Why Do I Need a ‘Decision in Principle’ to Make a Property Offer?

07 Jun
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Why Do I Need a ‘Decision in Principle’ to Make a Property Offer?

Purchasing a home is one of the most significant financial commitments you’ll ever make. In the housing market, having a Decision in Principle (DIP) is a crucial step that can significantly impact your home-buying journey. But what exactly is a Decision in Principle, and why is it so important? Let’s delve into the key reasons why obtaining a DIP is essential before making an offer on a home and how speaking to a mortgage broker like Impact Specialist Finance can help streamline this process.

What is a Decision in Principle?

A Decision in Principle (DIP), also known as an Agreement in Principle (AIP) or Mortgage in Principle (MIP), is a statement from a mortgage lender indicating how much money they might be willing to lend you. It is based on an initial assessment of your financial situation, including your income, expenses, and credit history. While it is not a formal mortgage offer, it provides a clear indication of your borrowing potential.

Demonstrating Serious Intent

One of the primary reasons to obtain a DIP is to show sellers and estate agents that you are a serious buyer. In a competitive housing market, sellers are more likely to entertain offers from buyers who have already taken steps to secure financing. A DIP indicates that you have undergone a preliminary check by a lender and are likely to obtain a mortgage, making you a more attractive prospect compared to those without one.

Understanding Your Budget

A DIP helps you understand the amount you can potentially borrow, allowing you to narrow down your property search to homes within your budget. This prevents the disappointment of falling in love with a property that is beyond your financial reach. By having a clear idea of your borrowing capacity, you can focus on properties that are realistic options, making the home-buying process more efficient and less stressful.

Speeding Up the Offer Process

In a fast-paced housing market, properties can receive multiple offers shortly after being listed. Having a DIP in place allows you to act quickly when you find the right home. Since you have already completed the initial steps with a lender, you can make an offer promptly, potentially outpacing other buyers who might still be arranging their finances.

Strengthening Your Negotiating Position

A DIP can strengthen your negotiating position with sellers. Sellers often prefer buyers who have demonstrated their financial readiness, as it reduces the risk of the sale falling through due to financing issues. By presenting a DIP, you can negotiate with confidence, knowing that your offer is backed by a lender’s preliminary approval.

Reducing Uncertainty

Buying a home involves many uncertainties but having a DIP can reduce some of the unknowns. While a DIP is not a guarantee of a mortgage, it provides reassurance that, based on your current financial situation, you are likely to secure the necessary funds. This can give you peace of mind as you proceed with the home-buying process, from making an offer to finalising the sale.

The Role of Mortgage Brokers like Impact Specialist Finance

Navigating the mortgage market can be complex and time-consuming. This is where mortgage brokers, such as Impact Specialist Finance, come into play. Here’s how they can assist you:

  • Expert Advice: Mortgage brokers have extensive knowledge of the market and can provide tailored advice based on your financial situation and goals.
  • Access to Multiple Lenders: Brokers have access to a wide range of lenders, including those that may not deal directly with the public. This increases your chances of finding the best deal.
  • Streamlined Process: Brokers handle much of the paperwork and communication with lenders, saving you time and reducing stress.
  • Specialist Assistance: If you have unique financial circumstances, such as being self-employed or having a poor credit history, brokers like Impact Specialist Finance can help find suitable lenders and products.

What Do Lenders Consider When You Apply for a Decision in Principle?

Lenders evaluate several factors when you apply for a DIP, including:

  • Debts, Missed Payments, or Arrears: Your credit history is closely examined for any existing debts, late payments, or arrears, as these can impact your perceived reliability as a borrower.
  • Lack of Consistency and Discrepancies in Your File: Inconsistencies or discrepancies in your financial information or credit report can raise red flags for lenders.
  • Not Meeting Your Lender’s Specific Criteria: Different lenders have different criteria for approval. Failing to meet these criteria, such as minimum income requirements or employment status, can affect your ability to obtain a DIP.

It’s important to note that obtaining a DIP does not commit you to a particular lender. You can still shop around for the best mortgage deal when you are ready to proceed with the full application.


In the housing market, a Decision in Principle is more than just a preliminary step; it’s a strategic tool that enhances your credibility as a buyer, clarifies your budget, and accelerates the home-buying process. By securing a DIP before making an offer, you position yourself as a serious, prepared, and reliable buyer, increasing your chances of successfully purchasing your dream home. Engaging a mortgage broker like Impact Specialist Finance can further streamline the process, providing expert guidance and access to a wide range of mortgage options.

Ready to Take the Next Step?

If you’re ready to start your home-buying journey with confidence, contact Impact Specialist Finance today. Their expert team can help you secure a Decision in Principle, navigate the mortgage market, and find the best financing options tailored to your needs. Get in touch with Impact Specialist Finance and turn your dream of homeownership into reality.