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What is a Shared Ownership Mortgage in Durham?

The Shared Ownership Scheme, a UK government initiative, aims to help individuals in taking their first steps onto the property ladder. Open to permanent UK residents, it caters to both first time buyers in Durham and previous homeowners struggling to acquire a new property.

Your household income must not exceed £80,000, and the property you intend to purchase will be primarily on a leasehold basis, meaning you’ll possess it for a predetermined duration.

Through Shared Ownership in Durham, you can secure your home through a combination of a mortgage and rental payments, often lower than standalone mortgage payments.

What percentage of the property in Durham can I borrow?

Originally, Shared Ownership required a minimum ownership share of 25%, but now, for some properties, this has been reduced to 10%. Homeowners have the option to increase their percentage through staircasing, often done at remortgage or when the mortgage on the owned share is paid off.

Now, shares can be increased in 1% instalments, and charges for increasing shares have been lowered. Additionally, landlords cover maintenance and repair expenses for the first decade.

Rules may vary based on when you took out the mortgage, so it’s advisable to check with our mortgage advisors in Durham for clarity.

How do I apply for a Shared Ownership mortgage in Durham?

Qualifying for the Shared Ownership scheme in Durham involves checking eligibility with an agent. They consider factors like income, budget, location preference, and credit history.

Once eligible, preparation for the mortgage application begins. A mortgage broker in Durham, like us, with access to various lenders, is important for navigating Shared Ownership mortgage options.

Pros & Cons of Shared Ownership in Durham

Shared Ownership in Durham, like other schemes, has its pros and cons.

Pros of Shared Ownership

For first time buyers concerned about a mortgage deposit, Shared Ownership typically requires a deposit for the percentage owned. This can significantly reduce the upfront cost, making homeownership more accessible.

Shared Ownership Mortgages in Durham, available through various lenders, provide stability, and the option to purchase the property in the future may be part of the contract.

Cons of Shared Ownership

While Shared Ownership has advantages, be aware of responsibilities. You are responsible for 100% of ground rent and service charges. Approval is needed for structural alterations, limiting complete ownership freedom.

Can I sell my home if I have a Shared Ownership Mortgage in Durham?

Selling your Shared Ownership property in Durham requires owning 100% shares, usually after the initial 21 years, with the housing association having ‘first refusal’ rights.

Sole applicants and those struggling to save for a deposit often benefit most from Shared Ownership. To determine eligibility, consult our mortgage advisors in Durham.

Is a Shared Ownership Mortgage in Durham right for me?

Shared Ownership is a tailored solution, not for everyone. Qualifying criteria apply, and our team is ready to provide guidance. Reach out to our mortgage advisors in Durham for a stress-free Shared Ownership process through a call or a free online mortgage appointment.

Does Your Credit Score Matter for a Mortgage in Durham?

How a Credit Score Plays a Role in Getting a Mortgage in Durham

Securing a mortgage presents challenges, especially for first time buyers in Durham, those considering a move, exploring remortgage options, or entering the buy to let market. An important aspect of this process is your credit score.

Put simply, a higher credit score improves your chances of mortgage approval. However, it’s important to note that each mortgage provider has its unique credit scoring policy.

A rejection from one bank doesn’t necessarily mean the same outcome with others. To enhance approval odds, it’s advisable to explore multiple lenders.

Credit Score Agencies

The journey to secure a mortgage often involves the challenge of determining which credit reference agency a lender uses.

Unfortunately, lenders don’t always disclose this information, making it wise to check multiple credit reference agencies. Discrepancies among agencies can impact your credit score and, consequently, your mortgage eligibility.

Way To Improve Your Credit Score in Durham

Elevating your credit score is key, as it opens doors to better interest rates and terms. This translates into lower monthly payments and reduced overall repayment costs.

Stop Unnecessary Credit Searches

Before checking your credit score, it’s vital to refrain from applying for new credit until you’ve officially registered with a credit reference agency. Each credit application triggers a credit search, potentially affecting your credit score.

Put The Right Address on The Electoral Roll

Lenders often use the electoral roll to verify your identity during credit applications. Ensuring your details are up-to-date is an important step, as not being registered can impact your credit score. Registration is easily done online or through a paper form submitted to your local council.

Active Credit

Improving your credit score involves maintaining “active credit,” like a credit card that sees regular use and is paid off in full each month. This demonstrates responsible financial management.

However, acquiring new credit can have a short-term impact, so it’s advisable to defer new credit pursuits if a mortgage application is imminent.

Don’t Run Close to Your Maximum Limit

Consistently maxing out your credit card or exceeding the credit limit can negatively impact your credit score and should be avoided.

Check Your Address History is Keyed Correctly

Accurate recording of previous addresses is crucial to prevent discrepancies and the appearance of simultaneous residency in two locations.

Close any Unused Credit Accounts

Cancelling unused credit or store cards may momentarily impact your credit score but can simplify your credit portfolio, making it easier to manage and potentially improve over time.

Remove any Previous Financial Links

If you had joint financial accounts with an ex-partner, their credit score might affect yours. To address this, inform credit reference agencies of the separation and remove any links.

