The Pros and Cons of Using a Mortgage Broker in Durham

There are many reasons why you should use a Mortgage Broker in Durham. It can be helpful if you are taking that first step into the mortgage world, or going through the process the second time as you come towards the end of your fixed term as the process can be daunting sometimes.

With many options available for homeowners and home buyers, you ideally want to get it right first time, even with a lot of money involved.

Obviously, we believe that our tailored service as a Mortgage Broker in Durham would be helpful during the mortgage journey, in particular, First Time Buyers in Durham.

Even though we are experts in assisting customers through the process, it’s also understandable that the service is not for everyone and some may still wonder how we can help.

With this in mind, we have created a helpful guide about why approaching a Mortgage Broker in Durham could benefit you in your situation and why some people decide to go direct to the mortgage lender instead.

What are the pros & cons of using a mortgage broker in Durham?

Cost-Effectiveness

Deciding to go direct with the mortgage lender and finding your own mortgage deal can save you more money than approaching a Mortgage Broker in Durham. However, mortgage brokers may charge a fee but can be based on circumstances.

Being experienced in going through the process, having an easy case and lengthy knowledge may mean that it’s best and cheaper to go through the process yourself. This can be an issue if you have a more complicated case and people who don’t understand the lender criteria.

Going through the mortgage process with little to no knowledge could either result in you being on the wrong deal or ending up unsuccessful when applying for a mortgage deal. Either circumstance could mean spending more money than you have to, or damage your credit score which could negatively effect your chances of applying for a mortgage further down the line.

A dedicated Mortgage Advisor in Durham strives in getting your recommendation right the first time by finding you the best and cheapest deal on offer. As much as this service comes with a fee, you could find that you save a lot of money in the end.

Local Bank Branch Relationships

One of the reasons why many older customers decide to approach a bank is due to how the mortgage process was previously run. Prior to the introduction of online banking apps and modern technology, as a loyal customer, you may approach your local branch a lot where you would speak to the same people.

If you were looking to get a mortgage, you would go through the bank manager and speak to them. They had extensive knowledge of your finances and would be the ones to approve a mortgage for you. Now, many things are done digital including credit scoring.

Because of advanced technology within these banks, it means that the bank manager would not personally go through your case. It would be carried out through an online system which will determine if you are eligible for a mortgage or not. Regardless of what bank you are with, everyone is treated fairly.

Exclusive Mortgage Products

Following on from the previous point, there is an assumption amongst people that going direct would mean they are open to the best and exclusive deals. This is true to an extent, however, they will offer the best deal from their own company.

Not every mortgage lender is a bank and there is a large variety of options to choose from. Therefore, the most suitable deal your bank can offer, might not be the best one for you outside that bank.

This is another reason why taking out tailored Mortgage Advice in Durham can be a huge benefit to you. With an expert advisor by your side, they will be able to go through your case and find you the deal amongst our large panel of lenders that is perfect for your circumstance.

On the topic of exclusivity, approaching a Mortgage Broker in Durham can give you access to deals that you can’t find anywhere else. If you are a first time buyer, looking to remortgage in Durham or have a specialist case, there are many options available to you through an expert mortgage broker.

Changes to Regulation & Consumer Protection

After the 2007-08 credit crunch, the mortgage market needed to change. The 2014 Mortgage Market Review, stated that lenders could not sell mortgages to their customers without regulated advice.

This policy meant you couldn’t just approach a bank to tell them you want a mortgage and be accepted without the important checks. Furthermore, it meant that you couldn’t be granted a mortgage by any member of the bank, which was a regular occurrence, regardless of if they were qualified to do so or not.

Along with these new policies, consumer protection was introduced which was initially not provided to you by the bank. This means that you, as the customer, as the right to complain to the Financial Ombudsman if you feel misadvised in any way. The Financial Services Compensation Scheme is also available to you to make a claim.

