One of the biggest milestone events in life is buying a home. As house prices in the UK are at their absolute highest ever, it is nearly impossible for anyone to purchase a home with their own cash, even if it is their second, third or fourth move. A mortgage is a financial instrument that enables the majority of home buyers to actually complete the sale. A mortgage is simply a large secured loan, where the home being bought is used as collateral.
The borrower receives the amount required to purchase his/her home from the lender at the outset. This is over and above what he/she has been able to provide as a deposit. In return, the borrower has to make regular repayments until the loan capital with interest is repaid.
We have divided our mortgage guide into the following sections. Click on the title of each for in-depth information.
Where mortgage payments only cover the interest on the borrowed amount. The borrower usually simultaneously takes out an alternative repayment vehicle (way of paying off the capital sum of the mortgage) such as pension plan, ISA or a life insurance (endowment) policy.
With a repayment mortgage you don't just pay back the interest on the loan each month - you pay back part of the capital as well. At the end of the year you get your annual mortgage statement which will show that the total amount owing is less than the previous year.
Remortgaging means replacing an existing loan with a new one from a different lender - although it is not uncommon for people to say they have remortgaged when they have simply taken a new deal from their existing lender.
In this latest era of tight liquidity, yields on buy-to-let properties are dropping as it becomes increasingly difficult to cover a high percentage mortgage with rental income.
Flexible mortgages are a step further down the evolutionary path from the traditional mortgage model in the United Kingdom.
Self Certificate (Self Cert) mortgages are designed mainly for the self-employed and people with an uneven flow of income. Self Cert mortgages allow these people to bypass the stringent income validation criteria normally associated with most other mortgage types.
A commercial mortgage is probably the best way to finance the purchase of buildings and land for business purposes - it provides the most flexible and affordable finance solution. Read our comprehensive guide.
This calculator will work out your monthly mortgage payments, whether your loan is interest-only or interest + repayments. It will also tell you what your total interest bill will be and at 5 year intervals.
The most common way to protect a homeowner's mortgage against death is a Decreasing Assurance Policy (DTA). Mortgage Payment Protection Insurance.
Common questions about applying for a mortgage in the UK
People self build for many different reasons. Here is our quick guide on self-building in the UK.
Do you need help finding a cheap mortgage? Do you have debts and need to reduce your interest payments using a consolidation mortgage? Or do you want to remortgage for home improvements or to raise capital?