Knowing these answers can make the mortgage application process a lot less painful.

Most first-time homebuyers will need to obtain a mortgage, and this can seem like a scary process. However, when you're armed with a little knowledge about what you'll need and what to expect as you go from the mortgage application process all the way to the closing table, you can banish those fears. With that in mind, we've answered 10 of the most common questions would-be homebuyers have about mortgages.

After all,… we are here to make it easier for you!

  1. Do I need great credit to get a mortgage?
  2. Not necessarily, but it will certainly help. It is possible to get a conventional mortgage with a lower Experian credit score. However, be aware that the lower your score, the higher your interest rate will be.

  3. How much of a down payment do I need?
  4. The short answer is that you can get a conventional mortgage with as little as 5% down, however as it might suggest the higher deposit you can put down will help you best mortgage rates and deals available.

  5. What are the costs, and how much should I expect them to be?
  6. The term "costs" refer to all the charges you'll need to pay before your loan is completed. This can include arrangement or product fees, solicitor costs and valuation or survey fees. Our advice is initially free and if you decide to take our services, you should expect the costs to be between £240 - £600 inclusive of VAT.

  7. Should I choose a fixed-rate, capped rate, tracker rate or variable mortgage?
  8. When interest rates are historically low, like they are now, a fixed mortgage makes good financial sense. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of mortgages originated today are fixed-rate.

  9. What type of mortgage is best for me?
  10. There are several types of mortgages to choose from. A conventional mortgage is tougher to qualify for credit-wise, but if your credit isn’t as strong then this could be costlier. This is something we will advise on from day one every step of the way.

  11. Should I get a 25-year or 35-year term loan?
  12. This depends on how much you want to stretch your budget. If you can afford the higher monthly payments, you will naturally pay off the mortgage loan quicker, you will also save a tremendous amount of interest. On the other hand, a 35-year mortgage will cost less per month, allowing you to afford a bigger or nicer house, or one in a better location.

  13. What documentation should I gather?
  14. Your lender may ask for many different items, but in general, be prepared to show all the following:

    • Income verification (Last three years SA302 and overview tax returns if self-employed, if employed 3 months’ payslips and latest year P60)
    • Passport and Drivers' license
    • Bank statements (3 months)
    • Proof of deposit funds (and an explanation of where they came from, if it's not obvious) Family and friend gifts are acceptable to some lenders (see below)
    • If some or all your down payment is coming from a gift, you will need gift letter from the source of the funds that confirm they are gift, not a loan. We will supply you with the letters for this don’t worry.
  15. What is a first appointment?

  16. A first appointment is a basic review of your finances to determine if you would qualify for a mortgage. In general, a first appointment is based on unverified information you provide and does not include a credit check and is therefore not a firm guarantee of a loan.

  17. How long does it take to get my mortgage?
  18. The short answer is that a lot of things need to happen between you submitting your mortgage application and you taking ownership of your home. The average completion time with our sales office is 98 days from offer being accepted to exchange of contracts. Our aim is to get the offer within this timescale to not cause delays.

  19. Will my monthly payments change during the loan term?
  20. Probably. Even with a fixed-rate loan, your payment is likely to change after the end of the fixed term. We will work with you towards the end of the term to advise you and make sure you get the best advice to ensure you get the best deals and rates moving forward.

Not ready to sell yet?

No problem, if you just want an informal chat about your property’s current value or any other moving advice please contact one of our expert team.

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