Questions to ask your mortgage adviser

All the key things you should be asking your mortgage adviser when looking to get a mortgage

Using a mortgage broker can take away a lot of the stress and strain that comes with searching for and applying for a mortgage – but not all brokers are created equal. When you speak to a mortgage broker or adviser there are a few key questions you should ask.

  1. Are you a regulated broker?

  2. How many lenders do you have access to?

  3. Do you cater to special cases like self-employment or adverse credit etc.?

  4. Do you charge fees and how do they work?

  5. How much could I borrow?

  6. What is the mortgage application process like?

  7. Which mortgage type(s) are most suitable for me?

  8. Do you offer protection insurance?

  9. Do you provide assistance with conveyancing and legal processes?

1. Are you regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)?

When selecting a mortgage broker, it’s vital to work with one regulated by the FCA. The FCA regulates the UK’s financial services industry and makes sure that banks, lenders and brokers, etc. are always working in the best interest of the consumer. 

Regulated brokers operate within a framework of professional conduct, have the appropriate qualifications, and adhere to industry standards. This ensures that they provide reliable and trustworthy mortgage advice.

Using a non-regulated broker means you’re at risk of receiving misguided advice and/or being missold unsuitable mortgage products.

2. How many lenders do you have access to?

Understanding the number of lenders a mortgage broker works with is crucial in the UK market. Brokers with ‘whole-of-market’ access to lenders can offer you a better choice of mortgage products and increase the likelihood of finding the most suitable option tailored to your specific needs and circumstances.

3. Do you cater to special cases like self-employment or adverse credit etc.?

If you have a unique financial situation, such as being self-employed or having an adverse credit history, it’s important to find out whether your mortgage broker has experience dealing with such cases. 

Specialised brokers who understand the intricacies of these situations can provide tailored advice and help you navigate any challenges that may arise. They can also guide you through how to prepare a stronger mortgage application and increase your chances of being approved for a mortgage by your chosen lenders.

4. Do you charge fees and how do they work?

Some brokers charge hefty fees while others will not. Understanding the fee structure of a mortgage broker is important, as it can affect the overall cost of your buying process. 

The way brokers charge fees for their services can vary, so you should clarify how the fees are calculated and whether they are paid upfront or upon completion. Get this information before you commit to using a broker.

5. How much could I borrow?

Determining what you can borrow is key. By discussing your income, expenses, and financial goals, a mortgage broker can provide an estimate of the maximum amount you can borrow. This information will help you establish a realistic budget and search for properties within your financial means.

Your mortgage broker should be able to give you an estimate of what you can borrow by giving you a mortgage in principle

6. What is the mortgage application process like?

Understanding the mortgage application process from start to finish will mean you know what’s going on. A mortgage broker should be able to: 

  • explain the steps involved

  • clarify what documents you’ll need and when

  • guide you through the entire process

Once you know what is carried out at each stage of getting a mortgage, you can be better prepared and at ease with the process. It could also give you a general idea of how long the process will take, although this will differ for different people.

7. Which mortgage type(s) are most suitable for me?

Mortgage advisers are there to provide insight into the different mortgage types available in the UK, such as fixed-rate mortgages, variable-rate mortgages, or tracker mortgages. By assessing your financial situation, future plans, and risk tolerance, they can then recommend the most appropriate mortgage options tailored to your specific needs and preferences.

8. Do you offer protection insurance?

Protection insurance, including life insurance, critical illness cover, or income protection, can provide financial security in unforeseen circumstances. Ask whether your mortgage broker offers any insurance products and how they can be integrated into your mortgage plan to protect your investment and give you peace of mind.

9. Do you provide assistance with conveyancing and legal processes?

While mortgage brokers primarily focus on securing the best mortgage deal, some brokers may offer additional services related to the home-buying process. These services can include assistance with conveyancing or referrals to legal professionals, ensuring a streamlined experience throughout the property purchase.

At Better.co.uk, we have a premium service called SmartBuyer, which matches you up with the right conveyancer and arranges the legal process of buying a home. Using SmartBuyer can even speed up the process by up to 6 weeks faster than the industry standard.

Important info & marketing claims

You may have to pay an early repayment charge to your existing lender if you remortgage. Your savings will depend on personal circumstances.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

*The savings figure of £656 is based on Better.co.uk remortgage customers in April 2024. Read more on our marketing claims page.

We can't always guarantee we will be able to help you with your mortgage application depending on your credit history and circumstances.

Average mortgage decision and approval times are based on Better.co.uk's historic data for lenders we submit applications to.

Tracker rates are identified after comparing over 12,000 mortgage products from over 100 mortgage lenders.

As of January 2023, Better.co.uk has access to over 100 lenders. This number is subject to change.

For buy-to-let landlords, there's no guarantee that it will be possible to arrange continuous letting of a property, nor that rental income will be sufficient to meet the cost of the mortgage.