Having this in place can assure customers who approach both mortgage brokers and mortgage lenders that they are in safe hands and are receiving professional and regulated advice.

Booking an Appointment with a Mortgage Advisor in Durham

One factor which can be a disadvantage to mortgage lenders but is beneficial to mortgage broker is that it can sometimes take months to try and speak to an individual at a bank. Whereas, getting in touch with a Mortgage Broker in Durham, like ourselves, can provide you with a more quick and responsive service that keeps you updated constantly about your mortgage process.

We are proud to offer a tailored service where a member of our team will contact you at a time that is best for you and your lifestyle. From morning, until late, 7 days a week, our expert Mortgage Advisors are here to help. This can sometimes include bank holidays!

Depending on availability, you may be able to book yourself in and have the appointment on the same day! However, it’s up to you if you want to speak to someone today or in a few days time.

As a part of our tailored service, our advisors have flexible availability. This means you can book yourself in around your 9-5 or around any other commitments. Our quick and simple book online system is great if you are on the move and need to book an appointment.

Responsiveness is an important part of Durhammoneyman. Whatever mortgage process you are going through, our friendly team will keep you in the loop. Your advisor will let you know of any changes that could arise.

The public’s views on mortgage brokers has changed due to Mortgage Brokers in Durham, like ourselves, providing an open and honest service to all customers looking to start their mortgage journey.

Handling Complex Scenarios

Through our time providing Mortgage Advice in Durham, we sometimes speak to customers who have a more complex situation than your average case. Below are just a few common situations we have encountered over the years;

  • Mixed Deposit (Savings & Gift) – This means auditing two different sources.
  • Applicants, who are on zero hour contracts – Will there be a consistent income?
  • Making a Second Purchase – Can they afford to make that additional purchase?
  • Self-Employed with No Fixed Income – A common challenge for Self-Employed applicants.
  • Poor Credit History – A lender will not look favourably upon an applicant who has mismanaged payments in the past.
  • Affordability – Can they afford a mortgage full stop?

In previous years, mortgage lenders could easily offer you deal that was better than any other lenders. Now, it’s not all about which deal you go with, it’s if you match the criteria or not.

Even if you find a deal that is reasonable, it doesn’t mean you match the criteria for it. In order to determine this, the lender will perform either a hard search (resulting in a footprint on your credit file? or soft search (leaves less of a footprint on your credit file).

One thing that could damage your credit file is being declined for an agreement in principle when applying for a mortgage. On top of that, if you are declined, it’s very unlikely that you will be given a reason for this which can be frustrating.

If you do speak to a Mortgage Broker in Durham like Durhammoneyman, we will be able to go through your case before, so you are prepared and in a position where you have a better chance of being accepted.

Here at Durhammoneyman, we have a large panel of lenders who offer a range of mortgage products. We will be able to match you up with deals and look to get you an agreement in principle. If you get your agreement in principle through Durhammoneyman, it will usually take no more than 24 hours after your free mortgage appointment.

Remember, having an agreement in principle doesn’t always mean you’re guaranteed to be agreed, nor does it guarantee a mortgage in the end, but it does provide safety for your credit file to have an expert go through your file beforehand. As a Mortgage Advisor in Durham, we always aim to get your recommendation right the first time.

In Conclusion; Should I use a Mortgage Broker in Durham?

At the end of the day, it’s your decision. As mentioned, there many advantages and disadvantages of going with a Mortgage Broker in Durham. On the other hand, there is many pros and cons to going direct as well. It all depends on how quick you want your service to be, and how secure you want to be.

Through our time as a Mortgage Broker in Durham, we have built up a positive reputation and strong relationship with many customers looking to begin their mortgage journey. If you are a first time buyer in Durham, coming to the end of your fixed term, looking to remortgage in Durham, we have done it all!

Here at Durhammoneyman, we offer fast & friendly advice that is FCA regulated. Simply book online or get in touch to book yourself for a free mortgage appointment or remortgage review with one of our brilliant advisors. Our goal is to fulfil your mortgage needs, by providing you with advice, at a time that best suits you, subject to availability.

