Technology may have its frustrations, but there’s no doubt it has made life much easier when it comes to the business of sorting out personal financial matters like car insurance, choosing a mobile phone provider and buying cheap flights. Price comparison websites have revolutionised the way people now shop for products and services, and the mortgage market is no different. Go online now and search “mortgage comparison sites” and you’ll be presented with enough options to comfortably keep you out of mischief for a good couple of hours as you trawl through the various mortgage products, rates, fees, and terms. So, if you’ve got the whole of the mortgage market just a keystroke away, why on earth would you want to pay a professional mortgage broker like Oportfolio to arrange your home loan?
It’s a good question, and one I get asked often by people who often seem genuinely surprised that there’s still demand for mortgage brokers in a digitally savvy world where people can buy more or less anything and everything they want themselves.
The equally good answer to that question is that the majority of people have very limited experience – if any – of the mortgage market and, because they lack that knowledge, they don’t really know what they’re looking at when they find themselves on a comparison site.
So, here are 3 good reasons why working with a professional mortgage broker could well be the right way to secure your next mortgage.
1. What product do I need?
In order to make the right choice for your personal circumstances now and those in which you may find yourself in the future you need to consider a number of factors that go a long way beyond the headline interest rates for the products on offer.
What are the set-up and early exit fees? How much flexibility would you have if you wanted to pay off more of the mortgage at times? Are there any special terms attached to the product you’re considering?
What level of certainty does that product give you and what is having that certainty worth to you? These days it’s possible to tie yourself into a ten year fixed rate – but it’s not going to be in everyone’s interests to sign up to that type of commitment.
A professional mortgage adviser like Oportfolio will be able to use their comprehensive knowledge of the market to identify the mortgage product most suited to your need to marry affordability with flexibility.
2. A professional mortgage broker can head off problems before they become problems
Anyone who’s been through a mortgage application will know that it can be a stressful time. Even back in the days before the 2008 financial crisis, when lenders were far more relaxed about their lending criteria, applying for a home loan was still an anxious process for many people.
Since 2008, of course, there has been far more scrutiny in how mortgage providers lend and who they will lend to – and that scrutiny has only increased further in these pandemic-hit times.
Many people who apply directly to a lender often don’t really know how much they’ll be able to borrow or whether they meet that mortgage provider’s lending criteria.
There are lots of mortgage calculators out there – and at Oportfolio we have our own, which you can access here – and they’re brilliant for giving you a broad sense of what might be possible in terms of how much you may be able to borrow and what that would cost in monthly repayments.
But in reality, the amount a provider might lend you is only decided when that lender has taken a detailed look at your financial circumstances and your credit history.
A professional adviser will know what criteria each lender applies when considering an application and so can match your financial position to a lender who is more likely to approve your application. Equally, your broker will be able to avoid lenders who are unlikely to say yes to you.
Nothing is ever guaranteed when large sums of money are involved but having the expert knowledge – sometimes backed by a personal professional relationship between lender and broker – can help to avoid a lot of the stress associated with mortgage applications.
3. Hassle-free process
A professional mortgage adviser worth the name will ensure they take on as much of the work that goes into a mortgage application as possible.
There’s no getting around the simple fact that lenders require a fair bit of documentation and, understandably, only you will be able to get all of that together.
But right at the start of your relationship, your broker should be able to give you a comprehensive list of the information the lender will need, based on their knowledge of that lender’s process.
We know, for example, that there are occasional circumstances when a lender would sometimes like to have additional paperwork – and because we know that, we include that request right at the start – which means that as far as possible we can avoid having to ask for endless additional documents.
And once the application is in, your adviser will be the point of contact for the lender, fielding any further inquiries based on the comprehensive information they should have about you and your circumstances.
All of which hopefully adds up to a smoother process that results in you being able to move into your dream home.
Oportfolio Limited is an appointed representative of Primis Mortgage Network, a trading name of First Complete Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority
Your property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Oportfolio Ltd fees are payable on application. We charge a broker fee for property purchases of £495 and a remortgage/further advance fee of £395. Our product transfer fee is £295.