Book Your Free Mortgage Appointment

To position yourself optimally for the right mortgage in Durham, maintaining an up-to-date credit report for your mortgage broker is key. This empowers them to thoroughly understand your financial situation and recommend suitable mortgage options.

As committed mortgage brokers in Durham, our mission is to find the best mortgage or remortgage solutions tailored to your unique circumstances. Begin your journey with a free mortgage appointment led by our knowledgeable advisor, who will delve into your financial situation.

With this insight, we navigate diverse lenders to pinpoint the most fitting mortgage product from the available deals. Our team’s deep understanding of mortgage criteria ensures a smooth voyage through the entire mortgage journey.

What are the 6 best places to live in Durham?

The best areas to live in Durham

Are you a first time buyer in Durham looking to buy your first home and are undecided on a location? Have your living circumstances changed and you are looking at moving home into a new area in Durham? However, where are you going to move to?

To help sway your decision, we have come up with our top list of places to live in Durham.

1 – Durham’s City Centre

The city center is a captivating blend of history and contemporary living. With its cobbled streets, medieval architecture, and the iconic Durham Cathedral, the city center exudes a timeless charm. Residents enjoy easy access to a plethora of shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions. The city’s transport links make it convenient for those working or studying at Durham University, contributing to the vibrant and diverse community.

2 – Nevilles Cross

For those seeking a more tranquil setting while still being close to the city’s amenities, Nevilles Cross is an excellent choice. This residential area boasts tree-lined streets, parks, and excellent schools, making it an ideal location for families. With convenient access to the A167, commuting to neighboring cities is straightforward, and the nearby university facilities add an academic touch to the community.

3 – The Viaduct

The Viaduct area offers a picturesque setting along the River Wear, providing residents with stunning waterfront views. The Riverside Walk and Wharton Park are popular spots for outdoor activities, creating a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere. The neighborhood is well-connected by public transport, and the blend of modern housing and natural beauty makes Viaduct a sought-after location for those who appreciate the outdoors.

4 – Framwellgate Moor

Framwellgate Moor is known for its affordable housing options and strong sense of community. With local shops, schools, and parks, residents find everything they need within reach. The community atmosphere is further enhanced by regular events and activities organised by local groups. Proximity to the city center, combined with the affordable housing market, makes Framwellgate Moor an attractive option for many.

5 – Gilesgate

Situated to the east of Durham, Gilesgate has become a popular choice for students due to its close proximity to the university campuses. The area offers a lively atmosphere with diverse amenities, including pubs, cafes, and recreational facilities. While it has a youthful energy, Gilesgate is also home to families and professionals who appreciate the vibrancy of the neighborhood.

Book Your Free Mortgage Appointment Today

As you embark on the journey to find your dream home, consider these seven outstanding locations, each contributing to the vibrant tapestry of Durham’s diverse and welcoming communities. As your trusted mortgage broker in Durham, we are here to guide first time buyers and home movers in Durham through the process and help you secure the suirable purchase or remortgage deal that fits your needs.

Do First Time Buyers in Durham Pay Stamp Duty?

Please note that the information contained in this article is for general guidance purposes only and should not be considered as legal, financial, or tax advice.

All information regarding Stamp Duty is taken from the government website and is in-line with the September 2022 Mini-Budget. The laws and regulations related to Stamp Duty are subject to change, and the information in this article may not reflect the latest updates or changes in the law.

The amount payable for Stamp Duty will entirely depend on personal circumstances. Please speak with the solicitor acting on your behalf, who will be more appropriate to advise on this.

Information Source: MoneyHelper

Stamp Duty Land Tax is a levy that impacts individuals owning residential properties in England or Northern Ireland, encompassing both mortgaged and outright property owners.

For property purchasers in Durham, Stamp Duty relief is applicable to properties valued at £425,000 or below. A discounted rate is administered to properties valued between £425,000 and £625,000. Properties exceeding the £625,000 threshold are ineligible for first time buyer relief, subject to standard Stamp Duty rates.

These regulations are presently operative until March 2025, post which the former thresholds will be restored.

Why was Stamp Duty relief introduced for first time buyers in Durham?

Striving to enhance affordability within the property market, the government has introduced alterations to Stamp Duty regulations tailored for initial homebuyers in Durham.

As you might be aware, amassing sufficient funds for mortgage applications, deposits, and conveyancing fees can prove to be quite challenging.

In contrast to current property proprietors who can depend on the equity in their homes, first time buyers in Durham, frequently tenants, might lack a comparable level of equity to assist in meeting these expenditures.

Are there any exceptions to the rule?

As mentioned previously, there are nuances to the Stamp Duty regulations. Properties falling within the £425,000 to £625,000 range attract a percentage on the amount surpassing £425,000, whereas those exceeding £625,000 do not qualify for first time buyer relief.

You should know that even if you’ve inherited a property and haven’t previously owned a home, you do not meet the criteria for first time buyer relief.

The same holds true if you’re jointly purchasing a property with someone who isn’t a first time buyer in Durham or if you’re contemplating investing in a first time buyer buy to let property.

In the latter scenario, Stamp Duty is applicable, with the amount contingent on your specific circumstances. Consulting with your solicitor is advisable for detailed information.

