How Easy is it Getting a Mortgage?

How to Get a Mortgage: The Easiest Ways Revealed

Home Blog How Easy Is It Getting A Mortgage?
Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Advisor, MD

Updated: March 18, 2024

Buying a property is much easier when you know the right steps to take, especially if you’ve never had to go through the process before.

But just how easy is it really to get a mortgage in the UK, especially if you’re looking for a second mortgage or after a buy-to-let loan to get an income from renting?

In this article, we look at the different ways to help maximise your chances of getting the best mortgage deal possible, how to apply, and the easiest ways to get approved for one.

How easy is it to get approved for a mortgage?

This all depends on your personal and financial circumstances, including if you already have an existing mortgage. Factors such as deposit, credit history, debt and income all play a large role in you being approved for a mortgage.

If you optimise the following factors, you’ll be more likely to meet the lender’s eligibility criteria and pass the affordability test. And improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage in principle.

Maximise your chance of approval and make getting a mortgage easy with advice from a specialist broker

Aim for a larger deposit

Important

The more deposit you have, the better mortgage deal you’ll likely get. Lenders will factor in your deposit when calculating your loan-to-value (LTV) ratio, which is essentially the size of the mortgage in relation to how much the property is worth and is expressed as a percentage.

So, if you borrow £150,000 for a property worth £200,000, your LTV ratio would be 75% – a ratio many lenders favour.

If you have limited or no funds to work with, see our guides to low deposit mortgages and no deposit mortgages.

Pay off as much debt as you can

If you have any unsecured debts, you may want to consider paying them back before applying for a mortgage. Lenders will calculate your debt-to-income ratio to see if you can afford to pay back your mortgage each month while still living within your means, so clearing off some debts could make your application much easier.

To calculate your debt-to-income ratio, divide your total monthly debt payments by your gross monthly income (i.e. before tax and other deductions), then multiply this figure by 100. Use our debt-to-income calculator below to work out yours and find out whether lenders are likely to view you as low, medium or higher risk.

Debt to Income Ratio Calculator

This calculator allows you to calculate your debt-to-income ratio and will indicate whether mortgage lenders will classify it as low, medium, or high risk.

The amount you get paid each month, after any taxes or contributions have been deducted
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Be sure to include all of your fixed outgoings, as well as any loans or credit card payments you make
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Your Results:

Your Debt to Income Ratio is %

Good news! Most mortgage lenders will class your debt-to-income ratio as low. You’re unlikely to be declined for a mortgage based on your outgoings, but speaking to a mortgage broker before applying is still recommended as they can improve your chances of getting the best deal.

Most mortgage lenders will class your debt-to-income ratio as moderate, which means some of them might view your application with caution. Some lenders are much more strict than others when it comes to affordability and debt, so it’s important for you to find a lender who’s more lenient. You should speak to a mortgage broker before you apply to ensure you’re matched with a lender whose criteria you fit.

Most mortgage lenders will class your debt-to-income ratio as high. But that’s where we can help! With so much of your monthly income going towards debt repayments, you could struggle to get approved for a mortgage without the help of a mortgage broker. We can help you find a lender who’s more lenient on debt and affordability, and could still secure a mortgage approval.

Get Started

How to get a mortgage

Your first step should be to find the right mortgage broker as this will boost your chances of getting approved and landing the best rate. Make an enquiry with us and we will match you with your ideal advisor for free.

Your handpicked mortgage broker will guide you through the following steps to full application:

We're so confident in our service, we guarantee it.

We know it's important for you to have complete confidence in our service, and trust that you're getting the best chance of mortgage approval at the best available rate. We guarantee to get your mortgage approved where others can't - or we'll give you £100*

Happy approved couple

Is it easy to get approved with bad credit?

While some factors on your credit report could have more impact on your mortgage application (for example bankruptcy and debt management schemes), there are other factors that won’t have much impact at all, like a missed phone payment or a hard credit search within the last 12 months.

To make sure you don’t miss anything, download your credit reports from the two main credit reporting agencies in the UK: Equifax and Experian. By getting these three reports, you’ll be able to see which factors appear across all of them and if there are any mistakes that you could amend. By doing this, you could make your mortgage application easier and save money on your future payments.

See our guide to bad credit mortgages for more information.

Is it easy to get a buy-to-let (BTL) mortgage?

Yes, in the right circumstances. Buy-to-let mortgages typically have higher interest rates compared to residential mortgages, and lenders also tend to require a higher deposit rate, though many will loan at 85% loan-to-value (at the time of writing). This is because BTL properties typically rely on rental income to sustain the mortgage repayments, so the risk is higher. The more deposit you can put down, the better deal you’ll likely get.

