Questions to ask when selecting a mortgage broker



For the majority of people, signing up for a mortgage is one of the most important and significant decisions they’ll make through life.

The majority of mortgages last for between 25 and 30 years, making it one of the longest-running and largest debts most people take on. Before making such an important decision, it’s vitally important you seek professional advice – typically from an experienced mortgage broker.

Mortgage advisors have a wealth of experience garnered over multiple years in the industry and can help you narrow down the loan that’s best for you, at the best price. Perhaps more importantly, they will also steer you away from the wrong mortgage product for your personal circumstances and can also help avoid getting black marks on your credit score through having applications turned down. 

Finding the right advisor

Choosing to work with a specialist should be a pre-requisite when looking for a mortgage – but how can you be sure you’ve found the right advisor? Working with a specialist like Azembel, a mortgage advisors company, will help you complete the somewhat daunting process of finding and applying for the right loan, but here are a few basic questions which can help you work out if a broker is the right fit for you:

The overall picture – choose which type of advisor to work with: With the rise of online product comparison sites and software, there is an increasing trend in the mortgage industry to use automated systems to scour web-based mortgage products. While there are pros and cons to these automated services, most people find the decision comes down to whether they would prefer to work directly with a human.

Ask if this advisor is a whole-of-market broker: Many mortgage advisors work only with a select group of providers, meaning they will recommend only products from within a limited pool. Likewise, while it can often be tempting to approach an existing financial institution you already know – for example, your family bank or building society – you will again be limited purely by their in-house mortgage products.

Rather, a whole-of-market broker will scour the entire range of available mortgages to find the best deal for you, at the best rates with the best contract duration. The savings can be considerable so always check whether your broker only works with a limited group of lenders.

Check whether the broker can advise you on ‘direct-only’ deals: While advisors often have the advantage of being able to offer broker-only deals, they are also conversely precluded from other direct-only deals i.e. where the applicant is expected to make contact directly with the loan company. A truly impartial advisor should agree to at least discuss these other deals with you - and will ideally advise you if they’re aware that other, better products exist for your needs. However, it’s worth noting brokers are under no obligation to discuss direct-only products, so it’s highly likely you will have to do this research yourself.

Ask for comprehensive details of fees and charges: All advisors charge for their services but it’s essential you ask them to outline their fees before contracting them to work on your behalf. Basic fees are relatively simple to agree on an hourly or per-service rate but you should also check for any possible additional charges – for example for extra meetings or support.