How do I pay stamp duty?

Typically, your solicitor will manage the submission of the Stamp Duty return and oversee the payment process on your behalf. However, if you prefer, you have the option to handle it independently.

Nevertheless, it falls under your responsibility to ensure that the return is submitted within the stipulated timeframe. Even if you are exempt from paying Stamp Duty, filing a return is mandatory unless you meet the criteria for an exemption.

It’s crucial to note that the rates and regulations for Stamp Duty can vary based on the property’s location.

For a comprehensive understanding of the specific tax rules applicable to your property purchase, consulting with your solicitor or conveyancer is advisable.

Additional Costs for First Time Buyers in Durham: What Else to Consider?

Aside from the Stamp Duty outlays, if you’re seeking a first time buyer mortgage in Durham, it’s crucial to account for other potential expenses.

A significant consideration is your deposit, typically constituting at least 5% of the property’s value. Opting for a 10-15% deposit may be advantageous if you have a history of poor credit or are aiming for more favourable interest rates.

Moreover, you should budget for solicitors or conveyancing fees as an inevitable expense.

In addition, there could be various fees and charges specific to your case, such as a mortgage arrangement fee imposed by your mortgage lender, valuation and survey fees, and potentially a fee from a mortgage broker in Durham, should you opt for their services.

General outlays to bear in mind encompass removal costs, potential repairs, furnishing expenses, and home insurance.

It’s worth noting that not all these costs are obligatory and can vary based on your circumstances. For a more precise insight into the potential expenses on your journey to homeownership, seeking advice from a mortgage advisor in Durham is highly recommended.

What Does a Mortgage Broker in Durham Do?

Why use a mortgage broker in Durham?

If you’re seeking to streamline the mortgage process, save time and money, and minimise stress, enlisting the assistance of a seasoned mortgage broker in Durham offers numerous advantages.

With our wealth of professional experience, we have access to an extensive array of mortgage deals, allowing us to meticulously select the one that aligns perfectly with your unique circumstances.

In contrast, approaching a bank directly restricts you to that single lender’s mortgage offerings, denying you the opportunity to explore multiple options.

Appointments That Work With Your Busy Day-to-Day Life

Our team is here to accommodate your schedule, offering appointment bookings seven days a week, with flexible hours from early morning to late evening. We understand that your time is valuable, and we’re committed to working around your busy schedule.

For your convenience, you can also make use of our website’s booking form. This allows you to easily schedule a video or telephone consultation with a mortgage advisor in Durham at a time that suits you best.

We aim to provide you with the flexibility you need to receive expert mortgage guidance on your terms.

Before Your Application

To begin the process of securing a mortgage as a first time buyer in Durham, the first step is to arrange an appointment with a mortgage advisor in Durham.

During this meeting, you’ll have the opportunity to provide additional information that will help the advisor gain a deeper understanding of your unique circumstances and plans. Subsequently, they will explore a wide range of mortgage deals to identify the one that best suits your needs.

Both first time buyers in Durham and moving home in Durham who decide to proceed with the recommendation of their mortgage advisor will benefit from obtaining an Agreement in Principle (AIP). Our goal is to secure this for our customers within 24 hours of their initial appointment.

An AIP is a valuable document, often requested by estate agents when you make an offer on a property. It demonstrates your commitment to the purchase and verifies your financial capability to proceed, with a mortgage lender ready to provide financing.

Additionally, we offer guidance and support throughout the offer process, assistance with property surveys, and can provide optional insurance recommendations. These insurance options act as a safety net to protect your family and home from unforeseen circumstances.

Furthermore, you will need to supply your mortgage advisor with the appropriate documentation to accompany your mortgage application. The specific requirements may vary depending on your circumstances and the lender you choose to work with.

Rest assured, as a mortgage broker in Durham, we will help you with this paperwork, ensuring a smooth and informed application process.

During Your Application

After we’ve received your documents, as a mortgage broker in Durham, we will carefully verify them.

Following this verification, we will provide you with a mortgage illustration that outlines the details of the agreement you’ve chosen with the mortgage lender we’ve recommended. This step occurs just before we formally submit your mortgage application.

Once you’ve approved our recommendation, your mortgage application is submitted. Your dedicated mortgage advisor in Durham will forward copies of your documents to the chosen mortgage lender.

Throughout this process, we maintain regular communication with you to ensure you stay informed about the progress of your application.

We’ll promptly reconnect with you as soon as the mortgage lender reaches a decision on your application. If your application is approved, this is when you will receive a formal mortgage offer.

At this point, the responsibility shifts to your solicitor, who will oversee the final steps to complete the transaction, ultimately allowing you to move into your new home.

Our Mortgage Advice in Durham Service

Being a mortgage broker in Durham, we consistently prioritise your best interests in every aspect of our service. If there are opportunities to save you time, money, and alleviate stress, we are dedicated to seizing them.

Our primary aim is to help you in achieving the strongest possible financial position.

Our customer reviews provide genuine insights into the enduring relationships we foster with those who reach out to us. These testimonials underscore the positive transformations individuals experience through homeownership, facilitated by our mortgage advice service.

