Why does my broker need it?
Every lender in the UK has their own unique criteria regarding who they will accept for a mortgage and who they won’t. The differences in mortgage criteria may sometimes be subtle, yet they can determining factor between being accepted for a mortgage and being declined.
All mortgage lenders rely on the information from the credit reference agencies to determine whether or not you fit within their criteria. A good mortgage broker will have a very good understanding of the lending criteria and will want to look through your credit reports in-depth to help them to determine which lenders may or may not accept you.
It’s important to bear in mind that different lenders use different credit referencing agencies to base their decision on. As a general rule, they don’t share their information with each other, which means that some things will appear to one lender that won’t appear to another. Having access to all three would give the broker the best chance of finding you a mortgage and getting you the best deals out there. Looking at your credit reports will allow the mortgage broker to see what the lenders themselves see.
You can download your credit reports to see how your credit record currently looks. If you see anything on the report you’re unsure of it’s definitely worth reach out to a mortgage broker who can advise you on the best course of action before applying for a mortgage.
Protecting you from damage to your credit file
When a mortgage application is made the lender usually performs a credit search and this usually results in a hard footprint being left on your file. Too many hard footprints on your credit file can harm your credit score and further reduce your chances of getting a mortgage or other finance. It is best to try to avoid leaving a hard footprint on your credit file where possible. Looking at your own credit reports will not result in any damage to your credit score because it doesn’t register as a full credit search – usually it’s only applications for credit that harm your score in this way.
Unfortunately, many inexperienced mortgage brokers will make applications for an agreement in principle without doing their homework first and apply to the wrong lenders that would have never have accepted the mortgage, leaving unnecessary searches on customers credit files. A good mortgage broker will avoid unnecessary hard footprints on credit files by making sure that customers fit the criteria before-hand.