Now you know how much you can borrow, understand your LTV ratio and have cleaned up your credit score, it’s time to find the right mortgage adviser and conveyancing solicitor for you.
The power of a good mortgage adviser
Based on the details you provided for your Mortgage in Principle, a mortgage adviser (or broker) can help you find a mortgage that’s right for you. You can either speak to a mortgage adviser from a lender, who can compare deals that only they offer. Or you can go to an independent mortgage adviser who will usually have access to a wide range of deals from multiple lenders. Some advisers charge a fee, while some offer free advice but take commission from the lender. Be sure to ask about this upfront!
What to expect in a mortgage appointment
During your mortgage appointment, your mortgage adviser will be looking to build up a picture of your financial situation, so they can recommend the right mortgage for you.
Your adviser will ask you to complete a budget planner before your appointment, to help them recommend mortgage options within your budget. 🙋 This exercise is also helpful for you, as you’ll be able to visualise how much disposable income you’ll have remaining after your mortgage repayment and any regular outgoings. You’ll be asked to provide several key documents upfront, as proof of income, identity and savings. Use our mortgage document checklist to check you’ve got your details together in advance.
During a mortgage appointment, you’ll discuss:
- The type of property you’re buying 🏘️ – Is it a house or flat? Leasehold or freehold property? What are the service charge and ground rent costs (if applicable)? How old is the property? Is there anything unusual about it (for example, it’s next to or above a shop)?
- How long you plan to live in your new home ⌛ – Do you see this as your ‘forever home’, or will you live there for a few years before moving on?
- Your budget 💰 – How much would you be comfortable spending on your monthly mortgage repayment? What is your budgeting style – would you prefer to know your monthly repayment will be the same every month, or do you not mind?
- Your personal circumstances 🧑🍼 – If you’re buying a home with someone else, your adviser will ask each of you the same questions. You’ll spend time talking about your income (especially any commission, bonuses or overtime). Your adviser will also be keen to understand any outstanding balances and monthly repayments you have on any credit commitments. They’ll also confirm any dependants – such as children or relatives – who require financial support.
- Your insurance needs 🔒 – Your adviser will discuss the importance of protecting your home and your mortgage by taking out insurance. They will work with you to understand your mortgage protection insurance needs and therefore which type(s) would be best suited to you.
- Any big life changes on the horizon 👪 – Although none of us have a crystal ball, you might be asked about your short-term life goals for the next 2-5 years. Do you plan to get married, start or expand your family any time soon? What about your income – do you expect to be promoted, change roles or receive a pay rise in the next few years?
- Your questions or concerns❓- Your mortgage appointment is also a great opportunity for you to ask any burning questions about the world of mortgages, or home-buying in general.
Source a solicitor
It’s wise to start looking for a solicitor at this point, so that they’re ready to start work as soon as you’ve had an offer accepted on your new home. Conveyancing solicitors handle all the legal aspects of buying a home, such as drafting contracts and transferring funds. Personal recommendations from friends and family can help you find the right solicitor, as can reading online reviews. Make sure you confirm that your chosen solicitor is on your mortgage lender’s ‘approved panel’ before working with them. This is essential and will save you the cost and stress of needing to find another solicitor down the line. 💼
Your solicitor will send you a ‘starter pack’ to complete, sign and send back. This will include a questionnaire and a list of documents you need to provide (for example, proof of ID, proof of address and proof of deposit funds). Strict rules around money laundering mean that solicitors have to run their own identity checks, even if you’ve already provided this information to a mortgage adviser or lender.
How much do conveyancing fees cost?
Fees vary – some conveyancing solicitors charge a fixed fee, while others charge a percentage fee based on the property value. It’s also normal for solicitors to charge you for their time on an hourly basis. You can expect to pay anywhere from £500-£1,500 in total, depending on the property type, location and the complexity of the transaction. Your estate agent might recommend you a solicitor, but you have no obligation to work with them. Bear in mind that the cheapest quote isn’t always the best one when it comes to legal advice. This is an area where it pays to shop around to find the right person for the job.
When do I pay a conveyancing solicitor?
Your solicitor is likely to request an upfront payment, so that they can arrange various third party services throughout the transaction without requesting money from you multiple times. You’ll usually pay the remainder of the solicitor fees just before you complete your home purchase. Make sure you check your solicitor’s T&Cs for any hidden charges and ask about anything you’re not sure of.
🟠 Time for a check in!
- You’ve started speaking to a mortgage adviser (if applicable)
- You’ve found a solicitor
Moneybox Mortgage Advice is provided by Moneybox Mortgages Ltd.
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.