For more information about our service, check out our fantastic customer reviews. You can have a customer insight on how our service has helped many individuals on their mortgage journey. We also offer free financial education through our YouTube Channel, MoneymanTV.

Mortgage Payment Holidays | Mortgage Advice in Durham

Mortgage Payment Holiday

At the start of the Covid pandemic, the Government promised that all borrowers would be allowed a three-month mortgage payment holiday if they needed it. Most lenders followed the Government’s guidelines and did their best to help their borrowers during these hard few months.

We feel that it is best to create a summary of what mortgage payment holidays are, what lenders are doing and who can provide you with help and guidance through the coming months.

On that note, we feel like this is a good time to talk about what mortgage holiday payments are and how they can help you with your mortgage payments.

What is a Mortgage Payment Holiday?

They are quite simple. A mortgage payment holiday is a set-period, agreed upon between you and your lender, bank or building society, where your mortgage payments are deferred. In this situation, the set period should be around three months.

You will still have to pay back these payments. Over the period, you will receive interest which will be added onto your loan at the end of the payment holiday whilst your capital balance will not decrease. So, your overall mortgage loan will slightly increase. So you save money in the short term but in the long term, it may prove expensive.

Once you feel like you are ready to start paying back your monthly mortgage payments, either your monthly mortgage payments will be recalculated at a higher level or your mortgage term could be increased. Lenders prefer to not increase your mortgage term as it could put you past their standard retirement ages.

You may even be allowed to pay off a lump sum later on in the year to get your monthly mortgage payments back on track to how they were prior to your payment holiday.

Mortgage payment holidays are available for borrowers with both residential or Buy to Let Mortgages in Durham. This really helps out landlords as they now have help if rental payments are affected.

The Government’s Proposal

Here is the Government’s proposal following the COVID-19 outbreak:

  • Mortgage lenders will offer an automatic three-month mortgage payments holiday for borrowers who have been impacted directly or indirectly by COVID-19
  • The mortgage payment holiday will apply to customers who are up to date on their payments, not in arrears, and wanting to self-certify that they are impacted by COVID-19
  • This means that lenders will not complete an income and expenditure assessment, or an assessment of alternate payment options as ordinarily required under MCOB
  • This proposal will allow lenders to be more responsive to customer needs and offer forbearance in a simple way to customers in an environment where the operation of collections teams made be also impacted by COVID-19
  • Customers will be made aware that interest will accrue in the holiday period and they will need to make up deferred payments in the future
  • Customers who wish to undertake a full assessment of their ability to pay or financial difficulty may still do so.

How do I apply for a Mortgage Payment Holiday

Even if you had a mortgage payment holiday before, we always recommend speaking to your Mortgage Advisor in Durham. They will sort out everything out for you and work out whether you actually need to take a mortgage payment holiday. You can also go directly to your mortgage lender and enquire about taking one but this may not benefit you as you may not even need one. The main thing is not to panic and explore all of your options before rushing into anything.

Here are the steps you need to take if you won’t meet/aren’t meeting your monthly mortgage payments and have been directly affected by the COVID-19 outbreak:

  • The customer would contact the lender and inform them that they are being impacted
    by COVID-19
  • The lender would accept these details from the customer and offer an automatic
    three-month mortgage payment holiday
  • No evidence is needed for the lender
  • The lender makes the customer aware that interest will accrue and will be contacted at the end of the three months to complete an assessment of the customer’s circumstances
  • At the end of three months, an arrangement to pay will be agreed with the customer according to their circumstances to recover any shortfall, also ensuring that the mortgage remains affordable and sustainable
  • The lender notifies the customer that if they wished to complete a full assessment now, there may be other forbearance options more suitable to the customer.

For more useful information on how the coronavirus could affect your mortgage click here.

Will a Mortgage Payment Holiday impact my Credit Score?

