What Does A Mortgage Broker Do?

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What Does A Mortgage Broker Do?

What Does A Mortgage Broker Do?

Michael Tilston introduces the company and talks us through the role of a mortgage broker.

What does a mortgage broker do?

A mortgage broker is effectively a middleman working on your behalf between yourself and the mortgage lender. We use our own knowledge to find you the right deal for you and your circumstances. 

We take all the information you provide and all your documentation to make sure that we can get you the most suitable deal possible.

What’s the difference between going to a mortgage broker versus your local high street lender?

A mortgage broker with a large panel, like ourselves, could have over 90 lenders to choose from. Meanwhile on a typical high street – if they even have any banks open, that is – there might be seven or eight building societies or banks. 

Imagine if you tried to go to every single bank up and down the country. Some lenders are only available in certain geographic locations – in the north, for example, or Wales or Scotland. 

But we can access them from wherever we are. Also, while Santander might be on your high street, it might be that Newcastle Building Society does a good deal for you. But good luck finding a branch if you live in the south of the country. 

Essentially, you can access a lot of lenders through a mortgage broker that you couldn’t find just walking up and down your high street.

What services does a mortgage broker offer?

It’s different with every firm you go to, but generally speaking, a good mortgage broker will act on your behalf when speaking to estate agents. If you’re sourcing an Agreement in Principle or Decision in Principle, your broker would contact the agent on your behalf to confirm you have that and you are able to borrow the money.

We can help you source solicitors and liaise with them on your behalf – such as letting them know when your valuation is booked and the mortgage offer has been issued. These are all important stages that effectively take a lot of the stress away from you. 

High street banks don’t like to take on that additional pressure. They’re strictly regulated, whereas we can quite happily pick up the phone and speak on your behalf. 

Typical services are mortgages for First Time Buyers and home movers. We also help with remortgaging, where six months before your deal comes to an end, we would contact you and look to move you to a new lender – or see if we can get you a better deal with your existing one. 

We also arrange Buy to Let mortgages for landlords with just one or two properties or with a hundred properties. We can look at a very wide spectrum. We will also ensure that you protect your mortgage, which is just as important as buying a home.

You’ve worked really hard to save your deposit to buy a property, so it’s our job to talk to you about protecting that risk. You are effectively taking out a big loan, so make sure that you’re covered in every sense possible. It might be buildings and contents cover,  life insurance,  critical illness cover, income protection. There’s quite a wide range of products to make sure that everything is sorted by the time you move into your home. 

When should I see a mortgage broker? At what stage in that mortgage house buying journey?

I would always say you should see a mortgage broker before you go house hunting. There’d be nothing worse than finding a place you fall in love with and then find an issue when it comes to your borrowing. 

By coming to see a mortgage broker first, you’re putting yourself in the best position possible to go out and look at houses. You can get your Decision in Principle, which involves a soft credit search, to tell you what you can borrow based on your circumstances. 

We can also do some research if it’s slightly more complex. We can go to other lenders if you need to maximise your borrowing or if you’re looking for the best rate. A broker will very much put you in the best position going forward.

Speak To an Expert

Come on in and be quite forward with what you’re after – just be very honest with your mortgage broker. It’s good to make sure that we know absolutely everything about you. That way we can’t be blindsided by a lender. An open book policy is very good when coming to see your mortgage broker. 

When was The Mortgage Quarter founded and how long have you been in the industry?

Based on how much grey hair I’ve got, probably far too long! James and I worked together at Halifax, what feels like a lifetime ago. We’ve been in the industry for over a decade each and both went self-employed in 2017, but individually. 

Then, in 2018, we realised we could join forces, having worked really well together in the past. We decided to start a company where we could put the client first, and get back to what we enjoyed the most – helping people buy their home, remortgage their home and protect their home. 

We started out renting a little serviced office on Queen Street and The Mortgage Quarter was born. We’ve worked very hard and we now have a much bigger team of 12 people in the business now, and soon to be another. So, so far so good.

Does it cost for an initial consultation with you?

No, we don’t charge a fee for that initial meeting. We’re always very transparent with that – we wouldn’t charge until your mortgage offer is issued. The general way the process goes is that you would come and see one of us and we would do your kind of initial consultation for no charge at all.

You can get your Decision in Principle at no charge, then go away and find a home. You put your offer in and have it accepted. We then put your mortgage application together, submit it, have your valuation done and all being well with kind of credit scoring, valuation and income, your mortgage offer will be produced. 

That is effectively the mortgage lender putting the money on the table. It’s not until then that we would charge a fee which, as of November 2023 is £399 for a standard transaction. 

We always like to be transparent with that – but you can come see us 50 times, in theory. If you can’t find a house or your circumstances keep changing, you won’t need to pay us.

What else should we consider with mortgage advice?

When coming to see a mortgage broker, come in with your eyes open. We’re not stuffy like some of the old school banks can be. We’re relaxed. We’re here to ultimately work with you to help you buy your home and as mortgage brokers we enjoy and love what we do. 

So come on in and be quite forward with what you’re after – just be very honest with your mortgage broker. It’s good to make sure that we know absolutely everything about you. That way we can’t be blindsided by a lender. An open book policy is very good when coming to see your mortgage broker.

Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. 

You may have to pay an early repayment charge to your existing lender if you remortgage.

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

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate most Buy to Let Mortgages.