We take pride in the meaningful impact we have on our clients’ lives.

9 Questions to Ask When Buying A House in Durham

Purchasing a house is a significant milestone, especially for first time buyers in Durham. The process can be both exhilarating and overwhelming, with numerous factors to consider. To ensure a smooth and informed home-buying journey, it’s essential to ask the right questions. Here’s a comprehensive guide to the nine questions you should definitely ask when purchasing a house in Durham.

1. How much interest has there been in the property/development?

Before committing to a house, it’s crucial to gauge the level of interest it has generated in the market. This information can give you valuable insights into the property’s desirability, helping you make an informed decision about its potential resale value and investment potential.

2. Is there a property chain?

Understanding the presence of a property chain is vital. A property chain refers to the sequence of buyers and sellers linked together because they are buying and selling properties from each other. Knowing whether a chain is involved can impact the timeline of your purchase, so it’s essential to inquire about this early on.

3. What’s included in the sale?

Don’t assume that everything you see during a house viewing is automatically included in the sale. Clarify with the seller or agent about what fixtures, fittings, and appliances are included. This will help you avoid any misunderstandings later on and plan accordingly.

4. What are the neighbors like?

Your neighbors can significantly influence your living experience. Take the time to ask about the neighborhood’s ambiance, the types of people who reside nearby, and any communal activities. This information can provide valuable insights into the community you’ll be joining.

5. How much does it cost to run?

Beyond the initial purchase price, consider the ongoing costs of maintaining the property. Inquire about utility bills, property taxes, homeowners’ association fees, and any other expenses. This will give you a comprehensive understanding of the financial commitment involved.

6. Which way does the house face?

The orientation of the house can impact natural light and energy efficiency. Knowing which direction the house faces can help you assess its comfort level throughout the day and potentially save on energy costs.

7. How much work will be required after moving in?

Get a clear picture of any potential renovations or repairs that might be needed after moving in. Ask about the condition of essential systems like plumbing and electrical. This information will help you plan your budget and timeline accordingly.

8. Are you open to offers?

While some sellers are firm on their asking price, others might be open to negotiation. Inquire whether the seller is willing to entertain offers and if there’s room for negotiation. This can potentially help you secure a more favorable deal.

9. When can we move in?

The timeline for moving in is crucial, especially if you have specific deadlines to meet. Discuss the potential move-in date with the seller to ensure it aligns with your plans.

Book a Free Mortgage Appointment Today

Moving home in Durham requires careful consideration and the right questions. By addressing these nine essential queries, you’ll be well-equipped to make an informed decision that suits your needs, preferences, and budget. Remember, a well-informed buyer is a confident buyer, and taking the time to gather information will undoubtedly pay off in the long run.

How to Save For a Mortgage in Durham

Saving for a mortgage deposit can be challenging in today’s economic climate. As experienced mortgage broker in Durham, we understand that first time buyers in Durham often feel overwhelmed by the homebuying process.

It’s crucial to ensure a good credit score, save enough for the deposit, and provide evidence of affordability.

In this article, we will explore valuable tips on saving for your mortgage deposit and important considerations to keep in mind before applying for a mortgage. Our goal is to provide you with the guidance and knowledge necessary to navigate the process with confidence.

Work Out How Much You Need to Save For Your Mortgage in Durham

To effectively save for a mortgage deposit, it’s important to assess your monthly disposable income. Begin by carefully evaluating your average monthly expenses to determine how much you can realistically allocate towards your savings.

This assessment will provide you with a clear understanding of the amount you can save each month. While the minimum deposit required is typically 5% of the property’s value, many first time buyers in Durham aim to save even more, aspiring for deposits of up to 20% of the property’s value.

There are several advantages to saving a larger deposit. Firstly, it results in lower monthly mortgage payments, making homeownership more affordable. Moreover, if you have bad credit, lenders may require a deposit of around 15-20% to mitigate risk.

It’s crucial to recognise that a larger deposit reduces the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio, which improves your standing with lenders. It showcases your ability to save and highlights your financial dependability as a mortgage applicant.

In addition to the deposit, it’s essential to consider other costs associated with obtaining a mortgage, such as arrangement fees, solicitor fees, property survey fees, and potential expenses related to using a mortgage broker in Durham.

By accounting for these expenses, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of the financial commitment involved in the homebuying process.

Effective planning and wise budgeting will empower you to save for your mortgage deposit with confidence, bringing you closer to achieving homeownership in Durham.

Are there any schemes available?

There are numerous government-led schemes available that can help you in boosting your mortgage deposit or saving for one. It is worthwhile to explore your eligibility for these schemes.

One of the popular options is the Shared Ownership scheme, which allows you to secure a mortgage for a percentage of a property, reducing the initial deposit required.

Through this scheme, you can obtain a mortgage for 10-75% of the property’s value, making it a helpful option for starting your first time buyer mortgage journey in Durham.

Additionally, there are several other schemes available, including the Lifetime ISA, first homes scheme, and the mortgage guaranteed scheme.

If you are interested in any of these schemes or would like to gather more information, feel free to reach out to us or book a free mortgage appointment online with one of our experienced mortgage advisors in Durham.