In most cases yes, they can give a negative effect to your credit score. However, you are taking one because of a virus so lenders shouldn’t let it damage your score.

To ensure that this is the case, before taking out a mortgage payment holiday, you must contact them. You need to record their answer as well as the date, time and the name of the person that you spoke with. This will avoid any confusion down the line if anything changes. It all depends on your lender, there is no guarantee that every lender will say the same thing.

Will I still be able to Remortgage or take a Product Transfer with my lender?

You would’ve thought that everything would continue as normal, however, all lenders are now avoiding all remortgages and product transfers during a mortgage payment holiday.

This will affect borrowers approaching the end of their existing product as they may be forced to move on to a higher lenders variable rate. This could mean that borrowers who act too early and jump into a mortgage payment holiday deal straight away could end up accruing interest on a costly variable rate.

This is another reason why we say don’t rush into anything! Take it slow and evaluate your options with an expert Mortgage Advisor in Durham first, they will make sure that you actually need to take out a payment holiday first before diving in headfirst. There are lots of mortgage options out there so have a look first with your mortgage Broker in Durham.

What are my other options?

Some lenders could offer you a temporary switch over to interest-only in order to reduce your monthly payments but not to add any more to the loan amount by still servicing the interest payments each month.

You don’t need to put all of your mortgages onto interest-only, but doing so could help you out financially.

If you have savings, remortgaging onto an offset basis could really help you out, you will be cutting down on monthly payments massively. For example, if you have a £250,000 loan and £50,000 in your savings, you would only pay interest on £200,000.

This may all may seem a bit stressful and it this may have come around faster than expected, however, you should try to take it slow and calm down. As your Mortgage Broker in Durham, we are still here to help and relieve you of all of that stress. Remember, we are still open as usual operating 7 days a week. Receive a free mortgage consultation with a Mortgage Advisor in Durham today, we hope that we can help you out!

Mortgage Advice in Durham

How to Improve your Credit Score in Durham

Mortgage Advice in Durham

Ways to improve your credit score | moneymanTV

What is a credit score?

A credit score is a tool that lenders use to measure an applicants ability to afford a mortgage. The higher your score, the more likely it is that you’ll be accepted for a mortgage. Which means that if you have a lower score, your chances of being accepted decrease.

Even though having a good credit score may look good on the outside, you must know that each lender has their own individual lending criteria and it’s more than likely that you won’t meet all of them. So sometimes it’s also down to your circumstances and not just your score.

Matching lender’s criteria

Most lenders’ criteria are completely different from one another, lenders have almost developed their own niche market. You could end up matching to a handful of them or maybe only a couple. As long as you end up securing a great mortgage deal that is all that matter though and it’s your advisor’s job to help you do that.

Whether you go with your bank’s in-house advisor or a Mortgage Broker in Durham, your personal and financial situation will be evaluated and then compared with lenders’ and their mortgage products.

We would always recommend approaching a Mortgage Broker in Durham before going straight to your bank’s in-house advisor and this is because your bank can only offer you their own products. If you choose a broker like us, we are able to access thousands of different mortgage deals through our large panel of lender’s. Once we have your details, we will try our hardest to match you to a lenders’ criteria.

If you are struggling to match a lenders’ criteria, it could be down to numerous different things. The most common reason why people don’t meet lenders’ criteria and get declined for a mortgage is because of their low credit score. If this is the case, then you need to try and improve it.

Improving your credit score

Avoid unnecessary credit searches

Having unnecessary credit searches on your file could have a negative effect on your credit score. Lenders’ don’t like seeing that you are repeatedly checking your score, they may think that there is a reason for it and they could even start asking you questions about it during your application process. Even using price comparison websites could damage your score.

On a side note, if you are applying for a mortgage, we strongly recommend that you avoid applying for any form of extra credit in the meantime. Paying back owed credit before your application will look good on your application, however, borrowing/paying back credit during your application will have a reverse effect. If you borrow credit, some lenders’ could think that you cannot afford the deposit and are relying on the credit to help you.

