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Stepping Onto The Property Ladder: First Mortgages

Aug 17, 2007
Stepping onto the property ladder and buying a home for the first time can seem like a really daunting prospect. You need to get the decision right because getting a mortgage is perhaps the biggest financial commitment you will ever make. Despite this, many people get a mortgage without really knowing a lot about the process. It pays to be clued up before stepping onto the property ladder. If you know about the mortgage buying process then you will get a better deal and find the right home for you.

The costs of a mortgage

Obviously the biggest cost of the mortgage is the lump sum that you want to borrow and the interest on top of this. However, there are many other charges that you need to think about when getting a mortgage. Arranging the mortgage will usually cost a few hundred pounds, as will legal fees. You also need to think about survey costs, land registry costs and stamp duty. There is also the amount of down payment you are going to make, all of which can add up to making the initial process of getting a mortgage expensive. Make sure that you have all of these funds in place before proceeding. You should be financially stable before even thinking about getting a mortgage.

Finding a lender

Once you have worked out the costs of getting a mortgage, you need to find the right lender for your needs. Shopping around to find the best deal is important, and looking at both online lenders and your local high street banks and mortgage providers is a good idea. You should look at lenders before you go house hunting, as you will have a better idea of how much you can afford to borrow and how much you will the lender will give you. That way you will have a budget to stick to when looking at properties. Some lenders will offer you a pre-approved amount, which can help to speed up the house buying process.

Finding a property

Once you have looked at lenders you should find a property that meets your needs and falls within your budget. Once you have done this you can get a survey done and exchange contracts.

Things to look out for

If you are new to mortgages, then there are a number of things you need to look out for. Most importantly, do not borrow more than you can afford. Although you may have seen the perfect house, that house will be taken away from you if you cannot meet the repayments. Do not be pressured into borrowing more than you can afford either. Remember that the lender can recover their money through repossession and know that lenders will get into other debts rather than default on their mortgage. Work out a strict budget and do not go over that amount. Also make sure that the mortgage terms you get are fair and that there are no hidden costs or services that you don't need, like credit insurance.

Know the terms

The last key to finding a good first mortgage is to know the terms involved in the mortgage process. If you know what to look out for and the things that you really need, then you can get a mortgage that will suit your needs and not cost you too much money. All you have to do now is find the right house for your budget.
About the Author
Peter Kenny is a writer for creditcards-gb.co.uk.
For additional articles and an extensive resource for everything about credit cards, please visit us at Credit Cards and Cheap Mortgages
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