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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get a mortgage offer before I find my property?

Yes you can. In fact it's a good idea to talk to us as early as possible so you can act faster later.

What does APR mean?

APR stands for Annual Percentage Rate and it's there for your protection. The point of it is to help you compare the true cost of any loan versus any other loan. The APR includes all possible costs including fees, legal costs and management charges so you can't get caught out with hidden charges. All lenders must by law show the accurate APR for their loan - you should always ask for it.

How do I pay off the loan if I have an interest only loan?

If you have an interest-only mortgage your monthly payments only cover the interest charges, they don't pay back the loan (known as the 'capital'). For this you set up a separate account. This could be in the form of an Individual Savings Account (ISA), an endowment, or a pension.

Do I always need life insurance?

When you take out a mortgage, your lender needs to be sure that you'll be able to pay it back, even if you lose your job, become unwell for a long period or die.

Because of this, lenders usually insist you buy life cover when you take out your mortgage. We strongly recommend you take out appropriate life cover policy. We can give you a quotation when you call in for a mortgage appointment.

What other costs might I have when taking out a mortgage?

It's important you add up all the costs involved in a mortgage, not just the interest rate. You may need to budget for a valuation fee, search fees, registry fees and legal costs, as well as stamp duty on properties over 125,000.

We expect you to take out buildings insurance to cover damage or rebuilding costs if needed. We also recommend you take out contents insurance along with sickness and unemployment cover, as appropriate.

What is the difference between a standard variable rate (SVR) and a tracker rate?

Each lender sets their own Standard Variable Rate (SVR) and they are free to change them at any time. Normally this change is based on a rise or fall in Bank of England Base Rate. But the lender doesn't always change their rate by exactly the same amount.

With a tracker rate, the mortgage tracks an independently set interest rate, such as The Bank of England base rate. The lender must follow that rate exactly. The benefit of a tracker mortgage is that any falls in interest rates will be passed on to you. However, any rises in rates will also be passed on to you.

What is the early repayment charge for my mortgage?

Some mortgages, such as a fixed rate mortgage, charge a fee if you pay back the loan early. This can vary, so check your original letter of approval or terms and conditions for the amount.

What if I lose my job?

We strongly advise you contact us if you have lost your job and you think you may have difficulties with the loan. The sooner you talk to us, the more options we can find for a solution.

What if I am having trouble paying my mortgage?

The number one priority if you are having trouble paying your mortgage is to talk to us. Whether it is because of unemployment, sickness or any other reason, we are committed to acting fairly and finding the best solution.

You can be confident that your individual situation will be dealt with confidentially by specialised staff who will outline the best and most appropriate option for you.

Please contact our Mortgage Centre on 0345 301 6910.