Buying a house is an incredibly exciting time and probably also the biggest financial investment we will ever make. Therefore, it is important to ensure you source the right professional advice and feel comfortable with the service you are given. You will find you have two main working relationships during the house buying and selling process. The first is with your Estate Agent. If you are buying or selling a house, you need to feel that they will market your property correctly, to maximise its exposure and provide a great service to justify the fees.
The second working relationship will be with your mortgage broker. You will want to feel at ease with them and confident they will understand your personal situation to find you a mortgage deal that best suits your needs. But why go to a broker and not direct to a lender, usually a bank? Brokers usually get better prices and deals from lenders as their costs of processing the transaction are lower. If they are independent with no links to any specific mortgage lenders, they will also have access to a much wider portfolio of deals and rates. For an upfront professional discussion with a broker Dan the Mortgage Man will be only too happy to discuss your requirements.
So how do you choose a mortgage broker that’s right for you?
Word of mouth
Start by asking your family, friends and work colleagues for recommendations. If people have had a great experience (or a poor experience) they will be only to happen to share this with you. If you already have an Estate Agent, then asking them for recommendations is also a good place to start as many professionals within the same local area will be networked. By doing this they may also be able to offer additional discounts to you, if they have come recommended by a colleague.
Giving yourself options is a must, so it is worth narrowing down your search to a final three and then subsequently arranging a face to face meeting with all of them. Here you should ask the same questions and collate the answers so you can compare these. However, don’t worry if you feel more comfortable with the broker who didn’t have the cheapest fees. This is fine, you should simply weigh up if you want to just go with the cheapest option or feel that paying a slightly higher fee is worth it if you have a better and more understanding client/broker relationship.
Consider the Process
Some brokers now offer an online platform for mortgage applications. If you are extremely busy or work long hours, then you may feel this is a better option for you. However, whether you opt for face to face or virtual ensure you enquire about what documents you will need to have to hand, what the average timescales are, discuss any credit score issues, ask about any deposits needed and if your debt-to-income ratio is acceptable.
By doing all of the above you should be able to feel comfortable that you have made the right decision with your final choice of broker.