Insights for homebuyers

Mortgages are the biggest financial commitment most of us will ever make, but they can be complicated. And with thousands of products available it’s not easy to find the right deal for your needs.

That’s where professional mortgage brokers come in. So, what is a mortgage broker? Simply put, they help you to get the most suitable and competitive mortgage for your circumstances and smooth the path to an offer, making the process as hassle-free and quick as possible.

Still wondering, what does a mortgage broker do, and should I use a mortgage broker? Here’s 10 definitive reasons why you should consider using a broker to help you navigate the mortgage maze.

Person on phone call

1. Whole of market advice

A mortgage broker (you could meet a broker in person or consult an online mortgage broker) searches for the right mortgage for your circumstances from across the market. If you go directly to a lender for a mortgage, you’ll be limited to its own deals, which may or may not be the best for you. A broker offers personal advice tailored to your individual needs, and they’re not tied to a particular provider.


2. Qualified and regulated

Brokers need professional qualifications to give mortgage advice and they work under statutory regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority. This provides you with certain reassurances: they have passed the required mortgage exams to practice and they will treat you fairly and make sure they recommend the mortgage that is most suitable for you. You are also entitled to seek redress from the Financial Ombudsman Service if you are not happy with their advice.


3. Access to exclusive products

Brokers can access mortgages that may not be available to you directly. Some lenders only offer their products through brokers and don’t deal directly with the public. These products may better match your circumstances and it’s only by going through a broker you can find out about them.


4. Market knowledge

It’s one thing finding the most competitive mortgage product, but that’s only half the story. A broker knows which mortgages you’ll be able to access. They help you get it right first time, which could potentially make or break your property purchase. They also know which lenders can turnaround mortgage applications quickly and which are currently struggling with service.

5. Fee or fee-free

Most lenders pay brokers a percentage of the loan amount, called a procuration fee, when the mortgage completes. This essentially acts as commission to your broker for introducing you as a customer to the bank/lender that provides you a mortgage. Some brokers may also charge for giving advice or arranging the mortgage and the cost does vary. You could be charged a flat fee - such as £250 - or a percentage of the loan amount, 1% for example. The scale of the fee could also depend on the complexity of your application. You may need to pay the fees upfront, when you receive your mortgage offer from the lender or on completion of the sale. Brokers will provide you with their terms of business, normally at the first point of contact, which will set out their fees and when they are payable so that you can make an informed decision.


6. Hassle-free process

Getting a mortgage and buying a home can be complicated, with many forms to fill out and different parties to chase. A broker does the legwork for you, taking away the stress, helping you to fill out the forms and preparing your case so it goes through smoothly first time. Then they stay on top of it throughout the process, keeping in touch with the lender and liaising with solicitors if required.


7. Specialist needs

If you’re self-employed, have seasonal income or a history of bad credit, you may find it difficult to get a mortgage on the high street. A broker has access to a wider range of specialist lenders and experience in helping those excluded from the mainstream market. Specialist lenders, such as Aldermore, understand that life gets in the way of the best laid plans, and you can be rejected by a mainstream lender through no fault of your own. Our experienced underwriters assess each application individually and look at the bigger picture if your circumstances are unusual.

Happy people in a meeting

8. Open all hours

Brokers frequently make themselves available to you at your convenience - evenings, weekends or in your lunch hour. You can contact them in whichever way you prefer - over the phone, on video, social media or email. This flexibility sets brokers apart from high street banks and building societies.


9. Wider financial advice

Brokers often specialise in other areas of financial services, which means they can take a wider look at your personal finances, rather than just dealing with your mortgage. For example, a broker can help you arrange buildings cover, which will be required by your mortgage lender, and they can talk about life insurance and other types of cover that might be suitable for you. They don’t just help you get you the home of your dreams, but can recommend insurance that ensures you keep it, whatever life throws at you.


10. Loyal to you

If your circumstances change your mortgage broker is there to help you review your options, and they normally contact you well in advance of your deal ending to see if they can get you a better mortgage. A broker wants to keep your business for the long-term, and they want you to recommend them to friends and family. So, they always act in your best interests and are loyal to you, their client.


Subject to status. Your mortgage is secured on your property.  Your property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments.