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FAQs - Mortgages

A mortgage is a type of loan that allows you to buy a house. There are several types of mortgage products available, so you can get the right one for your situation.

When applying for a mortgage, you need to put down a deposit, which is a percentage of the property value. This gives lenders an element of trust to borrow you the remaining amount that’s needed to purchase the property.

If you want to get on the property ladder, a mortgage is usually the best option, unless you’re able to save up the amount to buy a house outright.

In most cases a 10% deposit of the property value is required for a residential mortgage, however it is possible to get on the property ladder with a 5% deposit. There are plenty of benefits to saving a bigger deposit, they are:

  • Cheaper monthly payments – for capital repayment mortgages the less you borrow, the less you back
  • Better mortgage rates – lenders give better mortgage rates for those with higher deposits
  • More chance of getting accepted – lenders perform affordability checks, the higher your deposit the less your monthly payment will be
  • Lower risk – if you’re property equity falls, there’s less chance of you owing the lender in the long term

Yes, you can still get a mortgage with bad credit. You may not get access to most competitive rates, but it’s definitely still possible. Lenders will look at your payment history, so any missed payments or CCJs in the past will work against you.

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Key things to consider for the best mortgage deal

Rates

A fixed mortgage rate can offer peace of mind with a guarantee of what your monthly repayments will be over a set period of time which means financial planning can be easier although a tracker could be cheaper overall. It’s important to consider what suits your financial circumstances and attitude to risk.


Fees

Always consider what fees are attached to a mortgage deal, they can add considerably to the overall cost. Don’t forget to factor in the length of the initial term too as there is likely to be an early repayment charge if you want to leave early before that term is ended.


Credit Rating

Credit rating can have a BIG impact on what mortgage deals, and rates, you will be able to access. It’d be savvy to check your credit report before applying for a new mortgage so you can take steps to improve your rating where possible. Simple things such as getting on the electoral roll can help.


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What kind of mortgage do I need?

A fixed-rate mortgage simply means the interest rate remains the same over a set period of time. It means repayments will also be the same every month, so no need to worry about a rise in interest rates. You will often find deals will offer between two and five years of fixed rates, although some lenders offer 10 years or more!

A tracker mortgage will charge you an interest rate that is usually a few percentage points higher than the Bank of England base rate. The base rate is the interest rate that banks on the high street borrow money. This means that your monthly repayments will rise and fall too.

Discount Variable Rate is like a tracker mortgage as monthly repayments will rise and fall, but this rise and fall is linked to your lender’s standard variable rate (SVR), rather than being linked to the Bank of England base rate.

A standard variable rate mortgage is a type of mortgage interest rate that you are most likely to go onto following an introductory fixed, tracker or discounted deal.

An interest-only mortgage allows you to pay just the interest charged on the loan each month. You don’t have to repay the amount you’ve borrowed until the end of the term. This means your monthly payments don’t pay off any of the loan – instead, you pay the full amount back at the end of the mortgage term in one lump sum.

An offset mortgage is a type of mortgage that is linked to one of your savings accounts. The money in your savings isn’t used to pay off your mortgage. Instead, it’s used to lower the total interest you’ll be charged on your repayments each month but it’s worth mentioning that you won’t earn any interest on the savings your mortgage is ‘offset’ against.

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