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How to Find a Mortgage Broker

How do you find a mortgage broker and, when you have, how can you tell if they’re good?

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By Pete Mugleston  | Mortgage Advisor Pete has been a mortgage advisor for over 10 years, and is regularly cited in both trade and national press.

Updated: 5th November 2019 *

For most of us, getting a mortgage is probably the most expensive financial decision in life, so it pays to make sure you get the best advice available.

In this article we’ll look not only at how to choose a mortgage advisor but how to make sure you choose the right mortgage advisor and ensure that your mortgage decision is the best it can be.

Read on to get to grips with knowing where to start:

Alternatively, skip the article and cut to the chase by talking to someone instead.

The brokers we work with are all experienced whole-of-market advisors and will be more than happy to answer your questions and let you know how they work and what sort of mortgage deal they could arrange for you.

Call us on 0808 189 2301 or make a quick online enquiry and we’ll introduce you to someone with the experience to match your needs.

We’ll find the perfect mortgage broker for you - for free

Save time and money with an expert mortgage broker who specialises in cases like yours

  • We've helped over 100,000 get the right advice
  • Our form only takes a minute, then let us do the hard work
  • Save up to £400 per year with the right advice (source: FCA)
  • All the brokers we work with have whole of market access

What’s the difference between a mortgage broker, a mortgage advisor and a financial advisor?

A mortgage broker and a mortgage advisor are exactly the same, there are simply two ways of referring to the same thing and there is no difference in the role they perform.

Mortgage advisors and mortgage brokers will advise only on mortgages and related mortgage products (such as insurance) you may need alongside your mortgage. They can also negotiate the best deal with a lender or finance provider.

What about financial advisors?

A financial advisor offers advice across a range of financial products such as investments and tax planning. Some financial advisors might advise on and sell mortgages to their clients, but they don’t specialise in mortgages in the same way as mortgage brokers. 

While some financial advisors might be able to help you with a mortgage, since they advise clients on a broad spectrum of financial products, you may find a dedicated mortgage advisor has better knowledge and is better positioned to have a clearer understanding of all the mortgage products available.

For the widest selection of lenders, you should find a whole-of-market broker, like the ones we work with.

Make an enquiry for a free, no-obligation chat. We can introduce you to one of the expert brokers we work with who’ll be happy to answer all your questions, whatever you’re looking for.

Where can I find a mortgage broker?

You can find a mortgage advisor on the high street in your bank or building society or through an estate agent. These advisors are usually tied to arranging mortgage deals for the organisation they work for or, at best, are limited to only a select handful of mortgage lenders.

While taking a wander down the high street to find a mortgage advisor might sound easy, you stand a better chance of getting the best mortgage rate if you find a whole-of-market broker.

Whole-of-market brokers have access to mortgage lenders across the UK, which gives you the best odds of getting a great mortgage deal. 

Independent, whole-of-market advisors are often far more experienced in mortgages as they simply have more knowledge and are more aware of the pitfalls of dealing with certain lenders, because they have first-hand experience of dealing with them.

Such experience could pay off. Should a lender be too slow in processing your application, you could lose out on the property you want to buy if your broker isn’t up to speed and on the case to get the mortgage completed on schedule.

What are the different types of mortgage broker?

There are three types of mortgage broker:

  1. Tied brokers - Are tied to a specific lender. This is often the case with brokers who work at your bank or building society.
  2. Multi-tied brokers - Have relationships with a range of lenders but are still limited in who they work with.
  3. Independent mortgage advisors or brokers - These brokers are often the most experienced advisors with years of experience advising on mortgages. They also have access to the whole market and can search the widest range of products from lenders across the whole of the UK.

In addition to these three main types, there are also brokers who specialise in specific areas of mortgage lending, including…

We have access to brokers who can help you with all of the above. No matter how niche or obscure your enquiry is, one of the experts we work with can help you.

How to choose a mortgage broker

It goes without saying that you should choose an experienced mortgage broker who can find you the best mortgage deal available.

While you can find mortgage advisors on the high street, it’s unlikely they’ll be able to shop around for the absolute best mortgage since they will likely only be able to sell mortgages on behalf of the bank or building society where they work.

Most estate agents will happily introduce you to their own in-house mortgage advisors too but, again, it’s unlikely they will be truly independent and able to search across the whole market to find the best mortgage for you.

Also, their priority will be with the organisation they work within, rather than towards getting you the best deal.

Your mortgage decision can make a huge difference to your everyday finances and getting the wrong advice could cost you thousands of pounds in the long term.

Which is why finding an advisor you can trust to give you the best advice and find the most competitive deal available is so important.

The brokers we work with at Online Mortgage Advisor are experts in their field. With a network of over 100 accredited brokers advising first-time buyers, the self-employed and people with a poor credit history, we can introduce you to the advisor with the experience you need.

Make a quick online enquiry and we’ll introduce you to one of the expert brokers we work with. Your expert broker will work with you to get the best possible deal on your mortgage, whatever your background or situation.

Should you compare mortgage brokers?

While you could compare mortgage advisors, you can save time by using our matching service. 

We compare brokers and match you to the right one by looking at your own personal needs and circumstances. The broker we pair you with will have the right expertise to help you achieve your mortgage goals. 

