How Long Does Mortgage Approval Take?

If you are a first time buyer, you will no doubt have a lot of questions on your mind. It’s understandable, as this is will be a large financial commitment that you are making. One of these questions may be; “How long does mortgage approval take?”

This is not a straightforward answer, as it depends on the various stages of the process, the complexity of your case and the mortgage lender that we go with.

Generally speaking, if you have a simple case, we like to give an average of around 2-3 weeks, though if you are applying for a bad credit mortgage, worst case scenario is a few months. Of course, there is no guaranteed set time frame for everyone.

You may be wondering what the mortgage process entails though. Why does it take as long as it does? As such, here is a little timeline of the mortgage side of things, to give you a better understanding of what will be going on.

The Mortgage Application Process

Free Mortgage Appointment

The first thing you’ll have to do to get the ball rolling on your mortgage, is speak with one of our dedicated mortgage advisors. We offer all of our customers a free mortgage appointment or remortgage review, no matter their circumstances.

During this mortgage appointment, your mortgage advisor will take initial information from you so that they can get a better understanding of what you are looking to achieve and who you are, both financially and personally.

Our mortgage advice team have time slots available from early until late, every day of the week. This means you can arrange your free mortgage appointment at a time and date that best suits you and your schedule (subject to availability).

Mortgage Advisor Research

Once your mortgage advisor has taken a look through your case, they will begin the search for the best mortgage deal to fit your personal and financial circumstances.

We have a large panel of mortgage lenders, with some offering specialist products. This allows us to search through thousands of mortgage deals, to find the right one for you.

After they have found what they deem to be a suitable choice for you, your mortgage advisor will feed back and present their recommendation. This will all be outlined in something called a mortgage illustration, which they will go over in more detail with you prior to submitting your mortgage.

To learn more about this, see What is a Mortgage Illustration?

Mortgage Agreement in Principle

Also known as a decision in principle or mortgage in principle, this is a document that you will need to get in order to progress your mortgage application.

The purpose of an agreement in principle, is to outline that at this moment in time, the lender has agreed to the loan amount you would like to borrow, subject to evidencing the information submitted to the lender via the appropriate documentation.

An agreement in principle can last between 30-90 days, and can be useful when making an offer on the property, as it demonstrates to the seller that you are serious about your enquiry and are ready to go.

We can typically get one of these for you within 24 hours of your mortgage appointment. If you do not find a property before this document runs out, we can easily get your agreement in principle refreshed for you.

Submitting to The Mortgage Lender

At this stage, once you have your AIP, it’s back to the mortgage advisor to go over our recommendation, as detailed in the mortgage illustration.

If you are unhappy with your mortgage advisors recommendation for one reason or another, our mortgage advice team will take a step back and search for a different deal.

If, however, you are ready to proceed, then your mortgage advisor will submit your application to the mortgage lender.

Mortgage Lender Checks

Now that your trusted mortgage advisor has submitted your mortgage application to the lender, it’s time for them to do their checks.

They will take a look at your bank statements, so they can verify how much income you are making. They will also take a look at your outgoings, so that they are aware of any additional financial commitments you have.

In addition to this, the mortgage lender will need to check your ID and address, to make sure you are definitely who you say you are, as well as auditing where your deposit has come from.

If you were gifted a deposit, they will need to see the last 3 months bank statements from the donor, and have a gifted deposit form signed.

Mortgage Valuation Survey

Not to be confused by a house survey, a mortgage valuation survey is where the lender will instruct a surveyor to review the property in question. Our mortgage advice team can help to recommend which survey to have undertaken.

The purpose of a mortgage valuation survey, is to confirm the value of the property, so that the mortgage lender knows whether or not it is worth what they will be loaning to you. It also outlines the current state of the property, to make sure it will be a suitable security for your mortgage amount.

What this means, is they will be looking to make sure that, in the event of repossession, they will be able to make their money back by selling your home. Do not worry though, as so long as you keep up your monthly repayments, you won’t have to worry about losing your home.

Receiving a Formal Mortgage Offer

After their checks are complete, the mortgage lender will, if all has gone well, come back to the mortgage broker with a formal mortgage offer. Your dedicated mortgage advisor will get back in touch with the good news, and all that’s left is to accept!

From there, it’s off to your solicitor for the exchanging of contracts and the rest of the legal side of things. Once all this has been done, it’s time to get the keys to your new home and begin your life anew as a homeowner.

Get Mortgage Ready!

As mentioned at the start, there is a rough average for a standard case, though as you can see from what you have just read, there are various steps involved so the time frames can vary.

If you would like to get started on your very own mortgage, it’s important to be mortgage ready!

Book your free mortgage appointment online, to speak with an expert mortgage advisor.

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