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How to get the best mortgage advice

Mortgage advice is now almost mandatory whenever you need to get a mortgage (unless you decide to apply for a mortgage online). Whether you are a first-time buyer or have remortgaged multiple times, it is likely you will receive mortgage advice as part of applying for a mortgage. Whatever your situation mortgage advice is an important part of making sure you find and choose the right mortgage for you and your circumstances. This guide runs you through the merits of mortgage advice and how to ensure you get the best advice for you.

What is mortgage advice?

Mortgage advice is a process where a qualified adviser, either from your mortgage lender or from a mortgage broker, runs through a series of questions to help identify the best mortgage options for you. This will include questions about your finances, insurances, type of property you want to buy, your occupation, family and your views towards the pros and cons of variable and fixed rate mortgages. Part of the advice process is collecting information for an affordability check. This is a critical part of the process that identifies if you can afford your mortgage payments now and, in the future, should interest rates rise. In addition, the mortgage advice process will identify your specific circumstances and match these to a lender and a mortgage product best suited to your needs from within the adviser’s product range. Sometimes, factors such as being self-employed, on a zero-hours contract, previous bad debts, being recently divorced or in retirement can restrict your choice of mortgage lender. This is where you might want to find a mortgage broker to help guide you to the right lender for you.

Can you get free mortgage advice?

Those mortgage lenders who give advice on mortgages often do so without a fee. Usually, these are the high street banks and building societies. You can compare mortgages using our mortgage search to find lenders where you can apply directly with them. If you have more unusual circumstances or don’t want to do your own mortgage search, then you should look for a mortgage broker. In this situation, you may need to pay for your mortgage advice as your broker is not only completing the advice process associated with applying for the mortgage, but also conducting the mortgage search and evaluation of which mortgages best suit your circumstances. In cases where you have a specific set of needs, such as being self-employed or a contractor, then the mortgage broker’s knowledge of providers’ lending criteria will mean they can more likely locate a mortgage lender who will accept your situation and offer you a mortgage. In some cases, the value of your mortgage or the type of mortgage product you are looking for may incur a mortgage advice fee. A mortgage broker should tell you about any fees upfront and also disclose any commission they will earn on the mortgage.

Can anyone give mortgage advice?

Anyone wanting to give mortgage advice must hold a CeMAP (Certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice) at Level 3.

Where to get the best mortgage advice?

Your best choice of adviser is always a personal decision, but there are some useful things to look out for:

  • CeMAP qualified
  • Registered with the Financial Conduct Authority
  • Membership of Association of Mortgage Intermediaries
  • Positive local Google reviews
  • Trusted third parties, such as Moneyfacts with a preferred mortgage broker.

What are mortgage advice fees?

You should always be told if the advice you are about to receive will incur a fee. Mortgage advice fees are broken into the following categories:

  • Fixed fee – this is usually a single fee that is fixed for the totality of their mortgage advice to you.
  • Hourly rate – this is a variable charge, meaning the more hours you use the more you will be charged.
  • Percentage fee – this is where the mortgage adviser receives a percentage of the total mortgage loan from the mortgage lender as a commission. The broker must disclose this percentage fee to you including the percentage rate. You may or may not also be charged a separate direct fee from the mortgage adviser.
  • Combination of fees – a combination of different fee types shown above.
  • No fee – the mortgage adviser may choose to not charge you a direct fee. In these cases, they almost certainly will receive a percentage as commission from the mortgage lender.

Who can give mortgage advice?

Banks, buildings societies and mortgage brokers generally give mortgage advice. Many banks and building societies will offer advice but only using their own mortgage products (and if their products are not suitable, they should inform you of this). In some cases, banks and building societies have chosen not to offer advice and the only way to get their products is through a mortgage broker.

When should I get mortgage advice?

You should consider mortgage advice whenever you are looking to buy a new property or looking to remortgage an existing one. This includes residential and buy-to-let mortgages. While residential mortgages usually require an advice-based process as part of the application, it is not required for buy-to-let mortgages. Mortgage advice is still important for buy-to-let properties as knowledge of lenders’ underwriting criteria and a clear view on your own personal goals and situation is important to finding the best buy-to-let mortgage deal.

Do I need mortgage advice when moving house?

If you are taking a new mortgage as part of moving house, either in full or increasing your mortgage, then you will likely need to get mortgage advice from your existing lender, other lenders or a mortgage broker. If you are porting your mortgage from your old property to your new one and not increasing your borrowing, then you don’t specifically need mortgage advice. Contact our preferred mortgage broker for mortgage advice.

The whole of market mortgage and protection service

  • Get mortgage advice from a friendly, qualified advisor
  • Access exclusive mortgage deals
  • Can usually apply for a decision in principle within just 1 hour of your initial consultation

The mortgage advice service is provided by Premier Financial Group Ltd (PFG). PFG will search the market and advise you on the best residential or buy to let mortgage deal for your needs. For peace of mind and professional advice call 0800 193 6644 or request a callback using the form provided.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage