I take cash through my business – can I get a mortgage?

Despite the huge push for card-only payments since the COVID-19 pandemic, taking cash is still the norm for many businesses and amongst the self-employed, particularly in the trades & retail industry.  In fact, there are over 4.5 billion Bank of England notes in circulation. The notes are estimated to be worth a total of around £80billion according to the Bank of England.

Taking cash through your business is not necessarily an issue in itself when applying for a mortgage, it’s what you or your business does with that cash that can sometimes reduce the amount lenders will offer lend on a mortgage.

If you’re self-employed, whether it be on a sole trader, a partner in a partnership, or the director of a limited company in which you own more than 25% of the shares, lenders will typically want to see the last 2 years trading history in the form of company accounts and tax calculations submitted to HMRC.  Some may accept 1 year, but to access the widest choice of options it’s best to have 2 years.

Lenders may also request your last 3-6 months business bank statements to show consistent levels of income, and to make sure the average of these figures are aligned with your limited company accounts / tax calculations.

Lenders will only be able to lend against the income they can see on your accounts, so if you’re accepting cash payments and not putting them through the books, then it won’t be included in your taxable income and won’t be considered for lending and affordability purposes.

You may also be breaking the law by not declaring all your takings and be subject to investigation and prosecution by HMRC, which could lead to a fine and in serious cases prison and a criminal record.

In Summary, taking cash in a business should not directly impact your chances of getting a mortgage, nor should it affect your borrowing power, as long as you’re putting it through the books.

At Mortgage Medics we’ve been helping self-employed and business owners for over 15 years, so if this has got you thinking about moving, remortgaging, or your finances generally, we’d love to hear from you.   

Get in touch and we’ll be help you understand what’s possible, or sign up to our monthly newsletter, to keep your finger on the pulse.


Sam Mason – 5th May 2022