Knowing where to start when looking to buy a house can seem like a paradoxical problem.
You want to look at the available market and find a house that you like, but how do you know if you can afford it?
Similarly, a lot of banks aren’t too interested in processing mortgage requests to let you know what you can afford unless you have a property that you are seeking to buy so they can base their calculations on something tangible.
Without these calculations, it can be very difficult to know how much you can borrow. It can feel like a very vicious cycle.
Find the right people to talk to
Now, these sentiments are potentially a little outdated, and many banks are very welcoming and customer orientated these days.
There was a time not so long ago where this attitude of running a kind of exclusive club was fairly common among banks and still is in certain parts of the world.
But, as with many things in life, there is another option; mortgage brokers. A similar amount of time ago, anything associated with the word ‘broker’ had a degree of shade cast upon it as Hollywood had put the idea of underhanded, backstreet dealing, money lenders as being simply another side to a broker in the public consciousness.
This is grossly unfair and not at all representative of the kinds of service you will receive. Professionals, are experts in the financial markets and have the added benefit of working across a multitude of lenders.
This enables them to give accurate and unbiased advice and guidance to those seeking a mortgage; they should definitely be your first port of call.
Exclusive vs Inclusive
Brokers are the go-between, the middle people that facilitate the sale of a financial product from a lender to a borrower.
As a result of this, they will be able to access many different deals that the market holds and compare them for their customers.
Going straight to the lenders themselves is also a very valid approach, but they will only be able to offer you deals from their own products.
There will be occasions where lenders will keep exclusive offers in the house to attract business directly, but ultimately these deals will rarely be prolific and often carry many conditions to make them work.
There is merit to each approach, especially if you have existing products with a lender.
Ultimately, it rarely makes sense to narrow your options in this world, and mortgages are no exception. Utilise the full range of services and providers out there to gather as much information as possible before making a decision on anything.
Remember that a mortgage may seem difficult to get into, but they are even harder to get out of and doing so will more than likely come at a price. Make sure you get things right the first time but making a strong and informed decision.