.

Reasons Why People Choose a Longer-Term Mortgage

It may come as a surprise to you, but there are plenty of reasons for people to choose a longer-term mortgage. Out of them, the major reason is to minimise their monthly payments. When you spread the cost over a long period, such as 35 years, you end up paying less every month. This is in comparison to an average length of mortgage term.

This can come in handy for those who are running on a tight budget. Anyone who wants to keep their payments as small as possible to save money can go on a longer-term mortgage. You might have other financial commitments to follow through. In that case, you can go for a 30–40-year term mortgage. That is only if you are all right with paying for it for decades.

Of course, there is a downside. There always is. For longer-term mortgages, it is the cost. There are interest and capital payments that you must deal with for the term. An additional 5-15 years of them can pile up. Which is a lot, even though you are paying less per month.

You can use a mortgage repayment calculator to find out how changing terms can affect your payments.

How Can You Get Yourself a Longer-Term Mortgage?

While you are smack in the middle of the mortgage application, you can discuss the length. Well, the lender discusses the term length with you, and you can chime in if you want it to be longer. That is, if the benefits were convincing enough for you. There’s a catch, though. Your lender might not offer longer mortgage terms. Which, by the way, can be risky business.

There is a way around this. You might not like it, but it is worth giving a shot. You need to choose the right lender for the first time. Otherwise, you will face rejection. Rejection leads to marks on your credit report. What do marks on your credit report lead to? Your future applications are in jeopardy.

If it is your final decision to go for a longer mortgage agreement, then reach out to a mortgage broker. With their knowledge and access to the market, they can lead you to the right lenders with extensive mortgage terms. You can then make smaller monthly payments as compared to the average length of mortgage term.

The Helping Hand of a Mortgage Broker

The Helping Hand of a Mortgage Broker

Now, the question arises, what does a mortgage broker do?

Well, they can help you out by doing the following:

    • Search the market inside out for all the deal with a longer term. (Over 25 years.)

    • Consider your age, personal situation, and need to locate the right lender for a longer-mortgage term. For the first time.

    • Explain in detail the difference between longer-term mortgage and average length of mortgage. That way, you know you are making the wiser choice.

    • Become a negotiator to deal with the lender on your behalf. They will make sure you get your hands on the best rates possible.

    • Help with the paperwork and guide you through the complicated process of the application.

The Role of the Age Factor

Let’s talk about the eligibility criteria for a longer-term mortgage. It is no different from the criteria of the typical term. Nevertheless, your age can play a factor. Some lenders might put your age under the microscope for observation when looking at a longer-term agreement.

There is a reason for this. They want to consider your retirement years. Usually, people’s income decreases at this stage. This means that they may have a hard time affording their mortgage payment during their retirement years.

A mortgage term which runs past your 70th birthday will face rejection by a few lenders. Most lenders set the threshold at your 75th birthday. In rare cases, lenders do not mind the mortgage term going past 80 or even 90. Eve rarer cases are those lenders who do not put any age restrictions. Perhaps you are lucky enough to find them.

Furthermore, there are other options to look at if longer-term mortgages don’t work out for you. The reason, in this case, is your age factor. You can then consider RIO mortgages.

Is it Possible to Extend the Length of an Existing Mortgage?

mortgage refinance

The short answer is, yes, you can extend the length of an existing mortgage. Which is obviously an average length of mortgage term. Now, for the longer version. You can extend your existing mortgage term by refinancing. If that is not a possibility for you, then you can re-mortgage with a new one. Your eligibility for a term extension is all up to the lender. They will review your affordability. This way they can see if there are any changes since the time of original debt.

Your lender may not approve your extension on the following basis:

    • The age factor. If by the end of the term your age is 70 or above. It depends on the lender’s criteria.

    • The property in question is presently let.

    • If your mortgage is part-and-part or even interest-only.

    • You have a guarantor mortgage.

    • You owe unpaid mortgage payments for more than a month.

    • If the total mortgage term is less than the limit of the lender.

You can go the simple route and call your current lender to ask if the extension is possible. A better option is to speak with a broker first. They can find you a better deal by surveying the entire market. As a result, you can get a longer agreement and a better interest rate as well.

Pros and Cons of Short-Term Mortgages:

Pros Cons
Quicker to pay them off
Rate rises have more impact
Overall, less expensive
Monthly payments are more
Acts as a saving
Reduces your options

Pros and Cons of Long-Term Mortgages:

Pros Cons
Rate rises have a lower impact
Takes a long time to pay them off
Monthly payments are less expensive
Overall, more costly
More flexibility
Equity will take time to build

Is Extending an Ideal Option?

Now that you understand the complexity of longer-term mortgages, is it ideal? In certain cases, it is.

Suppose your salary suffered a cut and you cannot afford to deal with your monthly payments. Under such circumstances, an extension would help. It will decrease the amount you owe. Therefore, you can manage to pay it off.For those who want to save a little, it is also a great option. Additionally, it can help those who want more disposable income in the current term.

Still, you must think of the downsides. Of course, a longer-term means you are stuck with your mortgage debt for an extremely long time. Yet, you must also look at the bigger picture. If you pay interest over a longer term, you end up paying more than a whole.

Certain lenders give you the permission to go back to your average length of mortgage term. If that is the best choice according to your circumstances. Or perhaps it is your own decision later.

Therefore, you must ponder the overall cost. You will pay less monthly, but end up paying more in the long run. Is it worth in the end? Truly, it depends on your situation.

What are the Expenses of an Extension?

If you choose to refinance to extend your current mortgage term, then you may need to pay a re-mortgage fee. This fee varies from lender to lender. You can learn about the fee through research. It can result in a substantial amount. Therefore, consider if an extension is worth the trouble.


To summarise, it is in your best interest to reach out to the mortgage broker. Your plan to take out a longer-term mortgage or extending your current one requires expert advice. Remember, not every lender will accept a longer agreement and there are plenty of age restrictions out there. You don’t want the mark of rejection on your credit report. Thankfully, a mortgage broker can keep you out of trouble. They won’t let you fall into a hole that you cannot climb out of. You will end up meeting the right lender through them.

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