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How to get your mortgage approved first time.

Getting a mortgage is a stressful and challenging process, so how much better would it be if you could get it approved first-time? Getting a mortgage doesn't mean just filling out an application, it also involves looking clearly and deeply into your income figures and credit history. On top of that, you could also need months' worth of bank statements and bills. Finally, you'll need to research and decide on your solicitor or conveyancer. With a long process like that, you're not going to want to do it twice. So, find out how to get your mortgage approved first time here!

1. Assess your credit score

The first step to getting your mortgage approved first-time is to have a high credit score. It's important to assess your credit score first as it can take months or even years to build, depending on where you're starting. If you have no credit history then it shouldn't take too long to build your credit score, probably around 6 months. However, if you have a negative credit history it could take much longer and a lot more discipline to build your credit score.

When lenders assess your mortgage application, they run checks on your credit report to see the history of how you've handled credit in the past. If you have a high credit score and a positive credit history, by paying back debts quickly and regularly, then the lenders will feel more comfortable approving your mortgage application.

You can keep up to date with your credit score by using 'ClearScore', just remember that it takes time to build and you won't see results overnight.

2. Review your spending habits

When assessing your application, mortgage lenders also look at your debt-to-income ratio. This ratio assesses how many outgoings you have compared to how much income you make in order to see whether you have enough money to pay a mortgage as well.

To assess this, lenders will review bank statements from a few months previously. If they see that you regularly overspend or are regularly in your overdraft before payday then they will assume you're not responsible at handling money. They will then disregard your application.

3. Pay down your debts

After you've assessed your credit score and spending habits you may have found that you still have debts to pay off. If so, it's time to clear these debts. Of course, this is much easier said than done but in order to improve your credit score, you must adjust your spending habits to eliminate the debts. It may be worth using any savings you have to pay them off, so you have fewer monthly outgoings and are seen to be improving your credit score. On top of this, you would also be improving your debt-to-income ratio!

4. Keep things consistent

Step 4 to getting your mortgage approved first-time is to keep things consistent. If your finances, and general life, is consistent then it suggests to them that you're in a stable place in your life to take out a loan as important as a mortgage. Therefore, it could be beneficial to prevent making any big life changes before you apply for a mortgage, such as starting a new job. Consistency is key…

5. Get all your paperwork together

Having all the relevant paperwork together, in order and ready to show the lenders, not only will make their lives easier, but it will also give them a good impression of you. You will come across as eager and organised. These documents usually include:

  • Photo ID that's in date and has proof of your address

  • Bank statements – usually from 3 months ago to present

  • Payslips – usually from 3 months ago to present

  • Any tax returns you've recently received

  • P60

However, make sure you double-check exactly what documents your mortgage lender would like to see, as sometimes these can change based on unique circumstances.

6. Speak with a mortgage broker

The final step is to speak with a mortgage broker. A mortgage broker can assess all these previous steps and tell you your chances of getting accepted by a lender. Then if your documents aren't quite there or aren't ready you know to wait a little while longer, and you have a higher chance of being accepted first-time.

Mortgage brokers will also find the right mortgage for you, with rates that accommodate to your budget, so you can be confident with any mortgage application you make.

As you can see getting your mortgage approved first time isn't as tricky as you probably thought. If you need any further advice on getting your mortgage approved or for mortgages in unique areas, such as self-employed or here on VISA, feel free to contact us on

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