My son is a lawyer unto himself

Our lawyer, Fiona McNulty, explains why lender's need all adult occupiers of a property to sign a "Consent to Mortgage" document when remortgaging
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© Merrily Harpur
Question: My two children and I have lived in our home for several years. I am in the process of remortgaging and my lender has asked my eldest to sign a "Consent To Mortgage".

I do not understand why my lender wants my teenage son's permission before I can take out the loan. And they have said that he needs to speak to his own solicitor, too. What's all this about?

Answer: You have not said how old your son is but I assume that he has turned 18. It is very common for a lender to require that all adult occupiers sign such a form to protect the lender against any rights of occupation that your son may claim to have.

By signing the form your son acknowledges that the lender will have a charge over the property and also that he will vacate the property if you default on the mortgage and your lender wishes to take possession of your property.

He will not be liable for the loan repayments and any financial interest in the property that he can establish is not affected, though he would be paid from the sale proceeds after the mortgage had been satisfied.

Your lender has asked your son to take independent legal advice to prevent him from claiming that he "couldn't get his head round" what he was signing or that he was pressured into signing it by you. This is to protect the lender from such claims should they take possession. Your son should see a local solicitor who will be able to explain everything to him in simple terms.

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If you have a question for Fiona McNulty, email We regret that questions cannot be answered individually.

Fiona is a partner in the property team at Thring Townsend Lee & Pembertons Solicitors

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