For further details, you can also visit the government’s OwnYourHome website, which provides comprehensive information on the available schemes and their respective benefits.

Help From Elsewhere 

Receiving a gifted deposit can provide a valuable boost to your mortgage deposit, enabling you to enhance your homebuying prospects.

A gifted deposit refers to a generous contribution towards your mortgage made by a family member or friend. It’s important to note that a gifted deposit is not a loan but a genuine gift, meaning it is not expected to be repaid in the future.

This type of financial support can make a significant difference in helping you achieve your homeownership goals. It increases your available funds for the deposit, making it easier to meet the required amount and potentially access more favourable mortgage terms.

When receiving a gifted deposit, it’s essential to ensure that all parties involved, including the lender, are aware of the source of the deposit and the nature of the gift. This will ensure compliance with any legal and regulatory requirements associated with the mortgage application process.

If you have the opportunity to receive a gifted deposit, it can be a valuable asset in your homebuying journey, enabling you to achieve your dream of homeownership.

Review Your Outgoings

It is important to review your current monthly bills and subscriptions to identify potential areas where you can save money. By conducting an audit of your expenses, you can identify opportunities to reduce costs and allocate more towards your mortgage deposit savings.

Take a close look at each bill and subscription to evaluate if there are more cost-effective alternatives available. Consider comparing prices and exploring different providers to ensure you are getting the best value for your money.

By finding cheaper alternatives or negotiating better deals, you can increase your monthly savings, contributing more towards your mortgage deposit.

Additionally, it is beneficial to assess any memberships you currently hold. Determine if there are more affordable alternatives available or if you can reduce the number of memberships you maintain.

Cutting back on unnecessary subscriptions can free up additional funds that can be directed towards your mortgage deposit.

Remember, the more money you are able to save each month, the faster you can accumulate the necessary funds for your deposit. By being proactive in identifying areas to save, you can make meaningful progress towards your homeownership goals.

Have you considered buying a property with a friend or partner?

Purchasing a property with a friend or partner is a common choice among many first time buyers in Durham. This option is popular because it allows you to combine your savings, effectively doubling your purchasing power.

It is important to exercise caution when creating financial links with others. If your friend or partner has a poor credit history, it could potentially impact your own eligibility for a mortgage.

For instance, if they have a default on their credit record, it may hinder their ability to secure a mortgage, which could impact your joint application.

Fortunately, there are specific mortgage options available for individuals who wish to buy a property jointly with a friend or partner. These mortgages are designed to accommodate such arrangements and provide suitable financing solutions for joint buyers.

It’s essential to explore these mortgage options and consult with a mortgage advisor to understand the specific requirements and benefits associated with each type of joint mortgage.

A mortgage advisor can guide you through the process and help you choose the most appropriate mortgage product based on your unique circumstances.

By making informed decisions and carefully considering the financial implications, you can navigate the process of buying a property with a friend or partner successfully.

Joint Tenants

With this type of mortgage, both parties jointly own the entire mortgage and have equal ownership rights over the property. In the unfortunate event of one party passing away during the mortgage term, the full ownership of the home will automatically transfer to the surviving owner.

Lenders view both parties as a single entity, and any decisions regarding the sale or remortgage of the property will require mutual agreement and cooperation from both joint owners.

This means that if you and your co-owner decide to sell or remortgage the property, you will need to come to a consensus and act together.

It’s important to maintain open communication and discuss any plans or decisions related to the property with your co-owner. By working together, you can ensure a smooth and mutually beneficial process for selling or remortgaging the property in the future.

Tenants in Common

This type of mortgage allows for multiple owners, each with their own specific shares in the property. The ownership shares do not necessarily have to be equal and can be determined based on each owner’s contribution or agreement.

In the future, as individual shareholders, you have the flexibility to sell or transfer your shares in the property. This means that you can potentially sell your share to another party or gift it to someone else, subject to any legal agreements or restrictions in place.

It’s important to consult with legal professionals and follow the necessary procedures when transferring or selling shares in the property. They can guide you through the process and ensure that all legal requirements are met to protect your interests and rights as a shareholder.

Saving For a Deposit if You Have Bad Credit in Durham

Having bad credit may require you to save a larger deposit to meet the requirements set by lenders. In many cases, lenders may ask for a deposit ranging from 10% to 15% if you have a less-than-ideal credit history.

Consequently, you may need to dedicate more time to saving up for your deposit, which can be challenging but necessary, however, it’s not all discouraging news.

There are steps you can take to improve your credit score, which can ultimately enhance your borrowing prospects. Consider implementing the following tips to work towards improving your creditworthiness:

Register on the Voter’s Roll

Ensuring you are registered on the electoral roll is essential as it provides proof of your current address and establishes your reliability in the eyes of lenders.

To enhance your creditworthiness, double-check that all your personal information, including your name and address, is accurately spelled and consistent across various platforms.

This consistency applies not only to your electoral registration but also to your banking records, store cards, billing addresses, and other relevant accounts.

By aligning your address information across different platforms and verifying its accuracy, you present a cohesive and trustworthy profile to lenders. It reinforces your reliability as a borrower and instils confidence in your financial responsibility.