Credit Check Durham

Are you registered on the Voter’s Roll?

A great way to improve your credit score is to register onto the Electoral Roll, it indicates stability and lenders really like that. It’s really easy to get yourself registered and the fact that it can increase your credit score, you’re missing out if you don’t take the opportunity.

If you are already registered, you should check that all of your information is correct as lenders will easily spot misspellings and an incorrect address.

Don’t run too close to your maximum limit

Maxing out your card each month will negatively impact your credit score. If you are using a credit card, a lender would much rather that you pay off the balance in full each month as it shows that you are good at managing your money. If you are exceeding your credit limits or overdrafts, your lender won’t think that you take your finances seriously. This could massively impact your credit score, especially if you get declined by a lender due to this reason.

Check that your address is up to date

When people move home, especially from their parent’s house, people often forget to update all of their address’. When you forget to update your address with a previous credit provider, it can appear that you live in two different properties at the same time. This can hurt your credit score once lenders see this so make sure that you are keeping on top of what address’ are linked with each of your accounts.

Close down your unused credit accounts

Do you have any store/credit cards that are no longer in use? If you do, then you should contact the provider and get them to fully close your account(s). Having these accounts open could be doing your credit score more harm than good. However, this could also still have a negative effect on your credit score as the credit reference can’t really tell if it’s you closing the account or the provider. Don’t worry though, it’s a good thing to check up on as if you have lost a card and didn’t realise then fall victim for fraud, you could end up having a worse effect on your score.

Remove your financial link to others

If you are financially linked to a family member or ex-partner your credit score could be affected without you even knowing. However, if the account is still live, you cannot remove your link just yet. If you want to remove any of these links, then you should get in touch with the credit reference agencies and make a request.

Summary

More often than not, applicants see credit scoring as an unfair way of determining the success of a mortgage application. For example, you may have a low score due to personal circumstances, which applicants think is unfair. As a Mortgage Broker in Durham, we mostly see that it’s people that are Moving Home or Self Employed struggle with their credit score. However, if this isn’t your mortgage situation and you still need help with improving your credit score, you know to get in touch with.

Sending an up-to-date credit report to your expert Mortgage Broker in Durham could prove extremely beneficial to your mortgage journey. A great tool that we always recommend to our customers is checkymyfile.com.

Check my file | Mortgage Advice in Durham

The more your advisor knows about your finances the better. Also, there are still some lenders that prefer to operate the old-fashioned way and will manually assess your application. They will still have rules that they stick by about the number of defaults and CCJ’s that they will allow.

A Mortgage Broker in Durham, like us, likes to do things the new way and will always aim to deliver you the same Fast and Friendly Mortgage Advice service that you are all used to. We hope to hear from you soon.

Right to Buy Mortgage Advice in Durham

What is Right to Buy?

Right to Buy gives people who live in council properties in England, the right to buy their home at a discounted price, so long as they are eligible.

The scheme is open to people who are secure tenants of a local council that meet the current criteria. To see if you qualify, visit your council’s website and/or give them a call.

More often than not, a deposit is not required for the purchase due to a large amount of equity in the property, and due to the large discount offered.

There are also options to borrow additional funds for home improvements.

We help people like you by providing expert Right to Buy Mortgage Advice in Durham.

The process

Right to buy gives people who live in council properties in England the right to buy their home.

You check if you are eligible at your local council and if so, you request an application form from them. Once they have received it back, you will receive an offer which sets out the property value and your discount.  You have a set period of time to accept

Are you looking for Right to Buy Mortgage Advice in Durham?

We may be able to help! The Council Right to Buy Scheme in Durham has always been popular with people looking to get on the property ladder and own their own property and local Councils and Housing Associations are offering tenants, that qualify for the scheme, big discounts.

How to Get a Mortgage Agreement in Principle?

