FSA warns consumers over illegal self-cert

The Financial Services Authority has warned consumers not to inflate their income to get a self-certification mortgage as they risk getting a criminal record.

The FSA’s new mortgage website explains to consumers that they could be committing fraud, as well as being left with a loan they cannot afford, if they overstate their salary.

To help consumers work out how much they can afford, the new site offers a range of budget and mortgage calculators. It also offers independent mortgage tables to help people shop around and get a better deal.

Today’s warning was issued after recent FSA work with mortgage brokers who sell self certification mortgages showed that some brokers were ready to help borrowers inflate their income to obtain a mortgage.

However there was no evidence that this was a widespread practice.

To help ensure they get the right mortgage, the FSA is also urging consumers to make sure they disclose all financial incomings and outgoings to their broker to enable a correct assessment of how much they can afford.