First Time Buyers

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Getting your Mortgage Application Right

A first-time buyer is a person who is purchasing a principal residence for the first time. 

You can qualify as a first-time buyer if you haven’t owned a principal residence for three years; if you haven’t owned a residence, but your spouse has; or if you are a single parent who owned a home previously with an ex-spouse. This is especially true of a displaced homemaker who has only owned a property with a spouse in the past.

You may also be considered a first-time buyer if the only property you owned wasn’t in compliance with building codes and cannot be brought within them without constructing a new structure.

There are different schemes in Northern Ireland for first time buyers, so it is worth speaking to us to see how we can help.

How is the Process Different for First Time Buyers?

First-time buyers can often qualify for some added perks like lower deposits or grants. Some lenders also offer a first-time buyer mortgage with special rates or incentives.

When you are ready to arrange a mortgage, you will need to find a lender and using a mortgage broker will help in matching you to the lender that best fits your personal circumstances. As a first time buyer, there can be special rates or deals available to you, so do a little research first to determine where the best place to borrow is going to be.

How Much Can a First Time Buyer Borrow?

Before you start shopping for a home, you will need to know how much you can borrow. Since they will factor in things like the other debt you may have, your income, and the length of time you have been at your current job, you may qualify for less than you think.

There is not a set amount that a first-time buyer can borrow, it depends on your personal circumstances, so it is important to talk to a broker to get pre-approved for a loan. Applying for a mortgage and then completing the necessary paperwork with a broker will give you an idea if you qualify for a mortgage and the price range of homes you can afford.

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We will work with you to understand your situation and needs, then develop personalised advice to help you achieve your goals.

What is an Agreement in Principle?

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage requires a credit check and some paperwork (documentation). An Agreement in Principle is a fast way to determine if and how much you qualify for a mortgage. You are not committed to anything, and it is not a guarantee of a loan, but it is a good first step when you are preparing. Using a broker will usually increase your chances as they will know the criteria and can carry out affordability checks with various lenders first.

Understanding and Improving My Credit Score

Your current credit score is a significant factor when it comes to qualifying for a loan. Having a good track record of credit will also help you get a better interest rate on your loan, and more lenders willing to make an offer. Checking your credit score and taking steps to improve it will help you buy a home.

You can work to increase your credit score by paying all your bills on time. You should also repay your credit card balances and keep your debt as low as possible.

If you would like to access your credit report, click here.

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Additional Fees to Understand

There are some additional fees that you incur when you buy a house. The Stamp Duty is a tax the Government places on legal documents and may be due depending on the purchase price or your circumstances. You may also have to pay mortgage fees, search fees, surveys done to the property, and protection against accidents.


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

We may charge a fee of up to £395 for mortgage advisory services and administration

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