Regularly reviewing and updating your personal information, particularly your address, ensures that your records remain up-to-date and aligned. This proactive approach helps maintain a strong credit file and further strengthens your credibility with lenders.

Try to Keep Within Your Maximum Limit

Utilising your credit card to its maximum limit and carrying a balance without paying it off each month can have a negative impact on your credit score. To maintain a healthy credit profile, it’s advisable to use your credit card responsibly by paying off the balance in full every month.

By paying off your credit card balance in full, you demonstrate responsible credit management and financial discipline. This shows lenders that you can effectively handle credit without accumulating excessive debt.

Moreover, consistently paying off your credit card balance helps establish a positive credit history, which is crucial for future credit applications and favourable terms on loans and mortgages. It portrays you as a reliable borrower who can manage credit obligations effectively.

Therefore, it’s recommended to use your credit card judiciously, keeping your balances low and paying them off in full each month. This practice contributes to a healthy credit score and improves your overall creditworthiness.

Meet Payment Deadlines

It’s crucial to prioritise meeting payment deadlines and ensuring that you have sufficient funds in your account when credit card payments are due. Consistently adhering to these practices has a positive impact on your credit rating.

By consistently making timely payments, you demonstrate financial responsibility and reliability to lenders. This contributes to building a positive credit history, which is a key factor in determining your creditworthiness.

To ensure timely payments, consider setting up automatic payments or setting reminders to help you stay organised. By doing so, you can avoid late payments, which can negatively affect your credit rating.

Consistency in meeting payment deadlines and maintaining a strong payment record demonstrates your ability to manage your financial obligations effectively. This responsible behaviour enhances your credit rating and increases your chances of obtaining favourable terms on future credit applications.

By making payment punctuality a priority and managing your finances diligently, you can foster a positive credit rating and establish a solid foundation for your financial well-being.

Close Down Any Unused Credit Accounts

It’s important to consider closing any credit accounts that you no longer use or have no intention of using. Keeping unused accounts open can potentially have a negative impact on your credit file.

Having an old address linked to an account can create discrepancies and affect your credit score. Therefore, it’s advisable to update your address information and ensure that all accounts reflect your current and accurate details.

This advice also applies to store accounts. If you have store accounts that you are no longer using, it’s beneficial to close them down. By doing so, you can streamline your credit profile and prevent any potential negative impact on your credit score.

Taking proactive steps to close unused accounts and update your address information helps maintain a clean and accurate credit file. This contributes to a healthier credit profile and improves your overall creditworthiness.

Detach Yourself From Any Financial Links to Others

Being financially linked to someone with a poor credit history can have a detrimental effect on your own credit score. This situation often arises in cases of divorce or separation, where both individuals remain financially connected and their actions can mutually impact each other’s creditworthiness.

When you are financially connected to someone with bad credit, their financial behaviour, such as missed payments or defaults, can potentially affect your creditworthiness. This can make it more challenging for you to secure credit or obtain favorable terms on loans and mortgages.

To protect your credit score, it’s important to sever any financial connections with individuals who have bad credit. This may involve closing joint accounts, removing your name from shared loans, or taking other necessary steps to ensure your financial independence.

By taking proactive measures to disentangle yourself from these connections, you can safeguard your own credit score and maintain a strong financial standing. It’s always best to consult with a financial advisor or credit expert for guidance tailored to your specific situation.

Our Expert Mortgage Advisors in Durham

If you’re embarking on the journey of saving for a mortgage and seeking expert advice in Durham, our team at Durhammoneyman is here to help you.

We understand that starting the mortgage process can feel overwhelming at times. That’s why we’re dedicated to providing a helping hand and easing your concerns. With over 20 years of industry experience, we have the knowledge and expertise to guide you through the process.

To get started, you can conveniently book your free mortgage consultation with one of our experienced mortgage advisors in Durham. Whether you prefer to book online or give us a call, we’ll ensure that you receive personalised guidance tailored to your specific needs and circumstances.

At Durhammoneyman, we’re committed to helping you navigate the complexities of the mortgage journey and making informed decisions. Contact us today to arrange your free mortgage appointment and take the first step towards achieving your homeownership goals in Durham.

Buying a House From a Landlord in Durham: A Comprehensive Guide

For individuals seeking specialist mortgage advice in Durham, a common scenario we encounter involves tenants who are interested in purchasing the property they currently rent from their landlord.

From the perspective of landlords, selling a property to their sitting tenant can actually present several advantages, and it’s worth exploring this option before the property hits the open market.

From a landlord’s standpoint, selling a property to a sitting tenant can be a straightforward process. They may offer the tenant the opportunity to buy the property before considering other buyers. Let’s delve deeper into the reasons why landlords might opt for this route and the benefits it brings.

Reasons Why a Landlord May Choose to Sell

One key factor driving landlords to sell their properties is government’s tax relief changes. With the introduction of new regulations, many landlords have found themselves now paying more tax than they did in previous years.

Consequently, some landlords decided to exit the housing market and seek alternative investments in different sectors.

Committed landlords who are passionate about their role and believe in the long-term value of their properties tend to weather the storm of legislative changes. Their perspective revolves around the idea that property is a sustainable, long-term investment.