What is an Agreement in Principle?

What is a mortgage agreement in principle?

A Mortgage Agreement in Principle (AIP) is essentially a document to prove you have a mortgage in place. To the Estate Agent, it proves you are creditworthy as you have passed the lenders credit score. However, it is not a guarantee that you will definitely get a mortgage as a full application will require further background checks.

The value of a mortgage agreement in principle

How having your mortgage agreed at the outset can help you negotiate on an asking price.  A Mortgage Agreement in Principle is essentially a document to prove you have a mortgage in place. It is something we obtain for all of our clients and almost all Lenders offer them.

A Mortgage Agreement in Principle is not a guarantee that you will definitely get a mortgage as your full application will require further background checks (such as evidence of income) and a satisfactory valuation of the property itself.

However, it is a good idea to get one done at the earliest opportunity for the following reasons:

  1. Negotiating Power
  2. Avoiding Disappointment
  3. Knowing Your Limits

Negotiating power with a mortgage agreement in principle

When you are ready to make an offer on a new home most Estate Agents will undertake due diligence and ask you to produce evidence that you have funds available to complete the purchase. This will take the form of bank statements and also an Agreement in Principle certificate that we can provide for you. Once you have provided them with all this documentation the Estate Agent will then normally stop marketing the property and put a “Sold” or “Sale Agreed” board up.

If you already have a Mortgage agreed before you make an offer you are making yourself appear as an attractive proposition as this proves you are not making an offer on a “whim”, you’ve thought about how you’re going to fund the purchase and do something about it. This might persuade a seller to accept an offer you put forward on their property underneath the asking price.

Avoid disappointment with a mortgage agreement in principle

When it comes to buying a house some clients have always “put the cart before the horse”.  They go full steam ahead and make an offer on a property without first checking that they can actually proceed.  This can lead to terrible disappointment if the mortgage application fails. By that time they have really got their heart set on their new family home. This disappointment can be avoided by contacting us at an early stage.  Sometimes there are things that are causing a mortgage to decline that can be overcome given a little time.

For example, there may be a niggling issue on your credit report, perhaps a disputed mobile phone bill that can be easily rectified. Maybe you thought you were on the Voter’s roll and you’re not – once again that can be sorted out given a few weeks.

Or maybe you can’t get a mortgage at all! But if that’s the case it’s better than you know now rather than mess people about and we’ll be able to tell you what you need to do to improve your credit-worthiness for the future.

Knowing your limits with a mortgage agreement in principle

Ok, so you know you’ve got a good credit rating because you’ve never been turned down for credit, you’re registered on the Voter’s role and you’ve always made your credit card payments on time – so what can go wrong?!

Well, you could approach 10 different Lenders these days and get 10 different maximum mortgage amounts! They all calculate affordability in their own unique ways. If you’re self-employed it really is a minefield: some Lenders take your net profit, others your salary and divided. Some use your latest year, others an average over 3 years.

Still, think it’s simple?!

Knowing your borrowing limits is important as then you know for sure what your price range is. We’ll be able to advise you of the maximum mortgage available to you.   Also, more importantly, together we’ll work out how much you can afford to pay back each month.

If you would like to have a chat, give us a call as we are more than happy to help!

Durhammoneyman.com & Durhammoneyman are trading styles of UK Moneyman Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
UK Moneyman Limited is Registered in England, No. 6789312 | Registered Address: 10 Consort Court, Hull, HU9 1PU.

Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
We are entered on the Financial Services Register No. 627742 at www.register.fca.org.uk

The information contained within the website is subject to the UK regulatory regime and is therefore primarily targeted at customers in the UK.
Should you have cause to complain and you are not satisfied with our response to your complaint, you may be able to refer it
to the Financial Ombudsman Service, which can be contacted as follows

The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London, E14 9SR
www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

© 2022 Durhammoneyman

Durhammoneyman – Portland House, Belmont Business Park, Durham, DH1 1TW

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