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Mortgage broker - a necessity?


I'll shortly be in the process of hunting for a mortgage and I just wondered whether people think a broker is a necessity, or worthwhile or value for money even?

I'll be a first-time buyer and consider myself pretty switched on with finances (personal and general) and am someone who spends a lot of time researching any product or service and consider myself to have a reasonable knowledge of mortgages etc.

I know what LTV I'll be looking for, over what length and the extras like the fees applicable and terms attached (overpayments etc.), and I'm well on top of my own finances (a geeky accountant who uses spread sheets for everything in life!), so is there any need for me to pay for a broker?

Most lenders seem to have their products online and on comparison websites, but can a broker offer me something extra here? Could I be missing out on a materially better deal by not enlisting their services?

Any advice appreciated.



  • Brokers do sometimes have special deals with some lenders that you can't otherwise get, so no harm in trying them, shouldn't charge you if you don't go with them to take out the product.
  • Hi Rob7Lee,
    I didn't realise that you only pay if you end up taking out the product. Does suggest it's worth using one if that is the case, just in case they have access to a better product.
  • Only thing is not sure if all the deals are on the price comparison sites. A broker has a larger database I should think.

    Looking forward to the 'does anyone need a house in Maidstone' thread, 'I forgot to cancel a holding deposit on a new build'
  • We are currently in the middle of a move and have just organised our mortgage thru a broker. I also think of myself as being financially savvy but the broker got me a deal that couldn't be matched. Also a broker will have a special relationship with some leanders which will save you a lot of angst.
  • I'm a first time buyer and I went straight to the banks and got a pretty decent deal, but then my mortgage advisor pissed off to another bank and left us in the dark about it all. So I visited a mortgage broker who was local to me and they've sorted me a better deal and I'm getting 75% of the fee I'm paying them back as cash back a couple months after the house sale goes through. It's a no brainier really as like others have said they don't charge if you don't take their product.
  • I think it's worth it personally, a decent one will save you more than it costs.
  • I believe the broker gets paid a set fee by the mortgage provider, so you don't shell out (directly) and there is no incentive to sell you anything other than the best product for you in order to cash in themselves. Expect to be offered a ton of insurance. The ine we use is a it old fashioned but has always delivered an excellent mortgage
  • edited August 2016
    Strongly recommend using a broker. No fee, save you traipsing to bank branches, can access better rates, can access underwriters and push your case if you need to push LTV or salary multiple being borrowed. And they deal with most of the paperwork. I was well read on the best rates etc but having a broker made things much simpler. Can recommend Mike at Summit Capital Mortgages EC2 - small firm so you get a personal service.
  • Rob7Lee said:

    Brokers do sometimes have special deals with some lenders that you can't otherwise get, so no harm in trying them, shouldn't charge you if you don't go with them to take out the product.

    Spot on. Compare their deals to what you can get on your own.

    I thoroughly recommend London & Country. They've always been brilliant and don't charge any fee - well worth a look.
  • I used golfaddick on here for my mortgages and found him really good to deal with
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  • Thanks for the advice - sounds like a bit of a no brainer then. Glad I asked.
  • We used a broker and I got better deal direct with a lender than he did. Nationwide for instance can drop product fees and give cashback/free survey if you switch bank account.

    Worth seeing what a broker can find, but I reckon most of the time you can do better - unless you have a poor credit score or something like that.
  • I have had three mortgages and used a broker twice, I did get some decent rates with some pretty obscure companies (Accord Mortgages and some Northern bank).

    My current mortgage is with HSBC and you have to go direct, they offer the best rates and brokers are unable to use them. It was all pretty straightforward if you know what you are doing and read up.

    Worth watching out for early repayment penalties and also what the over payments limits are.

    I have always gone for fixed, but I think the trackers are great at the moment.

    Good luck with the new house.
  • I'd get a quote from a mortgage broker and then go looking around to see if you can beat it yourself. I tried playing a couple of mortgage brokers off against each other but they both came back with the exact same thing so I'm not sure there's much point.

    It's definitely not too hard to do it all yourself if you know what you're doing, or take the time to read up on what you're supposed to do. But the £300-£500 fee they charge is likely to be less than the amount they'll save you in the long-run.
  • Bumping an old thread.

    I'm hopefully going to be in the position to look for a mortgage this year but as a first time buyer I'm not really sure what we'll be able to afford yet. If it comes about that we haven't saved enough yet then we'll hold off until we have.

    So was thinking visiting a broker might be the best option to gauge what we kind of places we can be looking at? Is that the right way to be going about it?

    Will have a look at London & County for it unless there are any other options.
  • Are there no good northern ones?
  • That sounds like a good starting point for you to guage what you can afford. It’s free to sit and talk with them, after all.
  • That sounds like a good starting point for you to guage what you can afford. It’s free to sit and talk with them, after all.

    Great cheers, I wasn’t sure if that was the done thing or if, by going to speak to them, they’d expect me to be ready to proceed
  • Absolutely not. You can and should talk to a few to see who can offer you what. Different brokers can be limited to a pool of lenders while others have a different pool.
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  • Don't bother with the ones in the estate agent
  • Thanks very much.

    Any that you can vouch for?
  • A guy in Essex if you want his number, but unlikely to be any better than @golfaddick from what I've heard. You want someone properly independent who can look at the whole market. The ones in estate agents can often only look at a portion of the market. And they mainly just want to have a poke into your business. And wear slip ons with tassles on them
  • PM me.

    I am a IFA & a regulated mortgage broker. I don't charge fees & will usually take my commission from the fee paid by the lender. I have access to the whole market.
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