5. What you could receive
If you qualify for Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI), you’ll get help paying the interest on up to £200,000 of your loan or mortgage. This figure is £100,000 if:
If you’re already getting SMI and move to Pension Credit within 12 weeks of stopping your other benefits, you’ll still get help with interest on up to £200,000.
The standard interest rate used to calculate SMI is 2.61%.
SMI can be paid as a benefit or as a loan. Which you can get depends on when you get, or are treated as getting, your qualifying benefit.
If you get SMI as a benefit, it will stop being paid from 5 April 2018. You’ll get a letter before then about the SMI loan and other options available to you.
If you get an SMI loan, you’ll need to repay the money you get with interest when you sell or transfer ownership of your home.
If you want to pay it back more quickly, you can also make voluntary repayments. The minimum voluntary repayment is £100 or the outstanding balance if it’s less than £100.
Interest is added to SMI loan payments. It can go up or down, but the interest rate you pay won’t change more than twice a year.
How SMI is paid
SMI is normally paid direct to your lender and can start either:
- from the date you start getting Pension Credit
- after you’ve claimed any other qualifying benefit for 39 consecutive weeks