First-time home buyer guide

If you’ve decided you’d like to own your own home, there are a few things you can do to make the process easier. From saving for a deposit to the mortgage application process, here’s everything you need to know.

How much deposit do I need to buy a house?

Generally, you need to try to save at least 5% to 10% of the cost of the home you would like as a minimum requirement, the more deposit the better deal you are likely to get!

Make sure you can afford your monthly repayments

As a first-time home buyer, the most important thing to bear in mind is whether you can really afford to take this step. It’s wise to put together a budget before you start looking for a property.

There are now strict checks when you apply for a mortgage. Lenders will check that you can afford the mortgage and also ‘stress test’ your ability to make your payments if interest rates were to rise or if your circumstances changed, such as possible redundancy or having children. As part of the mortgage application process you will need to show the lender evidence of any outgoings, and prove your income.

Budget for the other costs of buying a home

Apart from your monthly mortgage payments, there are other costs associated with buying a home. These include:

  • Mortgage arrangement and valuation fees
  • Stamp Duty (or Land and Buildings Transaction Tax in Scotland)
  • Solicitor’s fee
  • Survey cost
  • Removal costs
  • Initial furnishing and decorating costs
  • Buildings insurance
  • Life Insurance & income protection

Affordable home buyer schemes to get you on to the property ladder

There are a number of government-backed schemes aimed at giving home buyers – and movers too – a helping hand onto the property ladder.

If you are able to use one of these schemes, lenders will still ensure that you can afford to pay your mortgage.

Help to Buy scheme

Shared ownership schemes

Finding a mortgage

There are many different mortgage deals to pick from, so choosing the right one for you can be tricky. It can depend on a number of factors, so it’s a good idea to take some professional advice and talk to us.

Professional Mortgage Services are independent Whole of Market Mortgage advisers,

Finding the best mortgage deal is crucial as it could be the biggest financial commitment you ever make. Choosing the right deal is about more than just finding the lowest interest rate.

How much can I borrow?

What type of mortgage deal should I get?

Which mortgages will I be eligible for?

How much are mortgage fees?

Compare mortgage interest rates

If you are thinking of buying your first home, moving up the ladder and are asking any of these questions you need to take professional mortgage advice, We will conduct a detailed fact find with you to establish your circumstances and preferences and will make some recommendations to you.

The application process

Whichever mortgage you apply for, your lender will want to know that you can make payments if interest rates rise or your financial circumstances change.

You will need to prove your income, and show the lender evidence of any outgoings, including debts, household bills and other living costs such as clothing, childcare and travel costs.

To prove your income, you may have to produce payslips and bank statements. If you are self-employed you could be asked for tax returns and business accounts prepared by an accountant.

Someone else can guarantee your mortgage

If you’re struggling to get a mortgage to buy your first home you might want to consider a guarantor mortgage. This means that a parent, guardian or close relative agrees to be responsible for the mortgage payments should you be unable to meet them.

Guarantor mortgages shouldn’t be entered into lightly as they are legally binding arrangements and your guarantor needs to be able to afford to pay your mortgage if you get into difficulty.

Contact us to discuss gurantor mortgage options.