A mortgage is the biggest debt you’re likely to ever take on, so you need to do your homework and understand more than just what the national press decide to publish. Advice is crucial and ideally from a company who can offer ‘whole of market’ mortgages, not just products from a limited panel of lenders, like some Estate Agency chains or a Bank/Building Society who only offer their own products.
Most lenders have a set of rules and criteria that need to be met even before requesting a decision in principal (stage at which you are credit searched for pre approval). Some will not allow a purchase where the vendor has owned the property for less than 6 months. Some won’t look at unencumbered properties for remortgages, or assist where the customer sold their house within the last year and are renting, so falling between a first time buyer and a residential home owner. Some won’t allow lending in to retirement and so on.
All of these are little idiosyncrasies that should be known by anyone advising on a mortgage. These save time and probably unnecessary credit searches being carried out. Remember, the more credit searches you have against your name, the more likely your credit score will decrease, which may affect your ability to obtain finance. Whoever you talk to about your financial requirements, make sure you say at the outset that you do not want to be credit searched, unless you give them the authority to do so.