On the other hand, more casual or amateur landlords may have entered the market with a short-term profit mindset, prompting them to sell if circumstances don’t align with their expectations.

The Advantages of Selling to a Sitting Tenant

There are several benefits for landlords who choose to sell their property to their sitting tenants:

  1. Cost savings: By selling directly to their tenant, landlords can avoid paying estate agent commissions, reducing their overall expenses in the sales process.
  2. Steady rental income: Rent payments will continue until the purchase is finalised, providing landlords with a consistent income stream during the transition.
  3. Reduced refurbishment costs: Since the tenant is already residing in the property, the need for extensive refurbishment before selling is often minimised or eliminated, resulting in additional savings for the landlord.

The Advantages of Buying as a Sitting Tenant

Now let’s consider the advantages for sitting tenants who are contemplating buying the property from their landlord:

  1. Familiarity with the property: As a sitting tenant, you have first-hand experience living in the property. This knowledge allows you to assess its strengths, weaknesses, and overall suitability, enabling you to make an informed decision.
  2. No need to wait for relocation: Unlike other buyers, you don’t have to wait for the previous owner to find alternative accommodation since you already reside in the property. This eliminates potential delays and uncertainties associated with moving house.
  3. Potential for discounted price: Since the landlord can avoid certain costs associated with selling through traditional channels, they may be inclined to offer the property at a discounted price to the sitting tenant. This can present a valuable opportunity to secure a home at a more affordable rate.
  4. Possible deposit assistance: If the agreed-upon purchase price is below the property’s market value, there is a chance that a lender may consider using the property’s equity to contribute towards your deposit. In some cases, if there is sufficient equity, you may not even need to provide a deposit at all.

Navigating the Process: Expert Mortgage Advice in Durham

While buying a property as a sitting tenant in Durham offers various advantages, it’s important to approach the process with due diligence and seek professional specialist mortgage advice in Durham.

Speaking with a mortgage advisor in Durham with expertise in the local market can help you navigate the intricacies of the transaction and ensure you make well-informed decisions.

A qualified mortgage advisor in Durham will assess your individual circumstances, financial position, and aspirations, and guide you towards suitable mortgage options available in Durham.

They will provide valuable insights and expert advice throughout the process, ensuring a smooth and efficient home buying experience. In conclusion, if you find yourself as a sitting tenant considering the purchase of the property you currently rent in Durham, it is a unique opportunity worth exploring.

With potential cost savings, familiarity with the property, and the chance for advantageous mortgage arrangements, this route can offer a smooth transition from tenant to homeowner.

By seeking professional mortgage advice in Durham and carefully considering your options, you can make the most of this opportunity and embark on a rewarding homeownership journey.

Costs of Buying a Home in Durham

One of the more often encountered questions that we hear from prospective first time buyers in Durham is them curious about how much their mortgage process would cost them.

Responding to this, we have put together a short list of all the fees you can expect to pay when you are looking to buy a new home, and when it will become payable.

Estate Agency Fees

This would apply only if you are planning to sell your home. With an increase in the popularity of online estate agencies, you can be seeing hundreds of standard website listings.

That being said, for a more localised service, you could be looking at a fee of around 1-2% of the property price.

Valuation Fees

Your mortgage lender will need you to have a valuation conducted on the property you are purchasing to make sure that the property is worth the amount you are looking to borrow from them.

Prices for a property survey can cost anywhere from hundreds of pounds, this can depend if you want just a basic valuation, a lot more in-depth Home Buyers’ Report, or a Full Building Survey.

A key thing to remember when to working around the cost is that you always have some element of choice in the level of detail your survey goes into, with your decision by age and property type, as well as any questions.

Mortgage Arrangement Fees

Sometimes you can have a product with a cheaper rate, but the advantage can be outweighed by the payable arrangement fee to a mortgage lender.

This cost doesn’t exist with every mortgage lender, so you may not have to pay for anything at all, but in some cases, it could be upwards of 3 figures, depending on how the mortgage lender is in question.

You can find that these costs can be paid upfront, though you may also be able to add these onto the balance of your mortgage. Noteworthy though, that this would mean incurring further interest charges.

Here at Durhammoneyman, our team of Mortgage Advisors in Durham, has helped many first time buyers and home movers in Durham alike, we can compare deals for you in order to find you the most suitable one for your circumstances.

Solicitor’s Fees

You will have to hire the services of a qualified solicitor. The cost of this service can be quoted very differently depending on the firm you are speaking to. An estimation for a straight forward purchase with a local company is likely within the mid-hundreds.

You will need to give the property address, whether it’s leasehold or freehold and how much you are purchasing it for, in order to receive accurate quotations.

The key points to cover when asking for a quote are:

Stamp Duty Fees

In addition to the costs and disbursements involved in paying your solicitor, depending on your circumstances, you may also be required to pay this tax which the solicitor collects on completion of the property purchase.

This doesn’t apply to everyone. The government have been known to change the criteria on Stamp Duty, with the latest change being in favour of First Time Buyers in Durham. The latest Stamp Duty updates can be found here.

Mortgage Broker Fees

A Mortgage Broker in Durham will typically charge for their service. The cost of this will vary from company to company.

