10 Tips For First Time Homebuyers to Help Secure a Mortgage

Why is it a good idea to get specialist first time buyers advice, when buying your first home?

It can be a daunting prospect when you’re ready to take your first steps onto the property ladder. It’s so easy to get it wrong, and you could end up making costly mistakes. 

Continue reading this first time buyers guide to find out how to avoid the pitfalls, and get the ideal mortgage for you.

1. Establish Your Budget

Probably the most important piece of first time buyers advice is to make sure you know how much you’ve got to play with. You’ll need to take a really good look at your income and outgoings with a fine tooth comb. 

Consider your regular monthly payments, such as food, utilities, cars, loans and other living expenses. Then make sure you account for unexpected expenses and cost of living changes. Be realistic, and don’t over commit. Interest rates can change regularly, and you need to be prepared for higher mortgage costs if that happens.

2. Check Your Credit Score and Credit file info

This is something that many first time buyers neglect to consider. It has an impact on the Lenders that could be approached and hence potentially the interest rates available to you. It could also impact on the deposit you will need to put down too. Checking your credit score, and also the full file info, is also a great opportunity to identify any issues that may be affecting your score in a negative way. Once you are aware of any issues you can start to deal with them and potentially secure a better deal.

It is also important to minimise the number of credit searches been carried out so don’t be tempted to obtain ‘agreement in principles’ until you have taken proper mortgage advice from an Independent Mortgage Broker who can help with this.

3. Determine Your Deposit

Some of the best advice for a first time buyer is to save, save, save for a deposit. The amount of money you put down will determine how much you can borrow, as well as the interest rates you are offered. The bigger deposit the lower the interest rate you will pay, also it can help boost the price that you will be able to afford to purchase at.

4. Research Mortgage Options

There are plenty of on-line tools that will allow you to compare one mortgage against another. Play around with the figures and set up a meeting with a reputable mortgage specialist who can dish out some great first time buyers advice and guide you through the full process from starting out, to moving in!

5. Ask Questions

The more the better, in this case. Remember, there are no silly questions. If it’s on your mind, ask. You are about to make a huge financial decision, so make sure you leave no stone unturned.

6. Consider Additional Fees

These can include:

  • Legal
  • Conveyancing
  • Land Registry and Searches
  • Stamp Duty
  • Valuation, Homebuyer and Full building Survey fees
  • Lenders Product Fees
  • Broker Fees

As with everything else, these costs will vary depending on who you choose to work with, the price of the property and other factors.

7. Get Support in Place

Your mortgage advisor will be able to point you in the right direction in terms of any additional support you may need. They will have worked with many other professionals related to the mortgage industry, and they will know who will be a good fit for your particular  circumstances. For instance we can recommend Surveyors and Solicitors too.

8. Negotiate

At any one time there are plenty of different mortgage rate options available for most people. You will likely have the option of trackers, discounts, fixed rates and offset mortgage options potentially, often with different scheme terms too. The Base rate are set by the Bank of England. Individual mortgage lenders use this as a guideline to set their rates but it isn’t the only factor.

9. Get Organised

Applying for a mortgage is a big deal. With that comes a lot of paperwork. Get yourself organised and keep all correspondence in a file, ready to refer to, as and when you need it. This will be especially important for a first time buyer. There’s nothing worse than losing an important document at a crucial moment in negotiations or when you need to provide it as part of a mortgage application.

10. Take Your Time

Work at a pace that feels right for you. Don’t allow yourself to be rushed into making these important decisions. There are often many options available to first time buyers, so you don’t need to sign up with the first offer you receive. Certainly don’t settle on just down to your bank, or been pressured into speaking to estate agent or builder preferred mortgage advisers (or solicitors).

A good independent mortgage broker acts for you and no one else and should guide you through the whole process.

If you’re still unsure about where to start, the best advice would be to set up a meeting with an experienced mortgage advisor. Stuart Brown Mortgage Services have a wealth of experience with all aspects of mortgage lending, particularly when it comes to first time buyers. Set up a no obligation call with one of their advisors now, and get your house buying journey started.


Here at Stuart Brown Mortgage Services, we offer professional and thorough advice on all types of mortgages, repayment methods, insurance and loan types. We work in and around Leighton Buzzard, and all the surrounding areas in Herts, Beds & Bucks and have provided over 20 years of fantastic customer service to many satisfied customers! 

Contact us now if you’d like to find out more about what we can do for you and get your journey to obtaining a mortgage started!


email: advice@sbms-online.co.uk

Telephone 01525 877650 or 01442 252040

Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up the repayments on your mortgage.

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