It all starts here
Thanks for applying with us
We appreciate it takes time and effort just to get to this stage, but now you’re well on the way to buying your property or remortgaging your existing one.
We understand the whole process can seem a little overwhelming at times. That’s why we’ve put together this simple step-by-step guide to help you understand how we deal with your application at every stage.
The key stages of your mortgage application
Our mortgage team will thoroughly assess your application and any supporting documents to build up an overall picture of how you manage your finances. We want you to take out a mortgage with us but need to make sure you don’t overstretch yourself financially, so this is an important part of the mortgage application process.
Make sure your solicitor lets us know any key dates throughout the application process.
How we assess your application
We look at a number of factors to make sure you’ll be able to afford the size of your loan. We’ll take into account how much deposit you’re putting down, your incomes, household bills and outgoings, savings and any other financial commitments you may have.
To help us understand your financial position clearly and move your application forward, we may ask you for additional supporting documents. If you’re employed, these may include your payslips or up to three months’ bank statements, depending on the type of mortgage you have chosen. If you’re self-employed, we may ask for up to two years’ of accounts.
Completing your assessment
Once our team has assessed your application, checked any additional documents and are confident you’ll be able to meet the repayments, we then move to the next stage – a valuation of the property.
Whether you’re buying or remortgaging, at this stage we ask an independent surveyor to check that the property is priced correctly and suitable for mortgage purposes. You’ll be given a choice of what level of inspection you would like.
A Standard Valuation is the minimum check we require to progress the mortgage for house purchases and is required by law. A surveyor will inspect the property, highlighting obvious major defects that could affect the value, then compare the property to similar ones, taking age, condition and location into account. This information is used to write a valuation report, called a Standard Valuation.
If you’re remortgaging, there are a number of valuation options available. We’ll contact you to discuss the most suitable one for you.
Other survey types
If you’d prefer the reassurance of a more detailed survey, you have two options:
The Homebuyer’s report is a more detailed report, with advice on defects affecting the property value, and details of any likely future maintenance or repair costs.
A full Buildings Survey (previously called a Structural Survey) is useful for older, larger or non-traditional properties. It provides a thorough inspection and detailed breakdown of the property condition including any structural defects, necessary repairs and maintenance advice.
Choosing the right survey
It’s a good idea to chat with your mortgage adviser about the most relevant survey for the type of property you plan to buy.
Buying a property in Scotland
If you're buying a property in Scotland, please check with your solicitor or the seller that a Home Report has been completed within the last three months.
In their report, the surveyor will provide their independent opinion on the value of the property. If the report highlights that the property needs repair work, we may make you a mortgage offer, but retain an amount that reflects the cost of the repairs.
If the valuation is unsuccessful
Sometimes the surveyor may recommend that the sale price is higher than the actual property value, and downgrades the valuation. This can be quite common and may be down to many different factors including over pricing due to market conditions or structural issues with the property.
We don’t want you to buy a property that’s been over priced, so we’ll contact you to discuss the different options open to you. These may include asking the seller to reduce their price or increasing your deposit. Or you may decide on reflection that this particular house purchase isn’t for you.
Once your valuation is complete, we carry out our final checks before writing to you and your solicitor with our mortgage offer. This will include a copy of your valuation.
If you’re remortgaging, we may appoint one of our solicitors. The solicitor will give you an information pack detailing what happens next.
Changing your offer before completion
We make our offer based on the details you provided in your original application, such as property purchase price, loan amount and your specific mortgage product. If you want to make any changes to these, now is your final opportunity to discuss them with your mortgage adviser before completion.
If you are buying a property, once your solicitor has made all of their checks, they will agree the dates for exchanging contracts and completing the purchase with the seller’s solicitor. On exchange of contracts, your deposit is paid to the solicitor. You’ve now committed to buy the property. If the property is in Scotland you will have already committed to buy it once all missives have been agreed by your solicitors.
The last step is completion itself. This is where , if you are remortgaging, we either release the funds to you or to your previous lender to pay off the redemption amount and clear your old mortgage.
If you’re buying a new property, it’s when your solicitor sends us the Certificate of Title and in return we release the funds to them. They then pass those funds to the seller’s solicitor. Once the seller has received the money, the house purchase is complete. You get the keys to your new home. Congratulations.
Welcome, you’re now a NatWest mortgage customer!