In our case, your dedicated mortgage advisor in Durham will discuss this in more detail with you during your free initial mortgage appointment.

We would definitely recommend choosing a local company such as ourselves, rather than a big organisation. They are more likely only to charge on completion, as opposed to any application fees and additional costs that could be incurred.

Moving/Removal Fees

Of course if you are Moving Home in Durham, the cost of doing so in regard to the actual moving aspect, can be quite costly. This will depend on the level of service you are looking for.

Hiring your own van and doing the work yourself can be quite cheap. Opting for a local man with a van can be only slightly more than hiring your own van. A professional van service can be in the high hundreds, early thousands.

To further discuss the costs involved in buying a home, including anything we may have missed, book your free mortgage appointment today. A trusted mortgage advisor in Durham will be more than happy to discuss this with you.

Buying a Property With a Partner or Friend in Durham?

Buying a Property with Others in Durham

Stepping into the mortgage world for the first time can be an intimidating but exciting experience for a number of home buyers even more for those looking to purchase a property on their own.

As an alternative, we do find that many first time buyers in Durham look at purchasing a property with a friend or partner if they are able to do so.

Lenders will factor in both your income as well as your co-borrowers’ so they can work out your maximum mortgage amount. The benefit of having two applicants is that the mortgage costs will be split between you both which, in turn, can help increase your chance of getting offered.

In the event that you default, your co-borrower could be responsible for the full mortgage, and vice versa.

With the help and expertise of being a First Time Buyer Mortgage Broker in Durham, we have collated a guide of helpful tips we recommend you take into account when into a property with a friend or partner.

Should I Buy a House With a Friend or Partner? | MoneymanTV

How many people can jointly own a property?

Some lenders may allow you to co-borrow with up to four people jointly.

This may seem like a safe option with multiple parties creating more financial security when paying the mortgage, however, the chances of someone pulling out before the term ends can be higher. Because of this, it is wise to be selective with who you buy a property.

If you decide that you want to increase your mortgage further down the line, you and your co-borrowers will all have to agree to this. Therefore, it’s good to plan ahead for your future and your plans for the property.

Joint tenancy or tenancy in common – what’s the difference?

Normally, joint tenancies are utilised by many civil partnerships or married couples. In the case where half of the party dies, the property would instantly be given to the other half. From a legal perspective, joint tenants are two halves of one whole, one borrower.

When it comes to remortgaging or selling the property, both of you will need to agree before proceeding with the mortgage.

For applicants that have co-borrowers that are friends or family, it is likely that you will go for the option of ‘Tenancy in Common’. This means that you both own your part of the property.

You do not need to split your share equally so if one of you is making a lot more income than the other, you will own more of the property than the other.

With this in mind, as a ‘Tenant in Common’, you have the right to act independently. This gives you the option to sell or give away your share if you wish.

Joint Mortgages & Removing Names

What happens if you jointly own a mortgage, but your co-borrower(s) stop meeting the mortgage payments?

A mortgage lender will stress the fact that all borrowers are jointly and severally liable which means that if one of your bo-borrowers decides not to pay their part of the mortgage, it’s your responsibility to keep up the payments.

How do I remove my ex-husband/wife from my mortgage?

The intention of looking to buy a home with your then other half doesn’t come with the assumption that you’re going to split before the term is up. It is a large financial commitment to make anyway and can become complex if you are wanting to make any changes.

This can become even more of a challenge when children are involved. In most cases, the parent who will stay with them usually stays in the current property whilst their ex-partner moves out to look possibly look for their own mortgage. Regardless of if you are staying or going, both parties will need the help of a Mortgage Advisor in Durham for divorce and separation.

Whether the situation is that you pay for the mortgage with the assistance of your ex or you pay the mortgage on your own, it doesn’t alter the joint financial commitment you have with them. Therefore, in the event of arrears, the lender will chase both parties.

Removing anyone from a mortgage means that only you will be in charge of paying and managing the payments. From a lender’s point of view, they will need to be confident that you are able to manage these mortgage payments so will reassess your income to make sure this is achievable before they will proceed.

We do find that applicants who are unable to afford a mortgage on their own will go down the route where they apply jointly again with a friend, family member or new partner. These situations will be best with the assistance of Mortgage Advice in Durham.

How do I remove my name from my ex-partner’s mortgage?

As mentioned, when it comes to divorcing or separating your partner whilst on a mortgage, both parties are still jointly liable for the property and its mortgage payments.

In the circumstance where you are the one to leave and wanted to remove your own name from their mortgage, it’s not as simple as coming to an agreement between the two of you, they would need to get in touch with their lender.

For those looking to get a mortgage on their own, the lender would take into consideration the property you are currently tied to, so it’s key to make sure that you are removed from the previous mortgage.

In these circumstances, you should always seek Mortgage Advice in Durham.

When it comes to the amount they will be willing to lend you, you will find that some lenders will be more generous than other lenders. This is something your designated Mortgage Advisor in Durham will factor in when recommending the most appropriate mortgage lender to apply for a Mortgage Agreement in Principle with. & Durhammoneyman are trading styles of UK Moneyman Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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