So, if you’re wondering how to make your BTL mortgage application as easy to get as possible, it’s worth speaking with a mortgage advisor. They’ll be able to review your circumstances and advise you on how to boost your chances of getting a great BTL deal. You can also make things easier for yourself and be prepared with your documents – read our comprehensive list to see what you’ll need to get together.

Is it easy to switch or refinance a mortgage?

Yes, it’s possible. In many cases, switching or refinancing your original mortgage to another could mean a better interest term and rate. For example, you may be coming to the end of a fixed-rate deal of two years and want to switch to a product with a lower standard variable rate (SVR).

Repayment mortgages tend to be more favoured by lenders, and you can choose the following:

  • Fixed-rate: A fixed-rate mortgage is where you pay back both the interest and capital each month. With a fixed rate, your mortgage payments will stay the same for the agreed term, so you know exactly how much you’ll pay back each month.
  • Tracker: A tracker mortgage rises or falls depending on the Bank of England’s base rate. This means that you’ll save money for some months and pay more with others.
  • Discounted variable: This mortgage has an interest rate that is set below your lender’s standard variable rate. It goes up and down when the SVR changes as opposed to the Bank of England’s base rate.

To find out how easy it could be to switch mortgage lenders, make an enquiry and talk to one of the expert mortgage brokers we work with.

How easy is it to get a second mortgage?

Getting a second mortgage could be straightforward, as long as a lender is happy that you can afford to pay the loan each month and you have enough deposit. It can be

Lenders will typically require borrowers to meet tougher eligibility criteria and affordability checks, and they’ll need to know if the loan is for a residential home or a buy-to-let property.

If you have a separate residential mortgage and are looking to take out a second loan as an investment opportunity, lenders will also be more critical when assessing your application.

How easy is for first-time buyers?

It can be very easy for the right applicants, and many lenders welcome first-time applicants. In fact, first-time buyers now make up the majority of home purchases (at the time of writing) with terraced houses and semi-detached properties being their preferred choices.

If you’re a first-time buyer looking for an easier way to get a mortgage, you could consider the following:

  • Joint owner, sole proprietor: This is where a second party helps the borrower to buy a property without featuring on the title deeds. It’s common for parents to do this for their children.
  • Shared: A shared ownership mortgage is a hybrid between buying and renting. Basically you can borrow a percentage of a home and the bank owns the remainder, meaning that you’ll pay rent on this amount. You can buy back percentages until you fully own the home if you wish.

Speak to an expert to ease the mortgage process

To find out how easy it is for you to get a mortgage or start your application the right way, use our free broker-matching service to get matched with the right advisor for you.

Our service quickly assesses your needs and circumstances to pair you with the mortgage specialist who is best placed to help you achieve your goals. Call 0808 189 2301 or make an enquiry to get matched with your hand-picked and full-vetted mortgage broker today.

Maximise your chance of approval and make getting a mortgage easy with advice from a specialist broker

FAQs

Because self-employed individuals don’t have the stability that’s typically offered to employees, lenders may see them as higher risk.

In order to get the best deal possible, lenders will want to see a solid history of your earnings. Having evidence of at least two years’ worth of earnings could make your mortgage application run smoother.

If your circumstances change and you can’t afford to keep up with your mortgage, or need to take your name off the loan for other reasons, how easy it will be to exit a mortgage will depend on a few factors.

First, you’ll need to talk with your lender – they may be able to provide a short-term solution for you, such as a payment holiday or extend the mortgage term while you figure out what to do.

If you’ve separated from your partner and are both named on the mortgage, you could choose to transfer the mortgage to yourself or the other party.

While a 100% LTV (or no deposit) mortgage is not typically easy to get, or something offered by most lenders for residential properties, for a 95% LTV ratio, the applicant would need to pass strict eligibility criteria and affordability checks. This is because your monthly rates will be higher overall, so lenders need to make sure that you can afford to pay the loan back.

While some lenders will agree to a 95% loan-to-value ratio, this percentage is often common for Help to Buy applicants – they put own 5% of the property’s value, then the government will loan a further 20%.

If you need help with your deposit, there are other avenues you can take, such as shared ownership and Right to Buy.

Read our guide for more information on 100% LTV commercial mortgages.

It will depend on what plans you have for the land and if the land has planning permission – whether you want it to build your own home, to build a commercial property, or for agricultural reasons. It will also depend on if the plot has planning permission.

Purchasing land is very competitive, and purchasing the right type of land in the area you desire may not be straightforward.

Working with a mortgage advisor, like the ones we work with, could make things easier since they’ll have the expertise to find the best deals via their whole-of-market access.

It could be very straightforward to take out a small loan, and because your monthly mortgage payments could be lower, lenders shouldn’t have a problem with you meeting their affordability criteria.

For example, if you take out a £60,000 mortgage for a property worth £90,000 at an interest rate of 3.5%, you could pay back £300 a month and your loan-to-value ratio would be 66.7% – a ratio many lenders would find very favourable.

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