Moving House

We’ll help to find you the best mortgage on the market

Our expert mortgage advisors will guide you through the whole process

We know that buying a home is exciting, and we also understand that it can be daunting or stressful. Our goal is to take as much of the stress away as possible, putting you with your own personal expert advisor who will help steer you through the entire purchase process; on hand to answer any questions that you may have.

Our step by step guide on
how it all works

Start
Find out how much you can borrow

Put bluntly, it depends on what you can afford.

That’s why we start with a review of your current finances, and we talk you through the various costs of buying a property. Before you start browsing the property pages, you need to know your budget, including how much deposit you have available.

Step 1
Get a Mortgage in Principle

A mortgage in principle is not a guarantee, but it does show that a lender is willing in principle to financially support your property purchase.

When you start viewing properties, this makes you look like a serious buyer.

Step 2
Start house hunting

Know what you’re looking for (including your must-haves, nice-to-haves, and deal-breakers).

Then you need to know where to look, including websites, estate agents, property developers, auctions, and property shows.

Step 3
Contact your mortgage broker

As soon as you’ve found your perfect place, put in an offer and wait for it to be accepted. Contact us to let us know and we’ll start to get the wheels in motion for you.

Step 4
Find a solicitor

To help you find out what you could borrow, simply call one of It’s not impossible to buy a property without a lawyer but it’s not recommended:

1) they understand the property sale and purchase process

2) they handle the various pre-purchase searches so that there are no surprises

3) they take care of the contracts

4) professional insurance means that if things get complicated, you’re covered

Step 5
Apply for a mortgage

Now it’s time to get back in touch with your mortgage lender and make a detailed mortgage application, confirming your Mortgage in Principle.

Step 6
Get a valuation

As part of the application process, the mortgage lender will carry out an independent valuation and survey of the property. Usually, this is a quick and simple process but you have the option to go for a more detailed survey that examines the building’s structure and flags up any possible long-term issues.

Step 7
Receive a mortgage offer

Once everything checks out, your lender should make you a formal mortgage offer.

Step 8
Exchange contracts with the seller

Exchanging contracts takes place 7-28 days before the date of completion (when the property becomes yours!) and involves the lawyers on both sides confirming that both seller and buyer are ready to proceed (for you as a buyer, that usually means having a signed contract, funds for a deposit, the mortgage offer, and a buildings insurance policy.

Step 9
Move into your new home

To help you find out what you could borrow, simply call one of Once contracts have been exchanged and the sale completed, you’ll have the keys and can move in when you want – it’s yours now!

Step 10
Complete

Helping to find you the best
possible mortgage

We deal with a wide network of lenders offering the best mortgages on the market

Talk to an expert advisor today
020 3102 9545

Too busy to talk now? Find a convenient time for you Arrange a callback

Commonly asked questions

What type of mortgage should I choose (fixed vs. variable)?

It depends on what type of mortgage suits your circumstances and plans best.

Fixed

As it says on ‘the tin’, your rate of interest is fixed or guaranteed not to change for a defined period (typically 2, 3, 5 or 10 years) regardless of changes to the Bank of England base rate. This type of mortgage gives you certainty, allowing you to budget effectively. They usually carry an early repayment penalty so it’s important to consider how long you wish to fix for (see the info on ‘porting’). The longer the fixed period, the higher the interest rate is likely to be; effectively paying for protection against any market rate changes.

Variable

The interest rate on a variable mortgage moves up and down, usually in response to the UK economy. An advantage of this type of mortgage product is that it’s often more flexible, with lower or no exit fees.

Variable mortgages fall into three categories: tracker, standard variable, and discounts.

Tracker – The rate tracks an economic indicator, most commonly the Bank of England base rate or LIBOR. It will be pegged above the indicator it is tied to by a fixed margin for the product term, typically two years or for the lifetime of the loan.

Standard variable rate – This is the rate you will typically move onto after finishing an initial structured rate. Each lender manages their own SVR, often following the Bank of England base rate but not necessarily. They can range from 2% to 5+%. There are no exit penalties for an SVR mortgage.

Discount – These products offer a discount against a lender’s standard variable rate for a defined period, typically two or three years. However, there is no guarantee that a lender will move their SVR down if the BBR rate goes down. Discount rates often don’t carry exit penalties.

What documents will I need to provide?

Though the documents you need to show will depend on your individual circumstances, generally speaking, you need the following depending on whether you are employed or self-employed:

All

  • Passport
  • Proof of address, dated within the last three months (e.g. a posted bank/credit card statement, utility bill, annual council tax statement, driving licence, etc.)
  • Proof of deposit or gifted deposit letter (purchase application).

Employed

  • Most recent three months’ payslips + two years’ bonus/commission payslips (if applicable).
  • Most recent three months’ personal bank statements, showing salary, mortgage or rent, utilities, and direct debits.

Self-employed

  • Most recent two years’ HMRC tax calculations & tax year overviews; and/or
  • Most recent two years’ signed trading accounts (limited company).
  • Most recent three months’ personal & business bank statements, showing salary, mortgage or rent, utilities, and direct debits.
How does the buying process work?

The basic steps are as follows (see our First-Time Buyers Guide for more detail):

  • Establish your budget and understand the costs involved when buying your property
  • Apply for an agreement in principle
  • Once you have a budget, decide on your property criteria and start house-hunting!
  • Make an offer on your property of choice
  • Your offer is accepted (if it isn’t, return to house-hunting)
  • Choose the best mortgage options for you
  • Instruct your solicitor
  • Submit a full mortgage application, with underwriting and valuation started
  • Your solicitor carries out the necessary searches
  • Receive your mortgage offer (assuming your application is accepted; if not, depending on the reasons given, rethink your financial circumstances or property criteria)
  • Agree to a completion date
  • Pay the deposit via your solicitor
  • Sign the mortgage deed and exchange contracts
  • On the day of completion, your solicitor draws down the funds from your lender and sends them to the vendor. Your solicitor will usually also pay the stamp duty at this point
  • Your solicitor will register you as the new owner of the property

The complete guide to buying your first home

Buying your first home is exciting! It’s also stressful, with plenty of ‘traps’ for the unwary.

Expert advice and guidance is essential, and we lay out the whole process – step by step and jargon-free – in our complete mortgage guide for first time buyers.

First time buyer - case study

Learn how Mai’s personalised experience saved her time and money, giving her the mortgage she wanted.

Read Mai's story

Talk to an expert advisor today
020 3102 9545

Too busy to talk now? Find a convenient time for you Arrange a callback