By Dom Spencer - June 3rd, 2024 Posted in Mortgage Guides No comments


When buying a home, securing a mortgage quickly is essential to move forward with your purchase. But how long does it actually take to get a mortgage, and what can you do to speed up the process?

Let’s break down the steps and timelines involved in getting a mortgage.

How Long Does a Mortgage Application Take?

A mortgage application typically takes two to four weeks to process. Several factors influence this timeline, including how busy the lender is, the complexity of your financial situation and how promptly you respond to requests for information.

Immediate Steps: Getting a Mortgage Agreement in Principle

The good news is that you can get an indication of how much you can borrow and obtain a “mortgage agreement in principle” almost instantly. This preliminary step involves providing information about your income and credit score online or over the phone.

While it’s not a formal mortgage offer, it helps you understand your borrowing capacity and demonstrates to sellers that you are a serious buyer.

Detailed Steps: The Full Mortgage Application Process

1. Finding the Best Mortgage

Timeline: 1 Day

The first crucial step is finding the right mortgage. Using a mortgage broker can expedite this process. Brokers like Your Mortgage People, can access exclusive deals and match you with lenders likely to approve your application. You can also search for mortgages yourself through comparison sites or by contacting lenders directly, but this can be time-consuming.

2. Getting a Mortgage Agreement in Principle

Timeline: Instant

Once you’ve chosen a mortgage, you can get a mortgage agreement in principle. This step is quick and straightforward, providing a preliminary loan amount based on your financial information.

3. Making a Full Mortgage Application

Timeline: 20 Minutes +

The next step is submitting a full mortgage application. A broker can streamline this process for you. You’ll need to provide various documents, such as recent bank statements, payslips and proof of earnings. Self-employed applicants need to provide additional tax documents.

4. Getting a Mortgage Offer

Timeline: 2-4 Weeks

After submitting your full application, the lender will review your information and conduct a credit check. This stage can take two to four weeks, depending on various factors. The lender will also arrange a mortgage valuation to ensure the property is a suitable investment. If all checks are satisfactory, you will receive a formal mortgage offer.

Why Does a Mortgage Application Take So Long?

The mortgage approval process involves extensive checks to verify your financial stability and the value of the property.

To speed up the process, have the following documents ready:

  • Three months of pay slips and bank statements
  • Last P60 and/or self-assessment returns (if self-employed)
  • Proof of ID and current address
  • Proof of deposit
  • Contact details of your solicitor and estate agent
  • Post-Approval: Completing the Purchase

How Long for Mortgage Offer After Valuation?

Once the lender conducts a mortgage valuation, it usually takes around two weeks to get the final approval. If the valuation is satisfactory and your financial situation is in order, the lender will issue a formal mortgage offer.

How Long Does It Take to Release Mortgage Funds?

After the mortgage offer and exchange of contracts, the completion date is set, and the lender typically releases the mortgage funds within 3 to 7 days. Your conveyancer will coordinate the transfer of funds to finalise the purchase.

How Can You Speed Up Your Mortgage Application?

Using a mortgage broker is one of the most effective ways to speed up your mortgage application. Brokers can quickly find the best deals and match you with suitable lenders. Additionally, having all required documents ready and promptly responding to requests can significantly reduce processing time.

How Long Does a Mortgage Offer Last?

A standard mortgage offer is typically valid for up to six months, whereas a re-mortgage offer usually lasts for three to six months. Some lenders have specific completion deadlines, so ensure you complete the process within the given timeframe to avoid re-assessment.

While the process of moving house can be lengthy, having your mortgage offer secured and ready to go can help move things along a little quicker. So be well-prepared ahead of time and use a professional to help and significantly streamline the process, allowing you to secure your mortgage offer faster.

To speak to one of our friendly, CeMAP Mortgage Advisors, click here to be taken to our contact form.

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