Getting a mortgage is a big deal – it’s one of the biggest financial decisions you’re likely to make in life, so it’s worth getting it right. By using our matching service you can get straight to the right person and save a lot of time, hassle and headaches.

How many mortgage brokers should I contact?

Save time and potential confusion by talking to the right mortgage advisor first time around. Use the broker matching service we offer and we’ll make sure we introduce you to someone with the specialist experience you most need to get the best deal on your mortgage.

Many of our clients come to us after being let down by their original broker so take a breath, grab a cuppa and make a quick enquiry and we’ll take care of the rest for you.

All the brokers we work with are whole-of-market and will be happy to answer your questions and take some of the weight off your shoulders by ensuring they tell you about the absolute best mortgage products available to you.

How do I find out if someone’s a good mortgage broker?

The best way to find out if someone’s a good mortgage broker is to start by asking the right questions… 

  • Ask them about their qualifications and how long they have been practicing.
  • Check they are regulated by using the FCA register.
  • Ask if they are ‘whole of market’ or if they are tied to only a handful of lenders. Whole-of-market brokers, like the ones we work with, can access lenders across the UK to find a mortgage to suit you, making it more likely you’ll get the best mortgage deal available.
  • Ask how they will be paid. Some brokers are fee based, others get paid in commission by your new mortgage lender. The brokers we work with will all set out their fee policy upfront, their initial advice is free and  there’s no obligation or marks on your credit rating. 
  • Ask if they have professional indemnity insurance. This will give you some protection in the event that they ended up giving you bad advice which affected you in the future.

While these questions are a good starting point, you can save time and get the right advice from brokers who already comply with all these by letting us match you with one of the expert brokers we work with. 

The brokers we work with are only paid if they succeed in getting you the mortgage you want so if you don’t get a mortgage, they don’t get paid. Which means you’re both working towards the same outcome.

Get in touch by making an enquiry. We’ll introduce you to one of the expert brokers we work with and ensure that they have the right experience to answer all your questions and help you achieve your mortgage goal.

The service we offer is absolutely free of charge and there’s no obligation.

Who regulates mortgage advisors and brokers?

In the UK, all mortgage brokers who arrange residential deals are required to be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or be the agent of a regulated firm. 

Make sure you check your mortgage advisor’s credentials at the outset. 

As with any industry, if you’re unlucky you may come across mortgage advisors who don’t know as much as they should when it comes to advising customers about large financial decisions, if you think your broker isn’t up to the job give us a call.

For the best advice you should look for an experienced whole-of-market mortgage broker, like the ones we work with. Send us a message to get started. 

What qualifications should a mortgage advisor have?

Mortgage advisors and brokers must be qualified to give mortgage advice. 

You should always check that any residential mortgage advisor you’re considering holds an FCA recognised qualification, either:

  • CeMAP (Certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice) - this is the industry benchmark qualification for authorised mortgage brokers and advisors.
  • Cert MA (Chartered Insurance Institute Certificate in Mortgage Advice) - this qualification also meets the FCA’s expectations for mortgage advisors.

If you contact a lender’s call centre, the staff you talk to may not be so well qualified. However, new regulations are now enforcing that all call centre staff must be advisors or refer you to someone who is. 

If you visit an in-branch advisor, you’ll be able to make an appointment with one of their advisors. While the advisor you’re introduced to must be qualified, it’s likely they’ll only be able to sell mortgages from the high street bank or building society in question.

Many high street or call centres only work on a non-advice basis, that means they can’t advise you on the correct mortgage needs, just give you a choice from the products they have available

How to check a mortgage broker is licensed in the UK

Use the FCA register to check whether a broker is regulated.

Search the Register by entering the name of the mortgage broker, or organisation you’re considering using to see if they are authorised by the FCA.

How do I go about finding a good mortgage broker?

There are many mortgage brokers around, on the high street, in your bank and attached to estate agents as well as online, so finding one isn’t difficult.

The catch is finding one who is independent and experienced enough to make sure you get the best mortgage deal available.

 A great mortgage broker will:

  1. Find you the best deal for your own specific set of circumstances.
  2. Find a flexible mortgage lender. This is particularly valuable if you are self-employed or have bad credit.
  3. Be able to recommend lenders who are reliable and consistent when it comes to processing applications. A slow processing time could impact your buying power in a fast-moving competitive sale.
  4. Do the chasing around for you. You’ll find that a great mortgage broker will keep tabs on your application and chase the lender up if things are moving too slowly.

Speak to a whole-of-market mortgage broker without obligation today

We make sure that all the brokers we work with are experienced and highly qualified with a friendly, professional approach.

We’re experts in specialist mortgages, with a network of over 100 accredited brokers advising first-time buyers, the self-employed, those with poor credit and more besides.

Discover for yourself why thousands of customers have awarded us 5-star rating on Feefo and talk to one of the expert brokers we work with today. 

Call us on 0808 189 2301 or make an enquiry online and we’ll match you up with the right specialist expert to get you the best mortgage deal around.

Updated: 5th November 2019
OnlineMortgageAdvisor 2020 ©

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The info on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs. Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

Find out more about how we help people get a mortgage.